Congratulations, you’re getting married! My Green Australia is here to help you guide your way through the amazing amount of information about green weddings! Part 2 – The Location
You have dreamt of the big day, whether it is in a chapel and you’re surrounded by white roses or on a beach having a casual ceremony with your nearest and dearest. Whatever your dream has been you can make it happen and still be environmentally aware.
First things first – day or night? By celebrating during the day time, and if possible, outdoors this is a an EASY trick to cut down on the amount of electricity you will be using. By using the sun you don’t need to have lights! simple!
If you choose a evening celebration you could consider soy candles for the table and also to help light up the venue. This also adds immensely to the romance of the day! Any unused candles can also be taken home by guests if they like as well.
Try researching outdoor locations such as State Parks and Nature Preserves – you may be able to donate to tree planting efforts in the area to also help offest the carbon. This is the same for beaches – you may be able to donate to the Clean Up days on the beach foreshore.
Consider the distance your guests will have to travel (whether by air or road) to get to your wedding, and then consider the distance between the ceremony and the reception. Maybe have both the ceremony and reception at the same place to cut down on travel required by the guests.
If you are having separate locations for the ceremony, is there any way you can organise a bus to travel between the two so your guests will be altogether and not in separate cars getting to each location. People who can car pool should also be given top priority – give them a little something extra for their effort if they are designated drivers. Any ideas you have to reduce the amount/distance of travel between the two locations will always be a positive environmental step.
If you are having a wedding overseas, please try to remember costs (in terms of both financially and environmentally) of your guests travelling to see your big day. If you are inviting overseas guests, you could on their behalf donate to the carbon credits of the flight and also donate on their behalf some trees to be planted. Not only is this a nice gesture to say Thank You for travelling so far, but also to help with the carbon load that is generated from flying.
Select your venue based on how many guests you will have (or expect to have). This way you are only lighting, heating/cooling and powering the size of venue you need. No point lighting a half empty reception center!
One thing to keep in mind and to ask your venues before you select is how do they pay for their electricity? You have a right to know if they use green power operators or not – so feel free to ask and if they don’t offer this, is there any way the business could contribute to carbon offsetting the event with you? No harm is asking, this is your big day we are talking about here!
If the whole idea of venue has your flumuxed, have you considered the idea of a garden wedding? Do you or someone know have a gorgeous garden that you could utilise for a day? If you’re lucky enough to have a dream garden you can use, having both ceremony and reception there is a huge boost to your green wedding, plus adds a huge amount of intimacy for both you and your husband/wife to be, and also to your guests who will share your home and your wedding with you. If this is possible for you, you should consider it!
Our top tips for the location of your wedding celebration are:
Hold your ceremony and reception in the same place. It helps your logistics and costs, as well as the environment
Reduce distance between the two locations by choosing wisely – this will also help your logistics
Select venues according to how seriously they take the environment. This will help you through your whole process of organising a green wedding
Encourage guests to car pool
Choose locations which are accessible by public transport and let guests know about the options
Limit the number and choose fuel efficient wedding cars
Just remember that this your day and your event, try not to let venues push you into ceremony/reception/catering plans if they aren’t right for you. Keep your head when researching as there is A LOT out there and ask a lot of questions too!