Post # 1
I need help deciding my cocktail start time.
I am having a catholic ceremony in Lincoln Park starting at 3 (probably be done around 3:30, 3:45).We want to then take pics around the city with our bridal party then arrive to the reception location (Hotel downtown). We want to take part in the cocktail hour with our guests, so what time would you all suggest for a start time? Hotel coordinator suggested 6:00. Would 6:30 be ok or is that unfair to guests who have nothing to do to "kill time" between ceremony and reception?
I’d love to hear your thoughts. THANKS!!
Post # 3
I would personally hate such a long wait time with nothing to do. I would either take the pics before hand or skip your cocktail hour. Or you could always plan something for the guests to do while they wait. Is it a destination wedding for most guests? Maybe a tour or something? I love the boat tour we did in Chicago. I think it’s a little much to make your guests wait while you do a photoshoot all around the city, but a little time is ok.
Post # 4
Agree with Kate, as a guest it would really suck to have to wait around until you’re done with pictures. Most people don’t expect the wedding party at the cocktail for that reason.
We took most of our pictures before the cocktail hour, but we still had some to take afterwards. we joined the room with about 15 minutes left of the cocktail hour and didn’t feel like we missed anything. You will be able to chat it up with your guests at the reception.
Post # 5
I also agree. Personally, I’d rather have something to do than see you during cocktail hour. (That sounds really mean, but really, I know that brides and grooms are busy.) I think a 5 or 5:30 start time would be good, and you can always get there for the last portion of cocktail hour.
Post # 6
I also have had to wait ‘hours’ between the ceremony and the beginning of cocktail hour at weddings and it is really inconvenient and annoying. An hour to an hour and a half would be best to keep your guests from getting too cranky! Good luck!
Post # 7
I agree with the everyone above – skip the cocktail hour so guests don’t have to wait or do your pics before the ceremony. We are doing our family and wedding party pics before the ceremony. Then after the ceremony, just me and my groom go to have ours taken (we’re not seeing each other before the ceremony).
Also – we’re a destination wedding so everyone will be from out of town – more reason we didn’t want to have a gap between our events.
Post # 8
- Wedding: October 2009 - Church Ceremony/Reception at The Waterford House
We are having our ceremony from 3:30- 4:15/ 4:30. Our cockatil hour will start around 5:00. Our reception venue and ceremony location are about 15mins. away from one another, so this gives us time to briefly greet guests after the ceremony before heading over to the reception. Could you take your pictures before the ceremony?
Post # 9
- Wedding: September 2009 - Catholic ceremony, reception at local armory
We are getting married at 1 and the cocktail hour starts at 5. With such an early wedding, there’s no way to really avoid the lag time. I think people are used to having lag time, so I don’t think it’s that big of a deal. Maybe you could suggest a bar that they can check out or something before the cocktail hour?
Post # 10
Mascara- I like you am use to have this lag time when attending weddings so I didn’t realize it was such an issue until I read the other posts. It’s not a matter of having lag time or not because I’m going to have one regardless, I was just throwing around 6 vs 6:30.
Erin – I actually WANT to attend the cocktail hour since it’s on the rooftop of our hotel and it’s such a great location before we move into the ballroom that I would want to experience it with my guests so it’s really me wanting to be there and not feeling my guests "need/want" to see me.
I’ll probably start it at 6 and arrive with bridal party about 6:30 Thanks for the input!
Post # 11
I can’t remember the last time that I didn’t have that lag time between the ceremony and reception. I really don’t think it’s a big deal, especially not in Chicago. Sometimes I think it’s nice to visit with friends away from wedding activities – more talking and shinanigans (until later in the evening when there’s been too much too drink). 6:30 start time would be fine, if you’re having an open bar it will even cut the amount of liquor your guests get…