How to party responsibly at your fall 2020 wedding

If you’ve been following along on our journey so far, you know we’ve done our research — we’ve read articles, we’ve talked to professionals, we’ve talked to our peers and we’ve run a guestlist-wide survey! And after all that, we’ve come to the decision that we are going to move forward with planning a wedding for this upcoming fall. I know — call us crazy — you wouldn’t be the first. Whether you’re in the same boat as us or you think we’re off our rockers, we encourage you to read on!

Before nailing down specifics, we decided to brainstorm solutions for how we can dance the Horah while also keeping people feeling safe and taken care of. Below are our very, very preliminary thoughts on how we can create an environment that make our guests feel simultaneously safe and celebratory, and most importantly, enables us to continue on with our celebration:

  • Host both the ceremony and reception outdoors
  • Preliminary research shows that the likelihood of outdoor transmission is much lower than indoor transmission
  • Provide face masks and gloves to all attendees, and place hand-sanitizing stations throughout the venue
  • Provide assigned seating during the ceremony and seated dinner for those attendees who want to maintain strict social distancing.
  • Avoid buffets and hor-dourves. Instead, our food would be limited to prepared plates (though of course it will still be fresh). This is to ensure that only the staff touch the food before it reaches our guests’ hands (and staff would be verified as COVID-free by the vendor before the event)
  • Drinks would also be pre-prepared — bars would simply be a place to quickly pick up a new drink, not a place to wait in line. We’ll eliminate standalone drink stations that require many people to touch the same handle
  • Depending on availability & status, we’ll also be on the lookout for enterprising companies that would rent out fast COVID-test machines, inspired by this and this

In addition to the list above, we’ve been keeping up with reopening plans in various countries to see how they handle reintegration of weddings and large events into society.

In Austria, cultural events with up to 100 people will be allowed starting on June 1, with that limit ramping up to 250 by July 1, 500 by August 1 and potentially up to 1,000 thereafter. It’s unclear whether this includes weddings and what precautions will need to be taken at the events themselves, but nonetheless, it’s encouraging.

In Israel, weddings with up to 20 attendees became permitted on May 10, and by June 14 attendee limits will be lifted entirely. However, this is being coupled with stringent rules: attendees will have to register beforehand, it may be the case that only “young” attendees will be allowed to dance, and a Health Ministry official will be present at every wedding to ensure proper compliance to national guidelines.

We’ve also been in touch with our venue and caterer, both have been developing their own precautions, and we wanted to make sure we knew about them ASAP so we could lessen the element of surprise and align our expectations up front.

In future posts we’ll share how our vendors are reacting to the major changes and how we’re working with them to ensure flexibility in our decision making to accommodate uncertain times.

If you’re planning a wedding, we’d love to hear from you! What kind of additional precautions will you be taking? What conversations are you having with your vendors? Feel free to reach out directly or comment below.

Stay creative,

Y&Z

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Yuval Yarden

Yuval Yarden

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Head of Community at Venwise, Mama to Baby Noa, Bachelor Nation Superfan