Take it Outdoors!

So you are planning an event and really want to have it outdoors. Maybe it’s a family reunion. Maybe it’s a church gathering, or a corporate event. Following these simple steps will help you plan a successful event!

First, start with the basics. Name your event and secure the date and time. Identify your budget and the total number of guests expected to attend. How are you planning on communicating the event? Social media? Email? Word of mouth? Advertising? Thinking through these things will help you with the following steps.

Securing your vendors. If you are planning on using any outside service providers, make sure you secure contracts with them. The venue you are using might be able to help suggest vendors they recommend. Make sure your plans fit within your budget. Confirm arrival times and responsibilities a week before the event to make sure there are no unexpected issues.

Have enough help. Don’t be afraid to ask for volunteers or family members to help with certain tasks. Ask them early and assign responsibilities before the event so if there are questions and concerns, you can address them with time to spare.

Make your lists and check them twice. What are your set-up needs? Are there any gaps in the delegated tasks or things you haven’t planned for? Parking? Electrical needs? Decor? Signage? These are all things to plan for and have them completed in time.

What can be handled before the event? The last thing you want is to be doing everything the day of the event.

Arrive early. If you are spearheading the event, getting there early will help you organize the team and be ready for any surprises.

Enjoy the day. You may feel overwhelmed with the responsibilities, but make sure to mix and mingle with the guests. You want to enjoy the fruits of your labors!

Follow up! If this is an event you want to repeat in the future, make sure to gather information from vendors and guests so you’ll know what worked and what didn’t work — this feedback will help you in planning future events.

Send thank-you notes! A handwritten thank-you note sent through the mail is still the most genuine way to express gratitude to vendors and helpers. This will help solidify relationships in a positive way and let people know how much you appreciated their help in making the event a successful one!

Dogwood Downs is the perfect place to plan any outdoor event. If you are planning an upcoming event, we’d love to talk with you about how we can make it perfect!

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Why Plan an Outdoor Wedding?

When trying to decide where and when to plan your wedding, one of the biggest questions is: Will it be inside or outside? Some of the pros of having an outdoor wedding are:

  • Having a beautiful and natural backdrop. It’s hard to beat the beauty and elegance that nature provides! There is almost nothing more beautiful and breathtaking than a natural landscape as your backdrop.

  • There’s less time and effort needed for decorations. That doesn’t mean the decor is not necessary or unwanted — but because you already have the background, the decorations can be simpler with less places to have to add the decor. This can also be a drawback if you are wanting to use extensive sets and decorations, so it will depend on the kind of wedding you are seeking.

  • You can usually fit more guests in a larger space. If you have a large guest list, you can accommodate more people in an outdoor venue than an indoor space, for less money.

  • Wedding photographers have more freedom and space to move around. Inside spaces may prohibit the kind of shots they can get of the ceremony and reception. An outdoor space features ample space and more creative natural backgrounds to give you great photos!

  • Natural light provides better lighting. Depending on the photographer, having sunlight will add an incredible vibrancy to your photos. Of course, there are risks involved with using an outdoor space. Rain or other inclement weather or extreme temperature change is always a possibility no matter where you are. If your heart is set on being outside, contingency plans should be made just in case that happens on your special day.

At Dogwood Downs, we think our lovely, Lowcountry setting is perfect for a wedding and will do all we can to make sure it’s the wedding of your dreams!