What comes first…the chicken or the venue?

When planning a wedding, it’s hard to know where to start – it’s easy to be overwhelmed with a lot of balls up in the air. Once you’ve figured out where you’ll be hosting the big day (e.g. your current city, your hometown, a deserted island) and approximately how long you’d like your engagement to last, the next step is to decide upon your number one priority.  For some brides, getting married at a historic church with a reception in a castle is non-negotiable, but for others the most important aspect may be the entertainment.  Maybe you can’t imagine your wedding without that awesome ‘80’s cover band?  Whatever that priority is, let that be your anchor, and within a window of time you’ve selected, let that vendor’s availability help you determine the date of your wedding.  If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to get all of your first choices, but flexibility is key here. If you’re looking to get married in one of the most popular wedding months, especially in a big city, you may have to set your expectations accordingly and widen the net a little bit.  Knowing what to ask when choosing a venue is enough for a whole separate blog entry (and I’ll eventually get to that), but there are a couple of things to consider even before you pick up the phone.  How many guests do you plan on inviting? Do you only want a Saturday evening wedding, or are other evenings a possibility?  What about an afternoon wedding?  Any of these options can significantly reduce your cost (strictly due to supply and demand) and can be a great way to save money so that you can spend it elsewhere.  Sometimes another couples’ misfortune can be your windfall. Occasionally a venue will have a cancellation a few months out and are willing to really negotiate with you on price.  This is a great option, especially if most of your wedding party and guests are local.  The idea of pulling together a wedding in a few months may give you the cold sweats, but it can definitely be done – especially with the help of an experienced and organized wedding coordinator that can quickly get you on track.

Once you’ve picked your venue, you can breath a sigh of relief. You’ll now have an
answer to that age old question – “So, when’s the wedding?”

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