Post # 1
Hi! I am a semi-regular poster with a new account 🙂 I am 8 weeks out from the wedding and I am in the process of finalizing all the details and wanted your opinions!
I live in Southwest Florida and am having an April wedding. Due to the time of the sun setting, I am a little worried that our reception is starting wayyy too late and out guests may be less than pleased! Here is our schedule
5:15 guests arrive to venue
5:30 busses leave for ceremony
6:30 ceremony starts ( 30 min long ) then the guests get back on the bus to the venue
7:30 cocktail hour ( open bar and appetizers will be passed )
8:30 reception begins
9:00 Dinner (salad and main course meal )
9:45 Cake and coffee
11:30 end of wedding
so the reason im a little nervous is because due to the late sun set (we want sunset photos after ceremony) , dinner wont be served until 9! Not really sure if this is normal?? It is honestly too late to do anything now because the invites have already been sent out. I guess my question is, even if dinner will be late, will people react ok? we are having apps during cockail hour… let me know what you think, thank you! 🙂
Post # 4
I’ve been to several weddings at which dinner ended up being served around 8:30 or 9:00 due to a variety of reasons, and honestly, I’m totally fine with it. Dinners at weddings seem like they’re usually a bit on the later side, as it is, so my husband and I usually eat a snack of sorts beforehand because we know it may be a while till dinner.
I really think your guests will be fine, especially if you’re offering appetizers at 7:30 with the cocktail hour!
Post # 5
I’d be fine as long I knew in advance that dinner was being served at 9pm. If you have a lot of chidlren/elderly though, be prepared for them to skip dinner altogether.
That said, I’m a little confused that your sunset pictures start at 7pm but dinner only starts at 9. I think you can get the photos you want within 1 hour, so where is the extra time going? It’s not necessary for you to be present for cocktail hour, and when your start time is so late, it can be a cocktail half-hour. Even if you can push dinner to 8:30, I think psychologically it just sounds a lot earlier.
Post # 6
As long as guests know ahead of time & are not taken by surprise on the day of, that should be fine and will adjust their day accordingly.
However, as a guest, if you were asking me to be there for a 5:30 depature, unless I knew ahead of time, I would assume that I would be eating significantly earlier than 9:00pm. I would likely end up overindulging in appetizers at cocktail hour and then not eating much dinner. (Or grumbling if appetizers were light and having to wait even longer to have dinner.)
Post # 7
@RadiantLove: that’s pretty late for dinner but if you’re doing passed apps it will probably be okay.
Can you have dinner earlier and leave the reception to do sunset photos? I know people have done this.
Post # 8
@canadajane: travel time is about 30 min unfortunately! season in SWFL..traffic is terrible lol!! so photos at 7, take about an hour, then make it back by 8:30.
good news is, not many elderly and no children! thank you for your response, it definitely helped!
@Gemstone: thank you! i feel better now!
Post # 9
@RadiantLove: lots of appetizers!!!! that is my advice..haha
Post # 10
@Giraffelover: lol! right?! we will be having three passed apps…i am going to contact the wedding coordinator and ask about adding another…i DEF want to make sure people are able to get a good amount of food at cocktail hour!
Also, we are doing chocolate favors (2 in a box…reallllly nice gourmet chocolate shop in town) along with our escort cards…so if they are chocoholics like me, they can snack on those too 🙂
Post # 11
@RadiantLove: That sounds good! and chocolate is always a good plan. 🙂
Post # 12
I try to avoid eating dinner that late, but guests will have eaten apps already. Is it possible to provude them a welcome snack as they board the first bus to the ceremony…popcorn or pretzels?
Post # 13
@CurlyCue: thats a really good idea! i will contact the hotel..they dont allow outside food or beverage but im sure there is something i can get from them..thanks!
Post # 14
@RadiantLove: I think it’s totally fine, since you’re serving some food ahead of the dinner!
Post # 15
@RadiantLove: I would let guests know that dinner will be at 9pm because you anticipate this being unusual/a problem. Also, can guests get themselves to your ceremony, or are the buses just a courtesey? I would maybe include a timeline of events with the invitation.
Post # 16
@Polygon: I know I should have ! I didn’t Include an extensive
timeline because we were worried about people driving to the ceremony location themselves and there is no parking ! So we put to arrive at 5:15 for trans and I also put more info on the wedding website. I think if i ensure there are a lot of apps people will be ok! 🙂 hopefully lol