Evaluating an Event Space for a Gay Wedding

bookLG.jpgOne of our favorite resources is the Essential Guide for Lesbian and Gay Weddings. My partner and I used this book back in 1998-1999 when we were planning our wedding and enjoyed the humorous read as much as the informative overview. The 20th century seems like an eternity ago already, but the book is as timely a planning guide as ever and continues to be a big seller on our sites.
Here’s an example of what I mean:
Authors Tess Ayers and Paul Brown take a look at the kinds of locations available for same sex wedding ceremonies and offer their two cents on how to pick a spot for the ceremony and/or reception. They offer a series of helpful questions to ask during your site visit, including:
* Is the ambiance of this location what you had in mind for your wedding? Make sure to visit the site at the time of day you’re planning on having your wedding.
* Is this the actual room where the event will be held?
* How many guests will be drinking, schmoozing, dining, and dancing in this space?
* How are the auxiliary facilities such as kitchens, bars, and bathrooms?
* Will anyone else be using that particular space on the same day?
* What about handicap access?
* Can you decorate any way you want?
* Is there someone on the premises who provides catering?
* Is there staff to assist you on the day of the wedding? (This can range from servers to the catering director.)
* What are the exact hours that you can use the facility?
* How are the charges broken down?

(Source: Excerpts from Essential Guide for Lesbian & Gay Weddings, by Tess Ayers & Paul Brown)
I always advise clients to be clear about contract elements and encourage you to make sure they are clear that you are inquiring about a same-sex wedding ceremony. I received a call from one panicked bride two weeks short of her big day. Her caterer had just found out that she had hired them for a lesbian commitment ceremony and freaked. They cancelled the deal and she was left scrambling madly for a referral to find a caterer who could help her out at the last minute.
Experiences like this are growing increasingly rare, but they do happen so be sure to ask lots of questions, communicate your expectations, and read the fine print.
Tip: For gay-friendly ceremony and reception sites, consider checking out our Vendor Directory!

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