Wedding planning can be stressful enough without a global pandemic on your plate! Take heart; you are not alone! Every single one of us is facing this new challenge together. Today we wanted to offer some thoughts about planning your wedding during the coronavirus situation in Idaho.
Idaho has established four different stages of operations with specific details for each stage listed on the Idaho Rebounds website. We have learned that there is really no way of knowing how long each stage will last.
In this stage public gatherings are discouraged. A 14-day self-quarantine is suggested for those entering Idaho and non-essential travel should still be avoided. Churches can open but large venues are closed.
Gatherings of less than 10 people (with physical distancing and precautionary measures) are allowed. Avoiding non-essential travel and a 14-day self quarantine for those entering Idaho is still suggested. Hair salons & restaurants may open (with strict helath plans in place), but large venues are closed.
Gatherings of 10-50 people (still with distancing & precautions) are permitted. Non-essential travel without a 14-day quarantine may resume. Large venues still remain closed.
Gatherings of 50+ (you guessed it... still with social distancing and sanitation measures) may resume. Large venues and businesses may operate with distancing in place.
What it Means for Your Wedding
Following the governor's advice, "until we have targeted, case-based interventions for each infectious person, an effective vaccine, or effective treatment, we must maintain some level of community interventions."
This means that social distancing measures will need to continue for some time, even after all the stages of rebounding are achieved.
Regardless of when your wedding is scheduled in the future, some common reception practices may be different moving forward. Some of these might include the following:
- Avoid buffet-style food lines where guests will each be touching the same serving utensils. Instead, you might have designated servers or plated meals.
- Beverages may also be poured by a designated server to avoid having multiple guests touching beverage dispensers.
- Smaller guest counts will make social distancing more feasible and help minimize potential spread of the virus.
- More outdoor, open-air ceremonies and receptions can occur to help maintain social distancing.
- Set up more tables, space out chairs, provide hand sanitizer or hand-washing stations, etc.
- Retirement of the traditional receiving line, handshakes & hugs. If you're worried about social awkwardness have your Emcee or officiant announce social distancing guidelines prior to the ceremony.
Your family, friends & vendors are understanding, and all want you to have the best (safest) wedding possible!
Rescheduling your Event
Flexibility is the name of the game!
- If your original date is important, or you just want to be married as soon as possible (we can't blame you!) consider an elopement or small ceremony & hold a big anniversary reception in the future!
- If a traditional wedding is what you're after, you can postpone the entire wedding for a later date.
- Be flexible when considering your new date. It doesn't have to be the same season, or the same month next year. You don't need repeating numbers or a holiday weekend. Your date doesn't make the wedding, the wedding makes the date!
- As a rule of thumb, a non-Saturday reschedule date will give you the best chance of having all your vendors available.
- Keep guests informed by updating your wedding website and consider sending out "change the date" cards.
- Be flexible with your planning ideas but don't think that you have to change everything to accommodate your new season/date/location. Did you already order napkins with your 7.11.2020 date printed? Keep them as a nod to what once was! Have a sleeveless dress but moved your wedding to winter? Wear a shawl and it will be perfect!
- Along that same line, also be open to new ideas for your different date, especially when it comes to what florals may be in season.
- For those guests that may not be comfortable traveling or attending your wedding, plan on a video recording or live video streaming. Consider mailing them a program or favor so that they feel included in the festivities!
Newly Engaged Couples
If you're recently engaged and just starting to plan your wedding, remember to also be flexible with your wedding date. It's very likely that we will see significantly more non-Saturday weddings in 2021 due to the the amount of rescheduled events. Don't delay booking your venue and your vendors!
Be clear about everything that's included in your vendor contracts. What are their policies for rescheduling? What contingency plans do they have in place if they are unable to attend your event? Having clear expectations from the beginning will be helpful for all parties involved.
Give yourself as much extra time for deadlines as possible, and again be flexible with your wedding vision. Any vendor that deals with physical products may be experiencing some different-than-usual operations. Know how long it will take for your dress to be delivered and alterations to occur. Florists, caterers, bakers, and more all rely on regular supplies of products to be able to provide your final product. Be honest and open with your potential vendors about any concerns or questions you might have.
A wedding website is a fantastic idea for everyone! There are many free, and attractive websites out there like these from Basic Invite. They can even match your printed invites! Be sure to include the URL on your printed invitations/save the date cards so you can keep guests updated with all the latest information.
Love Will Win!
Focus on your relationship and your marriage. All the other details of your wedding are just that... details! Even when there isn't a pandemic, you can't control every detail of the wedding day. But you can move forward and make the best of anything that's thrown at you!
If there's one thing we do know, it's that love is bigger than this virus. Every hurdle you overcome makes your love stronger and more resilient. Love will win!