Navigating planning (& re-planning) your wedding during a pandemic
There’s no hiding the fact that planning an event during a pandemic is stressful and with regulations constantly changing, we thought it would be beneficial to write a blog letting our readers know what we’ve learned from the last 8 months.
COVID19 updates and the constant change of rules & regulations enforced in our hometown are at the top of everyone’s minds when planning their events. Will he shut down again? Will we move back a phase? What will happen with the money we’ve put down thus far? Will we still need to wear masks in a year? ETC. It’s been a rollercoaster of a ride but the most important thing you can do to stay prepared, as you plan your big day, is to read and get all the information about the newest regulations for your state or where you intend to hold your wedding or event. Check if there is a limit on mass gatherings, and if so what that is, check to see if there’s a cut off for consumption of alcohol, are they regulating outdoor events differently than indoor? The most important lesson we’ve learned is to be patient. As hard as this may be, wait until the Governor has announced the new rules & regulations so that the Guidelines are spelled out online. The guidelines can be found on your state governor’s web page.
Vendors & Venue
By waiting for the Guidelines to be published, you will give your vendors enough time to digest the new information, and provide them an opportunity to prepare alternative options for you. We ask that you be patient with your vendors and your wedding & reception venue. They hear the news and announcements at the same time as you do, so give them time to come up with the next steps. They need time to meet with their team, speak with other local wedding vendors, and with the local health department – all to figure out how to best serve their clients and abide by the newest regulations. If you decide to call or email, then be aware you may not get the answers immediately especially if you call the day of the newest regulation announcement. Your vendors and venue do not have access to other forms of information and get the same information as you, so give them time and expect to wait for answers as they try to navigate cancellation policies, refunds, transfers, and guidelines. Our biggest tip here is to try to follow the following:
– If your event is scheduled to take place within a few days or up to 1 month from the regulation announcement then contact your vendors & venue immediately to schedule a call for the following afternoon.
– If your event is scheduled to take place within 3 months, we recommend that you email your hired vendors (most importantly your venue manager) to schedule a day and time to discuss your options. If you have your own plan in mind, be sure to express that in your mail. This will help your vendors focus on your desired option and give you more information on how to best move forward.
– If your event is scheduled to take place in 4 to 6 months, try not to panic!!! Try to stay positive, hope for the best, and prepare for the worst. In order to do this, we would recommend reaching out to the venue to see how they’re handling the current regulations. This way you can prepare on your own, knowing how they’re moving forward with the current regulations, and create your own back up plans.
– If your event is over 6 months away, we suggest you wait a couple of weeks before you contact your vendors or venue. Give them an opportunity to let the dust settle, and then reach out to them to hear how they’ve handled the current regulations so you can also create a backup plan in case the “worst case scenario” happens. But remember, with regulations changing sometimes as quickly as weekly, their best information to you will be updates on how they’ve handled things thus far.
Your vendors and venue are working tirelessly to work with the health department and following all state and local guidelines to be able to present all available options for you to make sure your dream day comes true – even amidst a pandemic. . Our clients are and always will be our top priority, so rest easy knowing that the Lesner Inn (and all of your wedding vendors) will do everything in their power to make sure your day is unforgettable!
Do my guests have to wear a mask? Will they still attend? What if my guest count drops because some guests are scared of COVID19 or can’t travel to the wedding due to travel restrictions?
This is YOUR wedding. YOUR big day. YOUR special day. Your guests will be understanding as they know these regulations are out of your hand. They will sympathize with you for having to plan during a pandemic.
To keep your guests in the loop and provide adequate time for them to make plans, we recommend providing constant updates on your your wedding website, Facebook page, email list, etc. Updates could include information about a date or time change, and COVID19 updates (think venue rules with masks, shuttle services, alternatives to ceremony through a live stream, etc.)..
Your guests may begin to reach out to you once they hear about a regulation so we recommend posting an announcement such as “We are aware of the new regulations & you will hear from us soon! Hoping for the best! Xoxo”. This lets them know that you’re working on it but also giving them a friendly reminder not to overwhelm you with questions you may not have the answers to.
As a small business, The Lesner Inn’s team will work day and night to make sure we have all the information so we can best serve each and every one of our couples. We know and understand the importance of a wedding, reception, birthday, anniversary and every other event in between. We love our couples and we love what we do. We’ve been absolutely devastated by how COVID19 has affected our clients, which is why we work to make sure we are able to give you the correct information, the best options, and are in constant communication to find the best solution. Each case is different, so if you ever feel overwhelmed or have any questions throughout the process don’t be afraid to reach out to your Lesner Inn manager via email with your concerns. We will work hard to provide the answers you need.
Thank you to our couples… Thank you for your patience as we navigate these unchartered waters and believing in us as we search for the answers. Thank you fortrusting us in creatingyour perfect day, even when it looks a little bit different because of COVID. We love what we do and we’re always here if you need us during this time!
A message from the Lesner Inn
We have been steadfast in our approach to be proactive, responsible and compassionate as the updates of COVID19 have unfolded. It has an always will be our priority to do whatever possible to ensure the wellbeing of our guests and everyone in our Lesner family. Our city and nation are facing unprecedented threats, but we are confident that we will get through this together. And we will do our part to be a part of the solution to an unfathomable crisis.
We understand how challenging and stressful it is to be planning an event right now, so please use us a resource during this time.
We hope you stay safe and healthy during this stressful time.