Wyoming has some of the most beautiful scenery — we can all agree upon that. Majestic mountains, gurgling rivers and streams, wildlife…and an endless sea of green in the summer, and golden brown in the fall. TRULY a sight to behold — and obviously we’re not the only people who think so, as Wyoming scenery is one of the most photographed subjects in the country.
Who wouldn’t want to stage their wedding in such glory and splendor?! First off, think of all the decorations you don’t have to spend money on — there is already plenty to look at! Adding in natural elements such as wildflowers and embellishments that pick up on the colors of nature make the transition between ceremony, reception and the outdoors seamless. The possibilities are endless!
The flip side of an outdoor wedding is that while the elements are beautiful and fun, they are still…the elements. Wyoming is well-known for its wind — which can sometimes bring havoc upon the most beautifully decorated reception tables. Candles can be extinguished, and perfectly sprayed hair can be blown — music can even be carried away from the ceremony site. The Wyoming summer afternoons can usher in terrific prairie thunderstorms, which can build and strike at any moment.
I know what you’re thinking — is all hope lost?! NO!!! People have beautiful Wyoming weddings outdoors every year — they just plan strategically. Make sure that for every plan you make, you form a Plan B — Do you have an indoor location available on stand by? Should you consider a tent? (Make sure to ask how they manage the wind — several companies have dealt with Wyoming winds and know just what to do!)
Be willing to negotiate your plans: Perhaps an outdoor chapel (such as the one at Esterbrook) exists nearby, where you can enjoy a beautiful ceremony and take pictures outside. A thunderstorm opens up in the afternoon? Many times, our storms pass quickly — be prepared to push back your schedule if need be. Make sure, though, to establish this with your vendors, so that you know what to do for the rest of your day if this occurs. Or, research venues that offer both indoor and outdoor facilities — several resorts in Wyoming have this capability. One such wedding took place at Snowy Range Ski Area’s lodge: the wedding ceremony was enjoyed on the massive patio, overlooking the Little Laramie River…the ceremony area was then converted to outdoor seating for the reception, and the crowd flowed easily from indoor to outdoor as they mingled, danced and ate. The bonus — a moose casually sauntered out of the woods to drink at the river during the ceremony!
Moral of the story: Wyoming is a beautiful state, full of majesty and priceless wedding opportunities. Be aware that with this majesty comes the elements of nature, and be prepared — plan ahead and have your back up plans in place. In the chance that something happens, you’ll be ready — and able to enjoy your day, no matter what happens!
‘Til next time — Keep making those beautiful Wyoming wedding memories!
Kati Hime, Editor