Outdoor Summer Weddings: How To Beat The Heat & Keep Cool

Summer tends to be the most popular season to say, “I do.” Those magical summer nights and ample vacation time lure many couples to schedule their weddings from June to September. However, summer is not always that romanticized season of late sunsets and cool evenings.

In many places, it can be blistering, humid and downright hot at a summer wedding. Keeping your guests and the whole event cool becomes a priority if you still want that summer affair to go off without a hitch.

In order to beat the heat and keep your summer wedding cool, there are several measures you can take that add more personality and whimsy to your wedding.

Personalized Fans

Summer Wedding: Personalized Fans

Photo from Etsy by abbeyandizziedesigns

If you are having any aspect to your wedding outdoors or in an indoor-outdoor setting, it is always a good idea to have personal fans for your guests. Hand-held fans for guests provide a nice breeze for those ceremonies outdoors or dinners under the elements.

One of the nice aspects to a personalized fan is that you can customize it for your wedding day. You can print your names and wedding date on the fan. It can then serve as a good memento for guests to take home and remember your wedding. You can hand out personalized fans as guests arrive or have them at their place settings and chairs depending on where you think your guests will need them.


Umbrellas/Parasols for a Summer Wedding

Photo from Green Wedding Shoes

For outdoor wedding ceremonies in the summer, the sun can be incredibly unkind. As it beats down on your guests, they can’t relax and enjoy your vows. Summer weddings call for umbrellas or parasols to block out the sun. You can order parasols in bulk in fun colors to match your wedding theme or design. In the process, your photographer will capture some great photographs of the crowd. A parasol is both stylish and useful at summer weddings.


Sunglasses are a must for a Summer Wedding

Photo from Martha Stewart Weddings

Even if you can’t beat the heat, you can at least keep the heat out of your guests’ eyes. You don’t want your guests squinting as you come down the aisle. For outdoor summer weddings, sunglasses can make for a cute favor or merely just an accessory to your wedding day. Whether your ceremony is outside or a portion of your reception, sunglasses can keep the sun out of your guests’ eyes and on to the wedding at hand. You can order custom sunglasses in bulk for your guests.


Summer Wedding Refreshment Ideas

Photo from One Wed

While it might seem like a good idea to have an abundance of alcohol for your wedding celebration, for a summer wedding, you want to be sure that your guests stay hydrated. An easy way to keep things cool is to have refreshments on hand like water, tea and lemonade. You can get creative with refreshment displays by assembling specialty jars and jugs in a set space. You can find a variety of beverage containers at Target and Crate and Barrel.

For ceremonies out in the sun, your guests need to have water readily available.  If you want to customize your drink station further, you can also create personalized labels on water bottles. In the intense heat, refreshments will keep you and your guest cool until the sun goes down.

Potted Plants and Flowers

Summer Wedding Decor: Potted Plants and Flowers

Photo from Once Wed

When I met with my florist to discuss my own upcoming summer wedding, she suggested potted plants for outside the church due to the sun. Many brides go with arranged bouquets for every aspect to their wedding. However, most flowers will wilt if the temperatures are too hot.

If most of your summer wedding events will have your flowers in the heat, it might be best to use some potted plants and flowers here and there to battle the sun. They will still hold up in the heat and add that touch of color that every wedding needs. If you don’t like the look of potted flowers, you can also consult your florist as to which flowers are the most heat tolerant.

Passed Popsicles

Summer Wedding Treats: Tray Passed Popsicles

Photo from Marry You Me

Most weddings feature passed hors d’oeuvres. Rather than bogging down your guests with heavy  appetizers, you can cool them off instead at a summer wedding with passed popsicles. If you are having a more fun wedding theme, passed popsicles not only help lighten the mood but they also keep your guests cool. Passed popsicles make for an inexpensive and easy way to help guests cool off during your summer wedding.

Back Up Cover

Wedding Tent for shade

photo credit: TruePhotography

One of the main concerns of a summer wedding is that the heat will be over powering and that shade will be hard to come by at the event. If any of your summer wedding events are outdoors, you need to have a back up plan in case the weather isn’t as perfect as you imagine. A back up plan involves having tents or sails on hand to create additional shade if necessary.

Every summer wedding should also plan on rain in their back up plan. While you might be trying to beat the summer heat, summer thunderstorms and rain aren’t unavoidable. For example, my summer wedding dinner will take place on a patio outside. If there is rain, the wedding venue has an indoor space that can be used instead. You need to consult your wedding venue about the weather, come rain or shine. You should always have a back up cover for either too much sun or too much precipitation.

Bottom Line

Planning a summer wedding

Photo from June Bug Weddings

Summer is a fine season to marry not just for the long days and open schedules. The weather can be at its most consistent, immune to snow storms and the like. However, it is a season that can heat weddings up until their guests are simply done with the whole affair. If you plan ahead with a few special touches to help cool things off, your guests will thank you and your wedding will be far more enjoyable for all.

Your Turn...

Have you had a summer wedding? How did you keep your guests cool?

Share your ideas with us in the comments below.

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