Once you reach the age when you’re ready to have a wedding of your own, you’ve likely attended your fair share of other couples’ weddings. This can usually give you several good ideas about how to plan and decorate your wedding ceremony, but most people don’t keep track of their ideas about the reception venue. Below, there are some key things to keep in mind when planning your wedding reception that will make sure it as great as the ceremony itself.
You want to make sure the reception is located fairly close the ceremony site. If your guests need to drive too far to get to the reception, you will likely see a noticeable drop-off in the number of people who show up. If possible, you want to have the reception site either at the same venue as your ceremony or only a block or two away; but if that’s not viable, you should try to keep it within a 10 to 15 minute drive at the very most.
Similar to the distance issue, you want to make sure the timing of your entire wedding is appropriate and that there isn’t a delay between the end of your ceremony and the start of your reception. You can open your reception hall to guests and give them something to do while they wait for your arrival. You don’t have to start dancing and serving food right when the guests arrive, but having some punch or other wedding projects to occupy them will go a long way.
Depending on what time of year you will be having your reception, you will want to make sure you’re taking the appropriate steps to control the temperature at the party. If it is during the hottest or coldest parts of the year, you may want to avoid an outdoor reception to stay courteous to your guests. Furthermore, you’ll want to make sure that an indoor reception venue has the proper climate control functions so that either the heater or air conditioning system can keep up with the temperature outside. Providing a comfortable environment for your post-ceremony celebration is vital; especially since people will be close together and getting warm already from dancing.
Depending on whether you’re having a very large wedding or a very small wedding, the number of guests you have will play one of the largest roles in your venue selection process. If you’re having a small wedding with less than 20 guests, you can easily get away with having a beach wedding or a ceremony in the gazebo of your friends’ backyard. If you’re having a lot of guests such as 200 or more, then a large hall will really be your only option. Knowing the size of your guest list as far in advance as possible will help you choose the right wedding venue without too much fussing about.