Ok - so it just occured to me that no one on wedding bee ever talks about planning their Stag and Doe parties.
Do people do this? It's pretty common in Ontario - but I have no idea how common it is in other parts of Canada or in the US.
If you've held one, how successful were you at raising money for your wedding fund?
ETA: Editing to provide definition (as I understand it) of a Stag and Doe: it's a party held in advance of the wedding - usually in a community centre, legion, etc. that is intended to raise money for the bride and groom's wedding fund. Guests pay for admission to the party, and then purchase drinks/drink tickets, prize tickets, game tickets, etc. with all proceeds going to the B&G.
Where I come from, the B&G can choose either a Stag and Doe or a bacherlor/bacherlorette party and ask for assistance from the wedding party. The wedding party usually helps with food prep, serving drinks, running games, etc.
The guest list is extended to friends, family, friends of friends, friends of family, etc. In small towns, sometimes the whole town comes to the party to have a good time, regardless of how well they know the B&G.
The most money I have ever seen a couple make from a Stag and Doe was about $4000 after their expenses.
This is my regional assessment, but others may have different experiences. Thanks for voting!
I'm from Ontario and we will be having one :) most people on weddingbee strongly disagree with them, though!
@WannaBeeMrsB: Really? I've never seen any threads about them at all!
I didn't plan one for my wedding, but I always enjoy other peoples' parties!
How is your planning going? Some people find them to be stressful to plan.
I dont know if I will have one, but a friend of mine had one last Canada Day long weekend. :)
I'm not having one, but I do enjoy going to them. I don't think they are faux-pas at all, but maybe that's just because it's the norm in Ontario.
They do seem quite stressful to plan, which is one of the reasons we opted not to have one.
Well we're not engaged yet! Haha but everyone in my town has them before a wedding and my mother has already mentioned a bit about when we'd want it to be once were engaged, etc. and yup most bees think they're extremely rude if they don't understand that it's normal in our area, and therefore not seen as rude :) oh well though! I love going to them! I think they're fun and a great way to support couples in their wedding planning!
@Little_Nut88: Same for us. Seemed like a lot of work to plan - not worth the stress and hassle for me, personally. But I do enjoy them!
@WannaBeeMrsB: So interesting - I have never seen it on WB before. Why do people think they are rude?
So - is this a Canadian tradition only, then?
@Happy2bMrs: If you search "stag and doe" on WB you'll find a few threads. And from what I understand they are a Canadian tradition, but not all regions of Canada have them :).
@WannaBeeMrsB: Thanks, I read a few - seems like issues related to the wedding party handling the Stag and Doe expectations poorly.
Is it your experience, too, that the wedding party may be asked to help out with the prep, but are not expected to fund the whole thing? My friends have always covered all expenses up front - the wedding party was asked to help with serving drinks, running games, etc. not for paying for it.
@Happy2bMrs: ya that's how I've always seen it done :) wedding party isn't responsible for the financial aspect, but they help with the setting up, Etc. Here, the majority of the prizes are donated, but the bride and groom generally pay for everything else, and come out of the event up maybe $1-2000 in the end.
You'll find that the strong backlash about them is from thinking it's a fundraiser for the Wedding and you shouldn't ask people to pay for your Wedding, you should have the Wedding you can afford! It can get pretty heated.
That said, I did have one, it's the expectation in my hometown and it was a great night.
Giving you the perspective from someone that comes from a country where this is not done at all the main reason I would have a problem with it is because well it is your wedding so you should pay for it. If anyone tried to do that here then yeah they would find themselves alone in the community centre with no one showing up.
Personally I don't understand this at all. I get that it is about community being involved and starting a life together but why just for this particular life milestone? Your going off to college why not throw a fundraiser for that, you want a new car/new home why not then, you turn 16/18/21/30/40/50/60 why not then? Why not just charge people to attend the wedding because when you boil it down it is the same thing.
I'm originally an Ontario girl, and I now live in Australia. When my fiance and I went back to visit my fam for a month in October they had already planned it. I thought it was great! I've always gone to them and had a blast. The prizes came from the ticket money, or were donated from businesses where we knew people. So no one was out of pocket.
To be honest, FI and I make pretty good money and weren't worried about how much the S&D pulled in. It was more an opportunity to get everyone together who wouldn't be able to come to our wedding down under.
