If you love the outdoors, are on a tight budget but plan to have a lot of guests, or you simply want something different for your wedding, then a picnic wedding might just be for you. Summer or spring are the best seasons to have the perfect picnic. You may even want to have both the ceremony and the reception outdoors. Here are some ideas to help you plan that perfect picnic wedding.
Where to have it?
The picnic-inspired wedding reception can be anywhere outdoors that will hold the number of guests you plan to invite. A large backyard with lush grass or that can accommodate many picnic tables. If you do not have access to a large backyard then a park is the other alternative. Most cases you will just have to pay a fee to the local council, a fraction of the cost of hiring out a venue.
What food to have?
Having picnic baskets is the obvious choice. Purchase picnic baskets, one or two per group or “table”. Fill these up with the typical picnic foodstuff such as sandwiches, pastries, fruit, snacks and drinks.
Packaging grab-n-go boxes filled with plenty of picnic goodies is another option. Guests can collect them when they arrive at the reception.
Couples may want to have a buffet where they set up tables bursting with food; stations for fruit, drinks, appetizers, hot and cold food and desserts. Guests can serve their own plates and then return to their seating area to enjoy their spread.
On summer or hot days, it is always a good idea to serve lots of cold drinks, and summer inspired foods like watermelons, ice-creams, gelato and fresh lemonade to refresh your guests.
What about the arrangement and decor?
Have picnic blankets laid out for guests to choose their spots. Large colourful cushions can be added for additional fanfare. Some scattered chairs for those people that may have trouble getting up and down from a blanket would be appreciated. If you want structured seating, picnic tables can be used instead of blankets or rugs. Shade guests from the sun under large umbrellas for each table or blanket.
There are several ways to adorn the reception area. If your wedding goes on throughout the night, fairy lights hung around the surrounding trees always looks beautiful and lights up the area. Lanterns also do the same job whilst birdcages pretty up the area.
What activities should we have?
Entertain kids of all ages with a variety of outdoor games to play throughout the reception.
Start a game of croquet or any other ball games. Cheap yet fun activity ideas are bubbles, card and board games, and dancing at the picnic. But really, guests usually appreciate when they can just relax and catch up with friends and family at the party.
A photo booth is a popular idea. You can make your own DIY photo booth or you can hire one. Either way, guests will have a lot of fun posing in different props such as hats, moustaches and costumes.
If the event goes on through the night, a fabulous idea and something different is to have a movie night under the stars using a large projector. Something ususual is to set up a stargazing station where guests can enjoy the stars using telescopes.
All these ideas can make for a fun, different and inexpensive picnic wedding that the couple and their guests can really enjoy and that will no doubt be remembered.