Let's Talk About Jack & Jills!

posted 2 years ago in Parties
Post # 31
731 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

thesoontobemrsv :  +1.

I’m about to go on a rant.

OP, I learned really quick that weddingbee is NOT the place to ask for advice about stag and does, as a large portion of bees find them offensive and “tacky” (can we all get another word please?)

That being said, WHERE I’M FROM (southwestern Ontario, Canada)… jack and Jill’s (we call them “stag and does”) are VERY popular here. I have attended several, and see at least one post per weekend on my Facebook about someone attending one.

WE opted for a stag and doe instead of a bridal shower. Why? Here were my reasons:

1) we already live together, so holding a “pre-wedding event where people give us housewares gifts” seemed pointless.

(also can we just talk about how showers *an event where people give you GIFTS before your actual wedding and then again on your wedding* are appropriate/ not tacky but stag and does *an event where people give you MONEY before your actual wedding then again on your wedding* ARE tacky? Hmmm…)

2. I find bridal showers INCREDIBLY lame (yes I said it). There is not a single wedding shower I have ever been to where I’ve enjoyed myself. You guys want to talk about tacky? Tell me how many times you can play “make a toilet paper wedding dress” before your eye starts twitching. A stag and doe seemed more fun for us, and as much side-eye as I got from my 85 year old grandmother for opting out of a traditional wedding shower( “well what about all the older women who wanted one?!” She complained)… she actually had a GREAT time at our stag and doe… and so did all the “older women”.

3. I HATE being the center of attention. Seriously nothing makes me cringe more than thinking about opening presents in front of a bunch of relatives I’m not super close with. Or playing horrible wedding themed games all about me and my wedding. Yuck. A stag and doe allowed us to *mingle*, people got to bring their friends or significant others, and most importantly… they got to drink, let loose and ENJOY THEMSELVES. 

We never heard anyone complain or find our stag and doe offensive. In fact, our friends and family were more than happy to support us/ buy tickets/ attend…. so were our family’s friends, our friends’ friends, co-workers, acquaintances….

We charged 20$ per ticket and that included all you can eat (catered) beef, pulled pork and chicken tacos, as well as all you can drink beer. We had people come for that alone because the tickets were so cheap for what people got. We also called ours a “buck and doe”, and while it wasn’t as “classy” as a bridal shower *cue women in sundresses sipping mimosas*, we had a Hunting and fishing theme, TONS of unique and fun games (a fishing game, Antler ring toss, a “sharp shooter” game,  a game where you had to throw toilet paper rolls into the toilet of the “outhouse” we built)… and awesome prizes. (Seriously the level of competition for winning prizes at our stag and doe was hilarious).

But most importantly, people had a GOOD TIME! We got tons of compliments about how it was the “most fun and most organized” stag and doe people had ever been to. 

So honestly OP, if they are something you are considering, and you’re not the first person ever to throw one in your area (although even if you were… traditions started somewhere AMIRITE?), I say go for it. Just make the focus on it being a fun night for people and not so “give us all the money you have.. let’s see how much we can possibly make”. My cousin and his fiancée were VERY pushy at their stag and doe about going around and trying to get people to spend money. She even gave attitude when I didn’t want to sign up for a really awkward and inappropriate game because MY ENTIRE FAMILY WAS THERE, being snarky to me and saying “oh gimme a break it’s only five dollars”… THAT I found a bit rude). I think people are less likely to get offended if you plan with your guests’ happiness in mind instead of seeing how much money you can possibly save/ make (even if it IS a “fundraiser”). Good luck! 


Post # 32
866 posts
Busy bee

I’ve not been to a Jack and Jill, we don’t really go for them in Eastern Canada… A Manitoba friend was telling me about hers when I got engaged… At first I thought it was a bit tacky, but once she went into detail I really see the benefit… Especially in smaller communities where there isn’t alot to do… As long as you are providing solid entertainment and great prizes go for it.

Post # 33
2332 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

“Honestly, I would prefer not to have any kind of shower/party before the wedding”

Then DON’T. I have a hard time beliveing people are just dying to throw you a fundraiser.

