This year has been the surprise of a lifetime for all of us. For those of us planning weddings, our plans have been shaken up or completely thrown out the window. Coronavirus has made its mark and, unfortunately, is here for the foreseeable future. But one thing is for sure: love is not cancelled…so neither are our wedding plans! Those plans, however, require a little “tweaking” and imagination.
By keeping up with the ever-changing guidelines and restrictions of COVID-19, our certified wedding planners have taken notes and curated some super cute, but most importantly, responsible wedding trends to keep you and your guests safe at your wedding. Here are 3 wedding details we highly recommend for your COVID-friendly wedding:
1) Reception Seating Chart
I know, I know, you really hate to take the names of every aunt, cousin, co-worker, and that “plus-1” you didn’t actually invite and figure out who they would be comfortable sitting at a table with. But seating charts are now more important than ever. We now have to consider:
- the wedding venue’s capacity
- the size of the venue’s guest tables
- how many tables/chairs fit with social distancing (6 feet between tables, walkways, & chair spacing)
- which guests are from the same household
By assigning your guests to specific tables, you eliminate the confusion that many guests feel when trying to determine where them, their plus-one’s, and/or they children will fit at the reception. It also alleviates some discomfort your guests feel about being too close to strangers or members outside of their households. A seating chart allows you to design a floor plan that allows maximum social distancing and shows that you considered each of your guests’ safety. Have a themed seating chart designed by your favorite calligrapher or snag one of the many instant-downloadable options via Etsy and print yourself for a cute addition that is actually helpful!
2) Catering Serving Stations and Passed Cocktails & Appetizers
Self-serving is now a thing of the past! Make room for the shift towards more serving stations – like separate meat or carving stations deliciously fun nacho or funnel cake bars. Plan for appetizers to be served to guests at a station or passed by walking servers in individual serving sizes (like an adorable shrimp-n-grits shooter or pretzel dunkers). Buffet lines may still be acceptable, but still require servers to plate your guests’ dish. So why not allow your guests to stay seated or be served throughout the venue? Stations and passed servings give your guests flexibility in how many other guests they have to get close to and saves time from bottleneck lines. Your guests will be more comfortable and will most definitely vote your wedding the classiest!
3) Games & Other Alternative Entertainment
Incorporating social distancing is pretty hard to accommodate on the common 16×16 or 20×20 dance floor. When thinking of our wedding reception, getting down on the dance floor is usually at the top of the list. But depending on the size of your reception space, dancing may not be the most practical option for your wedding reception. Instead, consider including games and outdoor activities in your wedding itinerary.
Even before COVID made its grand introduction, games like cornhole, jenga, and life-size connect four have become a popular wedding must-have. Adding games allows the guests who aren’t that into dancing to still enjoy your wedding reception. You can have your lawn games custom-made as an awesome wedding keepsake that you and your family can enjoy for years. If you’re allowing children at your wedding, games are sure to keep them occupied (rather than the unexpected game of tag that might end in a spilled cake or a table of unwrapped gifts…). Don’t have much outdoor space at your wedding venue? You can still add non-physical games, like The Shoe Game or a wedding scavenger hunt. Planning under new standards and continuously changing restrictions can definitely be frustrating and overwhelming. But don’t let coronavirus steal your wedding bliss! Enjoy the wedding planning process, even if you have to restart or adjust. Consult with a professional wedding planner. And always remember the most important parts of your wedding: marrying your true love and safely enjoying a beautiful day with your family and friends.
Happy Planning, friends!