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As we are in the midst of this pandemic, what is on most bride’s and groom’s minds, how will this affect our wedding? Will we still be able to have 200 of our closest family and friends? How will we seat everyone if we have to abide by social distance guidelines? How will we dance, throw the bouquet, toss the garter, and toast to our new life together? These are perplexing questions and we just won’t know until the scientific experts tell us what is to be! Regardless of what the president or governor tells us each day, most Americans are relying on expert advice from the world of science. Many of your invited guests may not feel comfortable going into a social setting even though it has been cleared to open for the economy, but not exactly cleared for the safety of everyone. In all probability, your guest count may be quite different from what you had first proposed to your vendors. This may not affect certain vendors that you have contracted with, some will be on an hourly or daily basis, but some, such as your venue/caterer, cake baker, and florist, with minimums not being met, could destroy their economic goals. Talk to your vendors to make sure that minimums have been waived or reduced due to COVID-19. It would be very costly to continue the wedding as planned for 200 people when only 100 would be allowed to partake under strict minimum guidelines.

Let’s take a moment to step outside of the ‘Wedding Box”! We have had some interesting ideas come to mind. One idea from a future bride was to split her wedding into two segments. The first half being close relatives and friends for drinks and dinner, the second half of her wedding will be for friends other than family and older relatives. This second group would be there for dancing and late-night foods, probably younger, more friends than family. Of course, it will be difficult to tell some guests that they must leave at a certain time to allow the others in, but as we have stated before, everyone is expecting a change in their lives. We cope, we deal with it and we move on. I can tell you from experience, your older guests will love it!

Another idea was to have a food truck wedding, providing the venue would allow such, or allow the venue to create various stations that can be within social distance guidelines. Perhaps individual tents, along with creative seating and a huge dance floor. There will be other ideas floating throughout the internet, look to Pinterest or other wedding sites. In this current time, there are simply no bad ideas!

You may also want to think about rescheduling your wedding until later in the year or even next year if possible. Many vendors are allowing you to place a “hold” on a future date, thus, if your event is cancelled due to guest restrictions, or for whatever reason, you can easily slip into your new date. You may not get the exact date you want, but be flexible, those that love you will come, even if it’s a Thursday night, your guests will come! Just make sure that those you have contracted with are also available for that date. It would be unfair to simply cancel someone without the effort of allowing them to navigate their calendar to comply with your change. Most of your vendors are expecting changes at this unprecedented time, as often as this has been said, we are all in this together!

So at this point in time, it’s really difficult to say what the new normal will be. Or, will there be a new normal at all? I’m thinking there will be certain changes, Brides and Grooms will no longer have receiving lines, kissing and shaking hands with their guests. That will definitely die out.  Our social interactions will certainly change, perhaps we may no longer have cocktail hours, un-manned buffets, or large groups dancing, who knows? What I do know for certain is that the Wedding Industry will go on and thrive, making the necessary changes that social etiquette requires. People will still fall in love, marry, and celebrate, that is a tradition that will outlive all of us!