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Ceremonies

 


Ceremony Rituals

 


 
 

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Let Love Flow

When it comes to love, there’s plenty of room for all of us. So, keep leading with love, listening with love and serving with love.

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Consider Comfort

Consider comfort. The ultimate goal of a wedding is to have fun with the people we most love. It’s not to lace ourselves into painful 19th century corsets and take beach photos while we sweat . When we focus on the optics of our weddings instead of what it takes for ourselves, the wedding party, and our guests to feel good and be at ease, we’re setting the situation up for misery.

Let your bridesmaids ditch the stilettos in favor of flip flops if they want. It’s okay if you feel better with your hair down instead of piled into an elaborately sprayed and pinned updo. Don’t make your groomsmen boil in heavy tuxedos on a hot afternoon. Give your guests water and snacks ahead of time if they have to sit through a long ceremony. Create an atmosphere of acceptance and inclusion where cherished memories can be made, rather than seeking an event that only looks great on Instagram

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Choose Love/ Be Love

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Do you need to Hire a Wedding Planner?

 

Your decision here is best determined by the number of guest you expect and how involved the bride and groom want to be in the planning of the event. Sometimes mothers and family members wish to be involved and have the organizations skills needed to make the wedding run smoothly. However, do remember that everyone wants to relax and enjoy your special day which is difficult when you have a span of a few hours to see that everything goes off as scheduled.

 

If attendance is over 75 guests, hiring a planner should be considered. The planner would work hand-in-hand with the bride to book the vendors that are needed for the event which would include caterers, musicians, floral, beauty and spa, the cake, officiant, tuxedo rentals, table and chair rentals, photographer, videographers, conduct the rehearsal the night before and transportation. Planners are a great resources for weather patterns, high and low tides; sunset’s and traffic patterns for the different months of the year.

 

Planners are also available for day-of services. This option works well for a smaller guests list and allows the couple to make the vendor decisions and the day-of planner making sure all time-lines for delivery, ceremony and reception are met on the day of the actual wedding.

 

The ultimate goal is for the couple to fully enjoy this momentous occasion and to make your wedding day as unique and extraordinary as you both are!  

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Length and Time of Ceremony

 

Your Outer Banks ceremony should be no longer than 30 minutes which would include the processional and recessional.  Guests will start gathering on the oceanfront 15- 30 minutes prior to the ceremony and may want to linger afterwards. However, they should not be held on the beach any more than one hour due to the heat of the summer months. I would suggest between 6 and 7 p.m. for ceremonies June- August and 6 to 5 p.m. at all other times. Spring and fall are beautiful times and often ceremonies are held from 11 a.m. onward. A sunrise ceremony is also possible but should include a small amount of guests.

Shown are Adam and Kalena Carpenter- married April 8, 2017.

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Duties of the Best Man

Best Man

Like the maid of honor to the bride, the best man is the groom’s biggest source of support. Generally, he is the groom’s brother or best friend, and he can be married or single.

The best man’s main role before the wedding is to organize the bachelor party. He helps coordinate the groomsmen’s formalwear fitting, picks up the groom’s attire before the wedding, orchestrates the toasts at the rehearsal party, and confirms the honeymoon travel reservations the day before.

On the day of the wedding, the best man makes sure the groom gets to the ceremony site on time. He brings the bride’s ring, holds the officiant’s fee until after the ceremony, and signs the marriage license as the groom’s witness. Afterward, he organizes the groomsmen for formal pictures, dances with the maid of honor, and orchestrates the toasts during the reception. Finally, he makes sure the getaway car is ready, with the couple’s luggage inside. After the celebration, he sees that all rented formalwear is returned.

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Duties of the Groomsmen

The groomsmen (sometimes referred to as ushers) have very few responsibilities before the wedding. Mainly, they help the best man plan and host the bachelor party (oh, and get fitted for a fabulous tuxedo). Of course, they should periodically check with the groom and best man to see if they can handle any other tasks.

On the wedding day, the groomsmen should arrive early at the ceremony site, ready to greet (and perhaps seat) guests. They’ll be involved in the wedding, and are expected to remain at the reception for its entire duration.

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New Ways to Walk

With the ceremony typically being the most traditional aspect of the wedding day, it’s no surprise that many same-sex couples are creating their own tried-and-true trends for their wedding ceremonies.

And one way that same-sex couples are shaking up the normal wedding ceremony is in how they choose to walk down the aisle. Many are forgoing walking down the aisle separately, accompanied by a family member, or choosing to walk with each other, hand in hand.

We’re also seeing couples make some interesting design decisions in terms of the aisles themselves, with some creating two aisles so that each person can walk, accompanied by a friend or family member if desired, simultaneously. Other couples are going even further and, when the space allows, creating three aisles. That way, couples can walk down the two outer aisles at the same time at the start of the ceremony, and then together down the center aisle once it’s complete.

