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I live in Nashville, TN, which, for the record, can be quite unpredictable when it comes to the weather.  Now, I feel a bit ahead of the game with an amateur Meteorologist for a fiancé, but there still remains the potential of being rained out and thus, the concern that comes coupled with it.

Cameron and I both want to have an outdoor wedding.  We are youth leaders at our church and spend many hours a week within the walls of the church, which we love.  When we picture exchanging vows and celebrating the beginning of the rest of our lives, it is out in the open.

I have spent weeks upon weeks researching venues in Nashville that can facilitate our rather large guest list and not break the bank.  I confess, when I first determined my budget, I had no idea how large our guest list would be, but that is for another post.  When your budget is only $6000, paying $1500 just to set up chairs is hard to justify.

So, as a result, Cameron and I began investigating alternative locations.  There was no shortage of options, but again, for every option, there was an equal and opposite condition.   It seemed like every option came with a condition that sought to punch a hole in my dreams.

One location we considered was Bowie Nature Park.  They have a beautiful outdoor classroom that can be rented for $75 for the day.  The catch: It only holds 100 people and allows no food or drink inside the classroom.  Sad days…it was really pretty.

I know the easy answer is rent a tent , but once you add on staking fees and permits, that pesky little price continues to climb up.  So, now, we are exploring (and may just have settled on) having it in beautiful Edwin Warner Park.  We can rent a shelter that, with a little gussying up, will be awesome and cost less than $30.  The surrounding park area is beautiful and lush and promises to serve as a great backdrop for our event.

For the record, we do have a backup indoor venue that can be used if necessary, so we’re not just flying blind.  I’ll keep you posted as plans unfold.

But I’m curious, are we crazy—any advice from those who have had an outdoor wedding in the heart of spring?

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About Lyssah

Lyssah is a 28 year old California native and Tennessee transplant. Marketing Assistant by day and writer by, well, any other time, she and her fiance Cameron can often be found dreaming, adventuring and just plain galavanting into whatever fun meanders across their path, often with coffee in hand and a pen close by.

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  • Ashley

    It sounds like Edwin Warner is a good choice. You can use about half of the money that you would’ve spent on tent rental and setup and put that towards making the shelter look amazing! Having your wedding at a park will make for a good photography backdrop and a fun atmosphere for your guests – everyone can feel free to have a good time! The only thing I would be wary of are the inevitable “April showers” and make sure you have a Plan B 🙂

  • Amber =)

    I’m in Nashville (well, okay, just outside of it), and I’m getting married at the beginning of March. I wanted an outdoor wedding SO badly, but I didn’t want to take a chance on torrential rain or snow. Cold was doable because I knew the ceremony wouldn’t be too long, and we could find a place to go indoors afterwards. Best of luck with the outdoor wedding! =)

  • Shamile H

    Me and my fiance are getting married April 20, 2013 in Channahon, Illinois which is a 45 minute to an hour drive from Chicago. We originally were stuck in the same situation..April weather..outside or indoors? We ultimately decided to host everything indoors. With our venue ( an Environmental Center) even if there was bad weather, we wouldn’t get our money back so the cost factor also weighed heavy.

  • Ashley

    I’m getting married the first Saturday in October this year… in Oregon. Last year it was 70 degrees and sunny, I’m hoping the same this time around. The ceremony will be outside in a garden and the reception indoors. I’m worried it might rain, but we saved a ton of money on the venue by choosing their “off-season” – so it will be worth it. I’m only moving festivities indoors if it pours hah!

  • Amanda

    I’m also from Nashville and was looking at parks to get married in. Where is the shelter located that is in the picture above? I like the look of it! 🙂

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