Vaccine Relief: Tips on Planning a Larger In-Person Wedding
Guys, it’s been a long time coming. 2020 was quite the year, and dammit if we didn’t make it through. Numerous games of CoD helped, even if it led to insane rage quits. You and your partner probably saw too much of each other, but you made it out with your relationship intact.
Let’s be serious: If you and your partner survived being stuck at home with one another amid a pandemic, the two of you can get through anything.
It sounds like we’re trying to say something, right? Like we’re hinting at something? Like we’re dangling a dollar bill at the end of a fishing line and tempting you toward the best prize out there? Well, it’s not a dollar bill, but it is a gold wedding ring we’re dangling over you. Still not getting it? We get it, bud. We’re all burnt out.
It’s time you get married. There, we said it. You deserve it; your partner deserves it, and damn if your family won’t love the celebration after living through this pandemic. You probably have a lot of questions, though:
- The pandemic isn’t over, even if the vaccination rollout is happening, so how’s that work?
- Should I just get married in my backyard?
- How many guests am I safe having in attendance?
- Will my groomsmen be comfortable attending?
- Does my partner feel good about the idea?
- Which is better: tux vs. suit wedding?
We’ll be your guide through it all. There are still a lot of unknowns related to COVID and the world, once it passes us by, but you shouldn’t allow it to hold you back any longer. However, we would be remiss to think this means you can go whole hog with restrictions being lifted. You still need to keep safety in mind. Let’s do a deep dive together.
Planning a Wedding
Let’s talk about the basics of planning a large wedding, without even considering COVID.
See everyone you can.
It can be difficult to see every one of your guests if you have a long guest list. Ask yourself: Did you know the name of everyone in your college program? Well, if you were a social butterfly or Van Wilder, you might have; otherwise, you knew a select group of people because you focused your attention. But you need to make sure you see all of your guests, even if it’s just for a few minutes for certain people in attendance. They came here for a reason, and you need to ensure they see you and get to interact with you.
Get others up and involved.
Don’t allow people to collect in little groups. People should be up and moving around, talking with others, dancing, celebrating! Find ways to engage your guests so they interact with one another. It’s important you make the night feel lively; otherwise, your large wedding will fall flat.
You might want to invite your distant Aunt Carol and Bob from Montana, but if you’re in Rochester, NY, that might be difficult for them. Consider where your guests are coming from and decide whether it’s worth the invitation.
Some friends and family wouldn’t miss your family for the world, and you should still invite them. But value other guests’ time and money. Travel can be expensive, and you need to think about how your wedding could impact their lives.
Understand the importance of your guests.
You want to invite everyone you’ve ever known, but do you really need everyone involved? Consider who your guests are: Are they someone you talk to on a regular basis or someone you knew in high school and haven’t talked to since? Is this a distant relative you see once every ten years or a family member you see every holiday? Take importance into account. It can help cut down on an overly bogged-down guest list—trimming the fat, so to speak.
Remaining Safe Amid COVID
Now, the big question everyone getting vaccinated asks is the following: Will I remain safe while vaccinated? CDC guidelines list the following tips to vaccinated individuals:
- You can be with other vaccinated people and not wear a mask.
- You can visit relatives and not wear a mask, as long as they’re not high-risk.
- You need to isolate yourself for 14 days if you’ve been around someone with COVID-19.
Now, wait just a minute. I thought I couldn’t get COVID-19 after getting vaccinated?
All right, here’s the big rub: Once vaccinated, you are safe from COVID-19, but that doesn’t mean you can’t carry it.
Carry it? You’ve probably heard the term “asymptomatic” being used during the pandemic. It means people who carry the virus but who do not show any symptoms. It’s part of the danger of the pandemic, and why masks are so important: You could technically be COVID-19 positive without showing symptoms; this means you can pass it to others, who might not be asymptomatic upon getting it—especially if they are high-risk.
Risks You Need to Consider
So this is the big thing when it comes to planning a large wedding, even with vaccinations being rolled out around the country: You still need to take precautions. You can be carefree if you want to, holding a large gathering without any COVID considerations put in place, but you’ll need to weigh the consequences—knowing someone got COVID at your wedding would be a heavyweight on your shoulders for the rest of your lives. So, what are the risks you need to consider?
- There’s a risk when being around unvaccinated people.
- Medium- and large-sized gatherings can be unsafe if unvaccinated people are present.
Wait? So there’s still a risk for my large wedding?
