Larry James' CelebrateIntimateWeddings BLOG

Friday, May 8, 2015

Assistance for Out-of-Town Wedding Guests

Anna Post, Guest Author

Many couples invite wedding guests from near and far to join them on their special day. Providing an experience that makes out-of-town guests feel at home and welcome will create a lasting memory for everyone. Give guests ample time to plan, suggest places to stay and eat, and if time and money permits, throw in a few weekend extras.

businessman lost in field using a mapAdvance Notice

Save the date cards are especially important for guests who may be traveling to join you on your special day. Usually mailed four to eight months in advance, they allow out-of-town guests to book plane tickets and hotel rooms with plenty of time.

If you are planning a dinner or get-together for out-of-town guests at a local club or restaurant, include this information for these guests on a separate card within your wedding invitation. It is also ideal to include this information in a tab on your wedding website that lists the schedule of wedding events.

Accommodations

Provide a list of suggested hotels in close proximity to your ceremony and wedding reception site. You can add this information on your wedding website as soon as you know it so guests can book early. Offer a few selections at different price points, or you may be able to hold a block of rooms at one or two hotels at a special price. Couples often ask a few close friends or family members if they would be willing to host an out-of-town guest or bridal party member at their house for the weekend.

At the selected hotels, consider leaving a welcome letter for your arriving guests. Include a personal note thanking them for joining you and showing your excitement. This is also a good place to include a timetable of events, relevant addresses for venues, links to online map sites, telephone numbers and any information about transportation services if they will be provided.

While by no means a must, a goodie bag is a popular way to welcome out-of-town guests. These are often DIY projects and can incorporate whatever your time and budget allow. Some suggestions include bottled water, restaurant suggestions, mints, small candies or chocolates, granola bars, tissues, sunscreen wipes, maps, and brochures of local activities.

Weekend Extras

When wedding guests will be staying several nights, couples often organize or suggest ways for out-of-town and even local guests to spend their free time. These plans can include things such as golf outings, reserved tennis courts or could get as creative as a trolley tour of the city where your wedding is held. It is important to note that it isn’t the responsibility of the couple to pay for these activities; however, it should be clearly communicated that guests are expected to pay if they attend. Choose activities that align with what your guests are interested in, what they can afford and what makes sense with the schedule of other events for the weekend.

BONUS Articles: Will You Have Out-of-town Guests?
Romantic Arizona Sunsets
Destination Wedding: Arizona…
Getting Married in Arizona? Here’s the Latest Scoop!
A Wedding Map! A Helpful Idea for Your Guests!
Goody Bags for “Out-of-Town” Wedding Guests

Copyright © 2015 – Anna Post. Emily Post Weddings – from old traditions to new trends, The Emily Post Institute has over 90 years of offering trusted inspiration, advice, and etiquette for couples, families, and guests. Visit: http://www.EmilyPost.com/wedding

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Click for Larry’s Wedding Website!

Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: Cell: 480-205-3694. Pre-maritial relationship coaching is available and not required. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
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Monday, November 18, 2013

Romantic Arizona Sunsets

A romantic wedding as the Arizona sun sets is an inspiration for you and your guests. Here you will find approximate dates & times of Arizona sunsets, plus a link that will tell you accurate sunset times for any American city. Also, you will find average temperatures for different times of the month and links to get the latest weather forecast and estimated sunsets no matter where you live in the U.S. and the world. Includes weather data regarding rainfall, driest cities, sunniest cities, etc.

In the Greater Phoenix area I have listed 52 weeks of approximate sunset times for each week in the month. It is wise to plan for approximately 1 hour of sunlight after the actual sunset time. If you will be taking pictures “after” the wedding ceremony, you may want to begin the ceremony about an hour before sunset.AZSunsets

What Time Should Your Wedding Ceremony Begin?

Example: If the sunset is at 5:30 p.m. most photographers recommend that you begin the wedding ceremony (usually under 30 minutes) at 4 p.m., but no later than 4:30 p.m. Some couple are choosing to to what we call “First Look,” then taking more photos before the wedding. The bride and groom usually miss out on the cocktail hour because they are taking photos.

More and more are choosing to take more photos “before” the wedding so they won’t have to take so many “after” the wedding. This gives those who choose to take in the cocktail hour with their friends a chance to do so after the wedding. They can still get the official introduction of the bride and groom and the wedding party at the reception.

