How to Plan an Outdoor Wedding in South Dakota

South Dakota is the perfect setting for a barn wedding. With open prairies, farmlands, and lakes located across our Midwest state, we have an abundance of natural beauty surrounding us for inspiration.

Finding the perfect wedding venue for your stunning day requires careful thought — especially when planning an outdoor wedding in South Dakota.

To help, The Canton Barn compiled a list of steps to guide your wedding coordination.

Steps to Plan a Barn Wedding Outside

Factors such as inclement weather, holidays, and local events all must be considered while putting together the plan. The Canton Barn outlines important steps to take when preparing for your wedding outside.

Sioux Falls Barn Wedding Ceremony

1. Consider weather conditions when choosing a wedding date.

If you live in South Dakota, you know right away that the weather here can be unpredictable. Inclement weather and drastic temperature changes happen at a moment’s notice. We typically can experience snowfall from October through early May.

So if you’re planning for an outdoor wedding, it’s best to take this all into consideration. June, July and August are the most popular months for weddings according to The Knot. With the mild weather of summer spreading into autumn, the months of September and October are also a good time for a wedding outside.

2. Prepare for the unexpected weather on the wedding day.

Preparation is key. In case it rains, snows, or heats up on your wedding day outdoors, be prepared to instruct guests to bring umbrellas and dress accordingly as soon as you can.

Embrace the rain by renting a tent from a trusted vendor and have towels and blankets available for guests to use. If temperatures warm up due to a hot day, provide fans for people to use to cool off.

At The Canton Barn wedding venue, we have a backup plan in action in case of inclement weather with a space to hold your ceremony inside. This gives you and your guests peace of mind.

By setting the right mood and remaining optimistic, the change of weather might just make the situation a pleasant, memorable experience.

3. If booking your wedding during holidays or major events, be conscious of a couple of things.

Consider that there may be scheduling conflicts for your guests if the wedding is being booked during a holiday weekend. Costs for travel and hotels are significantly higher during the holidays.

Here’s a compilation of holiday dates from 2020 to 2023 between May and November.

Mother’s Day (always a Sunday)
Weekend of May 9–10, 2020
Weekend of May 8–9, 2021
Weekend of May 7-8, 2022
Weekend of May 13-14, 2023

Memorial Day (always a Monday)
Weekend of May 23–25, 2020
Weekend of May 29–31, 2021
Weekend of May 28-30, 2022
Weekend of May 27-29, 2023

Father’s Day (always a Sunday)
Weekend of June 20–21, 2020
Weekend of June 19–20, 2021
Weekend of June 18-19, 2022
Weekend of June 17-18, 2023

Independence Day
Saturday, July 4, 2020
Sunday, July 4, 2021
Monday, July 4, 2022
Tuesday, July 4, 2023

Labor Day (always a Monday)
Weekend of September 5–7, 2020
Weekend of September 4–6, 2021
Weekend of September 3-5, 2022
Weekend of September 2-4, 2023

Columbus Day (always a Monday)
Weekend of October 10–12, 2020
Weekend of October 9–11, 2021
Weekend of October 8-10, 2022
Weekend of October 7-9, 2023

Halloween
Saturday, October 31, 2020
Sunday, October 31, 2021
Monday, October 31, 2022
Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Thanksgiving (always a Thursday)
November 26, 2020
November 25, 2021
November 24, 2022
November 23, 2023

If your wedding is taking place in eastern South Dakota, you’ll also want to note major annual events like JazzFest in mid-July as they can present extra road congestion and make it more difficult for your guests to find lodging. Check for upcoming events with Downtown Sioux Falls and Experience Sioux Falls to stay in the know.

4. Provide directions to guests who aren’t familiar with the area.

Make your wedding guests from out of town feel comfortable with directions, an event itinerary, and recommendations for reservations and restaurants. If they’re flying in for your special day, they’ll likely make a trip out of the occasion.

By giving these guests a taste of South Dakota kindness you leave them with a lasting impression — and hopefully a return visit back to our state.

5. Keep guests entertained with games and gatherings.

You can expect there to be downtime for guests in between itinerary items of the wedding day. If the weather cooperates, plan to set up yard games for people to play and enjoy themselves. Many of your guests may not know each other, so games give them an opportunity to break the ice, relax, and have fun.

At The Canton Barn, we have a fire pit outside, which is a nice gathering spot for wedding attendees at nighttime. Plus, the fire pit gives you another chance to capture photos of your loved ones together.

Book Your South Dakota Wedding at The Canton Barn!

Plan your outdoor wedding in South Dakota at The Canton Barn! Located just south of Sioux Falls, our wedding venue accommodates celebrations at the restored barn on our beautiful property.

We have plenty of room for convenient parking next to the barn wedding facility. Check availability by viewing our wedding venue calendar.

What to Expect When Booking Wedding Vendors

When you and your partner plan for a wedding there are many moving parts to consider. It can get intimidating knowing where to start!

Coordinating everything from the little details to the date itself can really put your head through a spin. The best place to begin is by selecting your venue in advance with a practical timeline in mind.

According to HuffPost, the average couple spends anywhere between 13 to 18 months planning for their big day. Consider this timeframe when selecting your date and wedding venue.

Types of Vendors to Hire for Your Wedding

After your venue is squared away, the next phase is lining up the vendors.

This step can often require the most time. You and your partner will likely want to get in touch with vendors who offer catering, floral arrangements, photography, and entertainment. Doing so will require getting in contact with multiple vendors to pick what works best for your wedding theme.

You’ll need to do your research and set up appointments to find what feels good.

To help, here’s a full list of services you can find a wedding vendor:

  • – Caters
  • Event Insurance
  • Florists
  • Photographers
  • – Entertainment
  • – Event Planners
  • – Hair
  • – Makeup
  • – Life Event Paintings
  • – Transportation
  • – Cakes
  • – Lodging
  • – Rentals
  • – Officiants

The Canton Barn sets extremely high standards for making your big day the best it can be with as little stress as possible. That’s why we help you look for vendors that deliver the best event services for your wedding. See the wedding vendors we recommend and trust based on our experience.

The Earlier, The Better When Booking Wedding Vendors

If you’re particular about your theme, then the best way to get what you want from vendors is to plan it out early on.

For example, the top wedding photographers that are in high demand typically get hired a year in advance for weddings. The same is true for high-class catering companies for appetizers and entrees, or local bands you’d like to hire for live entertainment.

While all of this might make you feel like you need to rush through the planning process, you shouldn’t just make a decision to be done with it. Take your time so you don’t regret booking a vendor and then end up finding another who you love even more.

Consider making a priority list to note what you absolutely can’t go without. That way you’re able to nail down the vendors who are most important to you and your partner in advance.

Get in Touch with our Trusted Vendors

If you’re planning a barn wedding in South Dakota, you’re in luck! We compiled a complete list of trusted wedding vendors with contact information included.

View our list of vendors to begin your search and let us know if you have any questions. Good luck with planning and congratulations!