In Sickness and in Health: COVID-Era Weddings

Those with a date set for this year should take a COVID-friendly approach, says Andre Wells, an event designer based in Washington, DC. This includes having protective equipment stations, multiple handwashing sites, plenty of space to practice responsible social distancing – and even people taking temperatures when guests arrive.

“COVID affects everything related to events,” says Wells. “It’s about gathering, hugging, dancing. You have to really, really think about it and get creative. “

Like many event planners, Wells has experienced a substantial drop in business since March. Not only are people afraid to congregate, but most hotels and places are closed, he says.

“We plan for the future, that’s what we do,” he says. “Many of us have big weddings and big events. Right now, I don’t know how you can get there. “

While some may postpone their nuptials until the pandemic is over, or better under control, some local officials say they have seen an increase in applications for marriage licenses. NPR reported in April that one city in Virginia and one in Arkansas reported spikes in licenses in 2019.

Wells is helping plan a wedding for 300 people at Union Station transit station in October, but savings have noted that, given the pandemic, the date may change. The strangers are outnumbered at the moment, Wells says, and couples who choose to keep their dates fast approaching should be ready for last-minute changes.

Lynne Goldberg, a New York and Boca Raton, FL-based wedding and event specialist, says traditional planning practices are being thrown out the window. Rather than focusing on group bookings and cake cutting, couples should take precautions with spaced line dances and even a “social concierge” to circle the room and make sure guests are in touch. security.

“Dances like hora that require close contact aren’t happening right now,” says Goldberg, who has made several videos on COVID-19 weddings. “People don’t bring groups of 12 musicians. The key is to try to make sure everyone is as safe as possible. “

Goldberg also recommends hosting outdoor weddings because the virus is more easily spread indoors, while keeping the guest list small.

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Jothi Venkat

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