Remember, all dates and times above are approximate. For a more accurate sunset schedule for each day of each month for any year and any city in the USA, click here and complete the information in “Form A – Cities or Towns in the U.S.”

The Greater Phoenix area has more than 325 days of annual sunshine with an average high temperature of 86 degrees and an average low of 57 degrees. With only 7.66 to 8.32 inches of rain per year, our area offers an ideal setting for outdoor weddings. We basically have two wedding seasons: March, April and May and October, November and December. Wedding occur in other months to, however fewer weddings are scheduled during out hottest months; June, July & August. Most of those weddings are indoors. The greatest percentage of weddings are usually outdoors.

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Planning a “Destination Wedding” in the Phoenix area?

Here are some interesting United States weather facts and extremes that include the Greater Phoenix area! The National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) is the world’s largest active archive of weather data. NCDC produces numerous climate publications.

10 Driest Cities – Average annual precipitation in inches
1. Yuma, Arizona 2.65
2. Las Vegas, Nevada 4.19
3. Bishop, California 5.61
4. Bakersfield, California 5.72
5. Phoenix, Arizona 7.11
6. Alamosa, Colorado 7.13
7. Reno, California 7.49
8. Winslow, Arizona 7.64
9. El Paso, Texas 7.82
10. Winnemucca, Nevada 7.82

10 Sunniest Cities – Annual percent of possible sunshine
1. Yuma, Arizona 90%
2. Las Vegas, Nevada 85%
3. Phoenix, Arizona 85%
4. Tucson, Arizona 85%
sunset5. El Paso, Texas 83%
6. Flagstaff, Arizona 79%
7. Fresno, California 79%
8. Reno, Nevada 79%
9. Sacramento, California 78%
10. Albuquerque, N.M. 76%

10 Least Humid Cities – Average relative humidity in %
1. Las Vegas, Nevada 30.5
2. Phoenix, Arizona 37.0
3. Yuma, Arizona 38.0
4. Tucson, Arizona 39.0
5. El Paso, Texas 42.5
6. Albuquerque, New Mexico 44.5
7. Winslow, Arizona 46.0
8. Grand Junction, Colorado 48.0
9. Winnemucca, Nevada 48.5
10. Reno, Nevada 50.5

10 Least Rainiest Cities – Number of days per year with rain
1. Yuma, Arizona 17
2. Las Vegas, Nevada 26
3. Bishop, California 29
4. Santa Barbara, California 30
5. Long Beach, California 32
6. Los Angeles, California 35
7. Great Falls, Montana 35
8. Phoenix, Arizona 36
9. Bakersfield, California 37
10. San Diego, California 42

BONUS Articles: Destination Wedding: Arizona…
Getting Married in Arizona? Here’s the Latest Scoop!

Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Will You Have Out-of-town Guests?

Filed under: Out-of-town Guests,Wedding Tips — Larry James @ 7:30 am
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Make it easy on your long-distance guests. They have come a long way. A “Save the Date” card should be sent out as soon as you have finalized your planning, usually four to six months before the wedding date. Make deals with local hotels or motels. Ask for a special group rate and be sure to communicate it to your relatives and friends.

It doesn’t take much to do a little extra for your out of town guests, and we’re certain they’ll appreciate your extra thoughtfulness.

Welcome2AZDo your part to keep your guests safe. Consider partnering with a hotel with a shuttle service between the wedding reception site and the hotel. Send a card with your invitation offering a special rate at the hotel for your guests with the headline, “Don’t Drink and Drive!” Arrange for the privilege of having your guests hop on a shuttle at half hour intervals for guests that want a “designated driver.”

Include a phone number for hotel reservations of several area hotels and resorts. You may want to include some travel tips for guests. Some out-of-towners will choose to rent cars. Be sure to provide car rental info with your hotel and airline details.

Provide a map in your invitation to help your guests get familiar with the area.

Create a wedding web page for an easily referenced one-stop-shop for guests to check up on everything you have planned. Give them a complete rundown of the events leading up to and following your walk down the aisle. Include key times, locations, who is hosting, what to wear, and so on for each activity. Tell your visitors about any free time they’ll have, and provide suggestions for how to fill it.

Comfort the jet-lagged and travel-weary with a little something left in their hotel rooms. Nothing hits the spot more after a day of airline food or rest-stop take-out then an assortment of yummy treats waiting on the hotel dresser – especially ones your guest won’t be billed for by the item. For guests traveling with children, provide a smaller bag with age-appropriate toys, activity books and kid-friendly snacks along with the grown-up’s goodies.