As I see it, it's the community/friends/family helping the couple start their new life together. I know there are some people who get too wrapped up in how much is being taken in(ie; my MOH kept pestering me afterwards as to how much we made to compare with hers, but I refused to discose - tacky), but that's not always the case. It's a party, and people enjoy them. If the bride & groom make a few bucks along the way, then fantastic for them.
My FI doesnt like strippers and wants me to meet fellow soldiers and they will get a chance to meet my friends and family. So this would break the ice and get the awkward feelings out of the way and make everyone more relaxed on our wedding day. They wont feel as though they are strangers anymore.
@j_jaye: Thanks for sharing your perspective. The idea of the Stag and Doe is not to have other people fund your wedding. People are invited to attend if they wish - there is no obligation for any guest (invited to the wedding or not) to attend a stag and doe party. In many towns, the S&G is the most exciting event of the weekend - many people attend because its a party, there will be drinking, prizes, etc.
The reason that the S&D is associated with this particular milestone is that some couples opt for a S&D instead of a bachelor or bachelorette party. Instead of doing two separate events, you do one, joint event where everyone is invited - with zero expectation that you are required to attend.
I'm trying to understand why people seem to get their back up about this event...the point that I think many are missing is that there is literally no obligation for people to attend this event. It's not like invitations go out in the mail and you must RSVP. At most, there's a facebook invite and people can find a bridesmaid to buy a ticket from. It's a fundraising event, yes, but with no strings attached.
I find that a wedding shower actually is more grabby - people must attend, they get nothing out of spending their money on you, other than to see you open your gift. At least with a S&D, people can have FUN while spending their money. Just another perspective. Let's not kid ourselves - wedding events are about other people celebrating your marriage, and about them helping to start you out in life. People just decide to do it in different ways.
They're not really common around here. TBH (and I mean no offense to anyone) but to me they are just a cash grab.
@Lyndzo: Fair enough. I find it interesting, though, that some cultures have "cash grab"-type traditions as part of weddings, that aren't attacked as much as the S&D. Just an interesting observation.
I dont want one but in my FI community everyone has one.
So i am being forced. Yay?
@Swizzle: Eek - that sucks. Hope you get some help planning it! Even though S&Ds were common in my area, we decided not to have one. Can you talk to FI about declining? Is it his family driving this or friends?
@Happy2bMrs: Sorry, I didn't mean to offend you :(
I think it depends where you live and also depends on your circumstances. DH and I are fairly well off, so we didn't feel right having a S&D or an engagement party.
I know a (former) friend of mine insisted on an engagement party, S&D, bridal shower AND bachelorette. I thought having all those was just too much, since I know she expected gifts at all of them.
@Happy2bMrs: His family is driving it but he wants one. I told him i want nothing to do with it i have enough to plan with the wedding. Usually the bridal party takes care of everything. So since i dont want it, i'm only showing up. Its his show.
Here they are a fundraiser, but more of a party to celebrate with the bridal party. We cant invite every single person to our wedding, so coming to the stag n doe is seen as a sort of support for the bride and groom, and also a chance to celebrate with them. Its UNCOMMON not to have one.
That being said we have stag n does AND bachelorette/bachelor parties.
THe most i have seen raised was $7000. You are usually guarenteed a few thousand dollars.
Obviously if it's done in your area and you have attended many of these events then it's ok to host one too.
It would be rude to throw a stag and doe while living in Australia when no one has heard of them. People would feel like you are unfairly fundraising for something undeserving.
I completely understand both sides.
@Lyndzo: Oh! You didn't offend me at all - sorry if it came across that way! :)
I agree with you on it just being too much when people are expected to attend all of those events. In my mind, you choose the S&D OR the bacherlor/bachelorette parties. And if you don't, you should not expect people to attend all of these events. It's just too much for people - especially your wedding party to have to pay for, organize, etc.
And what is it with people being expected to buy gifts for engagement parties? Is this a new trend?
I am having mine on Jan 12! I come from Nova Scotia, they are not common there. But outside of Ottawa they are very common!
People around there have both stag n doe and bachelor parties. Stag n Does are pretty well to raise money for the wedding. And its also uncommon NOT to have one, the bridal party throws it.
