Post # 1
I’m diving into the wedding planning now that I have a date & venue set… I’m having trouble figuring out how long a reception should go.
I’m having a plated dinner, the traditional dances (i.e., first dance/father & daughter), and open dancing. I also want a cake cutting at some point.
How long is too long? We’ll have a cocktail hour before the reception. My mom is worried that 5 or 6 hours is too long for our guests, but I feel like the guests who are my age (26/27) will want to dance and party for awhile. . . help! I don’t know enough about this.
For those you had “typical” receptions that had plated dinners and dancing, how long was your reception? Do you wish it had been longer or shorter? How late is too late?
Post # 3
Apparently when it comes to receptions in the states, its a bit different then up north here. Generally, the reception runs from 4 or 5PM (cocktail hour) with supper starting anywhere around 5-7PM and then everyone getting kicked out at 1 or 2AM.
My wedding wasn’t as typical, since the ceremony was held at the same location. The ceremony AND reception went from 5PM to 1:30AM. I found it was the perfect amount of time.
Post # 4
Our wedding is in June so I can’t contribute if it will be enough time or not, but Our cocktail hour will begin at 5:30 and the reception will end at midnight. 6.5 hours. That is very standard for our area. We are also having a plated dinner.
Post # 5
@CherryWaves: My ceremony is at the same site as well, so there will be no gap between ceremony and cocktail hour/reception.
Post # 6
Our cocktail hour is from 5-6, dinner from 6-7, dancing from 7-11. Altogether, from cocktail hour to end we have 6 hours. I have been to weddings that ended at 10 and it just didn’t feel long enough to me and to others. I’ve also been to receptions that ended at midnight and that just seemed too long. I figure ending at 11 will be just right.
Post # 7
our reception is from 6 to midnight
Post # 8
Our ceremony started at 7:30pm, ending around 8:15pm, and we left the reception at 3:00am, and we were NOT the last to leave!
Post # 9
We did 7-midnight and I’m not sure it was long enough… it was as long as our venue would give us.
My actual wedding was at 5:30.
Post # 10
Mine is next week so I don’t know if it’ll be long enough or not yet. But our cocktail hour is 6:30 – 7:30 and then our reception is until 12:30. It’s New Years so we want everyone to be able to ring in the new year together before the reception ends.
Post # 11
Our ceremony is going to start around 7, with cocktail hour immediately following from 7:30-8:30. Our reception is set to go to 1AM.
Post # 12
Our reception is going to be from 7-8 hours depending on how long it goes. Cocktails start at 6 pm, dinner served at 7. Cake cutting after dinner & then dancing until 2AM
Post # 13
Wow yall are marathoners! My wedding is at 2:30, reception will likely start at 4 and go until 9. We are going to do the traditional send off so that all our guests can see us leave and send us off–I know it’s fairly common these days for the bride and groom to close down the party, but I like the tradition and the idea of actually spending some time with my new husband at the end of our wedding night before we are too exhausted to do anything other than sleep!
Post # 14
Our ceremony will start at 3:25pm. Reception to follow in same venue. We will be doing a buffet dinner, and dancing/games. When people want to leave they can. We have to leave having cleaned up by 11pm. I am figuring with it being a Sunday, most will be gone by about 7. I know my Aunt will want to be home before dark, and my cousin will leave to drive her. Those who want, we will continue the party at the hotel.
Post # 15
Our guests can go to the reception site whenever they are ready – prob from around 4 (We are having a 2:30pm full nuptial mass which will take at least an hour, plus receiving line and then a group photo afterwards).
We are asking guests to be there by 5:30 at the latest and we will leave around 11:45pm and the guests need to leave by midnight.
Post # 16
I forgot to add, we will have the send off, however we will go to the hotel and change, then come back to clean up. I have a cleaning crew set up already by ways of the inlaws, but I do not want them to have to do it all. My party, I should help clean up. Besides, I will get $300 back the next morning by it being clean correctly.