Post # 1
(I will preface this post by saying that I am a stress ball right now and I might be freaking out about nothing.)
I cannot remember why, but we decided to book our ceremony at 5:30. We’re not changing locations and the ceremony will be 30 minutes max. I am now very stressed that 5:30 is too early and my reception will be lame and everyone will leave at 9 pm. I have printed the invitations, but I could always have them re-printed (for an extra cost) and move back the timing.
What do you think? Is 5:30 too early for a fun wedding?
Post # 3
I would say no but I don’t think that because of any of your poll options. Unless you have no cocktail hour and no gap at all between ceremony and dinner (like people will be walking in to the reception at 6 and receiving their dinners at 6:15), I don’t think that’s a weird timeline. To keep people around, you’ll have to have interesting events or good music- the timing won’t matter.
Post # 4
uhhhh, my ceremony was at 5:30, cocktail hour from 6-7, the old people left between 8 and 9, and everyone else went on until 10:30, which was when the exit was planned for, and quite a few would have gone on longer. 5 hours was really plenty long though.
Post # 5
Are you going to have a cocktail hour I assume? We had our wedding at 5 pm with a super short ceremony (like 7 minutes I think it was, haha) and the timing was totally fine.
Post # 6
I’m starting at 5:30!!! And anticipating partying until at least 11. That’s how it’s gone for most weddings I’ve been to. Don’t worry – I think it’ll go great!!!
Post # 7
Our ceremony is at 5, cocktail hour starts at 6:30 and the dancing won’t end until 11:30 or midnight. No. I don’t think 5:30 is too early at all.
Post # 8
Our ceremony started at 5. Lasted until roughly 535. By the time people moved upstairs to the cockail hour it was around 550 and I had made sure that it would be ok if cocktail hour started before 6 as it was supposed to be 6-7. By the time everyone was moved into the reception area it was about 720. The vast majority of people were there until the end (think 4 people left after the cake was cut) last song was at 1115. everyone left exhusted from partying it up and some people were even content hanging out at the bar and had to be coaxed out!
AS PP mentioned, if you had intially planned on skipping cocktail hour, I would suggest moving the ceremony until 6 or doing some event between ceremony and reception. If you can’t add a cocktail hour and you have a lot of young guests who enjoy dancing you shouldn’t have a problem keeping them entertained with good music and drinks. We could have easily added another hour onto our reception but we chose to do an after party instead. You can set up a late night food station or maybe cookies and milk around 1030 to keep people fed and interested. One other thing you can do to keep people from leaving is moving your cake cutting to the latest reasonable time. My DOC suggested this and I was really surprised about how no one left until we cut the cake which we did at 945. Almost immediately after, the only 4 people I know that left early came to say goodbye.
Post # 9
Thank you all! I feel much better about starting at 5:30 now.
@kgirl91: We are having a cocktail hour, so that will definitely help. And they’ll be omving to different parts of the venue for each part of the evening.
@distracts: We have a lot of rowdy old people coming to the wedding, so they may outlast the young ones!
@Westwood: Seven minutes? Love it!
@JenGirl: Thanks! I a sure yours will be awesome too.
@MrsOrange: Great point about the cake cutting. I know I have been to weddings where my date and I have agreed to stick around for cake and then head out. I think we’ll also have the bridesmaids and groomsmen spread the word for an after party location for people who want to keep going.