(Closed) Cocktail hour at the reception site- advice, please!

posted 7 years ago in Reception
  • poll: Is it ok to have a cocktail hour at a ceremony site?
    Yes! : (35 votes)
    90 %
    No way! : (4 votes)
    10 %
  • Post # 3
    Member
    128 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    The great thing is, anything goes with weddings now!! If it works out logistically and financially to have your cocktail hour at your ceremony site, go for it! I’m thinking of a few different things you can do to make it less confusing for your guests:

    1. If you are going to have an info card along with your invites you can write that the cocktail hour will follow the ceremony at the park.

    2. If you are planning to create a wedding website (which most people do anyhow) you can make sure this info is posted there.

    3. If you are going to have programs you can include this information.

    4. If all of the above aren’t plans of yours you can make sure you tell many of your guests and they can spread the word following the ceremony or your officiant can announce it!

    Good luck! Sounds like a great reception venue by the way!

    Post # 4
    Member
    1064 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    My first thought was that’s totally ok! Then I thought.. meh… even with a mile drinking and driving might be a big problem, and I am personally not ok with that. It all depends on what you want to do though! A brewery sounds really fun and it’s silly that you can’t buy more then just single glasses.. ๐Ÿ™

    Post # 5
    Member
    1008 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: December 2016

    I think it is fine… my last wedding that I went to had a champagne toast at a state park where the ceremony was….. Didnt think about driving though. We took a bus back to the reception site. 

    Hopefully most people would be responsible enough. 

    Post # 6
    Member
    1992 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    @Thrifty_Bride_Kate:  I LOVE this idea! I would MUCH prefer to hang out and have a drink and mingle as the bridal party takes photos than do a cash bar at the reception site. I think its an adorable idea and guests will love the intimateness of the location…
    I’m praying for your beautiful weather already tho~ rain would kill the dream completely Cry

    Post # 7
    Member
    555 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    So glad you posted this, I want to do the same thing. But serve lemonade and ice tea, no one is a big drinker 8]

    Post # 8
    Member
    555 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    Also how are you telling your guests? will it be in your invites or just word of mouth?

    Post # 9
    Member
    11356 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: May 2009

    I definitely would NOT do that, for the reason that @TopazWedding: provided:  You do not want your guests spending an hour drinking and then driving to your reception, even if it’s only just a mile away. I definitely would not want to take that risk.

    I also am wondering about your reception at the brewery.  Since you mentioned the cost of the drinks, are you planning to have a cash bar for your guests?

    Post # 10
    Member
    450 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: March 2012

    I will repeat others. The first thing I thought of was drinking and driving, that is a no-no for me. 

    Our ceremony and reception will be in the same venue, and we will be closing the bar at 8pm. All guests have been informed of this as well. After that it will be water, coffee, tea, lemonade and soda’s. Of course our wedding is on a Sunday afternoon, and many will have to drink the next day.

    Post # 11
    Member
    24 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: November 2011

    No way!

    Sending one drunk driver out into the world could end on disaster. Think about sending out 50! 

    For all you know, there could be legal ramifications to that. Say if a guest actually hit and hurt someone and the victim named you on a civil suit…I’m not sure if that’s possible but can’t people sue for any reason? You are liquoring people up and then asking them to drive to a second location…

    Perhaps a brewery is not the best place to hold an alcohol free reception…

    Id change the venue or rent a shuttle bus for the night for the guests to use. 

    Post # 12
    Member
    24 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: November 2011

    Rereading, I just realized that you won’t even be serving food with the drinks. 

     

    Please please please don’t do this! Do you really want to chance one or your guests dying, or killing someone with their car, on your wedding day?

    Post # 13
    Member
    68 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    I think do one specialty cocktail or champagne toast for all the guests (not a keg) that way you control quantity (i.e. one drink per person) and you get to at least offer your guests a beverage.  Unsure of your guest list but I have so many families coming that of so many nursing moms and non-drinkers that a designated driver won’t be an issue for me.  You know your guests if you think you’ll have drunk drivers don’t do it if you have folks who can do one drink and designate someone then go for it.

    Post # 14
    Member
    68 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    I think do one specialty cocktail or champagne toast for all the guests (not a keg) that way you control quantity (i.e. one drink per person) and you get to at least offer your guests a beverage.  Unsure of your guest list but I have so many families coming that of so many nursing moms and non-drinkers that a designated driver won’t be an issue for me.  You know your guests if you think you’ll have drunk drivers don’t do it if you have folks who can do one drink and designate someone then go for it.

    Post # 15
    Member
    27 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: August 2012

    If you go through with having this ‘cocktail hour’ at your ceremony site, I would probably call it something else.  A clever catchphrase or something, so that people understand that they should stay post-ceremony for a couple drinks (to pass the time, a glass of wine, we’ll take some pix, then see you at six!)

    On the note of safety, I would definitely make sure that you somehow announce this prior (either via your website, email or word of mouth) to make sure that everyone has a Dirty Delete to the reception site.  Maybe assign your ushers to stay behind and escort any guest who did not think & drink wisely.

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