Making The Most Of It
Different states have different laws in place pertaining to COVID-19, but many who are about to have a wedding have neither the luxury nor inclination to manage a destination wedding for that reason alone. So many brides and grooms are forced to contend with legal restrictions pertaining to their event.
Thankfully, there are things you can do to retain the event’s celebratory spirit. Here we’ll explore some things to think about if you’re planning a wedding during these uncertain times. We’ll explore things that would apply regardless of the strange atmosphere of 2021, and also a few things you can do to offset the restrictions legally.
1. Traditionalist Decor Is Still Applicable
One thing that can help offset the oppressive air of social distancing and related guidelines is décor which invites the mind to think about something else. To that end, don’t be afraid to decorate perhaps even a bit more passionately than would normally be the case. Regardless of COVID-19, the situation calls for it; so why not lean into that reality?
Some weddings favor more creative decorative arrangements, while others prefer to use traditional approaches. To that end, bouquets will probably never cease to be one of the top wedding trends. However, the sort of flowers you get may benefit from guidance. There are a variety of traditional wedding arrangements to explore; you might even combine what you like.
2. Outdoor Events Could Sidestep Certain Regulations
The Seattle Times says Washington State will lift COVID restrictions by June 30; but if your event is before then, look around at local counties. Some don’t always vie by state or federal guidelines. A great example of this principle in action is as regards sanctuary cities. There are counties and municipalities across the country who alternate social distancing enforcement.
The difficulty is finding them. However, if your “destination wedding” is just a few counties over, that’s a bit inconvenient. It might be better just to go to another state in that case. That said, you might be able to find some middle ground as per “outdoor” events.
In many restaurants, you can eat without your mask on. Wedding events have catering and beverages; so there is going to be some level of leeway here; it will depend on the event. If things are outdoors, that can help.
If the wedding party is interested in kicking against the goads, it can call the event a protest. This was a favorite tactic of many large gatherings in 2020. So don’t totally give up hope if the idea of totally masked weddings doesn’t appeal to you. Simultaneously, if the prospect of inviting such trouble into the event is too much, then simply abide by guidelines in your state.
3. Socially Distanced Seating May Be In Order
For some counties, cities, and states, it’s required that guests be seated in a socially distanced way. Restaurants will often skip a booth. The wedding event might do the same, if necessary. However, it’s worth noting that large wedding parties may ultimately require a larger venue for the event; and venue requirements may initiate restrictions.
4. The Virtual Wedding?
Probably the least desirable solution would be to conduct the wedding over Zoom or some other platform with a priest presiding over the new couple in one of the screens. This is an option, but it may not be good for the long-term wedding. If this is what you end up doing, why not just file the paperwork and have no event at all?
Still, many people are leaning hard into total socially distanced events through platforms like Zoom. That can be an option for some. It will certainly be the least risky and the least expensive.
The thing is, even with totally masked and socially-distanced wedding parties, there is going to be an increased risk of some pathogen developing. That’s always been the case with any gathering at any point in human history. Masks invite the wearer to adjust mask fit, spreading microorganisms. Outside a wedding party in hazmat gear, risk reduction is negligible.
It’s the legal angle that is really what puts such restrictions in place. So truthfully, the only real way to be safe, should the pathogen be a true concern for either future spouse or wedding guests, social distancing along digital routes is the only way. As a compromise, you could livestream an open event, and allow those with health issues to “Zoom in”.
Rising Above The Situation
It’s through building families that mankind is maintained, and this is chiefly done through marriage. Beyond the pragmatic angle, marriage is a beautiful thing and should be celebrated in the fullest bloom possible.
So whether you make your wedding of the destination variety to avoid restrictions, conduct it digitally, abide by restrictions with social distancing, look for legal avenues around local restrictions, or shop around for different local legal climates, you can find a way to have the ceremony you want.
Regardless which methods you and your wedding party deem most appropriate, proper décor for the event is fundamental to its overall celebratory spirit. Lean into that, and people will be able to rise above the situation for what’s immediately at hand.