“Create welcome packets of relevant information (phone numbers of the families of the bride and groom, the names of the other guests staying at the hotel, nearby hot spots to check out) to leave in guests’ rooms with another copy of your wedding itinerary, plus local brochures and sightseeing maps. Enlist the aid of your wedding crew to assemble and distribute all these treats. Finally, add that finishing touch and pen a personal note thanking each guest for coming to celebrate with you.” ~ The Knot

If your wedding is in Arizona, always include bottled water in you welcome packets. It’s important for your guests to be hydrated while they are in the Valley of the Sun (Greater Phoenix area). Find an adorable keepsake to stuff in the bag that is unique to your wedding’s locale. You may want to include a “Recovery Kit” (for hangovers). Give your guests a little love and make sure they’re stocked in aspirin and water. Perhaps even a custom do-not-disturb door hanger is in order. A month before your wedding, ask your local Chamber of Commerce to send brochures of area attractions to your visiting guests so they can plan their activities during their stay.

bubblesLong pauses between the ceremony and reception are generally a bummer to your guest. Schedule the cocktail hour immediately following the wedding ceremony. Arrange to take lots of your wedding photos before the wedding so you can make an appearance at the cocktail hour. Brides and grooms usually miss the cocktail partner because they are off somewhere with the photographer taking photos. Consider a “First Look!”

Some couples have a small appreciation brunch or dinner for traveling guests. Usually held after the wedding, the meal is an additional way for the bride and groom to personally thank these attendees. If a small celebration after the wedding is out of the question, consider inviting them to the rehearsal dinner. This will make your guests feel extra special and welcome.

Although the Minister will be at the wedding, to help you keep track of guests, remember to send him/her a wedding invitation. If you have invited him/her to the reception and you have assigned seating, remember to list his/her name on the table cards.

Let the concierge at their hotel know the details of your wedding; such as where they are registered, the time-line, and where it is being held. This way if guests have questions the hotel staff is prepared with the answers.

Pamper your out-of-town guests. A wedding can cost out of town guests between $500 to $1000 per person when you factor in the airfare, hotel, car rental, activities, food, and lost time at work.

Having lots of out-of-town guests takes a little extra effort. Remember to get your bridal party involved in relieving you of some of things that need to be done.

BONUS Article: A Wedding Map! A Helpful Idea for Your Guests!
Out of Town Guest Bags
Destination Wedding: Arizona…
Getting Married in Arizona? Here’s the Latest Scoop!

Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 445 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Destination Wedding: Arizona…

Unlike parts of the United States in the Midwest and the Eastern United States, Arizona has two wedding seasons. When everyone there is having June weddings, I usually take some time off in June or July because most of my weddings are outdoors and those months are when things begin to heat up in the Greater Phoenix area.

JerryFergusonPhotographyThe busiest months for weddings in Arizona are March, April and May and again in October, November and even December. If you will be planning a destination wedding in Arizona the best time for your wedding will be in one of these six months. They are the busiest months for weddings in Arizona because the weather is so accommodating.

Arizona’s low wedding season is June, July & August because of the heat. That’s when most wedding are indoors. Keep hydrated. Drink lots of water. Everyone knows water helps keep you cool. Give guests ice-cold bottles of water as they are seated.

Probably the most confusing and often debated weather event in Arizona is our so called “monsoon”. During the wet monsoon (July, August and September) we get 32% of our normal yearly rainfall. Average monsoon rainfall (July, Aug. and Sept.) is 2.45 inches. The Greater Phoenix area has more than 325 days of annual sunshine with an average high temperature of 86 degrees and an average low of 57 degrees. With only 7.66 to 8.32 inches of rain per year, our area offers an ideal setting for romantic outdoor weddings.

Arizona winters (December & January) may require heating for an outdoor evening wedding and cooling is a must if your wedding day falls in the warmth of summer (June, July & August). Yes, those months are the hottest, but fortunately it really is also a dry heat. The humidity is usually very low.

A romantic wedding as the Arizona sun sets is an inspiration for you and your guests. On the link below you will find approximate dates & times of Arizona sunsets, plus a link that will tell you accurate sunset times for any American city. Also, you will find average temperatures for different times of the month and links to get the latest weather forecast and estimated sunsets no matter where you live in the U.S. and the world. Includes weather data regarding rainfall, driest cities, sunniest cities, etc. Click here!