Let’s be real. COVID isn’t going to go away immediately; not until everyone is able to properly follow the rules and gets vaccinated—vaccination being the biggest thing. And how likely is it Uncle Arnold will go get a shot? You know how he is. So, what’s next?
What Comes Next?
The benefit of the COVID-19 vaccine is that it effectively prevents the symptoms of the disease, such as severe illness and death. If you come in contact with someone who is positive, there is a chance that you could develop symptoms yourself—as light as they might be. Worst of all, you could pass it on to someone else, vaccinated or not. This all might sound dour, and we’re sorry if we’re being a major buzzkill. But let us lighten the mood. COVID might not be going away, but you can still be safe and have a large wedding.
Wait, what? But what about the large-gathering thing?
So here’s the thing: We’re going to have to take precautions for a while. If your whole party is vaccinated, you can be more relaxed. If not everyone is, you’re going to want to err on the side of safety. But, either way, you should still plan with safety in mind and not take risks.
Encouraging Safety While Planning Your Wedding
Don’t throw your large wedding away because of COVID complications. You can still make the most of your wedding without compromising on the festivities.
Physical Social Distancing
Now, we’ve been social distancing for over a year, knowing that we need to keep six feet of distance between ourselves and others to stay safe. We’ve surely seen people at the grocery store who never heard of this rule and seem to be closer to us than ever before, but it’s in our best interest to keep this going.
CDC recommendations are now saying that the distance could shrink to three feet for children in schools, so we’ll see why that decision was made with time. But here’s the thing: You can hold your wedding and keep social distancing in mind. Now, let’s be honest, if we’ve been around others in the last year, we’ve found ourselves bending the rules with time. That’s bound to happen: We miss human contact, we want to celebrate life with one another. We get it, but try to set some guidelines for your wedding. Convince people to keep their distance from one another when possible, especially when it comes to any older relatives in attendance.
Another great thing to keep in mind is to have your guests wear masks. Yes, they’re annoying. Yes, they slide around on your face and are a pain. Yes, it sucks we can’t see each other’s expressions. But it is the safest thing to do, as it helps to stop the spread of the virus from one person to those around them. Masks remind folks there’s a pandemic happening.
If you want to go sans mask, that’s possible, but consider splitting your wedding into groups. This might sound awkward, but it’s a safe way to have many people in attendance while keeping groups safe. By limiting interactions, you can reduce the chance of the virus being spread between guests—if it is even present at all.
Hand Washing and Sanitizing
This should always be a rule of thumb for people, but your guests need to wash their hands and sanitize. Provide hand sanitizer all around your venue so guests regularly have a place to clean their hands. Whether they need to fix their mask, grab a drink, or get food, they can do so without the anxiety of wondering whether their hands are clean or not.
Maintaining a Safe Environment for Everyone
Cleaning and Disinfecting
If you’re holding your wedding ceremony and reception in a commercial space, you should hire some staff to regularly disinfect and clean almost everything. The extra cost might not be great, but it’s an exceptional way to ensure that your guests remain safe. Consider setting a schedule with the venue that defines how often certain areas should be cleaned and disinfected, such as the bartop, bathrooms, door handles, food serving utensils, etc.
Rely on Catering
Serve-yourself food is great, but it’s not the smartest decision during COVID—you don’t want guests interacting with food-serving receptacles or handling the same ladles, again and again. Instead, hire a catering service that will prepare and serve the food for you. This cuts out the middleman altogether, allowing you to party the night away without worrying about how germs will sit and spread.
Part of the issue of COVID is airflow: in confined spaces, COVID is able to easily spread from one person to another. That’s why ventilation matters, as it guarantees that particles are able to diffuse into the environment (and not our lungs). An outdoor wedding is the best choice for this time, as it guarantees that people will not be stuck in indoor spaces with one another—better yet, it’s perfect for the outdoorsmen.
Rethink Your Layout
Move your wedding outside for increased airflow? Cut down on lines for foodservice by having a catering service prepare and serve for you? Space out tables and encourage people to increase their distance between one another? Have sanitizing stations at various places throughout your venue?
Take your time when planning. Planning a wedding isn’t easy, especially with COVID still ongoing. Vaccinations will increase the safety of holding a large wedding, but it doesn’t mean that precautions should be done away with. With some forethought, you and your soon-to-be spouse can hold a safe, large gathering that allows you to celebrate the love of life. Who wouldn’t want to attend that after living through 2020?Discover Even More Boss A** Wedding Bands
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