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Features to look for in an outdoor wedding venue

Couples will remember their wedding day for the rest of their lives. The day a couple says "I do" is often the culmination of months of planning, and much of those efforts are dedicated to creating a special ceremony that will create cherished memories.

The choice of venue is a significant decision, and today's couples have more options regarding where to tie the knot than ever before. Many couples on the cusp of getting hitched are looking to do so in the great outdoors.

Nature took center stage at weddings in 2020, as many couples moved their ceremonies outdoors to adhere to government guidelines issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Couples considering outdoor venues for their weddings can look for certain features that can make the big day as special as it is safe.

· Backdrop: An awe-inspiring backdrop, whether it's the natural beauty of a mountaintop or a beach with the sound of ocean waves crashing into the shoreline, can make for great photos and a ceremony couples and their guests will never forget.

· Plan B: Couples may work hard to ensure everything goes off without a hitch, but ultimately the elements are in control during outdoor wedding ceremonies. So, couples hoping to host an outdoor ceremony may want to look for sites that have a readily accessible indoor option just in case Mother Nature is not cooperating. Many reception venues are capable of hosting indoor and outdoor ceremonies as well as dinners, so this might be the best option for couples who want to have outdoor weddings during times of the year when weather is typically inclement or unpredictable, such as winter, early spring or late fall.

· Lighting: What's awe-inspiring in person may be hard to capture on film. Couples may want to bring their wedding photographers along as they search for outdoor ceremony sites. Professional photographers can help couples determine which sites will make for great photos and which ones might make it hard to capture the beauty of the site's surroundings.

· Accessibility: Couples will want to make sure all of their guests can be there to witness the ceremony. Before choosing an outdoor ceremony site, consider those guests who may have mobility issues, such as grandparents. A midday hike, up a mountain might be doable for most guests, but it may exclude others from witnessing the ceremony. Try to find an outdoor ceremony site that's readily accessible to everyone. In addition, keep in mind that the more accessible a site is the easier it is to get away and get indoors if the weather takes a sudden, unexpected turn for the worse.

Outdoor weddings are wildly popular. Couples who find outdoor ceremony sites with certain features may rest easier knowing they and their guests are safe and sound no matter what Mother Nature has in store come the big day. 

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