Surprising Ways Hurricane Sandy Can Still Affect Your Wedding

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Hurricane Sandy had the power to knock out wedding venues’ electricity, and worse, flood them to the point of destruction. While losing your venue so soon before your wedding is horrific, it’s an obvious problem, one you’re hyper-aware you need to remedy. Other Sandy effects, like those that follow, aren’t as apparent–and you may not even know about them until it’s too late.

1. Local hotels cancel your out-of-town guests’ reservations.
My heart warmed when a Staten Island hotel refused to kick out evacuees to honor the reservations of New York City marathon runners, in town for a race that never happened. But hotels aren’t necessarily honoring rooms booked for weddings either. Even scarier, unless you reserved a block of rooms, you may not be notified that your guests are getting the boot. Contact any far-flung guests and offer to help them find new accommodations if need be.

2. Your venue has power…but not heat or hot water.
A funny thing happened in New York City office and apartment buildings: The electricity came back–or it never went away in the first place–but the hot water necessary to shower and cook food and the heat necessary to warm bodies in the near-frigid fall temperatures weren’t available. Good wedding venues have contingency plans for these things, but you may not love their plan B. Check in with them so there are no surprises on your wedding day.

3. Your guests can’t arrive on time because they need gas.
The situation’s a bit better now than it was a few days back, but people are still waiting in hours-long lines to fill up. If your guests’ tanks get low on the way to your wedding, they may miss your vows. Consider postponing the ceremony start time or posting a reminder to fill ‘er up on your wedding website.

4. Your guests can’t arrive on time because of detours/public transportation service changes.
Down trees and power lines (and in Manhattan, unsteady cranes) have caused street closures, while flooding on train tracks has crippled public transportation. Though conditions are improving each day thanks to hardworking folks, they won’t be back to normal for quite some time. Investigate the situation near your venue and alert guests–who may be relying on the directions you provided–to changes in the route.

5. The pretty spot you planned to use for outdoor photos isn’t so pretty anymore.
Idyllic lakes may now look downright swampy. And canopies of trees may now be piles of branches on the ground. If you had your heart set on a certain setting for your portraits, go see how it appears post-Sandy and scout out a new destination if the scene’s no longer serene.

6. Your wedding invitations are illegible to guests.
You know how mail has that deformed “I-was-wet-now-I’m-dry” look when it gets sent out in a rainstorm? Imagine how it looks after a hurricane. Key details on the invitations may be tough to decipher if your invites got soaked. If you were unfortunate enough to send out your invitations just before the storm, call a friend to see how the invite looked to her. And if she couldn’t make out the where and the when (or the who for that matter), plan to call more guests to clue them in.

Anyone have a wedding post-hurricane? We have one this weekend!

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Photo by Brian Birke

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