I am a big fan of mixing it up when it comes to days of the week and seasons of the year to host a wedding.   With Manitoba’s short summer, the wedding season rush down the aisle historically starts the first weekend of May and quiets down by Thanksgiving.  Of course, July is the most popular along with those very-special-never-happening-again novelty dates, (think 12.12.12), but what about the other four thousand couples who didn’t manage to snag a ‘prime’ date? Lately, I am seeing a spike in ‘off-season’ wedding inquiries and I have to say, I applaud my couples who are open to different options.  There are many reasons for a not so ‘off’ season anymore, including limited venue availability, special rates for ‘off-season’ bookings and importantly, a couple’s personal availability depending on lifestyle and profession. If you are struggling around booking a wedding date, consider these alternative options:

Brunch Weddings

Brunch weddings are a fantastic option for couples on a budget or those who really are eager for a summer date but flexible on timing.  With an 11AM ceremony, you have plenty of time to entertain your guests with a delicious buffet, (omelette stations, anyone?) mamosas and a more relaxed atmosphere.  Anna + Eric (pictured above) had a beautiful noon hour wedding reception at an outdoor nature center, spent the evening relaxing at a local hotel and then departed for Greece the next morning.  They enjoyed lawn games, a schmorg of delicious food, a jazz trio and their guests returned home full and happy after a day of celebrations – win/win!  Photo Cred: Yuki Noda Photography.

Weekday Weddings

Every weekend is a long weekend when you look beyond Saturday!  More and more, couples are aiming for Thursday, Friday and Sunday weddings. Friday’s can be a great day to celebrate your nuptials and start your guests’ weekend off on a high note.  Just make sure you consider a later ceremony time to accommodate business hours and acknowledge your wedding day may not be according to the norm (but that’s OK)! 

Winter Weddings

A personal favorite, especially with the Louis Riel long weekend in February, you should ALWAYS consider a winter wedding.  Your vendors (including myself) and your guests are energized and have greater availability, costs are often less and the photos are gorgeous!  I like winter weddings because of the obvious, (candles and ultra-romantic vibes).

Private Weddings

For the lower key couple, a way to trim back their budget, score a venue and just keep things simple are private ceremonies at your residence or City Hall with the couple and immediate family only. In reality, you can have the best of both worlds with a small, private ceremony followed by an open reception.  I love these intimate ceremonies followed by something larger, yet relaxed.  It re-focuses the day away from structure and more towards the couple and the family and friends that surround them.