(Closed) Alcohol Free Weddings

posted 6 years ago in Reception
Post # 61
7553 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: Dorset, UK

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kaitlynrose30:  Well, it’s not like I need a drink but if you want me to bust out my best wedding dance moves, I ain’t doing that without at least a glass of wine! 😉

Post # 64
1740 posts
Bumble bee

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kaitlynrose30:  If the wedding isn’t a “night wedding” (You say it starts in the afternoon, what time does it end?”, then I think it’s easier to not have it without people like me who usually want it. But please don’t tell any of your guests “You should never need alchohol to have fun” becuase that doesn’t sound very nice and they are your guests ; ) 



Post # 65
6309 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

Having no alcohol isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it’s absolutely a different kind of atmosphere. Sure, not everyone needs alcohol to have a good time, but I think the majority of people are saying – if you expect a wedding with lots of dancing, socializing, and people staying until the end….having a dry wedding is not going to achieve that. I’m speaking from my very extensive experience as a wedding photographer, who has photographed every kind of event over the years – no matter how “unique” people think their wedding is, it’s not. The fact is, dry weddings tend to end pretty early and I don’t know that I’ve ever attended/worked one where people stayed longer than the meal or danced. Typically after the meal/food is served people might stand around and mingle for 30 minues, an hour max, and then people start headed home. 

You seem pretty adament that your family cannnot handle drinking alcohol, at least not to your standards. If that’s the case – don’t serve it. But be prepared that people will likely eat dinner, watch you cut your cake, and go home. 

I personally can’t imagine providing beer/wine is going to result in an all out drunk fest at your afternoon wedding. The thing that makes me most irritated with this kind of stuff is blaming it on family. If alcohol isn’t in the budget, or you just don’t want to pay for it, just say it’s not in the budget and move on. But it’s not really fair to blame your guests as the reason you won’t serve it. You make it sound like they’re a bunch of idiots who can’t manage to function in public with a few drinks in them.

Post # 66
876 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2016

when I was growing up I never went to a wedding with alcohol. most weddings were in church with a reception directly after.

I think a dry wedding is okay at any time of day. If people can’t go one night without a drink, we have a problem Houston! 

Post # 67
4615 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 2016

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kaitlynrose30:  My sister had a dry wedding and everyone was gone after they served the cake, some even left beforehand.  I am attending another dry wedding in a couple of weeks and we are planning to leave right after we have cake.  I’m not a huge drinker, but I like the option of having a glass or two of champagne.  I disagree with PP who suggest going completely dry- I would keep the champagne toast.

Post # 68
1619 posts
Bumble bee

For those that like to control a certain portion of their guests, how is that fair to the larger portion of your guests who can act like adults?  So they get “punished” because you have a handful of guests that may get out of hand or not act to your standards.

And no one has to act as a babysitter.  That is what the venue staff and possibly security is for. Also bartenders will cut people off is they see that they have had too much because that is their job.

I guess for me, I would rather treat people like adults and not control them by limiting the alcohol or nixing it all together.  If someone acts up then that is on them and I would tell the venue before hand that if someone starts to get too crazy to escort them out.

Post # 69
8066 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

I think they’re kind of boring but if it’s early afternoon and short (like 2-3 hours reception) then you should be fine.  You have to know what type of atmosphere it causes (like it’s not going to be a big celebration/dance party) and be okay with that.  Definitely a no-no for an evening reception to me.

I don’t see what other people drinking a lot has to do with it.  Plenty of responsible adults can drink a lot and not make asses of themselves.  Alcohol is nice for your guests because it is more pleasurable and celebratory to mingle with people you don’t know or dance if you’ve had a drink or two.  But since you’re having an early afternoon wedding I don’t think people will be dancing anyway.

Post # 70
45 posts

I didnt have beers on my wedding, no big deal.

Post # 71
296 posts
Helper bee

DH and I had planned a full wedding for December of last year with absolutely no alcohol.  My family has a serious abuse history with it and neither one of us drink.  It was a completely personal choice for us and my family understood 100% and appreciated it.  His family, however, told us it was rude not to have alcohol at a wedding and it started a fight.  We tried to explain that because we were excluding the alcohol, the venue was upgrading EVERYTHING for us since the open bar was included as part of the package.  In the end, the issue over not having alcohol caused such a stir that we ultimately canceled the whole thing and eloped instead.

If you don’t want alcohol at your wedding, don’t let anyone else try to sway you.  I will say this though – if it is a dry wedding, don’t toast with champagne.  Toast with sparkling cider or something similar instead.

Post # 72
2953 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

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kaitlynrose30:  “If the guests quesiton why there was only champagne for the toast and nothing else then they are at our wedding for the wrong reason.”

Or they might have thought they were invited to a celebration and most celebrations involve libations. Even if you were my BFF, I too would wonder where the drinks were if I didn’t know ahead of time. Doesn’t mean your guests don’t love you. The two are not related IMO.

Post # 73
25 posts
  • Wedding: April 2016

Look: the reception is not for YOU. It is to thank you guests for coming to witness your vows and to be a party to the celebration of your marriage. You need to think about what the guests want. Now, if your FI’s entire family is full of recovering alcoholics and can’t be near the stuff–that’s one thing. However, it is not up to you to decide how grown adults enjoy their alcoholic beverages.

As everyone else says, it’s up to you to decide what you want to do for the party, but it’s not all about you.

Post # 74
1617 posts
Bumble bee

I really don’t see an issue with alcohol free weddings. It’s not as if anyone will die without it. I realize everyone’s circle is different but in my circle of friends and family, most people don’t drink and if they do, it’s really in the evening (a beer or two). BUT, they only do so every now and again. Usually, if given the choice, water or soda is preferred at meal time, even meals out.

If you are concerned about having champagne and then nothing (which I don’t see an issue with), consider doing something akin to a sparkling cider toast.

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