Is it cheaper to do a backyard wedding or a wedding in a hall?

by Brandi
(Youngstown OH)

our story
Okay my fiance and I plan to get married June 5,2010. My theme is mickey and minnie. His parents plan on paying for the food and making the food and setting it up and the beer and wine too.. my mom plans on paying for the cake and helping pay for favors and the bouquets and boutonnieres and plans on making those my maid of honor and I have made the flower girl basket, I got my mom and his mom to get together the guest list and there 160! my fiance and I tried to explain we want a very small wedding with no children to cut cost but they got angry so i said never mind. =( I wanted to have the guest do photography with disposable cameras but my parents want professional photographers? They're expensive! I asked my BFF to do it but she's one of my bridesmaid I told her I'd pay her or her sister to do it (she's a photography student at YSU) Is it okay for her to do the photography and be a bridesmaid? My next problem is location, again his parents are going to cater (they are caterers), where i run into a problem is they need time to set up the food before the wedding, The hall i found is 35/hr they would need it at 9am-11am and the wedding is a 1pm than the reception at 3pm-6pm but the time between 11 and 3 must be paid for even if were not using it that's already 315! our budget is little to nothing maybe 1000 or less we have very little money we plan on saving money but my fiance would like to save as much as possible The backyard wedding starts to get expensive too and im afraid of it raining It's OHIO! Im not sure of any cheap back up plans I told my mom we'd need to rent a tent from party max which is 200 or from this one little place here in youngstown it's 320 for tables chairs and a tent that fits 92 people our guest list is bigger than that ugh! Then I want to dance with my fiance and father and would like to have my fiance dance with his mother so music becomes a problem, the cheapest i found was 400 for 4 hours then I'd like to rent a dance floor haven't found a cheap one yet so im not tripping dancing in the grass Im not sure what to do it's more than a year away and I'm already stressing out telling my fiance never mind that we will never have the money to get married please help!

Hi Brandi
Deep breath, you are going to be fine! Think of all the positives; catering sorted, flowers sorted, photography sorted (yes it is ok for your bridesmaid to do the photographs).

Take a look at your costs - hall hire is $315 and you would need to pay for entertainment on top.

Backyard wedding is $200 for the tent, or $320 including tables and chairs, plus a dance floor and entertainment.

Based on those figures and as long as the hall hire includes tables and chairs then this is the cheapest option as you won't need a dance floor.

The costs for your music are about average, you may find someone cheaper by looking at craigslist.org - lots of service providers list themselves when they are first starting out and the prices can be cheaper. Rather than have a professional could you have friends put together the music? Play it via a laptop or mp3 using the halls sound system if they have one. If not then ask around if anyone has some decent speakers that you could borrow for the day.

As well as having your friend take the photos ask if your guests can email you copies of the ones that they take, this way you won't have the expense of disposable cameras and the pictures will be better.

Your plans sound like they are coming together perfectly so don't panic - if you need anymore help drop me a line.

Suz

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