Just remember that with this kind of approach, you need to consider how you’re going to have your wedding party walk down the aisle, if you have one, and also how your guests should be seated in this arrangement.

Also, let your photographers and videographers know about these kind of unconventional decisions. They need to know who’s going to be coming from where so that they can capture every special moment of your wedding ceremony.

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Deciding on your Wedding Date and Obtaining a Marriage License

You’ve booked your rental home and now it’s time to get down to the business of planning the day and time-line of your wedding ceremony.

 

If you are staying a week, your check-in is probably on a Saturday or Sunday. Most couples choose to get their marriage license on Monday and plan for the ceremony Tuesday- Friday. However, since the Dare County Register of Deeds office is in Manteo, located in the Dare Justice Center at 962 Marshall Collins Drive, it is possible to secure the license Monday morning (hours 8:30 a.m.- 4 p.m. unless it is a holiday.) and be married that evening but it could make for a stressful day! The process at the Register of Deeds office is usually under an hour but make sure you have all needed documentation which can be found at http://www.darenc.com/deeds/marriage.asp (252) 475-5970

 

A Marriage license can actually be purchased at any Register of Deeds Office in North Carolina- up to 60 days in advance. Often, couples might be located in another state that borders North Carolina and they just cross the line and purchase the license. If you live in North Carolina, you can work with your local Register of Deeds office. Sometimes, if couples from the northern states are making a trip to tie up details with planners and vendors, 60 days or less before the ceremony, they can plan to stop at the Currituck County Register of Deeds Office located on the Currituck mainland- 13 miles across the North Carolina State Line on Highway 168. For more information visit. http://www.co.currituck.nc.us/Marriage-License-Frequently-Asked-Questions.cfm (252)232-3297 (Mon-Fri, 8:00 am – 4:00 pm).

 

So now that you know the ends and outs of getting your marriage license, you can make a decision about the actual day and time of the ceremony. Timing is an important consideration and varies, depending on the month. Late afternoon and early evening hours seem to be the most popular. In our shoulder seasons- April, May, September and October- I would suggest between the hours between 4 and 5:30 p.m. However, don’t rule out a morning, noon or early afternoon ceremony during these months which can be very pleasant with the cooler temperatures and lower light.

 

The summer months offer greater challenges with the heat and people on the beach. The hours between 6 and 7:00 p.m. seem to work best and still offers an opportunity for your photographer to capture the

photos that will be treasured for years to come. The actually ceremony time should be no longer than 25 minutes but allow time for the guests to gather on the beach. Guests should not be held on the beach any longer than 45 minutes to an hour. However, the wedding party would remain until the photographer had completed photos.

 

Congratulations! You now know how to get your marriage license and a date and time to consider!

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Weather Back Up?

Rent A Tent
If you’re hosting an outdoor event, price tents and rent one just in case Mother Nature decides to make your day a little more interesting. Pitch the tent at the highest point of the venue in case of a downpour.

 

Make A Plan

About six weeks before your big day, write up a rainy day contingency plan you can pass out to your vendors and guests if the skies open up at your wedding. Include alterations to your timeline that allow for delays in travel time and setup.

 

Set A Time

Understand that there’s a chance your guests may be delayed due to rain, but deciding when to begin the ceremony is ultimately up to you and the officiant. If you’d prefer to delay your walk down the aisle, be sure to consider your guests who are present and waiting for your arrival.

 

Keep It Pretty

Think bright umbrellas (available at discounts stores) for you and your wedding party, adorable Wellies for your attendants (and a special pair for you) and other stormy weather preparations that make light of the dark weather. On the bright side, these changes will make for great wedding photos.

 

Prepare Your Guests
If there’s even a slight chance it will begin to rain midway through your outdoor wedding ceremony and you’re determined to say “I do” outdoors, make sure you’ve prepared your guests appropriately. Place umbrellas on each guest’s seat so they’re sheltered from the rain and consider placing pashminas on the backs of reception chairs so they’re warm. At the same time, have hair dryers and toiletries in the washroom.

 

Get Creative With Photos
Your photographers will LOVE those overcast skies because they offer some of the best lighting. Make signs to hold up during your photography session that say “Rain, Rain” and “Go Away” or re-enact the iconic rainy Breakfast at Tiffany’s scene with the help of a few trenchcoats (and umbrellas of course). Get playful with lighting and rainy window panes that make for beautiful artistic photos.

 

Laugh It Off
Making light of the cloudy skies is the best way to weather the storm. Why not switch your signature cocktail last-minute from a mojito to a “Dark and Stormy or change your ceremony’s recessional song to Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head?

 

Dance In The Rain
If it’s still raining at the end of your event, why not share a dance with your newlywed sans umbrella? These will make for beautiful photos and are a fun way to end the night. Just make sure you’re wearing waterproof mascara! And remember, a little rain on your wedding day is good luck- I said a little!

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