A Florida Gay Beach Wedding
A Florida gay wedding doesn’t have to be on the beach, but with nearly 1200 miles of coastline and 663 miles of beaches, a beach wedding is pretty good bet if you’re looking to tie the knot in the Sunshine State. If you are considering a gay beach wedding, there are several ways to about it and a few things that you will need to take into consideration.
DIY or Package Deal
There are a ton of companies in Florida that specialize in beach weddings and who are more than happy to work with same-sex couples to put together the wedding or commitment ceremony of their dreams on a nice sandy beach. These don’t have to be expensive, elaborate affairs. I’ve seen beach elopement packages well under $1,000. The benefits of having an experienced beach wedding planner handle details for you are numerous. They know which beaches are best for the type of ceremony you desire and can handle permits, if necessary. They can arrange for your wedding officiant, flowers, photographer and even a cake – often at their pre-arranged discounted rates. This also takes the burden of planning, and stressing over planning off of your shoulders.
However, if you are someone who prefers to have their hands on the reigns at all times, it is possible to plan your own amazing beach wedding from start to finish with a little research and organization. One of the first things that you will need to consider is your guest list. Are you eloping, having a small ceremony or planning an elaborate blow-out on the beach? Also, do you plan to have both your ceremony and reception on the beach? Consider the answers to these questions before you begin looking for the perfect beach location for your ceremony.
The Perfect FL Beach Wedding
When considering the location for your ceremony, there are several factors to keep in mind. Depending on the size of the group and how elaborate you plan to decorate, you may need to get a permit from the town or municipality for your event. Having the ceremony on a public beach is fine – just remember that it won’t be totally private. Also consider the time of year (tourist season), tides, weather and time of day. Be sure to visit the area several times on the day of the week and time of day that you plan to have your ceremony so that you can get a feel for the atmosphere. Beach sunset weddings are very popular but be sure that you are leaving enough sunlight afterwards for photos. If you are planning your ceremony during storm season, consider having either a large tent erected or a plan B location.
Most beach weddings are pretty casual. The wedding party dresses more casual (shoes optional) and guests are not expected to wear their Sunday best. It’s ok to ask guests to stand for a fairly short beach ceremony but you may want to provide a few chairs for older guests. Background music isn’t a necessity either with the beauty of nature, although a string quartet or acoustic guitar could add a nice note to the ceremony.
If you don’t have your reception right on the beach, you may wish to consider something at one of the beach-front hotels or restaurants. Depending on how big your wedding is, you can have a traditional reception at one of the beach front hotels, with catering, music and the works. Otherwise, keep it simple and take your small wedding party to a close by beach front restaurant for a nice meal to celebrate your new union and the amazing gay beach wedding that you were able to share.