Hints for a Beach Wedding

Top 20 Beach Wedding Tips
Licensing – Make sure you have it done...just a hint! And then, make sure to bring your license with you when you get married!
 

Permits – Scheduling with the City is necessary for use of public facilities.   You must give us ample time to notify the city and be prepared for disappointment if the beach, pavilion or mansion is already rented.  Start early.

 

What to Wear on the Beach? Brides wear all styles, lengths and colors, with or without trains and veils. Shoes are left on the promenade or beach entrance. Grooms keep their shoes on – it’s a guy thing. Consider bringing a bucket of paint brushes (the dollar store) for between the toes sand removal before strapping on those heels. Prevents walking and dancing blisters. Also, consider issuing or recommending flipflops or other beach suitable shoes for your guests.
 
Rehearse, Rehearse, Rehearse. Preferably at the ceremony location. Don’t show up at your own wedding and encounter chaos.
 
Do not under any circumstances watch The Weather Channel the week of the wedding. Let a designated person do it. Enjoy yourselves. The weather will be what it is. Make the best of it. It makes your wedding day story unique.  Some of the most romantic weddings had a little rain.
 
Assign someone you trust – preferably not a bridal party member – and give them total responsibility and authority to make the decision the day of the wedding to change the ceremony location in case of inclement weather.  This person will tell you and the groom where you are now going to be married – but only if necessary.   If you need to have chairs or other items delivered to the "other" location, you can simply redirect your chair provider.
 
Be on time. The day goes by so fast. Everyone is happier, especially you, if you have more time for those beach photos and more time at the reception. Be on time.
 
The No No No don’t go there list – No runners on the sand. They are treacherous and only make good wind sails. No PA systems or microphones. Let the ocean waves break and the breeze blow for the best sound affects. The wedding officiate knows how to project. Ask and "readers" you choose to speak-up.  Even calypso bands don't have PA systems... 
 
Memoriams – Consider readings, a dove or balloon release and that special song, ringing little bells, bubbles or a single flower toss into the Lake off the rock breakwall after the ceremony with the officiate. Honor absent, deceased or seriously ill family and friends.
 
Sand Pouring Ceremonies – What a wonderful way to symbolically unite two families with children from previous relationships into one new entity without intimidating the young ones. It is something they will always remember. And it is fun too! Each one gets to pour their own personal sand color. Also, sand castles, sculptures and sand events are great ways to unify a family.
 
Save unity candle services for the reception. Do it with the blessing before dinner. Wind and strong breezes can make it difficult on the beach. Do a sand pouring ceremony instead. Make the most of the beach and the sand.
 
Provide every guest a chair for the ceremony.  If that isn't possible, spread them out into groups.  Don’t ask your guests to stand in clumps on the beach. It looks very messy and chaotic. It can also look cheap. Provide an aisle for the bride, bridal party and parents. Your guests came a long way for you. Make them comfortable at your beach wedding. 
 
Protocol on the beach – Assign the groomsmen to ask the guests to be seated on the beach before the bride gets to the promenade or beach. Guests mean well, but get excited at the sight of the bride. Let her enter in peace and calm to the processional.
 
Be sure to coordinate your officiate and your musicians before the ceremony so that you are not the one queuing the processional, readings, musical interludes, sand pouring, dove releases and recessionals at your own ceremony. Remember once the officiate takes over the ceremony he/she has control of the guests, bridal party and musicians. Another reason to rehearse, rehearse, rehearse.
 
Rings – bring them. And keep them in small ring pouches rather than bulky ring boxes. Try not to drop them in the sand. Do not give the real rings to a ring bearer on the beach. Tie fake rings to the ring pillow.
 
Let your parents enjoy your wedding day with you. Don’t make them work. The bridal party is supposed to help with everything first, then look beautiful, handsome and have a good time second. That’s why they call them BridesMAIDS and GROOMSmen.
 
Parking isn't always convenient or available.  Encourage car pooling and limosines.
 
Bring a cooler to the beach filled with ice, bottled water and rolled wash cloths (the dollar store again). Great for hot days, trolley, the ceremony, and beach photos in the sun.
 
If the weather does not cooperate don’t forget to notify the officiate, the guests, trolley, limo, the ceremony musicians, the videographer and photographer. They are not psychic.
 
Most important of all is to….Have Fun on Your Wedding Day!