Tent or no tent? That is the big question..and frankly, rather common question for couples planning outdoor wedding ceremonies and/or receptions in the Pacific Northwest. The dilemma begins the day a couple chooses their outdoor venue. “What if it rains? What’s plan B? I don’t really want to pay to rent a tent.” Unfortunately, with the unpredictability of our climate, it is important to have a rental tent reserved for your big day unless your venue provides an indoor plan B option. The good news is that most rental companies will allow you to release the tent the Tuesday before your event with minimal to no charge. However, again, due to the unpredictability of our climate, sometimes this is too soon to make the call for your event. Do you risk it if the forecast is unclear and cancel the tent? Or, do you play it safe and rent the tent regardless of the unclear forecast? To eliminate financial stress as a factor in your decision, the recommendation is that you include tent rental in your budget from day one. If you need it, great! You have the tent reserved and the money set aside to pay for it. If you don’t, super great! You just saved yourself some money and are able to have the outdoor wedding ceremony and/or reception you envisioned.
Now, this conversation is not over. When we think of the need for a tent in the Pacific Northwest, we think of impending rain. However, a tent is just as necessary if it’s a sunny, hot day. Here are some questions to ask yourself: How much natural shade is provided by the landscape and/or venue? What time of day is my event? Where will the sun fall during that time? The reality is that 80 – 85 degrees in the direct sun gets real hot, real fast. Shade of some sort is a must.
The moral of the story is to plan ahead, budget for plan b and think rain or shine! Besides, tents can be a beautiful addition to your outdoor wedding ceremony and/or reception.