How to Include Family in Your Elopement

When you think of an elopement, your first thought might be of a secretive escape, just the two of you whispering vows in a secluded spot. But what if I told you that elopements can be just as dreamy and also include your closest friends and family?

This has been one of the most commonly asked questions from my eloping couples, “How do we still include family in our elopement?!” There are actually more ways than one! And don’t worry, I’ll tell you all about them in this blog.

Before We Get Started

Before we dive in, I wanted to get a couple of things out of the way.

I consider elopements to be experiences for up to 20 people. The definition can vary for different photographers, as well as different ceremony spots and celebration venues. So, I definitely recommend looking it up ahead of time!

I also love to remind my clients that your elopement day is completely yours to create! You don’t have to include any traditions you don’t want to. It can be as adventurous as you’d like it to be, and don’t feel like you actually have to include anyone other than yourselves!

However, if you’d like to share your day with your closest friends and family, note that these choices will impact your elopement timeline and location options.

Now that we got this out of the way let’s get into the good stuff!

romantic bride and groom adirondack elopement photo

Involve Family in the Elopement Ceremony

There are a couple of ways to include family in your elopement ceremony.

  • You could go for a sunrise hike, exchange your vows in private somewhere romantic, and then head back for a ceremony with your friends and family.
  • You start your day with the ceremony, share a celebratory Hors d’oeuvres and drinks with your loved ones, and then head off to adventure on your own.
bride and groom kissing during their adirondack elopement ceremony

Have a Post-Elopement Reception

Another good option to include your family in your elopement is by hosting a post-elopement celebration. You could spend the whole day with your partner and then have a celebratory dinner with your family in a restaurant. 

You could also host the celebration on a completely different day, so you can really enjoy yourselves without a single worry on the day.

bride and groom eating cake

Plan a Family-Friendly Elopement Day

Some couples choose to have their loved ones around throughout the whole day. In that case, it can look like – spending the morning with your family, having a small ceremony, heading off to adventure on your own, and then returning for evening celebrations.

In this scenario, I recommend arranging activities that everyone can enjoy, like a gentle hike, a boat ride on the lake, or a cozy campfire evening. Dinner cruises on Lake George are always a great option!

bride and groom and their families

Can We Include Our Dog?

I thought you’d never ask! The answer is YES! As long as the locations we’re going to allow dogs, you can bring your fur baby! Just make sure to bring bags to clean up their waste, extra water and food for them, and a leash as well!

bride petting her dog during the elopement day

Ready to Plan Your Dream Adirondack Elopement?

I hope this blog has helped you find the perfect way you’d like to include your family in your elopement!

And hey, if you need an Adirondack elopement photographer to capture the joy and the jaw-dropping scenery and craft the perfect elopement experience, you know who to reach out to. Send me a message here – I’d love to hear from you!

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