Summertime means two things: tons of festivals AND wedding season! Many couples within the community get engaged at festivals every year. For the couple who bonded over EDM, or met at their favorite festival, tying the knot at a festival might be the perfect option. Luckily, the precedent will allow for you and your loved one to have a highly personalized and deeply touching ceremony at your favorite festival! Here’s everything you need to know about planning your festival wedding.
1. Research festival wedding packages
If you’re looking to have (almost) all of the details taken care of for you on your big day, festival wedding packages are the way to go. These packages typically provide the venue on the festival grounds, as well as a legally ordained officiant. EDC is probably the most famous for their wedding packages at the chapel, but Shambhala, Electric Forest, Burning Man, and Hangout Festival also offer wedding services for attendees.
Check the website of your favorite festival to see what they offer. Each experience will be a little different, so consider how well the festival’s personality aligns with your own. Typically you’ll have to fill out a form and wait to hear back – at large fests like EDC the availability may be limited, so it never hurts to get an early start! Fests may also offer options for vow renewals or commitment ceremonies for the couple who doesn’t need a legal ceremony.
2. Obtain your marriage license beforehand
Though festival wedding packages can be nearly all-inclusive, you’ll still be responsible for obtaining a marriage license beforehand. Typically the county you’ll be tying the knot in will issue the license, so festival organizers typically recommend arriving a 1-3 days early to run down to the courthouse and obtain a license. Check ahead online to find out what forms of ID you’ll need, and find out about any licensing fees.
3. You can still have a ceremony at a festival without wedding package
You can also go off the beaten path for a festival wedding, and set everything up yourselves. We like to call this the BYOO (Bring Your Own Officiant) style for festival weddings. Have a good friend become ordained online with a few simple steps, pick a suitable spot within the festival, or at the designated wedding chapel, and you’re set! If you decide to go this route, you’ll still have to obtain a marriage license, and should double check the requirements for officiants in that county – some areas are more strict about who can legally marry you.
For U.S. citizens looking to marry at Shambhala, the process is still fairly simple, just be sure that your officiant registers with the county and follows Canadian guidelines. Luckily, licensed officiants post in the Farmily group on Facebook almost yearly, so you’re sure to be able to find someone who’s a good fit for you. Find more specific information about B.C. wedding laws here.
4. Use Facebook events to invite all of your loved ones
You can skip the paper invitations and go straight to social media to invite your friends to witness your ceremony. This is especially convenient if you’re on the spontaneous side, and want to just find the right spot upon arrival. You can immediately communicate any updates to the plan on the event page, ensuring that all of your friends make it to your nuptials. Older loved ones you might invite to a traditional wedding may not attend, so you could likely avoid the typical complications of paper RSVPs.
5. If you’re still dreaming of a traditional wedding, you can go with a festival theme
If festivals are meaningful to your relationship, but you’ve always imagined a traditional wedding, a festival theme is a great way to incorporate your love story! The theme has been trending in the UK for a while now, with dreamy backwoods venues turned into a mini festival just for you. Companies like Wedfest make the theme even easier to execute with custom-designed stationery that resembles VIP passes, and wristbands for all of your guests. Going a little further by hiring a local DJ or having a friend play a set at your wedding could really complete the vibe! The possibilities are endless.
Do you have a festival wedding or love story? Tell us in the comments!
Get all the latest Pacific Northwest nightlife news, directly to your inbox.