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Top Tips From Georgia Wedding Planners

Georgia's top wedding planners share their juiciest insider info for planning a wedding in Georgia.

Photo: JandDImages

The planner

Carla Pryor
St. Simons Elopements, St. Simons, GA, (912) 638-8706

Years in the biz
One

Secret weapon
"I can provide my couples everything they need. I'm a wedding officiant– I can perform the ceremony, if necessary. I can also do the photography."

The planner

Toni Friday
Events Boutique, Atlanta, GA, (404) 230-9724

Years in the biz
More than 10

Secret weapon
"Candid yet tactful honesty is the absolute best way to communicate, plan and prepare in the often emotionally heightened wedding world."

The planner

Ally Haggerty
Unforgettable Soirées, LLC, Atlanta, (770) 375-8000

Years in the biz
Two

Secret weapon
"Organization from day one to that special day!"

weather woes

"There's a saying in Georgia, ‘If you don't like the weather, wait until tomorrow,' and it's true. Always have a backup plan. Consider venues that handle both indoor and outdoor venues, like Atlanta Botanical Garden (404-876-5859 x1585) or The Hilton Garden Inn Atlanta Downtown (404-577-2001) with a new rooftop deck and helipad." –Toni

change of scenery

"I'm personally a big fan of having outdoor cocktail hours and indoor receptions. The outdoor location allows a bride to spread things out a bit, while still having the backup in case of bad weather. In Athens, The Pavilion at Foundry Park Inn (706-433-1943) is great. Guests are surrounded by the old inn feel while being in the heart of UGA land!" – Ally

best months for beachfront bashes

"The best months for beach weddings (along Georgia's coast) are the autumn months of September, October, November and the spring months of March, April and May. This is also considered the "off season" for hotels and it's a great way to save money." -- Carla

favorable favors

"Consider parasols as keepsake gifts. Placing them at an angle in guests' chairs is a nice addition and will help minimize the discomfort of direct sunlight." –Toni

native decor

"My brides prefer to use flowers and greenery that are native to Georgia and the coast. Palmettos, seashells and Spanish moss are abundant here. Linda, over at Brunswick Flower Basket (912-265-5990), is the quintessential Southern lady. Her work is excellent, but dealing with her is truly a Southern experience." –Carla

brand-new venue

"I am personally very excited about the grand opening of Greystone in Piedmont Park Conservancy (404-875-7275 x224). With beautiful stone wall accents, a gorgeous ballroom and a terrace that has great park views, it is sure to wow guests and provide spectacular backdrops for pictures." -- Ally