Post # 1
I know a couple people have posts about having second receptions, so not wanting to hijack one of those, here’s my question: We are getting married in Illinois. FI’s family lives about 8 hours away. My parents are paying for our wedding, but his family wanted to have a party of some sort for us in their hometown, as a way to celebrate with those who couldn’t/didn’t want to make the trip to the wedding. It will be a few weeks after the wedding, and most of the people they are planning to invite are work friends, clients, old family friends, etc.
I realize that most of them will not come to the wedding since it’s so far away, but I feel like it would be rude to invite them to a reception but not the ceremony. We’re planning to send them an invite to the wedding in Illinois (along with a reception card for that one), but how do we politely say “If you don’t want to make the trip, we’re having a party a few weeks later if you’d like to come to that”. Do we put an invite for the 2nd reception in with the one for the wedding? Or send it separately at the same time and hope it’s not too confusing?
I really don’t want it to seem gift-grabby or something by sending invitations to 2 events… the 2nd reception is just something that my future in-laws wanted to do, more for them being able to host their friends. Any suggestions? Would you be confused getting 2 reception invitations? Thanks so much!
Post # 3
…I would be confused if they were both issued by the same party and had the same tone and formality. What I mean is, if I got an engraved invitation to a nighttime wedding and then a more informal one for like, a backyard BBQ that clearly was from someone else in the family who just wanted to throw a party, then I wouldn’t be confused or offended or think it was gift-grabby (or maybe that’s just me? I’d certainly only be purchasing one gift, LOL!). If it’s your FI’s family, then they can also do a preliminary “head’s up” to their friends and family just informally. When we announced our wedding, my father called all of his siblings (we have a lot) just to tell them when it was and, knowing a lot of them are a bit cash-strapped to be travelling xcountry (with kids) to reassure them that we would love to see them there, we didn’t want them to jump through financial hoops to do it.
If you are worried about the gift-grabby thing, then just don’t include any information about the registries and leave it up to word of mouth. That way, it will totally be at your guest’s discretion (and trust me, they WILL want to give you a gift!)
Post # 4
I don’t think it’s weird for them to get invites for both – if you got two invites, would you think you had to send two gifts? I don’t think that’s implied at all. Don’t worry about it!
Post # 5
- Wedding: October 2011 - Tre Bella, Mesa, AZ
My friend did a second reception in the state they lived in (had their wedding ceremony/big reception in the state they were from). They didn’t invite people to both, from what I understand (ceremony was majority family). The second reception was word of mouth and e-invites. Although it was really nice, I thought it was a bit weird, and considering I was a close friend of both, I felt a little left out of the ceremony (I would have flown to the other one).
Honestly, having been an invitee of a second reception, I’m not sure how you would handle it without it being weird. I guess word of mouth is probably best. I agree with @JennyW1 that having 2 receptions listed in the invite is confusing.
Post # 6
Thanks for your help! I think we’re planning to do what @JennyW1 was saying- send the regular invite and then FI’s family will send a separate, more casual invite for the party they are hosting. I agree that it would be weird to not get invited to the actual wedding and then be invited to the 2nd reception, so we’re going to do both (the scary thing is seeing that many people on the guest list, and considering the possibility that they all could show up).
I think most of our good friends will try to make it to the actual wedding even though they’re scattered all over the country. But I think the idea was to have something for FI’s parents friends and more distant relatives… people that I’ve never met before and wouldn’t drive 8 hours to attend our wedding, but might show up if it was local. (I really think FI’s stepmom just wanted a reason to have a party!). Would you send out both invitations at about the same time?