Beach Weddings and the Harp
It’s fallen below freezing here in Southern Rhode Island, which has me reminiscing over long summer days, and trips to the beach. I thought it might warm us all up to dedicate a post to beach weddings.
Who doesn't find it romantic to get married beside the ocean with the sand between your toes? I'm often asked if I can bring my harp on the beach for weddings, and the answer is yes! I use my medium size mahogany harp for beach ceremonies as it's lighter and can be carried across the sand. To avoid placing it on the sand (which would be harmful) I bring a white wooden base for it to sit upon. Another necessary component I bring are my music clips, which I place on my sheet music to prevent the wind from turning my pages.
As with any outdoor wedding you're in the arms of mother nature. Beach weddings are often less protected than the typical outdoor ceremony in terms of rain and especially wind. With the beach you also have the sand to deal with. The wedding's I've performed at in the past have often been hosted by a venue that is right on (or walking distance) to the beach and ceremony site. This allows for a plan b option in the case of rain or turbulent weather, a must for beach weddings.
One of the aspects that should be considered extra important for beach weddings is amplification. The harp's sound is generally able to carry. I do like to bring amplification just in case however, this is mostly due to the presence of wind. I also find that it's better for beach weddings to have the couple use a microphone during their vows. I'm typically fairly close to the alter in most ceremony setups, so if I'm having trouble hearing the vows, your guests are having an awful lot of trouble!
Overall, beach weddings can be a lot of fun! I've often seen weddings couples that set up cute little baskets of different sized flip flops for their guests to use. They really are something special and unique! Typically, the setup for the ceremony is the same as it is for most indoor or outdoor weddings. In most cases the venue (or rental company) has provided chairs and an alter or trellis where the couple will be wed underneath. The backdrop of course can't be beat.
One last thing to consider, is to schedule the ceremony a bit later on in the day. For example, you probably wouldn't want to have a beach wedding at noon on a Saturday in July. Not only for the heat, but because the beach will be packed with beach goers. This could disrupt the ceremony, or at the very least cause your wedding photos to include random strangers in their bathing suits. My advice is to choose a time a little bit later when the beach would be less crowded. The sun will also be a little lower, which your guests will appreciate.
In the future I will do an additional post on my favorite locations for both beach weddings and seaside venues. I hope this post has both inspired and informed you on planning your lovely beachside ceremony!