a photo of Scott and Penina's Wedding

The venue for your marriage not only creates the ambiance you want, but can make a big difference to the comfort of you and your guests. Here are my top tips for consideration.



Will it hold all your guests?  Does some seating need to be provided?  If you are paying to use the venue, depending on the number of guests, it is reasonable for the provider to supply up to 30 chairs.  Don’t be put off asking for more if they only suggest a few.



Is it easily accessible for everyone who is coming? If not, what arrangements can be made?


If parking is not close by and free, indicate on the invitations how long it will take to walk to where the ceremony will take place. For example, the Australian Botanic Gardens requires paid parking, even at weekends, and it can take 10 minutes to walk to some sites. So factor this in on the invitations.

If paid parking is required advise guests where and how much parking is.  One couple I married attached a $2 coin to each invitation, a great way for guests to remember to have some cash with them to pay.



Is it easy to find?  Will people need directions? Once at the venue, if it is a park, how will they know where to go? If it is out of town expect some guests to over estimate the time it will take to get there and so arrive quite early. Some will do the opposite and underestimate the time and arrive late.  Clear directions on the invitation and an estimate of how long it takes to get there from a central well known land-mark can be helpful.



Is there shade?  Protection from the sun is as important as protection from a down-pour. It is impossible to predict if a summer wedding will occur on a scorching hot day. Full sun on such a day for you or your guests can make your ceremony memorable for all the wrong reasons.


Positioning of bride and groom

Is it possible to have to bride and groom standing in the shade?  Photographers are always delighted if it is an overcast day. Standing in the shade is the next best thing. And have the signing table also in the shade. If not possible, have the sun behind you not in front of you.  And remember at the rehearsal to take off your sunnies so you realise how glary it might be.


Wet Weather

A last minute marquee is rarely possible. Decide on an alternative and who will make the decision, and who will then notify guests if it is necessary to move.  Neither the bride nor groom should have to be bothered by this decision. Parents are often the best to make a sensible decision. Simply advising everyone to bring umbrellas can work well if it is only light rain, but doesn’t work in a deluge.



What are the acoustics like? Will your celebrant need a PA system?


Power supply

Is it easy to play recorded music? Can music be played through your celebrant’s PA? Is there nearby power if necessary?


Signing Table

Does the venue provide a signing table?


I hope you have found these wedding venue tips useful. As always, if you have any questions or comments, please contact Judy Aulich Canberra Celebrant.

Photo courtesy of Steven Murray, Creative Image Photography