How to Make Guests Comfortable at a Summer Wedding

Guests at a summer wedding staying comfortable.

Summer weddings are wonderful. You get beautiful weather, extra hours of sunshine, and all the latest “song of the summer” jams to spruce up your reception playlist. However, summer weddings do come with one major drawback—potential discomfort. While summer does bring us longer days and clear skies, it also brings heat, humidity, insects, and many other uncomfortable elements.

If you’ve ever attended a summer wedding (particularly an outdoor summer wedding), you might have noticed that some guests get cranky or lethargic by the end of the event—or worse, they decide to leave early. No one wants that to happen at their wedding! This is why you ought to invest in a few treats that will keep your guests comfortable.

Offer Survival Kits with Sunscreen and Bugspray

A box of white fans for guests at a summer beach wedding.

We all know that friend who never remembers to pack sunscreen. No matter how many camping trips, outdoor concerts, or beach days you take together, you know that he or she will be a lobster by the end of the day. Honestly, you probably know lots of people like that, and odds are your wedding will be no exception. Help those forgetful guests by setting up a “Relief Station” somewhere in your venue. You can fill this table with everything they’ll need to survive the summer day: cold towels and hand-held fans to cool off, insect repellent, sunscreen, sunglasses, even parasols and wide-brimmed hats!

If you don’t want to set up a “Relief Station” at your wedding, consider giving out survival kits as party favors for your guests. If you’re going to get married during the summer, a little bag filled with bug spray, sunscreen, and a water bottle will be most appreciated.

Use Fabric Cushions on Chairs

Some aspects of summer, like the heat and the excess of insects, can’t be avoided. However, most summer weddings also feature uncomfortable elements you can avoid. For example, you do have the power to prevent your guests from burning their legs on hot metal chairs that have been sitting in the sun. All it takes is some careful planning.

When you start looking for rental chairs, try your best to find seats that won’t heat up too much. Fabric cushions will be much more comfortable than metal and wood, and they reduce the risk of burn marks on your guests’ hamstrings. Of course, if you can’t avoid using metal chairs, that’s OK; you’ll just have to make sure your ceremony space has shady spots for the seats.

Provide Cold Treats During Cocktail Hour

A server at a wedding holding a tray of refreshing appetizers at a summer wedding.

Summer is a season for cool, refreshing treats: iced tea, Popsicles, blended margaritas—you get the idea. These cold foods and beverages can be a great alternative to the typical hors d’oeuvres you find during a wedding cocktail hour. Instead of sticking to the more traditional bill of fare, get creative and look for dishes that are nice and chilly.

If you want your guests to enjoy the sweeter things during cocktail hour, Popsicles or cups of ice cream can be a great option. If you’re looking for something a little more sophisticated, consider Caprese salad skewers, mini servings of gazpacho, or a raw oyster bar. Or, if you want to keep it simple, an array of fresh fruit can be wonderfully refreshing! These options will keep your guests feeling cool in the heat of the day.

Set up Opaque Tents

Humidity is one aspect of summer that’s both out of your control and in your control. While you can’t change the humidity in the air, you can control the humidity inside your venue. This is especially true if you’ve set up a tent for your wedding ceremony or reception, as the kind of tent you use makes all the difference.

Do your best to avoid tents with clear plastic paneling. That plastic tends to trap heat, creating a greenhouse effect that will have your guests really feeling the heat by the end of the evening. You’ll end up with lethargic guests, wilting flowers, and drooping curls. (No one wants that!) Instead, opt for a tent with opaque paneling, and keep the sides open for a constant breeze.

Have Misters or A/C Units on Hand

Sometimes your wedding day falls on a real scorcher, and there’s no choice but to pull out the big guns. Renting mister fans or portable A/C units can help keep your guests cool no matter what Mother Nature decides to do outside. Of course, misters don’t come cheap, and it may be hard to find a last-minute rental (especially during wedding season), so make sure to check the temperature forecast and plan accordingly.

With these tips, you can make sure you have the “coolest” wedding in town—and your guests will thank you for it!

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