Post # 1
Hello – I’m having conflicting thoughts, so I wanted to get some input. I’ve found the perfect location for my ceremony, but there are absolutely no receptions allowed – no food, no light snacks, no drinks. My budget is tight, so I was only considering a light “hors d’oeuvre” / cake-cutting reception anyway. But now this is not possible at my ceremony location. It’s impossible to find reception venues near by for such a small reception – they all have $$ minimums. I also can’t consider something like a park, as it will be dark after the ceremony. My thought was to pass out a little gift bag to each guest personally, with a little bottle of Martinelli’s (our families don’t drink) and a few cake-pops.
We are only inviting close family and a few friends – approximately 40 people. What would a thoughtful bride do in this situation? (I’ve read posts that go as far as to say it is “rude and offensive” to have a ceremony only and not provide food for guests). Oh – as a side note, we don’t actually even want a reception. Neither of us dance, and we prefer quite, intimate gatherings – we are definitly not party people.
Post # 3
@bellabrooks: I don’t think it is rude having a ceremony with no reception. To each their own! You just have to be very clear about it on the invite.
Maybe after you could go have dinner in a nice restaurant with your close family and friends 🙂
Post # 4
Can you host cake/punch in your house or something?
Though I think goodie bags with cake pops and mini bottles of sparkling cider is a really great idea!
Post # 5
I second the other bee who mentioned dinner afterwards. We didn’t have a reception but we hosted dinner at a nice restaurant.
Post # 6
Can you have appetizers and dessert at a person’s house? Or is there room in the budget to rent out a restaurant?
Post # 7
- Wedding: June 2014 - British Columbia
My future brother-in-law did this back in September — on the first day of fall.
All they said on the card was: Reception to follow at a later date.
So, that could be them having a vow renewal.
All they had was a dinner for two after the ceremony. People will understand. Weddings ARE expensive.
Post # 8
@bellabrooks: I think it is rude. I would never invite 40 people to my home and not serve refreshments, much less host a wedding and not serve refreshments.
If it is going to be dark after the ceremony, it sounds like it is awfully close to dinner. Bad enough not to be served dinner, but to not even be offered a drink or appies would not be very hospitable.
There must be one amongst your family and friends who have a place large enough to host your guests for a drink and appies for even an hour or so.
Post # 9
Agree with the dinner thing. Maybe find a nice restaurant with a reasonably priced menu that will let you use a banquet room. Totally intimate!
Post # 10
Meh, it is up to you guys what you want to do. It is your day and you guys should do what makes you comfortable. I just wouldn’t be surprised if you have a low attendance. Or offended.
Post # 11
@bellabrooks: I think it’s pretty rude for you to have no reception. People spend a ton on travel, gifts, clothes etc. to attend a wedding – at least give them a meal and a chance to celebrate with you! It doesn’t really matter if you don’t want a reception – I’m sure your guests don’t want to attend a wedding near dinner time only to be told after to service to go home. People remember you for stuff like that.
I think in this scenario a thoughtful bride would book a room in a restaurant close by for her reception. It doesn’t have to be tons of partying, just some dinner and socializing. I think that would be doable since you’re having a small wedding.
Your wedding should be about what you want, but when you invite other people you have to factor them in too. Don’t have no reception – have a reception that you will enjoy.
ETA: If you can’t afford to rent a room in a restaurant or a banquet hall then why not host a reception at your house if it’s near by? Make some trays of food, buy a couple of buckets of KFC and you’re good to go. You could even ask people to bring a dish of food instead of a gift if they want to.
Post # 12
Wow – I appreciate all the quick feedback. Perhaps it would help to clarify….unfortunately, I can’t hold the reception at my home – it’s about 90 miles away. Also, the wedding is not quite at dinner time. The ceremony will be complete by 4:30 pm (it just get’s dark early in December). Dinner only at near-by venues still have a minimum guest/dollar spend $$. So I guess maybe my real dillema is – do we get married at our dream location, but commit this faux-pas? Or compromise on location, in order to be feed our guests? Or if there are other creative thoughts, I’m open….
Thanks to all who are taking the time to reply 🙂
Post # 13
@bellabrooks: You can still get married at your dream location.
Just figure out how and where you are going to serve some refreshments to your guests after the ceremony.
Post # 14
Unless the vast majority of your guests live close to the ceremony site (within 20-30mins), I think it’s rude to ask people to dress up, buy a gift, and travel for somethin that will last 30 minutes tops. While I would still attend if it was a close friend/family member, I would just feel awkward about what to do afterward.
For 40 people, are you sure there isn’t a private room at a restaurant or even just a large restaurant that could put together a bunch of tables you could use? Is there a bar you could rent for just drinks and appetizers?
I understand wanting to get married in your dream location, but I think it would lead to an uncomfortable situation with many guests.
Post # 15
- Wedding: June 2014 - British Columbia
90 miles is a bit far; that would take at least an hour to commute, depending on traffic and speed limits.
Are there any community hall or restaurants or bars close by? You could book 5 tables for 40 people, presuming that 8 people fit each table.
You could still have a candle-lit dinner at a park. Just make sure you rent some tents in case of bad weather. Not sure if December is summer or winter where you live.
Post # 16
Why not go out to dinner at a restaurant?