When it comes to event planning, you are often expected to think outside of the box. You need to fit x number of attendees into a certain amount of space often with a limited budget and in a short amount of time. This requires creativity.
Thinking Outside The Box
Weddings are becoming less and less ‘traditional’ with each passing year. Though there are no firm statistics, in an ABC News article from April 2015, experts shared that less and less couples are rushing to the altar, with many choosing to elope or start families before nuptials due to the costs associated with a traditional ceremony.
There are statistics to point to this delay, and according to author Kerry McDonald in her book, Your Unique Wedding: Say I Do With A Twist (2005, New Page Books), the average age for a first wedding has increased dramatically for both men and women. “In the mid-1950s…the average age of first marriage was roughly 22.5 for men and 20 for women. According to the US Census Bureau, those numbers have increased dramatically over the past half-century, to a current average marrying age of approximately 27.7 for men and 25 for women.”
Because of this constant evolution, there has been a shift in the industry. The type of spaces are changing and what may have once been considered solely a wedding venue can be seen in a different way. The same can be said for restaurants and bars, which now are playing host to more and more small ceremonies as couples look for affordable alternatives and downsize their ceremonies.
Why You Should Reimagine the Space
The typical wedding ceremony is scheduled on a Saturday for the ease of guests and it is true that venues can book their Saturday’s solid up to a year in advance. This could point to another possible reason for delay in marriage, as the planning process post-engagement can take up to a year or more.
Not only can these venues accommodate weddings for a lesser fee on Fridays or Sundays, the same can be said for corporate events throughout the week. As these spaces make the majority of their income off of their Saturday bookings, they look to book their space out to get additional income and can afford to negotiate lower rates.
There are two other added bonuses of using these spaces for a corporate event. The first is that the staff at these venues is very well trained to handle large-scale events and they often have recommendations for partners they regularly work with (either with a preferred vendor list or a requirement for regular vendors they are comfortable with). The perk of this is that it can make your planning and research stage for your event exponentially easier, especially as you are racing against the clock to get decisions made. The second benefit is that these spaces are often quite large, allowing you to easily section off the area and move event attendees seamlessly throughout the space. For example, should you be holding a conference, you can have the actual keynotes take place in one area and then move attendees to another side of the space for lunch or breakout sessions. This eliminates the need for attendees to travel between venues and can save you money and time having to find a separate restaurant or bar that can accommodate your large group (while often requiring large minimums or that you to rent out the entire space so they don’t lose money on what would be a busy night).
When it comes to getting creative, the space can serve as the perfect jumping off point for structuring your whole event in a way you may not have envisioned. Try a quick and easy search for an event space that may traditionally be seen as a wedding venue and see what we mean firsthand.