Post # 34
958 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

brittnamrogo :  The last  wedding shower I went to was co ed with unlimited booze and we played trivia. The bride/groom did not open any gifts (which were mainly just bottles of wine/champagne from what I could tell from the gift bags) and nobody had to pay to get in. The shower I went to before that was also co ed and while they did open gifts there were no games. We just drank beer and hung out. In fact I have never heard of the game you said is played at all wedding showers. Maybe showers are different in my area or my friends are different. Regardless, I’d much prefer the wedding showers I’ve been to then buying a ticket to a fundraiser to fund your wedding (you’re not a charity) and then paying even more money once I was there. I’ve only been invited to one jack and Jill and I wasn’t even invited to the wedding. When I  asked I was told that was common. So you’re not only fundraising for your wedding but fundraising from people who aren’t invited to the event you’re fundraising for!  That is the very definition of TACKY. If not liking something makes me privledged then I’m bathing in privledge. 

Post # 35
171 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

Apparently my last attempt as responding didn’t go through so I will try again !

Jack n Jill also known as Buck n Doe, Stag n Doe etc. = raises money for the bride & groom – to be used however they please, put towards wedding, honeymoon, house, whatever you want! but do not expect gifts at this type of event! The gift is the money that people are spending on the games etc.
I have seen people make from $1000 -$3000+ at Jack n Jills – they are a huge hit and good reason to get together and celebrate!
Also, anyone can come to this event – they don’t have to be invited to the wedding – could be a friend of a friend… the more the merrier! 

I am having mine at the end of this month (the bridal party is doing all the work – I have been helping here and there though)

At ours:

  1. Entrance: $10/ticket or $15/couple  (with purchase of ticket – chance to win door prize)
  2. Raffle tickets/prizes ($/ticket or $10/arms length) [different prize baskets or donated items people will put their ticket in to try and win.]
  3. Some I have seen have big item prizes that requires a separate ticket (ex. BBQ, chainsaw, tv etc)
  4. We are also having a draw to win 1/4 beef (separate ticket required – don’t have to be at event to win)
  5. At the event location we get a $1 per drink purchased 
  6. We will supply food & music for everyone! (free of course)
  7. They also try to raise money – by doing a ‘save the bride or groom’ –> whoevers jar has less money gets the pie in the face (usually just whipped cream)

I have also seen a dress up the groom – people put money in a jar and as you hit different amounts the groom gets dressed up.  $25 –> a wig  $50 –> makeup  $100 –> wears a dress for x amount of minutes etc. 

Jack N Jills are very common in my area (Ontario, Canada) — but as you can tell from the responses not so much in others.

Usually these events are held in a community hall, bar that holds functions, or even someones back yard or barn. 

As for showers – a Jack n Jill does not replace a shower.  You could just not have a shower – or do a stalk the bar type of shower – if you don’t need anything or want to get stuff you’ll never use. 
Stalk the bar could be a joint shower (men/women) and everyone brings one bottle of booze to stalk your bar (wine, tequila, whisky, etc) 

Hope this helps! 

Post # 36
2811 posts
Sugar bee

I think this is too much of a regional thing to really get advice on! I’d never heard of stags the way that you described them OP, and I only just learned about ‘Jack and Jill’s’ a month ago (i’m 31).

Here (Vancouver Canada) a stag is the exact same thing as a bachelor party, it’s just a different word for it. People actually usually call bachelor/bachelorette parties here stag/stagettes more often. 

I heard that Jack and Jills are fundraisers open to the public, typically (but not exclusively) held in small towns where there isn’t a lot of night life. Then it’s both a fun night for people in the town and a way for the couple to raise money. I heard about them from someone from Ontario, where they’re apparently really popular. 

I’m not super into the traditional pre-wedding parties either, so I totally get where you’re headed with this. My fi and I did our stag(ette) weekend together and jokingly called it the “Wedding Warmup” If what you’re going for is a co-ed bridal shower, I think they’re often called ‘couples showers’. 

Post # 37
2332 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

I’d just like to add where I am from Bridal Showers are also not a thing. If someone tried to throw one here everyone would be highly confused.

