When I was a child the old tradition of sending off a bride and groom at the end of their wedding reception was rice. I remember getting the rice bags and throwing it and having a great time of it. It was supposed to represent a new beginning with a wish for good luck and good crops. Then the rumor about what that rice can do to birds who eat it got out and pretty soon bird seed became the norm for sending off a bride and groom. Although, before writing this blog, I Googled it and it turns out that the whole "rice making birds explode" rumor may be just that -- a rumor. Birds eat wild rice from fields all the time, and there have not been any big bird explosion epidemics that we're aware of. It turns out that, in reality, the trend away from rice throwing is most likely traced to massive lawsuits against venues brought on by guests who slipped on the rice and hurt themselves. In response, venues prohibited the throwing of rice and often, they've prohibited the throwing of birdseed as well. In fact, many of them say, just don't throw anything please.
I've seen a few brides choose flower petals to send off and those seem innocent enough -- although not for the one who has to come through and pick them all up. Venues frown upon you leaving those things behind.
Right now the most popular trend is bubbles. Bridal supply stores are making out like bandits selling little plastic bottles of bubbles.
Many brides are opting for send-offs that don't involve throwing anything. Sometimes the guests will receive a noise-maker of some sort -- horns, bells, spinning things -- and send the couple away with enough noise to wake the neighborhood. I've yet to hear of any noise-related injuries from this technique.
I've seen a bride get a hole burned in dress thanks to a sparkler. I've seen children burn their fingers on sparklers -- one of them a quite nasty burn. And now I've seen the gift table caught on fire thanks to sparklers. Fortunately, the fire didn't spread beyond the gift table and only a few gifts were lost, but the potential for disaster was really high.
They come in a variety of colors, they last for hours, children love them, nobody slips on them and they are pretty inexpensive.
Whatever you decide to send you off on your wedding day, make it special and make it safe. And call me to record all the details of it!
Lisa On Location Photography