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When Weddings Go Wrong: How to Avoid Day-of Disasters

  1. After a perfectly timed and beautiful ceremony, cocktail hour begins, and the guests in attendance chat and mingle, excited about the day’s celebration. The picturesque scene takes a turn, however, with the blood-curdling screams of a child who has just broken his arm.
  2. A beaming guest attending an outdoor wedding wanders to the bar during cocktail hour to enjoy a cocktail before dinner was served. Within moments, she is unconscious on the floor as heat-stroke takes its toll on her body.
  3. Your Maid of Honor, a crucial part of your day, has to cut your wedding ceremony short when she unexpectedly goes into labor and must be rushed to the hospital. The cake has yet to be cut.

The three scenarios above all have two things in common–each is an example of a wedding day disaster, and each has happened at a wedding that we have coordinated. So what do you do when a wedding goes wrong? Well, we have a few tips (and the experience to back them up).

  •   Stay hydrated.  One of the most common causes of wedding-day disasters (especially for outdoor weddings) is dehydration. Making sure that you have several cases of water, however, helps to minimize heat-related illnesses and injury. Similarly, if your wedding has alcohol, talk to your bartenders about limiting your guests’ alcohol intake if he observes that they’re on their third beer and have yet to drink a glass of water. If nothing else, see that signage advertising transportation alternatives are displayed at the bar.
  • Set up your wedding with guests’ health concerns in mind. If you know that you and your fiance have four sets of grandparents who have a hard time walking long distances without getting winded and needing to rest, you may not want to set your ceremony site at the bottom of a hill and your reception at the top. A guest who uses a weelchair may have a difficult time navigating a venue with three sets of stairs, and so likely will choose not to attend. Take a look at your guest list, noting any special accommodations someone may require, and stage your event appropriately.
  •  Have a fully stocked first-aid kit on hand. You never know what could happen, and if we’ve learned anything from Murphy’s Law, it’s that tragedy will strike when you are least prepared. Want some suggestions for how to supplement this kit to include decor or design disasters? Take a look at our list of essentials for a wedding planner’s kit. You’ll be ready for anything.

    (Photographer: Break the Mold Photography)

  •  Consider hiring childcare for your event. We all know that children, in all their energy and enthusiasm, are often less concerned with their own safety than they are with having the best time that they can. Unfortunately, this youth and vigor can easily lead to serious injury, or at least a major disruption in your day. Look into hiring a childcare professional (or designating a trusted family member) whose sole responsibility on your wedding day will be to keep kids safe and in sight. Believe us–we know a couple (and an unlucky ringbearer) who really, really wish they had.

(Photographer: JoPhoto)

The worst thing you can do in response to a wedding-day emergency is to be caught off-guard. However, by following our advice, we guarantee that you’ll at least have a course of action for how to proceed. And if nothing happens at all, then you can rest assured that the best day of your life really was the best that it could be.

Have any other tips for avoiding disasters during your wedding? Send them to us at info@customlovegifts.com! We’ll see you again next week!