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Reception Ideas

Is this a smart idea?

When I first thought of this I thought it was amazing, now the more I think about it I think it might not be the best idea. So tell me what you think, good and bad. 

Renting a house on The Sound and having a late summer, beach wedding, bonfire, lobster bake and a pig roast for dinner, New England feel, semi casual, s'mores as a late night snack. I worry that it might be too casual, the lobster bake too messy. But another part of me thinks it will be a blast. Pro & Cons. Thanks.

Re: Is this a smart idea?

  • My brother had a wedding a LOT like this but it was on the Chesapeake.  It turned out okay; the food was great and people had fun.  But a couple things guests complained of:  1) TOILETS. Little bro should have rented portable restroom trailers that flush/have running water (not enough bathrooms in rental house for an event that size and crappy port-a-potties outside....it was incredibly gross and people haven't stopped mentioning it. 2) BUGS. Prepare to spray like mad and put down bombs for the bugs. 3) Rain plan. I can't stress enough how important it is to have one.  A tent in the middle of a lawn on the Bay would not have been sufficient if it had rained the way it did the day before his wedding on the actual day. They would have needed to rent a floor, sides, and tent. 

    Your event sounds fun. Just make sure big logistical issues are taken care of and it should be great.
  • Sounds AWESOME!  I love the idea of having a wedding/reception at a home, much more personal even if it is more on the casual side.
  • One more thing to think about:   where is everyone going to stay?

    It's probably a bad idea to offer to let a lot of people stay at the beach house that you plan on using for the reception.  It would be WAY too crowded, and usually in beach houses when you try to sleep the advertised number of people you end up with lots of people sharing bathrooms, sleeping on foldaways, bunk beds, etc.   Also, YOU really don't want to try to get ready for a wedding or have your wedding night in a house full of people.

    Also, places that are common for beach houses rarely have other good lodging options, which locks your guests into spending a lot of money on their own beach house, or trying to find someone else to share a beach house with, then they end up paying for a whole week when maybe they can only stay the weekend.   So please make sure there are some good hotel options nearby.
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  • I think it's a good idea, if that's what you want.  Only you and your FI can decide if it's too casual.  

    You will need to be clear when you rent the house with the owners that you are having this kind of event there, and tell them if you are going to put up a tent and bring in all the rental stuff.  Also, find out about any noise ordinances if you plan to have music (or even if you don't, people making a lot of noise could be an issue in some of these communities).  I would post on your local board to see if anyone has done this in the area you want and has suggestions.  There may also be a venue that would give you a similar feel while seeming a little more wedding-y, if that's part of your concern.  

  • I'm agreeing with PPs here. I don't think your plan sounds bad in theory, it sounds really pretty and like a lot of fun! However, this may be one of those situations where once you add up all of the rentals and take into account any civic codes or fines, you may end up paying more in the long run than you would with a more traditional wedding. That's not a bad thing, just something you need to prepare for. 

    I'll also second in a big way the PP who mentioned where your guests are going to stay. Staying all together sounds fun, but when you're trying to coordinate a million last-minute details, you're not going to want to be sharing a bathroom with two other people and then wondering when you can go up to your room after it's all finished. Not having time to myself would probably make me go a little nuts. 
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