What do you do for your guests in between the ceremony and reception?

posted 3 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
169 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Weddings I have been to haven’t had the cocktail hour, although that could be an australian difference.

Usually, we’ll go to the nearest pub and chill out before the reception.

For our wedding, we’ll have a 2 hour break between ceremony and reception for photos, and so we can go to the pub (we love that chilled part of other people’s weddings, and know that we won’t have time to relax much at the reception). So, as part of the invitation package, I’m drawing up maps that show the ceremony and reception locations along with nearby things to do (bars, cafes, gardens to walk in, etc) so guests can keep themselves entertained!


Post # 4
2173 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

Where I’m from, most people just go to a bar, or back home for a little if it’s close enough.

Usually the bar is more popular.

Post # 5
753 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013


@kazarmo:  I think PP solution might be a good one for you! see if there is somewhere close by your guest could go to while youre doing pictures.. or could you do pictures before the ceremoney and move up dinner? or maybe change the time of you time of your wedding to earlier afternoon so that you could take pics after dinner and the light wont be ruined? 

Im not sure what your guest will do for 1.5 hours with no snacks or drinks.. im sure there will be non alcoholic drinks tho.. can u guys afford some veggie trays or cheese trays? a little something for nibbling? 🙂

Post # 6
304 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

One of my friends had a 2-3 hour gap between the ceremony and coctail hour so they gave us these sheets with “fun things to do in the area.” We went and grabbed some snacks and did some local stuff and it was a lot of fun.

Do you have any friends that would maybe be willing to make some veggie platters or other appetizers? We’ve had friends offer that to us for our wedding and while right now we don’t need it, we are really grateful for them offering to help us in that way. 

Post # 7
1232 posts
Bumble bee

@kazarmo:  how about non-alcoholic cocktail- I’ve been to one

Post # 8
1926 posts
Buzzing bee

I’ve been to a lot of weddings that have long gaps between ceremony and reception and guests weren’t taken care of at all. Although as a guest I hate this about some weddings, it is rather common. You could always do photos before the ceremony, and push your ceremony later to remove the gap.

As for taking stuff down – do you have to take everything down the night of? Or can you wait till the next day?

Post # 9
650 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

We didnt’ want to deal with travel and all the crap that comes with it.   And since it’s a winter wedding in MICHIGAN – travel would have been a royal pain.

Move ’em in! Move ’em out!   Ceremony and Reception are in the same space in a hotel.  Cocktail hour will be in the hotel’s library while they set up the reception tables.   Best decision we ever made.

Post # 13
1036 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

@kazarmo:  Why don’t you suggest a local cafe or pub for people to just hang out at during the in between time?

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