(Closed) 3 Hour Reception?

posted 6 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
668 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

I’m curious as well. I’m not planning to have the traditional “hoopla” either. Is 3 hours longer than normal or shorter? LOL I don’t even know what is considered a “normal” length of time for a reception.

P.S. You are not a “late” bride in anyway. But I understand where you are coming from. I’m 30 and the last of my friends to get married too.

Post # 5
6741 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2014

@SaltyBride:  +1 normal is 4 hrs plus 1 hr cocktail and some people do plus 1 hr venetian.

I would say 3 hrs is sufficient.  By the end of the night, people are ready to go home and lot’s of people leave early. 

Post # 7
1916 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

This is very much the norm in New Orleans.  We had our ceremony at 5:30 pm, cocktail hour started immediately afterwards.  We had passed hors’ douevres, sushi bar, roast pig, carving station, shrimp and grits station, pasta station, cheese, fruit and salad display.  We did our intro as a couple, first dance, father/daughter dance, mother/son dance, skipped speeches, cut the cake, did a cake pull, threw the bouquet, tossed the garter and had plenty of time for dancing.  At 9:00 p.m. the reception ended and we had a brass band leading us for a second line parade to Bourbon Street.


Post # 8
668 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@SaltyBride:  Speaking of the after party, our venue requires us to have everyone out by 7:30pm so I was thinking of organizing an after party too. Is that something that’s included on the invitation? Or more word of mouth? One person told me that the bride and groom CANT attend the afterparty…. I was like, really? I’m pretty sure we can do what we want on our wedding day 🙂

Post # 10
2363 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I think 3 hours will be fine if you aren’t doing the usual hoopla and if you offer an after party for those guests who want to keep the celebration going.  This was our timeline:

  • 7 – Guests enter
  • 7:20 – Ceremony
  • 7:40 – Cocktail hour
  • 8:40 – Dinner (buffet)
  • 9:10 – Toasts
  • 9:20 – First dance
  • 9:45 – Cake cutting
  • 11 – End of party
  • 11 to ? – After party

We had a friend announce the after party after the last dance.  Our family and older guests went home at that point, and our friends kept the party going until 2 or 3 in the morning!  We left the after party at 1:30.

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