7 Tips for Planning a Gorgeous Outdoor Summer Wedding

kim and mike | summer wedding venue

There’s a reason summertime is peak wedding season – nothing is more idyllic than a gorgeous summer wedding! Warm weather, blooming flowers, and blue skies make for the perfect backdrop on your wedding day. That said, it’s best to be prepared for all possible scenarios when hosting your big day at a summer wedding venue, and the team at the 1812 Farm is here to help every step of the way!

Below, we’ve put together 7 tips to help guide you in planning a stunning outdoor summer wedding.

7 Tips for Your Outdoor Summer Wedding Venue

1. Choose a Venue with Indoor-Outdoor Availability

First thing’s first: when choosing a venue, try to be sure that it offers both outdoor and indoor availability. This can be beneficial in case of inclement weather (or even if it’s simply too hot outside!) to give guests a reprieve from the elements and ensure everyone is comfortable. Ask each venue about the options they have available for any weather-related concerns.

At The 1812 Farm, we offer 2,200 square feet of indoor space in our historic barn. The barn is also connected to a 400-square-foot tented deck that looks out over 3-acres of professionally landscaped lawn and gardens, so you have plenty of space and options to choose from!

2. Make Sure There’s an Indoor Cooling System

This is just as important as our first tip! If there is indoor accessibility at your summer wedding venue, confirm that there is a cooling system in place. While many venues, like The 1812 Farm, have HVAC systems built in to provide the utmost comfort to guests, there are some that will require you to bring in your own rented AC or industrial fans.

3. Keep Guests Safe From the Sun

Even with the option to step inside where there is air conditioning, most guests at a summer wedding will want to enjoy the beautiful weather outdoors, so take any precautionary steps needed to keep them comfortable in the sun. Some easy and inexpensive ways to do this include:

  • Put out high-SPF sunscreen at each table or in the bathrooms – these come in many forms, so consider sprays or wipes if you don’t want guests dealing with a mess!
  • Have plenty of ice water and other cold refreshments available
  • Offer sun umbrellas or other fun accessories for guests to wear during the reception
  • Set up tables and chairs in naturally shaded or tented areas so guests can take a break from the sun if needed


4. Serve Lighter Menu Options

On a warm summer day, give your guests a fresher, lighter menu to enjoy! Dishes could include chilled soups, local fruits and vegetables, fresh seafood and grilled entrees. A bonus is adding frozen cocktails to your menu to cool down your guests while keeping the party going! 

At The 1812 Farm, our in-house caterer Stone Cove Catering offers customizable menus highlighting seasonal local favorites, so you can be sure that your reception reflects your unique style.

5. Start Later in the Day

As an outdoor summer wedding venue, we can tell you from experience that mid-day weddings can get hot. The sun is at its strongest and can really zap the energy out of guests! Instead, we’d recommend starting a little later in the day – early evening is ideal for a ceremony and reception on a beautiful summer day, when it starts to cool down and sunset approaches!

6. Be Flexible On Your Date

Understandably, summer wedding dates are often top-pick. When planning your big day, be mindful of date availability knowing that a summer weekend can be hard to book if you don’t do it early enough in advance. It can be helpful to consider alternatives – for example, rather than a mid-summer Saturday afternoon, go for a Sunday morning or make it a long weekend with a Friday evening wedding. 

7. Go For a Summery Color Palette

When setting the scene for your outdoor summer wedding, it’s fun to get into the summer spirit with airy fabrics, light colors and bright tones. When focusing on a specific color palette, try incorporating in-season florals or even inviting guests to dress in that range of colors. This can make for such special (and summery!) photos.

Celebrate Your Love at The 1812 Farm

Let us host your big day at The 1812 Farm, a glorious summer wedding venue located in picturesque Bristol Mills, Maine! Our classic white New England farmhouse and barn are situated on 3 acres of lush grass and gardens, setting a pristine backdrop for your wedding day. For more information about our elegant barn and catering options, please contact us today at The 1812 Farm!