Let’s start by saying that we believe it’s important to follow local and federal guidelines about gathering during the COVID-19 pandemic. We know this is challenging, but as a team, we’ve dedicated ourselves to implementing recommended precautions and offering solutions to our clients over the last few years, and we’re thankful we did. Although some have had to cancel or reschedule in the past, no one wants to reschedule their wedding day. Luckily, we’ve had successful, safe events over the last few years even as things have seemed to change from day to day. As news and guidance continues to evolve, we have some great tips for how to adjust your wedding plans without canceling your big day.
Onsite Testing of Staff & Guests
The majority of our events now offer onsite testing of both staff & guests. This is the single biggest change that allows events to continue on as planned because testing has become more available over the years. Providers like EventScan, send out a team with rapid tests to ensure that every vendor and guest tests negative before entering the venue. Just be sure to communicate this to your vendors and guests so they can be sure to arrive early so it does not derail your day of timeline!
Create More Space Between Guests & Offer Household Seating
Staggered seating during the ceremony allows more space between guests and actually looks quite beautiful. During the reception, we strongly encourage couples to add a couple of extra tables and spread guests out giving them more space for comfort during the reception. Also, if you weren’t planning to do a seating chart, this may be the time to implement one. Ensuring that guests are seated with other members of their households can minimize everyone’s overall exposure, especially while eating. This also allows guests to choose their interactions with others, allowing everyone to participate at a level they feel comfortable with.
Supply Health-Promoting Wedding Favors
As quickly as the hand sanitizer and face mask businesses have scaled up to society’s new demands, suppliers have started offering customized versions of these products. Whether you have your names printed on them, or something cute like, “Spread Love, Not Germs,” you can make health precautions serve a dual purpose as adorable take-home favors.
Move Your Wedding to an Outdoor Venue
Luckily in Austin, we have a myriad of venue options available. There are some incredibly beautiful outdoor spaces at places like Star Hill Ranch, Umlauf Sculpture Garden, & the Wildflower Center. We also have a wonderful climate for outdoor events, getting 300 days of sunny weather in Austin each year! If the weather is less than ideal on your big day, tents, heaters, or fans can be brought in to ensure your guests are comfortable.
Hire Companies That Keep You Safe
We’ve made the Caterer’s Promise to ensure that we protect our clients as much as possible during events. This means that our staff is following strict safety, sanitization, and serving procedures. Learn more about our precautions here. Simply hiring safe vendors will do a lot of the work of keeping guests safe for you.
Require Guests to Wear Masks
Mask wearing may have become a hotly debated political topic, but your wedding is still your special day! Requiring guests to wear masks at your event ensures that everyone can attend without feeling uncomfortable or anxious. As a caterer, we require that at a minimum guests are wearing masks as they approach food and beverage areas.
Minimize Shared Objects & Spaces
Providing a plated meal service or individually portioned food items for your guests is a great way to minimize contact. The fewer shared surfaces guests touch, the lower the chance that germs will spread widely through your crowd.
Additionally, creating separate space like lounge areas and small vignettes allows smaller groupings of guests instead of everyone gathered on one large dance floor. This also looks beautiful and encourages a cozy and more intimate ambiance.
Give the Option to Attend Virtually
No matter how safe you try to make your event, there may be people who aren’t comfortable attending. Organize a Facebook Live or some other video stream of your big day for those who can’t join. This can be more memorable than you might think because we can arrange to provide the catered meal to your guests at home or smaller grouped locations around town!
Having been a top Austin wedding caterer for over 10 years, we know these are especially crazy times for having a wedding. If you’re a bit bewildered by all of your options, reach out to us so that we can help guide you to the solutions that will work best for your big day.