Planning a wedding in the summer? From energizing, colorful beverage stations to dance floors set up under a canopy of twinkle lights, a summer wedding has lots of room for thrilling activities and quirky reception features. We compiled the ultimate list of the most unique and fun ideas for you to incorporate into your very own rustic summer wedding. Explore them below!

1.Set your wedding reception on an interesting outdoor location.

Summer is the perfect time to step out of sheltered wedding venues and host your reception outside! We’re down for the wide spaces, summer breeze, and breathtaking landscaping outdoor wedding venues offer. Plus, there are various, exciting themes you can choose for your big day, such as an English garden-inspired wedding…

Photo Credit: Mustard Seed Photography

…a backyard barbecue party-style wedding…

Photo Credit: 99 Wedding Ideas

…a reception set at a barn or a ranch…

Photo Credit: Andi Mans Photography

…a wedding on the beach…

Photo Credit: Tied the Knot Wedding Photography

…or a day at the desert!

Photo Credit: Fondly Forever

2. Get married at a summer camp!

If you do want to get married indoors, consider a summer camp as your wedding venue. Summer camps will pretty much have everything prepared for you: vast fields, interesting activities, and a cozy indoor space.

Photo Credit: Kivalo Photography

3. Set a special bonfire area.

What’s a rustic summer wedding without a celebratory bonfire? Choose a wedding venue with a special bonfire area for you and your guests to dance around all night.

Photo Credit: My Wedding HQ

Photo Credit: Paper Lantern Store

4. Create an outdoor dance floor.

Whether it’s an elevated wooden platform or a vintage black and white space, an outdoor dance floor is one your guests will surely appreciate.

Photo Credit: Wedding Plans Today

5. Exchange vows on a dock or the pier.

For a wedding moment straight out of a romantic flick, consider getting married by the bayperhaps on a dock or pier!

Photo Credit: Curt O’Neil

6. Dress up in summer’s brightest palette.

Nothing gets the summer vibe going like a gorgeous, summer-inspired wedding motif for your wedding. Pick the season’s most vibrant colors for you and your bridesmaids to step out in.

Photo Credit: Ocodea

7. Decorate your reception area with twinkle/string lights, poppy flowers, or paper lanterns.

Set the mood for your rustic summer wedding with easy and chic wedding decor options, such as a twinkle lights and the season’s best blooms. Here’s one with tassels for that extra whimsical touch! 

Photo Credit: Bloc Memoire

8. Set up a food booth inspired by a summer favorite.

Delight your wedding guests with food stations such as a lemonade booth…

Photo Credit: WhiteCottagePaper

…a s’mores bar…

Photo Credit: Wedding Window

…or an ice cream cart!
Photo Credit: Shell Demar

9. Wrap pictures around tree trunks or hang them around branches.

For a rustic or vintage look, consider wrapping picture frames around tree trunks or hanging them around tree branches. Easy to DIY, as well!

Photo Credit: Tulle and Chantilly

10. Let your guests sit on covered or blanketed bales of hay instead of chairs.

Go all out with your outdoor rustic summer wedding and switch up the chairs with bales of hay. Do cover them with blankets or cloths so guests can comfortably sit on them.

Photo Credit: Kacie Lynch

11. Set up a bubble station for the kids.

Boost the kids’ energy levels with bubble guns and toys they can play around with. Entertainment guaranteed.

Photo Credit: Home Design Inspired

12. Offer your guests sparklers that they can use to make an arch for your exit.

A fun idea to engage both adults and children in the audience is to hand them sparklers that they can ignite and use to illuminate your pathway to the exit.

Photo Credit: Wedding Sparklers R Us

13. Exit the ceremony on a bike.

Riding away on a bike is a refreshing change to the usual escapade by means of a bridal car. Not to mention, it will make for an extremely photogenic exit with the groom’s coat and the bride’s dress billowing around!

Photo Credit: Edyta Szyszlo


14. Release wish lanterns into the sky.

There’s a set of symbolic activities that transpires during wedding ceremonies. A wish lantern is, by far, the most romantic summer wedding must-do: it is traditionally taken as a symbol for hope. The way these floating lanterns brighten up the night sky also makes for a stunning show to watch and a beautiful backdrop for photos!

Photo Credit: Wedding Exits

15. Have your wedding invitations or programs double as fans.

Guests will definitely appreciate the practical side of it!

Photo Credit: Anna Skye via The Knot

16. Provide parasols, sunglasses, and sunscreen for your guests.

Something to beat the summer heat with!

Photo Credit: Connie Lyu

Photo Credit: Aster and Olive

17. Give away slippers for your wedding guests.

…because dancing in heels isn’t always fun or comfortable!

Photo Credit: Plan Your Perfect Wedding

18. Supply your lady guests with heel protectors.

These are especially useful for your guests-in-heels when you are hosting your summer wedding at a garden or a field of grass.

Photo Credit: Lily Blue

19. Have a firework show for the wedding finale.

There’s no season more perfect than summer for you to take advantage of the clear night skies. Mark your once-in-a-lifetime celebration with a breathtaking firework show!

Photo Credit: Wedding Belle Blog

20. Host summer wedding games! 

Whether it’s croquet or a giant Jenga, fun field (or water games, if you’re hosting a beach wedding) will keep your guests entertained.

Photo Credit: Brides

21. Write words in the air with sparklers.

Here’s a fun summer wedding idea to elevate your photos: write words or phrases in the air with sparklers. It usually results into unique shots that captures the festive mood in your party.

Photo Credit: Adorama Pix

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