“Perfect” Wedding Weather
Ask any soon-to-be bride and they will tell you that one of their many concerns is the weather on their wedding day. As a meteorologist, you can imagine how many times I analyzed and then re-analyzed the weather situation for my own wedding day. This is such a popular concern that some have turned wedding weather forecasting into a business. Some websites offer planning guides for purchase on how to chose your wedding date for optimal weather conditions. You can give yourself better odds by choosing a location and a season where favorable weather is more likely. But when it comes down it, no one can be certain that you will have pleasant conditions for a wedding more than a couple of days in advance.
I have had the pleasure of attending several outdoor weddings in recent years. One of the best was in Montana in August. This is a safe bet for an outdoor wedding because in the month of August there is on average only about .85 inches of rain all month. On the wedding day, there was actually some rain just prior to the ceremony so it was momentarily postponed until it cleared and then it was a beautiful evening. I recently attended another outdoor wedding in Minnesota in July where there were plenty of nature’s version of fireworks in combination with torrential downpours and this did not clear up like the Montana wedding. But this was not at all a complete disaster as you may suspect since a substantial tent was sufficient in keeping the guests dry and the party going. Rain isn’t the only weather condition that could potentially ruin an outdoor wedding – there are also extreme temperatures. A few years ago I was a guest at an outdoor wedding in Vail, CO in October. Now this is a much riskier location for this time of the year. Although the average monthly rainfall is only about 1.5″, the average temperature is 37 degrees! So, needless to say, it was quite chilly. And on the flip side, I have also attended an outdoor wedding with sweltering heat. High temperatures climbed into the 100 degree range. At this particular occasion, the bride was accommodating by encouraging the guys to wear shorts to be as comfortable as possible. All of these weddings were very happy occasions even though it didn’t turn out to be exactly how it had been envisioned. As I have been going down memory lane here, it occurred to me that I have actually never attended an outdoor wedding where the weather was considered “perfect.” (Whatever that means). So with some careful planning, I suppose it is possible to pull off a a successful outdoor wedding as long as you are aware of worst case scenario and you can be flexible enough to deal with it. (And maybe thats a lesson that can be applied to the the marriage as well).
By the way, Chelsea Clinton will be married today in Rhinebeck, NY. The details of this event have been carefully hidden it is most likely that some portion of this event will be outside. On average, August is one of the rainiest months of the year but she will luck out. The rain will hold off until tomorrow and today we are expecting plenty of sunshine with the high temperature resting comfortably in the low 80s.