What is a Rehearsal Dinner/Party?

posted 3 years ago in Parties
Post # 3
Member
357 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Well you usually have your rehearsal first at your ceremony venue. Either a DOC, officiant, or yourself will walk the party through where to go, who walks with who, who stands where, etc.

Then theres the dinner. It can be at your venue, it can be a bbq at your home, it can be at a restaurant, it can be pizza and beer…whatever. There’s no real timeline. You might do some thank you speeches or hand out gifts to the bridal party, but it’s just a laid back evening with the wedding party and immediate family. Some people also invite all out-of-towners but you don’t have to.

Mostly all you need to do is this:

1. Find out from your ceremony venue if you can have the rehearsal the day before and what time

2. Choose a location for the dinner portion (could be a lunch or brunch if your venue has it in the afternoon)

3. Choose a menu based on restaurant offerings and/or your budget. We did heavy apps at a restaurant and ran a bar tab.

4. Send invites. Do it! We just did an evite for the rehearsal. I wasn’t paying another $200 for printed invites!

If you don’t have a complicated ceremony you don’t have to have a rehearsal at all, but if you have a rehearsal, you need to provide a meal. The formality is totally up to you.

Post # 4
Member
7410 posts
Busy Beekeeper

@laura.batty:  It is not an Aussie thing. I had never heard of a rehearsal or a rehearsal dinner until I visited the bee. Please do not feel like you need to have one.

Most of the lists on wedding websites (even some of the aussie ones) are all based on US wedding traditions/customs/etiquette.

 

Post # 5
Member
2992 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

The wedding party (and usually the parents) and officiant goes to the rehearsal. Everybody goes to where the rehearsal dinner is being held. Everyone eats, talks and has a great time.

I have been to quite a few rehearsal dinners and that is how it always goes. Usually the guests are the wedding party, their spouses, and immediate family and the officiant.

Post # 6
Member
108 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

Rehearsal dinners are awesome. That’s when you’re done with all the planning, all the practicing, and you finally have time to just enjoy yourselves and all the people who have traveled to be with you on your wedding day. Your rehearsal dinner is really just a great excuse for your two families to spend quality time together. You have a nice meal, maybe some wine, and your close friends and family members get to know one another and begin celebrating your new life together. Someone may want to give a toast – they should clink a glass and do so as the spirit moves them. 

Post # 7
Member
526 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

It’s just everyone who was at the wedding rehearsal going out to dinner together, basically. Some people send formal invites, others just invite people verbally. Usually it’s the bridal party & their SO’s, your immediate family, your FI’s immediate family, and maybe the officiant or whoever you would want to invite. It’s never a huge bash, though.

Post # 11
Member
2992 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

The officiant will lead the way for the rehearsal, You and the wedding party just need to show up.

Post # 13
Member
357 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@laura.batty:  You’ll rehearse where you walk in from, how to line up, who walks in what order. Not so much the vows, but if the officiant is there, they might say “and now I talk! You kiss! Get to the party!” and then you’ll rehearse the recessional out of the ceremony. And then you can go have dinner! It’s a very laid back affair. They’re really only needed for complicated ceremonies, like a full Catholic mass. I did one for our simple ceremony and found it a little helpful but we would have been okay if we didnt do it since we had a Day of coordinator. Our officiant didnt even come to the rehearsal. Don’t stress too much about it and you def don’t need one if you dont want one!

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