FAQs on Planning a Wedding on Nantucket
Most frequent questions and answers.
A marriage license in required to be married in Massachusetts. Any couple may apply for a marriage license as long as both are free to marry and 18-years-old or older. There is a three-day waiting period from the date you file your marriage intention to when you may pick up your marriage license, and Nantucket town offices are closed on Saturdays and Sundays, so plan accordingly.
If you need the license in less than three working days, you may apply to the Nantucket Probate Court for a Marriage Without Delay waiver: the fee for this is $195 (cash only). The Probate Court is upstairs in the Town Building at the corner of Broad and Federal streets.
You must pick up your license before the wedding takes place and give it to the officiant performing the ceremony. Your officiant must complete the license and return it to the Town Clerk’s office. The marriage license is valid for 60 days from the date you applied for it.
To apply for a marriage license, couples must make an appointment with the Town Clerk’s Office https://www.nantucket-ma.gov/216/Town-Clerk at 508-228-7216. Both parties must be present to fill out the Marriage Intention form and supplement, and there is a $50 application fee that must be paid by cash or check (payable to Town of Nantucket). To complete your marriage intention form and supplement you will need:
- Valid identification (passports, driver’s licenses, state IDs, or military IDs)
- Your social security number (if you do not have a social security number, you have to write down reason – for example, not a resident of US)
- Your full legal names and what last name you will use after marriage
- Your current physical addresses
- Your dates and location of birth
- The names of your parents (including mothers’ maiden names) and whether or not your parent were married when you were born
- If you were previously married, you will need to state what number marriage this is for you and your divorce decree must be final.
Weather on Nantucket is typically warmer than Boston in winter and cooler than Boston during the summer. Locals often say Nantucket has only three seasons, with chilly weather extending through May. The island can have lovely weekends in April and May, but it would be particularly important to have a plan B if you want to celebrate your wedding here during those months. And if your dates coincide with Daffodil Festival Weekend, you could have a difficult time getting travel reservations and accommodations.
June, July, and August are beautiful months on Nantucket: they are also peak season, so expect to pay peak prices and plan ahead… way ahead… think 12 to 18 months or more before your date if you need to rent a venue and accommodations.
September and October are our favorite months with fewer visitors, less traffic, and most seasonal establishments still open. Yes, this is peak Atlantic Ocean hurricane season, but more often than not the weather is sunny and warm.
November and December are lovely on our island. We don’t get the dramatic colors of autumn leaves so loved in New England because we have fewer trees, but the weather is usually warm and mild, people are laid-back, and the holiday decorations put up after Thanksgiving are beautiful. Just avoid hosting your wedding during Christmas Stroll Weekend.
Do not plan to host a wedding here during January, February, and March. Nantucket is a quiet and relaxing spot for a winter couples getaway, but there’s too much risk of weather interruptions that could cause logistical nightmares. Weather these months is raw, cold, and often windy. Many favorite island establishments are closed for the season between mid-December and April.
The answer to this depends on which beach. The first step if you want to get married on the beach is to determine who is in charge of the beach you want to use. There are a few private beaches on the island, many are owned by the Town of Nantucket or the Nantucket Land Bank or the Nantucket Conservation Foundation.
Nantucket is a summer resort, so there are a lot of fun activities and events from June through October. In addition to beaches and water sports (boating, fishing, surfing), Nantucket is a great place for biking and exploring nature (more than half the island is conservation land). There are museums for history buffs, and most wedding parties find their way to Nantucket’s Cisco Brewers for a pint or two and live music.