Barn Weddings 101

Barn Weddings 101

As catering veterans, we’ve done our fair share of barn weddings. They’re lovely, gorgeous and magical, and we eagerly embrace the challenge that each new location presents. We take pride in the fact that we can set up a kitchen anywhere! We know how to ensure that your canapés and dishes are perfectly cooked and prepared, whether you desire an informal BBQ, buffet style meal or elegant sit-down affair. Experience, the best Executive Chef and kitchen staff in the biz, culinary know-how, organization, and timing are the reasons why when you hire us for your barn wedding, you can relax knowing it’s going to be done right.

A Crash Course In Barn Weddings

While we’ve got the catering side of barn weddings covered, we’d love to share valuable information about other important aspects of these rural affairs with you! We hope it’ll help!


Poetic Impressions

Rural weddings are wonderfully enchanting affairs.

The setting evokes an Edenic lushness–a verdant fecundity. It thrills with life, renewal, and hope–all themes that go hand in hand with matrimonial celebrations.


The rustic elegance, the juxtaposition of untamed nature and carefully curated artifice delights the senses and, when carried out properly, invokes a visual Wordsworthian poem; a Monet painting brought to life.


Pinterest Perfect

Indeed, no matter how beautiful an indoor venue, it’s rarely a match for a golden wheat field bathed in the warm glow of the setting sun–not to mention that it makes for kick-ass Instagram posts (#nofilter)! Which leads to our next point…

You’ve spent hours (somewhat obsessively), scrolling through your IG and Pinterest feeds scouting out the most idyllic rural wedding posts for inspiration. That’s not a bad thing in itself, but it’s important to remember that (like so much of social media) those photos don’t tell the whole story. What you’re seeing is a very carefully controlled and professionally shot moment in time.


Before you Buy the Farm (so to speak)

To be clear, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with seeking out aspirational images, but we feel that it’s important to have all the facts before delving into a rural wedding.


We’ve had lots of experience catering farm and barn weddings over the years, and would love to pass on a few helpful hints to those with rural and rustic wedding reveries!


The Elements

The Nature of Things

Rural weddings often convey the feeling that we are in harmony with nature and the cosmos. However, Nature often doesn’t get the memo and fails to sing Kumbaya with us. Because of this, when opting for an outdoor wedding of any kind, it’s best to adhere to the Boy Scout Slogan: Always Be Prepared. We suggest you may want to keep repeating that as your mantra!


Throwing Shade

A natural setting for your nuptials can certainly be romantic, but because you’re not in a controlled environment of a traditional venue, you’ll need to prepare for the elements. To avoid having guests, or worse, the bride or groom, faint from heat stroke, you’ll want to make sure there are designated shade areas. Event rental companies such as Lonsdale Events can provide a variety of tents to accommodate the number of guests attending.

Additionally, a fun way to keep your guests from becoming lobsters is to provide straw hats and sunglasses. Not only will this ensure that you’ll have happy guests, but it shows that you’re thinking of them on your big day! The only lobsters on your wedding day should be the kind served with melted butter!


Hydration Stations

Encourage your guests to drink water, by providing water stations around the venue to ensure that your guests stay hydrated. Mingling in the hot sun is a sure fire way to become dehydrated!


Getting Caught in the Rain

While you may have checked your almanac for Aug 15, 2018, there is still always that possibility that it may rain on your wedding day.  An easy precautionary measure is to rent tents to cover the most important areas of your wedding. Another great idea is to buy or rent umbrellas for your guests so they can still enjoy the day and keep their hairdos and makeup on point. Check with event rentals companies like A and B Party Time Rentals for all your needs.


Nature’s Uninvited Guests

Having an outdoor wedding means that you’ll most likely have to contend with Nature’s wedding crashers–bugs and mosquitos. It’s kind of hard for anyone to enjoy a wedding if they are being eaten alive by mosquitos or flies. A great way to ensure that you and your guests are not being eaten like canapes is to provide travel-size bug and mosquito repellent. It’s  simple and easy and may just save your wedding day!


Allergies Alert 

The desired reaction you want your guests to have upon seeing your wedding venue is not an allergic one!  Farm weddings expose guests who suffer from hay-fever with many potential obstacles. Long grass, wheat fields, and hay, for example, can cause mild to severe allergic reactions. Also, many farms have livestock nearby, which can also trigger people’s allergies. It’s best to remind guests to bring allergy medication with them and make sure that you have plenty on hand at the wedding for those guest who may have forgotten to bring their own. The only blurry eyes should be from your guest’s tears of joy!


The Road Less Travelled

A major factor to consider with a rural wedding is accessibility. You may have found the perfect place to hold the wedding, but if it’s very much off the beaten path, your guests may feel beaten up by the time they arrive.

Seniors and guests with disabilities may also find getting to the destination a challenge. Aunt Penelope, for example, may have difficulty attending your wedding because her walker can’t be pushed through the scenic fields surrounding the venue.


Path of Least Resistance

It’s best to ensure that passageways from the parking area to the event are as easily accessible as possible. If there is no smooth path, you’ll want to ensure that there are some strong volunteers that can help your more fragile guests get to the destination.


What You May Need to Bring

Some farm and barn locations regularly rent out their space for weddings and may be able to provide certain services, but often you’ll be responsible for renting and transporting the equipment and furniture yourself. This can add logistical complexities and costs. When looking at prospective locations be sure to ask if they provide the following. If not, you’ll have to arrange for them yourself.

  • Tables and Chairs
  • Dishes, flatware, and other table settings
  • Lighting (including perimeter lighting)
  • Generators (electricity)
  • Catering and Vendor Tents
  • Commercial Cleaning of Barn
  • Access to water
  • Electrical outlets (for caterers and entertainment)
  • Portable Washrooms

Whatever they don’t provide, you can rent from A&B Partytime Rentals, Lonsdale Events or Pedersen’s.

Contact Us!

We know that there are many moving parts to creating that perfect barn wedding, so please don’t hesitate to contact us for a consultation. We’d love to hear from you!

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