The following article deals with answers to the following:
What changes to weddings have been enacted to abide by public health measures? How some people are getting creative, what a change to rules like Ontario’s might mean for some couples/events, and whether weddings can, in fact, be done safely – and how.
According to the Government of Ontario, as of October 3, 2020:
Meeting and event facilities (including banquet halls, convention centres, hotels, motels, resorts and conference centres) must:
- have an indoor capacity limit of the number of people who can maintain a physical distance of at least 2 metres from one another, to a maximum of 50 people, excluding staff
- ensure there are no more than 6 people per table
Social gatherings and unstaffed events: We have now gone from a generic 50 people indoors /100 people outdoors to 10 people indoors/25 people outdoors for personal properties and gatherings, as people were not following proper safety guidelines and protocols thus spreading the COVID-19 virus to others.
This specifically means no more backyard weddings, weddings held in parks or friends or family’s homes for more than 10 people.
*Regardless of the number of persons allowed previously, it was always advised and mandated to keep friends and family in their respective 10 person bubbles.
Wedding ceremonies can still happen in a church/mosque operating at 30% of the occupied room while keeping guests in their bubbles for seating. Keep every other pew closed, and keep families in their bubbles for seating in the pews.
Ways that Weddings Have Changed:
We will follow and work with the wedding pros and venues to implement what protocols they have in place and can make and offer added suggestions if wanted/needed. Everyone needs to respect each other for the best results. Our own individual companies may have our own safety protocols on top of government-mandated policies (this would only apply to our own staff). We can’t be afraid to question a company that is not following the government regulations and take action if necessary. If you see something, say something.
All of my wedding couples from Tracey M Events have postponed their weddings until next summer. All couples did go ahead with the actual wedding ceremony and were legally married on their original dates.
The venues and wedding teams (vendors) were very understanding and accommodating. Everyone helped when and where possible to give ideas and solutions to how best to implement the changes and have discussions about the frustrations and disappointment involved.
Other couples decided to change the size of their guests and went with a micro wedding, which is a smaller-scale type of wedding that still had their nearest and dearest in attendance. Some that had a micro wedding will go ahead with a bigger type of celebration next year with those who were unable to attend, and some are happy with the way it turned to which was smaller and more intimate giving the couple a chance to interact and spend lots of time with those in attendance.
It’s definitely been an emotional time for couples and wedding pros as the future is very uncertain. We are all hoping for the best and praying for a fruitful 2021 so we can get back to doing what we love.
Ways that weddings can be done:
- Staff checks upon arrival (temperature and verbal confirmation that they are feeling well)
- -Cleaning and disinfecting schedules amped up (staff to disinfect door handles and most used areas during and after all guests arrive, sinks, toilet handles should be disinfected throughout the event, etc)
- -Temperature checks upon arrival of each guest
- -Take the name and phone number of each individual for contact tracing
- -Arrows for guests to follow through the venue to their assigned seats and when going to the restrooms
- -Staggered arrival/departures led by staff-Guests should refrain from dancing (just keep the first dance for the couple)
- -Guests should remain seated unless going to the restroom
- -No receiving lines to greet the couple/guests
- -Alcohol consumption should be kept to a minimum and not encouraged (wine bottles on table/drinks brought to tables only).
- -Keep the bar area closed to the guests
- -Keep the social distancing 6 ft apart in effect between those outside of the family/friends bubbles
- -All guests should be wearing a mask
- -Have hand sanitizer readily available-Make announcements to remind guests to wash hands frequently and not touch their face
- -Staff (including wedding planner and other vendors) should be monitoring the guests to ensure rules are being followed
- -Ensure that guests are staying seated at tables and not mingling with others outside of their respective bubbles
- -Have a safety plan in place for those not following the rules (who will ask the guests to leave, and enforce that they do). Who will call the police to remove them if they won’t?