Augusta, Missouri, is the country’s first American Viticultural Area (AVA).

Wedding Planning Guide

Start Planning Your Wedding Today

It’s important to start your planning off right. Sit down with your fiancé before you begin and talk over what each of you would like to have at your big event. Then, keep that ideal wedding vision in your mind as you make each decision so you make sure you have the wedding of your dreams.

Try creating a story board of things you like and colors you want to use before you start planning. This will give you a good reference to use when looking at everything from the dress to the wedding favors.

Planning a Wedding in St. Louis? The St. Louis Wedding Show takes the stress out of your wedding planning. In just one afternoon you will see more wedding businesses than you could visit in a month on your own. The Wedding Show will bring you a face-to-face sampling of virtually everything you’ll need to make your wedding day perfect with over 200 wedding exhibits! For more information visit

The Date

Choose your wedding date and time carefully. Remember that some times of the year are more popular than others, so give yourself plenty of time if you’re choosing a busy season. If you’re operating on a lower budget consider a Friday night or Sunday for your ceremony and reception. If you’re having an outdoor wedding consider the season and the weather.

The Budget

Talk to both sets of parents to see how much they can contribute toward the wedding, and then look over your own finances to see how much you can afford. To stay within budget consider creating a budget spreadsheet for tracking costs.

The Guest List

Compile the guest list. Make a list of the friends and family members you would like to invite and ask your parents and your fiancé’s parents to do the same. Combine the lists and consider keeping them in a spreadsheet for easy tracking/changing/updating.

The Paperwork – Making it Legal

Don’t forget the marriage license! You’ll need to be prepared with any documents the county is going to require to issue the license. Call the county clerk’s office where you’ll be married to find out what information you must bring with you and to get any additional questions answered.

All applicants in Missouri and Illinois must receive a license before the ceremony. Blood tests are not required in either state.

A Missouri license is valid for thirty days from its effective date, an Illinois license for sixty days.

Both bride and groom must apply in person. In Missouri, you may apply for a license at any office provided the wedding is to take place within the state. In Illinois, you must apply for and receive a license from the county in which the ceremony will take place.

City of St. Louis
City Hall, 1200 Market Street, Room 127
Hours: 8am – 5pm, Monday – Friday
ID: State ID/driver’s license, proof of social security number if absent from license
Phone: 314-622-3257
Fee: $48 (cash only)

St. Louis County
Government Center
41 S. Central Ave (4th floor), Clayton
Hours: Monday, Wednesday & Friday 8am – 5pm,; Tuesday & Thursday 8am – 6pm
ID: State ID/driver’s license, proof of social security number; if under 18, must be accompanied by custodial parent/legal guardian with guardianship papers ($1.00 fee), must present certified copy of birth certificate.
Phone: 314-615-7180
Fee: $45 (cash only)

Franklin County
Government Center
400 E. Locust, Room 102 (Union)
Hours: 8am – 4:30pm Monday – Friday
ID: Proof of social security number
Phone: 636-583-6367
Fee: $46 (cash only)

St. Charles County
St. Charles County Admin. Building
201 N. 2nd Street, Room 338
Hours: 8am – 5 pm Monday – Friday
ID: Driver’s license, proof of social security number if absent from license; if 15 – 17, must be accompanied by custodial parent ($1.00 fee), 18 and under must present certificate of birth as well.
Phone: 636-949-7505
Fee: $48 (cash only)

Jefferson County
Jefferson County Administration Center, Room 126
Maple Street (Hillsboro)
Hours: 8am – 5pm Monday – Friday
ID: Driver’s license
Phone: 636-797-5415
Fee: $51 (cash only)

St. Clair County Illinois
County Clerk’s Office
10 Public Square (Belleville)
Hours: 8:30am – 4:30pm Monday – Friday & 8:30am – 12pm Saturday
ID: Two valid forms of ID (driver’s license, social security card)
Phone: 618-277-6600 ext 2388
Fee: $32 (cash, money order or local check)

