Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Ten Tips for Planning the Perfect Vineyard Wedding

The summer wedding season is here with June considered the most fortunate month to wed. And for a spectacular and romantic wedding, look no farther than the vineyard!

Vineyards are gorgeous in the summer with grapevines offering a beautiful backdrop for an arbor trellis, or a ceremony among the vines. Many vineyards also have amazing vistas with scenic valleys, winding roads, snow-covered mountains, or verdant woods to enhance the scene.

Here are ten ways to find that perfect vineyard and make sure your wedding is a sparkling success.

1) Check with different wineries on the types of bridal packages offered. Many have dedicated staff in charge of such events. If you want something a vineyard doesn’t offer, ask. Many will consider and accommodate, if the request is reasonable.

2) Find out what the winery supplies in the package price and what can be rented for an additional charge. Arbors, gazebos, wine barrels, chairs, tables, china, stemware, silverware and linens are just some items that may be included in the package, or may need to be rented.

3) Arrange for the vineyard site to be available during the wedding rehearsal. Vineyards need to be mowed, sprayed and harvested, so make sure you have access when you need it.

4) Ask about the exact times when you are allowed to decorate the wedding site and reception area.

5) Be sure you and your party have access to changing rooms and restrooms before and after the wedding.

6) Decide where the wedding photos will be taken and have access and transportation to the site lined up, if needed.

7) Discuss your wine needs and let the winery assist in selecting wines to pair with the food chosen; or offer a variety of wines that will appeal to most guests. Many wineries offer discounts to wedding parties that purchase a certain number of cases or bottles of wine. Also, find out if other alcoholic beverages can legally be brought onto the winery grounds.

8) Check the winery restaurant for custom menus and in-house catering for weddings and rehearsal dinners.  Many will prepare different dishes for consideration and selection.

9) Know how you (and your guests) are getting to the vineyard: By horse and carriage, in a wagon, on horseback, by golf cart, in a limo? And make sure that mode of transportation is permitted by the winery.

10) Check on alternatives in case of bad weather. Most wineries have an event center, barrel room, cellar or meeting room that will work in a pinch. Have a back-up plan. (Keep in mind; you can get special event weather insurance.)

And an added tip: Make sure the marriage license is valid in the county you’re getting married in.

A vineyard wedding offers the perfect touch of Old World ambience and modern flair. Make it a stress-free event with a little planning, and enjoy a beautiful wedding with lasting memories.

~ Joy