(Closed) How Long is Too Long of a Wait Between the Ceremony and Reception?

posted 8 years ago in Reception
  • poll: What to do?!

    Arrange for the reception site to accommodate early guests

    Nothing. They can find something to do to kill the time.

    I like polls! :D

  • Post # 77
    Member
    1966 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    I think 1-5 is way too long. Especially if its a short ceremony.  I would say no more then 2hours, unless you have something planned for your guest. Like sending them all to a family members house for coffee & cheese.  

    Post # 80
    Member
    1668 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: October 2014 - Church

    View original reply
    @silkspectre94:  It’s normal – it’s just something that’s more difficult for out-of-town guests if they don’t know the area. Just provide some suggestions for things they can do in-between and they will be okay. It was the fact that we didn’t really have anywhere to go or much of an option in things to do in the area. Like I said when it came to another wedding we went to my and my SO are friends with a lot of the guests so we just went down to a pub and hung out.

    Post # 81
    Member
    2552 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: April 2013

    View original reply
    @silkspectre94:  it’s not about it being not typical, but about how inconvenient is to travel to a city that is not yours to attend a wedding, and having to sit in between two events for four hours because the hosts are taking pictures.

    Post # 82
    Member
    1876 posts
    Buzzing bee

    View original reply
    @silkspectre94:  It sounds like you don’t have a choice then, so there’s no point in stressing over it.  It may not be the ideal, but it’s unavoidable, and there’s no need to feel badly.  As a non-Catholic, I have never heard of this problem.  I’d be confused by such a long gap when I saw the invite.  Maybe you could graciously address the time frame for the days events on your wedding website?  Either way, the people who love you most will be there.  You may lose a few guests because it’s a far way to travel on top of a gap which makes for a long day, BUT the most important people will go no matter what.

    Post # 84
    Member
    926 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

    Who cares how long the gap is? Do the wedding how it will work for you and your Fiance. If people want to come, they will. It’s hard to make everyone happy. Honestly don’t think too much about it, it’s not that big of a deal at all, I’ve gone to weddings with gaps and guess what I still had fun. Don’t worry too much about it!

    Post # 85
    Member
    2779 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: October 2013

    @silkspectre94:  It happens, many of your guests will return home to take a break from the festivities, and many of your out of town guests will either do the same (returning to hotel rooms) or decide it’s a chance to go check out something in the city. 

    I’m in a similar boat, we aren’t planning anything for our guests between the 1:30pm ceremony and the 5pm cocktail hour start. Really it’s going to end up being alot less time then you think. For us, the ceremony is an hour, then we will be doing pictures at the church with friends and family, with the reception being 30 minutes away from the church, it really only gives guests an hour-an hour and a half, when all is said and done. Our reception hall will be open for guests to arrive as early as 4:30. I know many of our friends and family are happy about the gap because it gives them a chance to have a bite to eat for lunch, put the kids down for a nap, or simply recharge themselves to be ready for a long evening.

    Post # 86
    Member
    2285 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: Central Park

    I would be pissed if I went to a 1 PM ceremony and 5 PM Hors D’oeurves. You need to warn people so they can grab a bite to eat and find a place to chill in between, or arrange for them to be accepted early at the reception space. I went to a wedding in college. The Ceremony was at 2:30 and the Reception was at 5 PM but she only had hors d’oeurves. She didn’t tell anyone, so we all sat at the reception venue for 2 hours staring at the covered buffet station whle she took photos and took her time coming over. It was horrible. Everyone was so absorbed in finally eating that her toasts and cake cutting got ignored. And everyone left at like 7 PM because they were starving and wanted dinner.

    Find a way to entertain and feed them. Can you have lawn games or something?

    Post # 88
    Member
    15 posts
    Newbee

    I think that maybe you should arrange for some sort of entertainment a comedian, or have your DJ do some karoki or something fun maybe to bridge the gap and keep peoples minds off of the wait, and by all means have SOMETHING for them to nibble on even if its just cookies and punch until the reception starts at 5:00.

    You maybe should have (if you didn’t) specified on the invitation that the reception would start at 5:00 and then people could decide what they wanted to do in that 3 hour gap of time.

    Hope all works out well for you – Congratulations!!!

     

    Post # 89
    Member
    41 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    Man, so many people responding here are rude! This is your wedding and if you see fit the need for a gap, then so be it! People can find plenty of stuff to do.

    I know for a fact that most of our guests are going to go back to the hotel and hangout, we have quite a few out of towners and they barely get to see each other so being able to hangout before the reception is great for them.

    The pictures are what allows you to remember your day, you have to have as many of these as possible. Our ceremony is at 1:30 and our reception starts at 5pm with dinner at 6pm. We’re renting a limo and going down for pictures and drinks and then heading back around 5:30 so we can do our entrance right before dinner.

    It’s your wedding, do what YOU want! 

    Post # 90
    Member
    140 posts
    Blushing bee

    This is a tricky issue always, I think. I remember hanging out at the mall between my cousin’s ceremony and reception. It certainly helps guests if they realize this ahead of time. 

     

    My son’s wedding ceremony will be held in the same place as the reception, just on the other end of a huge hall. I know they want to take photos after the ceremony also. So I’ve been wondering about what guests will do in between. There are trails there that people could take a nice walk on, but only if they aren’t too dressed up, and have the correct shoes. 

    I’m wondering if there’s something guests could do during the Gap, like board games? or what? but all the tables will be covered and decorated. I’m going to think about this. 

    We had this at another wedding last summer, and it would have been nice to at least have a place to sit, something cold to drink, maybe a little snack. I think a lot of people are OK to just sit and talk. Maybe younger people would want to go do something more.

    I do think brides should consider this in their planning, and try to work it out as best they can. You might not be able to keep everyone completely happy, but aim for having most people be pretty happy, and also meet your needs for when photos are taken.

     

    Post # 91
    Member
    14 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: April 2013

    @silkspectre94:  I don’t think the gaps too long if you plan something for them. I’m sort of oin the same situation with our wedding. The ceremony is at 3 and the reception starts at 6 but all at the same place. This has made it easier when trying to organise things to do for them. We are having lawn games set up on a seperate grassed area. We are also organising a few platters and drinks to keep them busy. We’re hoping the photos only take an hour although our photographer said about 1.5. I want to be there celebrating and playing games with our friends!

    One of my friends did get married last year and she had a larger gap. We didn’t care we all went to a bar in the city and had a few drinks and ordered some nibbles. It was no big deal… maybe just rent some games for them to play like Kubb, giant Jenga and croquet – it might get people mingling too!

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