by guest blogger Aurelie
When the weather is warm, an outdoor wedding can seem very appealing. One advantage is that renting space outdoors is cheaper and easier than renting space inside. There's also more room for guests, entertainment and activities. Receptions can range from casual cook-outs in the park to elaborately catered outdoor galas.
Another benefit is flexibility. You don't have to reserve space months in advance, and there's little competition for space. You also have more choices for your setting. Beaches, gardens and mountain tops are just the beginning. And outdoor weddings give you the option of interactive games like volleyball or baseball in place of dancing.
Although outdoor weddings can be subject to bugs, sun, rain, and uninvited guests, these problems can be minimized by renting a large tent or canopy sufficient to shelter food, tables and guests who prefer shade. Tents can also save the day in case of rain. A private or secluded spot will eliminate uninvited visitors, while bugs can be minimized by placing citronella candles around the wedding area and providing insect repellent for guests.
Outdoor weddings are a good choice if you are spontaneous, like to improvise, and are open to surprise. Just don’t drop the diamond wedding rings, as they will be much harder to find in the grass! But if you want a meticulously planned wedding that goes like clockwork, you may want to stay indoors.
Indoor weddings have the advantage of providing reliable shelter from bad or cold weather. If your wedding will be very large, it's probably best to hold it inside. Indoor weddings give you the option of formal dress, and you get to have dancing and a band. For very stylized and choreographed weddings with lots of structure, indoors is best. Indoor weddings are also more private. And some clergy will only perform ceremonies in a house of worship.
You can also have it both ways. Hold the ceremony in a church and have the reception outside. Some churches and chapels are situated on land you can rent for an outdoor reception. Guests can dress up for the ceremony and bring a casual change of clothes for the reception.
Or have your ceremony outdoors and hold the reception at an inside venue nearby. Parks and beaches often include or adjoin sites that can be rented for special events, and are close enough so guests can walk from one location to another.