CactusJackHere’s the breakdown. On Average:

• July is the warmest month.
• December is the coolest month.
• March is the wettest month.
• June is the driest month.
• June has the most clear days.
• December has the most cloudy days.

To help with your Arizona Destination Wedding, you may want to pick up a copy of Arizona Bridal Source Magazine. Need someone to help with the planning of your wedding in the Greater Phoenix area, call Kim Horn, MBC™ (Master Bridal Consultant – 1 of 59 in the world!). Kim get’s 5 stars from Larry James!

And… of course, if you are looking for an experienced full-time, professional Wedding Officiant to perform your wedding ceremony, call Larry James. 😉

BONUS Article: The Pros and Cons of Destination Weddings

Photo Credit: Top left, Jerry Ferguson Photography

Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or Cell: 480-205-3694. Pre-maritial relationship coaching is available and not required. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
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Friday, February 19, 2010

Goody Bags for “Out-of-Town” Wedding Guests

If you’re getting married, you may be looking for the perfect token gift that tells your guests you’re glad they came. Make your guests smile with a whimsical goody bag. You may want to limit the number of bags by presenting gift bags in the hotel rooms only for your out-of town guests. After a long day of driving or flying across the country, they will feel right at home by sharing with them all your favorite treats and ideas for fun in Arizona or wherever you live.goodybag4

Goody bags bring elegance and style to any celebration. They can be as classy or as plain as you like. It’s what is inside that counts. It’s a great way to personalize your event, and deliver a message of thanks and appreciation to your guests.

Treat your out-of-town weekend wedding guests to a box, small bag full of local treats to a large tote bags with gifts or comfort packages.

Be sure to include a personal message from the bride and groom (with your engagement photo) and give schedules, directions to the ceremony and reception site with addresses, and phone numbers they might need. You may want to have designated phone number for your out-of-town guests to call if they have any questions.

Here are a few examples:

• A local key chain
• Put your special message or photo on M&Ms®
• A favorite local recipe
goddybag2• 2 bottles of water (get creative with the labels)
• A folding fan
• Mints
• Cactus candy
• Anything chocolate
• A Granola bar
• Midnight snacks and munchies
• The wedding itinerary
• Lip gloss
• Anything Heart-shaped
• A small bag of gourmet coffee and a custom coffee mug
• Personalized shot glasses
• A stamped postcard from the area
• Golf tees and directions to the nearest public golf club
• Individual packet of Advil/Tylenol
• A small package of band-aids, safety pins, rubber bands, a small lint brush, etc.
• Personalized coasters with your names and wedding date
• Sweet-smelling soaps
• A scented sachet
• Votive candles
• Something made by local artisans
• Personalized matches
• A gift card for your favorite restaurant
• A list of Churches and addresses
• and miscellaneous forget-me-nots or anything in keeping with your wedding “theme.”

One couple included a couple of pears and wrapped them in a pretty cellophane and tied a bow on the package that said. “We hope you have a wonderful time this weekend! Love, the most perfect “Pear.”

If children will be a part of the guest list, remember to add coloring book, Crayola crayons, simple puzzles, a kazoo, bubble bottles, yoyos, etc.

goodybagGoody bags are available in many sizes and styles, personalized wedding gift bags and favor bags range from small sheer fabric bags for favors.

Most guests appreciate knowing how to get around and information on sightseeing activities in the area. Contact AAA, your local Chamber of Commerce or the Convention and Visitors Bureau for brochures, maps and more. They may have free or discount coupons for local attractions, museums, magazines, etc.

Ask the hotel to take care of making sure your guests get to the guest’s rooms. The hotel may have a free goody to add. These bags can be filled with local treats, comfort items, and literature about your area including local attractions family and friends may want to visit during there weekend stay.

The bride, groom and their helpers have a lot to do to prepare for the wedding, so it might be a good idea to either hire someone to put the goody bags together or assign the task to a willing friend.

Don’t have a creative bone in your body? Not to worry. Ask your bridesmaids for suggestions. Use your imagination! Be creative! Don’t worry about making your favors like everyone elses. Find something that fits the tone of the wedding and reflects you as a couple, and your guests will almost certainly appreciate the thought.

CelebrateIntimateWeddings

Click logo to go to Wedding Website!

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. This information is adapted from Larry’s Wedding Website and Wedding Blog. Larry James is a non-denominational minister and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 475 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Check Larry’s availability.

comment2Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles, “LoveNotes” and wedding tips listed in this Wedding BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Networking BLOG” at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com

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