Welcome to The Bride Link podcast, your home for expert wedding planning advice! Today, we want to talk a little bit more about alternatives to a sparkler exit! These wedding exit ideas still light up without the dangers of a wedding send off with sparklers. Using sparklers as a grand exit for your wedding can be stunning but you've probably seen it a ton of times on Instagram or a friend's wedding! There are other wedding send off ideas out there! Let's chat about some! But first, don't forget your FREE copy of our Ceremony Cheat Sheet to help keep your planning!
First up, using fireworks!
Our first suggestion is not a cheap alternative so if you're not doing a sparkler exit because of budgetary reasons, you can skip this one. If you have room in your budget then having fireworks go off at the end of your wedding can be the highlight of the evening! Most guests won't expect it and are usually stunned when they begin! To do this correctly, you're will need to hire a professional and book a venue that allows it.
You should have a pretty hefty budget to be able to account for the professional services, as well as all the safety and insurance liability that comes with it. You also need to do some heavy-duty research! You'll need to not only talk to your venue about what they allow but also look at city and county ordinances. Making sure that you're not breaking any laws is important, we cannot stress this enough. Setting off fireworks without doing your due diligence will end in the cops and/or fire department being the honored guests at your wedding. You'll more than likely be issued a hefty fine/citation and they could shut down your event right on the spot.
(Always hire a professional)
Next, light-up fiber optic wands!
If fireworks are not going to be an option for you or not allowed at your venue, the most similar option to sparklers is LED light-up fiber-optic ones. It might be something that you remember from the circus when you were little, but these sparkless wands offer the same kind of effect in your photos as sparklers. Plus they can be reused or sold after you've finished using them. The best part?! They are not a fire hazard! They don't cause any harm to the venue like open flames, don't pose a danger to your guests, or require professionals to handle them.
They are becoming the standard at more and more venues! With the link below, you'll be able to purchase them in bulk from Amazon! We're going to have a link for everything other than the fireworks! That way you can easily find everything online!
Glow in the dark champagne toast!
Should you be looking for a way to double your money by getting double use out of things, you can buy cool glow in the dark champagne glasses. They function as glassware but also light up! Everybody can use them for glassware during the event and at the end of the night, you can announce to grab your champagne glass and line up to do one final toast for the couple as they exit. Be sure to mention the special glassware more than once (listed on the RSVP info card, instructions when you hand them out, have your coordinator or mom involved with spreading the word, etc), this way your guests will remember to keep their glasses. You could also distribute the glassware at the end of the night, be sure to involve your bartender so they can be prepped and ready to go! It'll be a neat treat for them to take home as a favor as well.
Next, is light-up bracelets!
If you and your partner are really into a good time and great music, having light-up rave bracelets might be a good option for you. Not only are they activated by the sound of music, but they also blink brightly! Use them to plan your unique dancing exit! You'll need to purchase the bracelets in bulk so that every guest has access to more than just one. Most come in a pack of 48, and there are several options to choose from with white being the most popular! One of our most recent weddings had these in three different colors and pulsed to the music. It was fun during the dancing part of the night, as well as the grand exit!
This next option works great for events with smaller guest counts, or if you're doing just a simple elopement! You'll still want a picture at the end of the night with a little bit of sparkle! You might've seen the cute wedding inspiration where the couple is wrapped up in fairy light! The photographer takes a picture and it is not only a cute photo, but it can be a cute little moment for any small or intimate wedding. Getting your guests and family members to help wrap the fairy lights makes for another great photo at the end of your event. We've selected a link to fairy lights that not only can you use them for an exit photo or acute elopement couples photo, but also you can submerge them in water (just NOT the battery pack). They can add flair to your centerpieces even if they're filled with water! We've linked to the pack of 24 below, which depending on the size of your event can be used both for the tables and your grand wedding exit!
Last is LED light-up balloons! (caveat included)
We have done this at weddings before and one wedding, in particular, came with problems. A balloon release is a good option, just not a great one for a lot of reasons and I'll tell you why. But first, if you without a doubt want balloons, we do recommend that you have them stay low to the ground. There are these neat little balloon weights you can get from the dollar tree that will allow you to keep the LED balloon from getting too high and escaping to places it shouldn't go. Keep this in mind when purchasing the helium to blow them up. Less is more!
Helium and weights are also not required! You can simply have guests hold the LED balloons and have volunteers to help blow them up. It's something that will take a little bit of time if you are inflating them manually so keep this in mind padding your time. Unfortunately, for us as wedding planners, we've had to do it before at the wedding we mentioned earlier. Unfortunately for the couple, they decide to purchase the cheapest led balloons they could find. Please do not do this, especially if you hope to inflate and distribute them quickly. The cheap balloons were made of thin cheap latex, with cheap batteries in them, and equipped with cheap lights. Seeing a trend? Half of the balloons didn't light up and the other quarter of them would pop extremely easily. Be mindful of where you get them from, especially if you want your wedding exit picture to glow!
We've got a link for you some legitimate ballons but what we've also done is link another type of LED balloons with sticks! You won't have to worry about a balloon release and it's something that they can hold up and wave. It's still bright because the stick lights up too! I thought those are neat options instead of just regular white led balloons. The balloons on sticks have colorful sticks, or you can get just like the candlelight color.
So multicolor candle, light color, the sticks light up as well as there's a little bit of sparkle inside the balloon and the balloon itself is clear. You could also use them for decoration to the entrance or cocktail hour!
Things we don't recommend as alternatives to a sparkler exit!
The first thing we already discussed, and that's a balloon release. It's not only harmful to the environment but also the wildlife around the area. It can be against the rules for your venue because balloon releases leave a huge mess of popped balloons and strings everywhere. The worst part is when the pop and stick to trees. It was really difficult to climb up and get all of those little balloons and straggly pieces out of the trees. That's the one reason why we don't recommend that you do a balloon release.
The next thing that we don't recommend is going to be a floating lantern release. You might 've seen these at music festivals or you might've seen the Pinterest wedding or Instagram wedding inspiration of a beautiful picture of all of these glowy lanterns lighting up and floating away into the sky. Just like the balloon release, the lanterns have to land somewhere. A local wedding venue had a tree that caught on fire when a floating lantern landed in it during the dry season. We're local to the smokey mountains and susceptible to forest fires. Just a few years ago a small portion of the area was devastated by fire. All floating lanterns here are illegal at every venue. When you think about floating lanterns, it is really a terrible idea. You're literally igniting a fire source and letting it float away to land in a random location.
Also, capturing that perfect picture is hard to pull off. Floating lanterns can be difficult to get everybody to light them at the same time and be able to let them go at the same time. They're just not always really functional and guests sometimes don't listen to instructions. Best to avoid them altogether!
That's why those are some things that we don't recommend. I do hope that we've been able to help you today to come up with an alternative sparkler exit idea that will still light up the night.
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