I just want a simple tent reception. … I want to save money by having a tent wedding…It will be so much easier to have a reception in my backyard… How many of you have said or are saying this?
Tent Receptions can be just beautiful but let me tell you there is more to it than you think.
Things you need to know when planning a Tent Reception.
- Size of the Tent or Tents
- This will be determined by the number of guests.
- Are you having a DJ or live Band (They will need room to set up)
- Dance floor size (you will need to rent this)
- Bar and Cocktail area (The bar and number of bartenders will be determined by the number of guests)
- Catering Staging area (will you need a tent for your caterer or is there a separate staging area?)
2. Electrical Source
- What type of electrical outlets area available for your caterer. Can they support the electrical load? (Fire is not what you want at your wedding) Are they bringing convection ovens, microwaves, coffee pots, fans…..?
- Will you need lights for the evening hours of your reception? What type of lights will you use?
3. Water Source
- Yes, you will need water for the caterer to make coffee, ice tea, lemonade (or whatever) but also to wash glasses, dishes and clean tables.
- Will there be a sink for the caterer or will they have to put together a wash unit? How are they going to wash their hands?
- Are there restrooms available?
- How many? Can they accommodate the number of your guests?
- Do you have to rent porta potties?
- Will you need extra hand washing stations?
- What about changing diapers, where will your guests with babies change a diaper?
- Tent or Tents
- Sides for the tents just in case of rain or high winds
- Tables both long for buffet lines and long tables for the caterer to prepare the food
- Round Tables for Guests and long tables for head table
- Tables for the Bartender and a Bar (you could just use a few long tables but if you want the bar look you will need to rent it.)
- Glassware, silverware (you can use plastic or Bio friendly paper and bamboo are available) Talk with your caterer about what they include. You may be able to negotiate a package that includes dinnerware and linens.
- Linens: Tablecloths and napkins
- Porta Potties
- Hand Washing Stations
- Dance floor (size will be determined by the number of guest. Make sure you take this into consideration when choosing the tent size.)
- Ice (talk to your caterer will they provide the ice for the bar? How will you store that much ice?)
- Where will people park?
- What if it rains can they still park in that field?
- Is it Flat? Hilly? This will determine how and if they can put a tent up.
- When will the cake be delivered? Where will it go until it is cut? What if it is 98 degrees with 90% humidity? It will melt unless refrigerated. NOTE: When choosing your frosting take this into consideration. Ask your Bakery what is the best to have in the heat.
- Will you have the tent air conditioned or heated? (This can be done but it will cost you. You will need a very large electrical source like a generator)
- Will you have fans? How many will you need? Where will you get them?
- Will you have heaters? How many will you need? Where will you get them?
- Are there any neighborhood restrictions?
- When does the city require you to shut the party down?
- Will you need an extra insurance policy for the Day?
- What if someone gets drunk and drives how do you keep yourself from liability.
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