Post # 1
I’m in love with Greystone, but am torn between it’s beauty and it’s 8pm closing time. If I must end at 8pm, that means dinner must be served at 4pm, if not 3pm. As a guest, would you feel awkward/unhappy eatting at 4 or 3pm? Would it inconvenience you too much? Should I just look for a different venue?
Post # 3
If I know that food is served at 3 or 4pm, then I would plan accordingly and have brunch at 10 or 11am (depending on your ceremony time). But if I didn’t know, then I wouldn’t be hungry enough if I ate lunch or starving if I thought it was a lunch reception and didn’t eat breakfast. I can’t say I’ve ever been inconvenienced by party food…no matter what time. =)
Post # 4
we are kind of in the same situtaion. My venue allows us to have 5 hours but latest ceremony can preformed at 2… so all over by 8:30 :e(
Our ceremony is at 2pm (mass so it’ll be long)
Cocktail hour 3:30-4:30
probably squeeze in our slide show and thank you’s to our guests.
then dinner served at 5
dancing, cake blah blah blah
We are going to take pictures before the ceremony so we can enjoy our reception and help move things along.
Post # 5
Thanks for your response. It’s such a relief knowing that it’s not poor ettiquette and knowing that other brides will do/have done it too! Thank you both, Yach & TallBride!!!
By The Way, TallBride, with reception starting that early, will you have dancing? Do you think guests will dance that early in the evening? We are trying to incorporate dancing between courses to hinder the typical "eat and run" guests. Do you think guests will start dancing as early as 4 or 5 pm?
Post # 6
No need to worry. Our venue has noise laws that we must be done by 9:00pm. So our ceremony starts at 3, cocktails at 4pm, and dinner at 5pm. Yes, its a bit early, but as long as guests are aware in advance, it should be fine. We’lll be serving a full meal, but I’m emphasizing lighter food (seafood, salads, no heavy mashed potatoes) so guests don’t feel gross having an early heavy meal. You’re fine!
Post # 7
We were going to do all of the father-daughter, first dance, etc while the guests were eatting dinner. Then have dancing around 6:30. Our wedding is in January so it gets dark earlier I hope they dance, if not Oh Well :e)
Post # 8
If the early end time is a concern, could you budget for an afterparty elsewhere?
Post # 9
People will dance no matter what time it is at a party. Just make sure the music is good and the MC knows how to get a party going!
As for having dinner early, just make sure you let people know ahead of time. Like Yach said, guests will plan their meals accordingly if they know dinner will be early. I know my family usually eats early during holidays. Usually Easter, Christmas and the like we have our big meals around 3-4pm.
I think you’re good to go. Try not to stress too much, and remember to have fun in the process! Good luck.
Post # 10
Our ceremony is at 230 and reception is from 4-9, our venue is allowing us to extend extra hours for $300. I love how it is an early reception because im getting married may 29th and we cant take beautiful pictures outside on the terrace and cazebo rather then in a photo room
Post # 11
I would say that most people when they see an invitation and the time isn’t during normal meal times then they plan to eat before or after the event. So if you are wanting to serve a full meal then be sure to note that dinner will be served on the invitations so that people know to come hungry.
Here’s another thought…Why do you have to serve a full meal? Why not just do a dessert bar, popcorn bar, fruit/cheese bar, ice cream bar OR do light finger foods.
If you really love your venue I wouldn’t change the venue just to serve people food.
Post # 12
My first wedding was a brunch and people danced. I think the cool thing about weddings that end around 8 or 9 p.m. (or earlier) is that there is always the option for a less serious after party at a lounge, bar, or club, or even home or hotel room!
And people will eat when food is served. 🙂 I don’t know many people who pass up a free meal!
Post # 13
First, I’m with vintage. It is an awkward time for a full meal. A nice cocktails and hors devours event would probably fit better, or a fancy tea.
Second, have you considered a true lunchtime event?
Third, If you did go for dinner, I would skip dancing, honestly. Have dinner later (6), and conclude with cake and a grand exit. You will have time for an after party.
If full dinner and dancing are important to you, I would seriously reconsider the location. For an event in a very fancy location, it just seems too rushed. I TOTALLY understand the desire to be different, but I keep asking myself this: is this a choice that makes the actual celebration better, or is it just about me wanting to be different/special/cooler/etc.
Post # 14
4pm is not lunch. It’s the early hour of dinner. 3pm is not dinner since it’s the tail end of the lunch hour. I never eat a full meal at that time under normal circumstances, and as a guest, I would never expect a full meal to be served at a non-meal time which both of those are. Then again, I have never once expected a full meal at a regular meal time either. I’m not against eating a full meal at that time but it is a bit odd, however I wouldn’t feel awkward as a guest. Actually, I don’t know anyone else who would either. Whichever you decide, make sure that you mention on the reception card that it will be a full meal if that is what you intend to serve. That time of day though is better suited for an afternoon tea. If you want a full meal, move your meal to the actual lunch hour (11-2pm)