PRO: You're in a controlled environment - neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow is going to derail your day. As a matter of fact, you can pretty much assume your guests will enjoy the comfort and security of knowing your vows will go off without a hitch and they'll be protected from the elements.
CON: There could be rules on space and décor - your wedding vision could be slightly marred by the fact that your décor might need to be minimized to meet the rules of the establishment (as is the case with most religious institutions, museums, and historical landmarks). Check with your event planner or wedding vendor to find out what stays and what goes BEFORE you sign a contract. Also, not all your guests might fit the available seating. So weigh what's more important: A killer space or the fact that some of your extended family and friends might not make the cut on the guest list.
PRO: 2-in-1 Packages - many indoor event spaces have the ability to double as both your ceremony and reception venue. This could potentially save you big money - especially if you're thinking about having your venue cater your event too. This can give youleverage to negotiate for a lower price OR additional add-ons, like your wedding cake, free valet parking, etc.
CON: Higher Demand During the Colder Months - Good luck trying to find an indoor space last minute in the late fall or winter. Given the freezing temps outside, indoor wedding spaces are usually at a premium and harder to come by if you put off booking it in advance. We suggest 6-9 months out just to play it safe.
PRO: Little Décor Necessary - Pretty flowers, rolling hills, elegant gardens, and greenery aplenty - a scenic outdoor ceremony doesn't require a lot of flourish to make it spectacular. As a matter of fact, decorating for your ceremony is a definite no-brainer when you book your wedding at someplace like a vineyard, beach, park, etc.
CON: Lighting Limitations - A pretty ceremony spot doesn't automatically equate into a picture-perfect affair. Depending on the time of day, shadows and overhanging trees and brush could make it a challenge for your photographer and videographer to get good pictures. Keep in mind it's always a good idea to take your vendors for a walk-thru beforehand (or at the very least ASK them for suggestions before you drop money on a deposit.)
PRO: More Family Friendly - Keeping a toddler or a 10-year-old engaged and occupied is much easier to do outside than it is in a restricted indoor space. From blowing bubbles to hula hoop and kite lessons for the kiddies, ALL your guests will have a great time when Mother Nature plays host on your wedding day.
CON: The Weather - While we'd all love a crystal ball, the simple fact of the matter is that having a wedding outside is a gamble. You just can't anticipate rain, high winds, or a sweltering heat wave when planning something up to a year in advance. If you're worried about any of these things ruining your perfect day, maybe it's time to think about scoring a tent, heater, fans, or a venue that offers an indoor space to accommodate guests if inclement weather does strike.
All-in all, it's entirely your day and you can make the most of it with these helpful considerations for whichever venue you choose!