With its iconic mountains hugging the narrow river valley, amazing restaurants, world class skiing and five-star resort, it’s no secret why so many people choose Sun Valley as their wedding destination. It’s the perfect mountain backdrop for a picturesque outdoor wedding or a romantic lodge-inspired winter wedding. If you are planning your Sun Valley wedding from afar or even if you are an Idaho local, here are 10 tips when planning your Sun Valley Wedding for success.
Unless you are an Idaho native or grew up visiting Sun Valley often, you might have some sticker shock when planning your wedding. Don’t let the Idaho location fool you; Sun Valley is a small, but extremely affluent area and the prices you see for goods and services will reflect that.
Hiring a professional planner with experience in this region can be hugely helpful in navigating this small and competitive wedding market. They can help you source local vendors and also tap
on resources from Boise when necessary. A planner will also fight for your vision and keep you from getting overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of details that come with planning a wedding.
Sun Valley and nearby Ketchum and Hailey are small towns with a limited number of resources to choose from. Wedding venues and vendors book up extremely quickly; sometimes a year or
more in advance.
If you plan to bring in vendors or supplies from Boise, be sure to factor in the cost of travel fees for these vendors or deliveries. Depending on the type of service, some vendors will charge a fee to drive the few hours to get to you and may require lodging for a night as well.
Summer months, especially September, can bring bad air quality and smoke obscured mountain views. Selecting a date a bit earlier or later in the wedding season could help ensure you have clear skies and clean air and might also mean less competition for vendors depending on
the month you select.
Nestled in the heart of the Wood River Valley at the base of Mt. Baldy, it’s not uncommon for storms to pass through this region at any time of year. It also tends to be chilly at night due to the higher elevation. If you plan to get married outside, make sure your venue has an indoor option in case of inclement weather. If inside isn’t an option, have a tent on reserve and make sure
the venue knows that is your plan. Nothing kills the joyful atmosphere faster than a
bunch of cold and wet wedding guests.
Whether you have chosen to get married at one of Sun Valley’s many beautiful venues or have selected a private location in nearby Ketchum, the mountain roads can be treacherous and the wildlife is abundant. Take the stress off your guests and allow them to relax and truly have a
good time without having to worry about navigating back to their hotel in an
Sun Valley has a base elevation of 5945 feet, so one drink will feel more like two for your guests. Make sure everyone stays well fed and well hydrated so they have a fun and memorable time! Liquid IV packets or late night snacks are fun ways to help mitigate this issue for your guests.
Unlike many hair and makeup artists who typically charge by the service, most hair and makeup artists in Sun Valley and the nearby towns of Ketchum and Hailey charge by the hour. Not only
that, but they tend to have time minimums. So it’s actually more economical to have a group of people who want hair and makeup services rather than just the bride.
Sun Valley is a gorgeous destination but it can be a bit tricky to get there. Since your guests will be traveling to get to your remote mountain venue, consider scheduling some other activities before or after your wedding for your guests to enjoy. Golfing, mountaintop yoga or hiking are all fun activities available in the summertime months and skiing or snowshoeing are great
options in the winter months. There are also tons of amazing restaurants for
welcome drinks or farewell brunches.
Sierra Saletta is owner and planner at Little Bird Events.
Little Bird Events is a boutique destination wedding planning company based in Boise, serving Idaho, California and beyond. They specialize in thoughtfully curated details, artfully presented and flawlessly executed.
Book or Contact Sierra for your wedding here.
Bramble and Vine is a Wedding Photography company that hosts guest authors on their blog from time to time to help serve Brides with Wedding tips. View more of Bramble and Vine’s work here.