You get a bachelorette (party) night with your friends, and the man has a stag (party) night, but no ‘showering’ of gifts or fundraising events other than gifts given to you at the wedding.

So saying you don’t want a bridal shower so a Jack and Jill is okay makes me laugh. Neither are necessary. Pay for your own damn stuff

Post # 38
2332 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

whnlz :  +1000 

People will use any nonsensical excuse to justify their own greed

Post # 39
2129 posts
Buzzing bee

Personally I think in today’s world all pre-wedding parties are tacky and unnecessary. Most couples live together before marriage, have most homeware they need, and both are usually in full time work. If you can’t afford a wedding, you scale back. You budget. You don’t ask your guests to pay for it. 

If you want a party, have a party. Don’t register, don’t ask for money, just have a party. 

Post # 40
2811 posts
Sugar bee

For people saying that Jack and Jill’s are greedy – From what I heard about them they’re often held places where there isn’t a lot of night life and it’s open to the public. The girl that told me about them was from a really small town in Ontario and said that people loved them because it was a really fun and well organized night out that they otherwise wouldn’t really have. It was more of a community building mutually beneficial thing and the whole town would go.


Post # 41
1096 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

My fiance’s mom threw us a shower/party like this last weekend and it was actually really fun. We were visiting and she wanted to host a shower, but didn’t want us to have to ship gifts home or pay to check extra bags to do so, if people had bought us gifts off the registry. I was reluctant to have a shower at all, but she really wanted to do it, and I think it made her feel more involved in the wedding (she’s in the midwest and has spent a lot of time in Canada, so maybe that’s were she got the idea). It was also a chance for me to meet a lot more of FI’s family. 

It wasn’t called a Jack and Jill, they called it a casino night, and there were games hosted by my FI’s brother and sister-in-law, including roulette (with shots as well as the normal game), blackjack, and a dart board set up with cards where you tried to get the best possible poker hand. People bought a cup of poker chips when they arrived, and could pay for a turn at the darts or to have me or Fiance take their shot during the roulette game if they wanted. I don’t know what they asked people to pay for the chips, but we got about $300 by the end of the night. We also played the newlywed game, which was fun. My Fiance thought we’d do as well as his grandparents, married over 50 years (surprise: we did not). Whoever got the highest poker hand on the dart board would split the pot with us, but it turned out Fiance did, so we kept all of it. It may be tacky, and in my part of New England I’ve never heard of such a thing, but it was fun, there was no pre-paying for a ticket, and I was touched by how much effort his family put into setting this up for us. If it were up to me I would have had no shower at all – I don’t like to be the center of attention, and having showers AND a wedding feels gift-grabby, but it meant so much to his family so I went along with it. We used the cash to buy a few items off the registry, and will send thank you cards to all the guests to thank them for celebrating with us, let them know what we purchased, and tell them we’re looking forward to seeing them at the wedding.

Post # 42
5583 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: July 2018

wolfeyes :  It was more of a community building mutually beneficial thing and the whole town would go.

If it’s for community building why not fund-raise for charity rather than your wedding then?

Post # 43
2811 posts
Sugar bee

zzar45 :  They could definitely do that as well! Just like many people have bridal showers that ask for donations to charity rather than themselves. I hate the gift-giving pre-parties as well (my mom insisted that I have one to get all of us together, but I asked for donations to charity or used books as gifts)

I’m just saying that every region has it’s own traditions that are not necessarily considered selfish. The people from my friend’s town loved when people threw Jack & Jills, and it’s a lot of work to do. 

Post # 44
1361 posts
Bumble bee

Where I’m from Jack & Jill just means a co-ed party. It’s pretty popular for baby showers here. Although my male friends aren’t happy with this new trend haha.


On a side note, I don’t have a problem with traditional fundraising Stag and Does even though they aren’t in fashion where I live. They were a way for rural communities to have some night life. Engaged couple throws a dance/shindig where the entire town could go (not limited to guest list) and they keep the profit for the trouble of hosting/putting it together. It’s no different than going to see a band and paying a cover fee.

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