(Closed) Ceremony/Reception in the same area?

posted 10 years ago in Beehive
Post # 3
84 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2007 - Ceremony at a cement and stained glass cathedral and reception at a boutique hotel ballroom

hey ms-C,

I don’t think it’s impossible, but it’ll be pretty packed. is there a way you can stretch the time to at least 2 hours? we had our wedding coordinator transfer our floral arrangements from the church over to our reception location that was a block away. we gave her about two hours. (ceremony from 3-4.30pm, cocktail hour at 5.30pm, guests allowed into the reception room at around 6.15pm). I hear she was just finishing up her decorating as cocktail hour was winding down. Also, the tables, tablecloths, and chairs, were already set up in the reception room the night before.

Hope that helps!


Post # 4
45 posts
  • Wedding: June 2008

I’m doing the same thing, but we have enough room in the back yard to have the tables already made… we just need to move the chairs. 

I think you will have enough time, but only if you have a large crew of helpers/catering staff to help.  Otherwise, can you increase the length of time in between to 1 1/2 hours or 2 hours? 

Post # 5
337 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

I think it would be impossible unless you have a large setup crew (at least 10 people, I would think).  And you would want to have the tables ready to move with the tablecloths already on them, the chairs already decorated, and centrepieces already set up so that minimal assembly would be required and things would just need to be placed in the right locations.  The most time consuming part for setup will be the place settings because they will have to be done after the tables have been moved.

Post # 6
236 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

my venue also offered this idea to me because a lot of people actually do it to save costs since you only have to pay for one room/space. The only thing is that you may have to pay a little more to hire extra set-up/break-down people
 for your crew in order to ensure that everything gets done in one hour.

What they do is they have people move from the ceremony space onto a different patio for about an hour for the hors d’oevres and cocktails, and then when you come back to the space, it has been transformed into a magical reception area! They said the only way to really make it work is to have the dance floor already set up under the chairs/pews during the ceremony because that is what really takes a long time to set up. So, this means you would have a runner going over the dance floor for the ceremony. I wasn’t too thrilled about this, but if you don’t plan to have a dance floor, this may not be an issue. I think as long as you have all your centerpieces and such set up and ready to plant on the tables, you should be okay.  Good luck!!

Post # 7
471 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

This is completely possible. We are doing the same thing as well. Although we haven’t figured out the exact logistical timeline for this, our venue allows us in at 2PM and we are able to set up from 2-4PM. They don’t allow any event time until 4PM which is when people will start to trickle in for the ceremony.

We will then be transforming the same area for use during our reception. Although our wedding is for 200 guests and the venue comes stark empty, the BARE MINIMUM for us for the cocktail hour to allow for set-up is 1 hour and 30 minutes which is already pushing it.

Pancy has a great point about the dance floor especially since you are doing yours on a lawn.

Post # 8
291 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2007

Are you doing full-on seated dinner or cocktail style standing tables and chairs scattered about the lawn?  If the latter, it will be easier.

Also, is there a portion of the lawn that you could rope/screen off where some things would be pre-set?  Like your food tables, gift table, cake table, dance floor, etc.?  My Maid/Matron of Honor did her ceremony in the same room she had her reception in, and the change-over was pretty fast (about 1 hour).  But, they’d screened off half the room so that most of the tables/chairs were already set up.  

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