Post # 1
We’re having a small out of town wedding, about 35-45 people (some guests are local to the wedding city). We got to talking about the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner and figured out that at least 25 of those people would be at the rehearsal dinner, we have 3 on each side of the wedding party plus family and officiant who is a lifelong friend, spouses, etc. My thought is to do some kind of beer and wine and maybe a cheese tray right after the rehearsal, at the venue (we would time it so others in town could stop by for a bit) and then maybe we take the wedding party out for pizza and beer after. We want to be able to do a hosted bar and not skimp on the wedding dinner and paying for another expensive dinner would cut way into the budget. Not trying to be cheap but we also can’t feed almost the entire wedding guest list the night before the wedding. We didn’t have an engagement party, we aren’t having a shower and we are asking for no gifts, so it’s not like we have asked people to shell out tons of money for the wedding. Is this horrible?
Post # 2
Why would 25/35 people be at the rehearsal dinner?
Just take the people involved in the rehearsal out to dinner after.
Post # 3
tomandrachael : If you are having a rehearsal, then yes, I’m sorry to say it is tacky to not treat those people to a dinner of some kind. If you can’t afford it, skip the rehearsal. Everyone will figure out how to walk a straight line the day of. This has nothing to do with you asking people to shell out money for other parties, it has to do with asking them to take time out of their lives to help reassure you that your special day will go smoothly. If you’re asking that of them, you should feed them. If you can’t or don’t want to, don’t ask them for this favor.
Post # 4
I am also confused as to why 25 out of 35 people would be at the rehearsal dinner. Rehearsal dinner is only necessary for people who are attending the rehearsal and their significant others. In other words people who are in The Wedding who need to rehearse.
So I would either not have a rehearsal, they generally aren’t that necessary. You and your future spouse can go over whatever you need to go through with the officiant. For everyone else it’s pretty much just walking in a straight line and standing still and can be covered the morning of. No rehearsal equals no rehearsal dinner.
Or keep the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner to only the rehearsal participants. I’m assuming all these extra people are your out-of-town guests? It is not required to host out of town guests at your rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. I think it would be really weird and awkward to try to host them with cheese platters in between the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner and just being like peace out suckers we’re going to dinner and you’re not invited. Cut them out of that equation and if you really feel compelled to host something for your out-of-town guests the night before, do it after both the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner and invite them over somewhere like your hotel suite or the lounge area of the hotel for some drinks and dessert.
However if all of these 25 people really are in the wedding and necessary for the rehearsal or are significant others of people in the wedding, then yes you are stuck buying dinner for all of them. You can’t exclude their significant others. It doesn’t need to be fancy but it does need to be a meal. Pizza, salad, and beers are just fine.
Post # 5
All good suggestions, honestly, we probably won’t need a rehearsal really, just making sure the timing of the music works. Maybe we will just do a casual get together for anyone who is around.
Post # 6
No rehearsal dinner is fine if you aren’t rehearsing. If you are, provide pizza and drinks.
Post # 7
Just invite people involved in the rehearsal, not many people do the out of town guests as often anymore because of this issue.