Post # 1
Hello fellow brides!
I’m needing help figuring out my timeline. The wedding is at 2pm and it’s a full-blown Catholic Mass which means it’s not going to end until 3:00-3:30PM. Then, we’re having hour d’ ouvres starting at 3:30pm at the reception. We will be taking pictures after the mass and probably won’t be able to get to the hotel by 4pm. The reception doesn’t end until 11pm.
What time should we serve dinner given that hour d’ ouvres are served before?
Thanks in advance!
Post # 3
My instinct is that you should give yourself ample time before the reception for photos and a little bit of down time – I would actually make hors d’oeurves/cocktail hour start around 4pm, and reception starting around 4:30/5? Even with hors d’oeurves at 3:30, I wouldn’t start the actual serving of dinner until at least 5pm. Of course this all depends – if you are doing a first look before the ceremony, then you might not need that much time for photos. But that’s just my best guess!
Post # 4
I had a fairly similar timeline so I’ll share my experience. If there’s minimal travel time between the church and reception than 3:30 cocktail start sounds about right. I’d let it go till 4:30, maybe 4:45, which gives you time to enjoy it as well. Then about 4:45, you do a head entrance, followed by your first dance and any other spotlight dances. This gets you to around 5:00, at which point you bless the food and start serving. If that feels too early, you can push some speeches before dinner too. One other thing- our reception actually ended around 8:30-9:00 because of this fairly early start. There was an impromptu after party in the nearby brew pub, but the room was really clearing out of all but my generation by that time. Just something to think about.
Post # 5
THank You Bees! I decided to end the reception at 10PM. Here is my timeline:
3:30 – Guests arrive for Cocktail hour
4:30 – Bridal Party then bride and groom are announced
4:45 – First dance for Bride/ Groom
4:50 – Daddy/ Daughter Dance followed by Mother/ Son Dance
5:00 – Dinner Buffet is open (slide show shown while eating) immediately followed by Open Dance Floor (Fun group songs, line dances, etc.)
6:55 – Anniversary Dance for all married couples
7:00 – Cutting of the cake followed by toasts while caterers cut and plate the cake
7:15 – Open dance floor
8:00 – Dollar Dance
8:15 – Open dance floor
9:40 – Bouquet/Garter Toss
9:50 – Couple last dance all alone while guests prepare for send off
9:55 – Departure