Post # 1
We’re planning a cocktails and dinner reception at my parents’ house for somewhere between 25 and 35 relatives, to follow a brief ceremony in a nearby park. I feel like we have a pretty good grip on things — we entertain a lot and have had far larger parties without anyone setting the house on fire.
Obviously, I’m forgetting something crucial. So, who’s planning or had a reception at home? What hot tip am I missing? What did you wish you’d thought of? What genius idea saved your ass? What was the big unforeseen problem?
Any advice would be super awesome.
Post # 3
We’re doing the exact same thing ceremony wise. Having the reception at home, but with 85+ guests. We’re just having a pizza party, with BYO alcohol (really don’t have a lot of money between us), with some decorations and cake/cupcakes. I’m not sure what it is you’re missing, but don’t go over the top. 🙂
Post # 4
Tell your neighbors that there will be a lot of cars. It’s nice to have a heads-up.
Post # 5
@Sazerac: I just went to one today! It was so much fun, and so relaxed! You might want to try to have enough seating for everyone, arranged into separate groupings so that people can mingle about and sit down with different groups of folks. Our hostess had a circle of chairs outside, 6 chairs around a breakfast table, couches arranged in a few different rooms, etc. That helped people spread out and be comfortable.
She also did a theme for hers (she’s going on a honeymoon to Hawaii, and did a luau theme) – this was handy, since it specified the dress code (casual/tropical!), and she provided leis, tropical drinks, etc, that looked cute in pictures and upped the “relaxed/party” feel.
Depending on the climate, you might want to plan on bumping down your A/C – it does get hot if you have a lot of people in a fairly small space!
That’s all I can think of – have a blast!
Post # 6
@Sazerac: We were thinking of doing the whole ceremony and reception at home but the photographer said he couldnt get the angles correctly for photos without running around people. I would recommend telling neighbors about the extra parking, make sure you have good lighting, extra stock of toliet paper/washcloths that isnt hiding,store in plain sight in baskets, and such in the bathroom and bins/trays for dirty plates and glasses cause the sink will fill up fast.
Post # 7
We had a 28 person backyard wedding. We just hired and rented as many things as possible – 1 company took care of chairs, tables, glasses, cutlery, trash cans, etc. our caterer handled serving, bar, food transport. It cut down our work and stress a lot.