So you have decided on Cape Cod for your destination wedding, but now is the time to choose your ceremony location - Beach? Church? Venue? Back Yard? So many of our clients opt to have their toes in the sand and today we are sharing tips on having a Cape Cod beach ceremony.
If you choose to have your ceremony on a public beach, be sure to contact the town hall for a permit. Permits range from $35-$50 depending on the town and the beach. Also be sure to get all of the town rules and regulations - for example when can you set-up and when do you have to break it down?
Again, a public beach is great, but parking can be interesting. If you are getting married on a public beach between Memorial Day and Labor Day do not forget that beaches charge for parking from 9am-5pm every day. So unless you want all of your guests to have to pay to park their cars, either plan your ceremony after 5pm or provide transportation for everyone. Don't forget, if you do provide transportation, your vendors will also need a place to park.
When planning a beach ceremony on any beach, it is always a good idea to consider what seating you will offer and how it is getting on and off the beach. If you are at a public beach, most restrict the time that the chairs or benches can be on the beach - for example they have to be set-up within 30 minutes before and taken down within 30 minutes of the end of the ceremony. Take in to consideration the length of your ceremony - do your guests need to be seated? And if you think they do, then consider do they all need to be seated? We highly recommend offering limited seating on the beach for just family or older guests as you can save money and time getting the chairs or benches on and off the beach.
On Cape Cod we have some serious high and low tides, especially on the north side beaches. Please be sure to check the tides to know if you will be standing on dry sand or not during the time of day you want to get married!
Location on the Beach
Please be sure to be mindful of the location you choose to hold the ceremony on the beach. Think about how far your guests and vendors will have to walk. Do your ceremony musicians need power? Also be sure to check for a power source at the ceremony location.
Lastly, consider the weather. Not only could the weather be too windy, cold or raining to have a beach ceremony, but it could be scorching hot! Be sure to be prepared for anything - have a plan B location for poor weather, fans for the heat, sunglasses for the sun, pashminas for the cold or a water station for thirsty, hot guests. Keep in mind that the one thing you can't control is the weather, but you can control planning for it!