I wasnt going ot have one because it would all be on the groom for the guest list, but it was really important to him to have it. And it helps with the wedding too.
My FI said his friend made $4000. The only person I know personally was FBIL and SIL, shes my best friend. They made $1300, but they did not have a good turn out. And MOH spent ALOT of money on the thing. Theirs was a little out of town too, it helps if its in town then more people go because they dont need to worry about driving. And where we come from, not alot of people have cars.
I wont lie, if its common I am all for it. Weddings are expensive and I have helped out a few B&Gs by attending their Stag n does.
Also- I dont know if it is common courtesy, but we are reimbursing the bridal party with the proceeds from the stag n doe. Although, our BP is broke. So we ended up having to pay for most of the hall anyway lol but thats ok
The BP usually really looks forward to stag n doe, its a big party for them!
We had one, everybody said they had a great time, and most won a prize of some sort...We even had OOT people show up..It was a Great Party!!
Wow. I don't think I've ever heard of these! But I knew basically nothing about weddings before I got engaged. Just what I've learned off pop culture stuff really. I wonder if people do them around here... because... that would be really handy. haha I'm going to ask my mom! lol
I love how much I learn on weddingbee! I have never in my life heard of a stag and doe party and I'm not even THAT far from Ontario!
@kjo: I think that its more than fair to reimburse the bridal party for their expenses. You are obviously a considerate person :)
Oh - and am I reading this right - your best friend is your sister in law? That's awesome!
I have heard the term before but I never knew what it meant. No we will not be having one. It appears by the replies that it is mainly done in Canada. It seems cool though.
@Lyndzo: I've been invited to a bunch of them in your area...I guess it just depends on what your family/friends plan.
More reason to move to Canada...
@miss narwhal: It is cool! Where I live there are people that go to them even if they barely know the bride and groom. They get great food, have a few drinks (cash bar) and get the chance to win lots of prizes. Some people buy tickets even if they are not attending just to give support. The last one I went to (for FH's cousin) the big prize was a beer fridge full of beer! We won a printer for our computer!
@Luayne: Where do these prizes come from? Doesnt that mean people are spending money to make money? What if people don't show up? (I am not being a smartass, they are actual questions)
Nah, we arne't going to do that. We don't like asking anyone for anything. We are planning to get an empty gallon water jub and fill it with money. That will be our wedding fund. The only thing we may do is the website that people can donate to your honeymoon instead of giving a gift.
People we know donated prizes to the table, and we also know a couple of beer reps as well, that helped, Nobody was out of pocket for expenses, they took whatever they spent right off the top....I was kind of talked into having one, and didn't want anyone who was planning it to spend money on it, that said, we still walked out with a fairly nice sum...and like I said, everyone had so much fun, they can't wait for the wedding!!!
@miss narwhal: Some prizes are donated by family, friends or businesses that you know. Some are purchased (just like Christmas shopping...look for sales and the 'most bang for your buck'). If no one shows up then yes, it would definitely suck!
The money that can be made is good and it's usually all your family and friends that want to help out anyways but this is much more fun than just handing someone money. That last one we went too was a casino night. They had a roulette wheel and blackjack table. Her brother's band was the entertainment and there was a dj as well, great food and a bunch of other games too. One was for a 60 oz bottle (Seagrams I think)...you had to shoot a twonie (our $2 coin) across the floor to see who could get the closest...no rebounds allowed and you could knock other coins out. I think by the end of just that game (a matter of minutes), they made a few hundred dollars! And the competition was FIERCE! lol
It's all in good fun and people have a great time. It's also a great way to get the two families together prior to the wedding in a relaxed environment.
Do people also give you gifts AT the wedding or is it lieu of a gift on the day of the wedding?
@miss narwhal: People will give gifts at the wedding also. People aren't required to attend the S&D party - they do because it's fun and they can win prizes, drink, dance, etc.
If people don't show up, which is a real possibility, you are out a lot of time and money. That's why you would never plan a S&D unless you are sure that people in your community are interested in attending. As mentioned earlier, in small towns, the stag and doe is the party of the weekend, regardless of whether you know the bride and groom - so they are a huge deal in some places.
@Luayne: The toonie toss games are the best! People get sooo competitive over winning a texas mickey! Love it!
You must log in to post.
Sorry, there are no users yet.
Shop Now »