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There are many reasons why a married couple would want to renew their marriage vows. Perhaps they’ve reached a significant milestone in their marriage, such as a 10th or 20th anniversary. Or, maybe the couple has gone through a difficult situation and have emerged on the other side with a need to give their marriage a fresh start. 

Whatever the reason, if you are planning to renew your wedding vows, there are many things to consider. It’s never too early to begin planning in order to ensure that your vow renewal is everything you intend for it to be. Here is a great starting guide on how to plan your marriage vow renewal. 

What Is a Marriage Vow Renewal?

A marriage vow renewal is a ceremony that a married couple has in order to celebrate their marriage or signify a re-commitment to their marriage. Vow renewals have gained popularity in recent years due to how the COVID-19 pandemic caused many couples to scale down their original wedding plans. In fact, many couples who have only been married a year or two are already planning to renew their vows in order to have the dream wedding that was put on hold as a result of the pandemic.

It is important to understand that a marriage vow renewal is a ceremonial occasion, not a legal one. You do not need to obtain a new marriage certificate, and there are no legal requirements as to how the ceremony takes place. There is no right or wrong way to renew your vows, but there are some considerations that must be made.

Planning Your Vow Renewal

When deciding to renew your vows, you and your spouse should ask several questions in order to begin planning the event. Those questions include:

  • Who will be your officiant? Because the vow renewal is a ceremonial act, you are not required to have a minister or a judge perform the ceremony. 
  • What type of ceremony do you want? Some people want to renew their vows in the church where they were married, while others seek a full-service wedding venue where they can have the ceremony and reception at the same location.
  • What are you planning to wear? Again, you’re not tied to the traditional wedding attire for your renewal. Brides don’t have to wear a white dress, and grooms don’t need a tuxedo (unless they want to wear one).
  • Who will you invite? For some, the marriage vow renewal is a private ceremony attended only by the couple and a few close friends or family members. For others, however, it is an opportunity to celebrate with family and friends near and far with a party that surpasses the one they had when they first got married.

Again, the details of your marriage vow renewal are entirely up to you and your spouse. This is an opportunity to make the ceremony exactly how you want it without many of the considerations or rules that commonly dictate how a wedding ceremony is going to be.

Fun Ideas to Incorporate Into Your Vow Renewal Ceremony

When planning a marriage vow renewal, it’s important to remember that this is supposed to be a cause for celebration, not a cause for stress. There are many fun ideas to incorporate into the vow renewal, and this is your opportunity to do all the things you wanted to do for your wedding. Some ideas include:

  • Write your own vows. Many couples find that traditional vows don’t reflect the strengths of the union or speak to the important and personal aspects of the marriage in the same way as writing their own vows would.
  • Have your children be part of the ceremony. They can serve as ring bearers or flower girls, or they can even stand beside you and your spouse while you renew your vows. 
  • Dance the night away. Get a venue with a dance floor and tell your guests to wear comfortable shoes. Who doesn’t love a dance party?
  • Don’t forget the honeymoon. You didn’t have a honeymoon after your wedding? Now is the chance. Even if the honeymoon is more of a “stay-cation” in town, it is still an important and unforgettable piece of the vow renewal.

Having a firm idea of how you want your vow renewal ceremony to look and feel will help as you make important decisions, such as determining the venue, table decorations, menu, cake, and even figuring out if you need a DJ for the event. Many couples obtain the assistance of an event planner who can help turn the image they have of the ceremony into a reality.

Renew Your Vows in New Jersey at Windows on the Water

Speaking of venues: Windows on the Water is an 86-acre secluded resort in Millstone Township that provides couples with the ability to have an outdoor ceremony by the lake. Our venue offers a number of wedding packages, depending on the type of gathering you wish to have. Each of our wedding packages is fully customizable in order to ensure that couples have the opportunity to make the occasion exactly how they want it. 

Our experienced event planners are ready to provide you with a tour of the venue, introduce you to our chefs, and help you begin ironing out the details for your marriage vowel renewal. To book your appointment, call us at (609) 208-9475 or send us a message online.