Anyone ever had a small wedding and do a reception months later?

posted 2 years ago in Logistics
Post # 2
Member
2566 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

My cousin did this!  And I’m planning on doing a similar thing for my wedding.

She did a destination in Hawaii with close family and friends.  When they got back, they had a small reception in Michigan (with husband’s family) where they rented out a hall… not sure what they did there.  But my invitation for the one for my/her family in Minnesota consisted of getting together at her parents and have hors d’oeuvres, drinks, and desserts.  Since they don’t live in MN, the reception there was 3 or 4 months after the wedding.

For mine, I will be having a full reception with our 25ish guests… full meal and everything.  Since there won’t be too many people, I can rent out a small hall for $500 and food/drinks should only total to $2k maximum (likely only $1.5k, but all those hidden fees… you know?).”  Then we’ll have a get-together with a similar spread as my cousin’s where we live with half of my SO’s family and our friends here, then we’ll have a similar thing at my dad’s house anywhere from 2-5 months later… depending on when we can get back to Minnesota after the wedding next September.

Post # 3
Member
2126 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

I didn’t, but we’re going to FI’s brother’s very small wedding next weekend. His fiance’s dad is dying, so they’re doing something tiny (like 10 people) so that her dad can be there. Then, FI’s mom is hosting a reception for them in November. She already ordered the invitations – I believe they say “Brother and Wife are Married, Come Celebrate” or something like that. 

As for what they’re “doing” at their wedding, they’re having a ceremony in a small chapel and then we’re all going out to a nice dinner. I’m not sure if they’ll be having a first dance or anything like that, but I can’t imagine why not. 

Post # 4
Member
11717 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

MangoLover4Life:  What’s the point of doing this, instead of doing it all at once?  At you having a DW and wanting an at-home reception?

Post # 5
Member
2566 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

Oh, I should also add that my friend did this.  Her and her then-FI live in North Hollywood area.  They had a very small ceremony on the beach with close family and friends, and then rented out a HUGE reception hall in Minnesota (where they’re both from) a couple months later. I couldn’t attend (honestly the ceremony was a state away and the reception was across the country for me), but the invitation made it seem like they were going all out for the reception.

Post # 6
Member
4596 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

I had a friend who did this. They got married in Vegas, and a few weeks later had a reception for everyone.

Post # 7
Member
1208 posts
Bumble bee

My sister did this. She had a tiny (10 ppl maybe?) civil ceremony in the US with a backyard BBQ dinner at her mother in laws house. Then a few months later they came to Canada and had a small (30 ppl) lunch reception here for her Canadian family and friends. She loved it and was really happy. She had wanted to eventually do the big 200 ppl wedding but she said the lunch reception we put on for her filled her need for a big wedding with family and friends because all the important ppl were there. 

so I guess even your big second reception doesn’t have to be “BIG”.

* oh, also this was done because he’s American military and was being restationed to a new state and all that stuff works out better when you are  legally married not just engaged.

Post # 10
Member
11717 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

MangoLover4Life:  Oh, so you’d have a celebration/vow renewal!  Easy to do.  It’s not really a reception, since the reception is held to thank people for attending the ceremony, and if you aren’t inviting them to the ceremony, then it wouldn’t be a reception.  After you’ve saved up the money and given notice, you can certainly invite people to your vow renewal celebration.

I, for one, however, would not travel a great distance for a vow renewal.  I love to be present at the ceremony (the important part, for me), and if I was just invited for a party, I don’t know if I’d make special travel arrangements.

Post # 12
Member
11717 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

MangoLover4Life:  Legally, you can’t do a second ceremony.  You can only get married once.  You won’t be able to get a religious leader, Justice of the Peace, or any other legal officiant to do a wedding if you say you’re already married.  BUT you could have a friend or family member officiate.

It’s still a vow renewal to me.  If you’re already married, anything that happens after the fact is a vow renewal or celebration. Even if you had some sort of ceremony, I would still see it as a vow renewal and that I wasn’t invited to the ceremony, and that would weigh heavily on my decision to attend or not.

Post # 14
Member
1500 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I did it. I called the 2nd party the “wedding celebration party” and everyone knew we already got married. We did do a vow renewal. I think people had fun! You would get a lower attendance rate than if it were your actual wedding.

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