Madison County
Illinois, Administration Building
157 N. Main Street, Suite 109 (Edwardsville)
Hours: 8:30am – 4:30pm Monday – Friday
ID: State ID, driver’s license
Phone: 618-692-6290
Fee: $30 (cash only)

The Venues

Celebrating your wedding can mean anything from an intimate brunch for your closest friends and family members to a formal sit-down dinner for 300 or more. This is a celebration of your marriage and should reflect you and your fiancé’s personalities. The location(s) you choose for your St. Louis wedding ceremony and reception will play a huge part in the style of your wedding. Everything from casual affairs to formal dinners can be accommodated here in St. Louis.


Choosing a place for your wedding ceremony is a big decision, it will be commemorated forever in photos and fond memories. There are a wide variety of event facilities in the St. Louis area that will frame your lifetime memories perfectly.


You want a reception site that will suit your wedding style, accommodate your guests comfortably and fit your budget. Be sure to ask what’s included with your reception site. You may find that you’ll need to hire an outside caterer, rent tables and chairs, or one of many other things which can impact your budget.  See a full list of event facilities.

The Food


When it comes to the food for your wedding the options are endless. Check out a full list of St. Louis Catering Companies in our Partner Directory to find the one that can put together the perfect meal for you.

Local STL Favorites

If you are having a large number of guests from out of town, you might want to consider adding some of the local favorites to your menu to give your guest a sample of what St. Louis has to offer. Just don’t forget to talk to your caterer or reception venue about bringing food items from outside into the venue. Below is a list of just a few of the St. Louis’ local favorites.

Ted Drewes Frozen Custard
Fitz’s Root Beer
Anheuser-Busch Products
• Switzer’s Licorice
• Gus’ Pretzels

The Cake

While some traditions have come and gone, the wedding cake has endured as the centerpiece of the reception. Talk to some of St. Louis’ best bakeries to find the perfect cake to feature at your reception.

The Entertainment

When you’re ready to have your first dance as husband and wife, you will need some music to make the moment. Most people hire a DJ or band to provide the music. Which you decide to go with is really a personal choice and sometimes comes down to budget and space.


If your space is limited or your budget dictates, you might go the DJ route. You’re in luck, St. Louis has amazing DJs who spin the best music.  See a full list of St. Louis DJs in our Partner Directory.


While you’ll need a little more space at your venue to accommodate them live bands provide an added element to events that you just can’t quite duplicate with a DJ.  See a full list of St. Louis Bands in our Partner Directory.

The Attire

Wedding dress, bridesmaids’ dresses, groom’s tuxedo, tuxes or suits for the groomsmen – the list of clothing that must be coordinated, purchased, rented, and fitted can be overwhelming – but will add the perfect accent to you and your fiancé’s day. We have plenty of places in St. Louis to accommodate all your wedding clothing needs.

For the Gentlemen

Whether you’re renting or buying, wearing suits or tuxes St. Louis can accommodate any variety of formal menswear you may need.  See a full list of St. Louis Formal Wear.

For the Ladies

Your wedding dress is probably the number one most sentimental item you’ll purchase in your life. Don’t forget, your bridesmaids want to look beautiful too, without outshining you. Find the perfect dresses for you and bridesmaids at one of the St. Louis area Bridal Salons.

The Details

Don’t forget the details – decoration and documentation. Be sure to have the freshest flowers, a variety of supplies you may need, and a talented photographer to capture the beauty and magic of your special day.


Nothing adds that special touch more than gorgeous flowers. St. Louis has florists to help you with everything from the bride’s bouquet to your parents’ corsages.  See a full list of St. Louis Florists in our Partner Directory.

Event Supplies

For every event here are always a few extra things you need, and your wedding is no exception. Need chairs, extra tables, decorations? All those and more can be found through our local Partner Directory.


Your wedding day will live forever in your photographs. That makes your choice of photographer an important aspect of your planning. Word of mouth is the best way to find photographers, but to plan for your destination wedding in St. Louis we can help too.  See a full list of Photographers in our Partner Directory.