(Closed) Reception Timeline

posted 8 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
540 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

6:05 – Guests asked to be seated for dinner.
6:15 – Grand Entrance, Bridal Party. Food is blessed.
6:20 – First dance
6:30 – Cake is cut? Guests are invited to get dinner, two tables at a time.  Photographers and videographer break for Dinner after everyone is seated.
7:25 – Toasts.  Photographers resume taking pictures.
7:40-  Cake is served/offered
8:00 – Father-Daughter dance

8:05 Mother-son dance?
8:10 – All dancing begins
10:00 SHARP – Last Dance
10:05 Bride and Groom make exit, Throwing of bouquet?

Post # 4
540 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

Well…looking at my timeline I think I need to do some revision. Sorry if that didn’t help.

Post # 6
1403 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

If you have a DJ who has done wedding before, he/she can help you put together the timeline.   The DJ is usually in charge of the transitions by announcing the first dance, cake cutting, bouquet toss, etc.

Post # 8
11325 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2011

My tentative timeline: 

5:30 ceremony

6:00 cocktail hour

7:00 guests asked to head up for dinner

7:20 grand entrance

7:30 dinner is served

8:00 toasts

8:30 cake cutting

8:40 first dance

8:45 father daughter and then mother son dance (and maybe anniversary dance)

9:00 party on party on

10:55 last song

11:00 you don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here!

Post # 9
555 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I’ve never been to a wedding where the cake was cut before dinner was eaten and the toasts were done . . . I’m not sure that’s a typical time line.

The weddings I’ve dealt with is usually: cocktail hour, couples grand entrance, guests eat, toasts, (sometimes those two are switched) cake cutting, first dance, father daughter dance, mother son dance, dancing begins, bouquet/garter toss, more dancing, last dance, grand exit.

Post # 10
540 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

My fiance’s aunt is our wedding coordinator. She’s very take charge and she’s been very helpful. Also we will have a DJ…hopefully. Just assign someone you really trust to these duties.

Post # 11
877 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

Here’s one for a wedding I was the MC for:

1845-1900: Arrival – announce the bride and groom

1900: Dinner

2030: Speeches

2100: Cake cutting

2115: First Dance, dances with parents

2200: Bouquet/Garter toss

2300: Late lunch

0045: Last Call

I’ll post another example of another wedding I MC’d as soon as I can find it.

Post # 12
877 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

1600: Ceremony

1645: Receiving line

1725: Gather guests for group photo

1730: Group photo

1750: Final preparations for reception

1800: Usher people into banquet hall

1815: Lion dance and bridal party entrance, introduce parents, housekeeping announcements, kissing game rules

1830: Announce tables to get dinner from the buffet.

1915: Speeches

1945: Newlywed game

2030: Slide show

2045: Cake cutting, garter toss, bouquet toss

2100: First dance, then dance with parents

2300: Midnight buffet

There was ample time given for a lot of these events and everything ran on time.  It also helped for me to have been an MC before so I knew how to help organize as well.


Post # 13
525 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2011

WOW what a cultural shock!

In no way dinners last less than 3-4 hours in Italy.

Post # 14
2561 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

This is our tentative timeline for the evening:

7:00 pm – Ceremony Begins

7:30 pm – Ceremony ends

7:30-8:00 pm – Family Pictures/champagne and hors d’oeuvres on balcony.

8:00 pm – Reception Begins

8:20-8:40 pm – Speeches

8:40 pm – First Dance, Parent dances

9:00 pm – Cake cutting

10:00 pm – Garter and Bouquet tosses

Midnight – Guests leave

Post # 15
1523 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Cake cutting, first dance and toasts will all be done before dinner at my wedding. My DOC reccomended that cake cutting happen before dinner so that the catering staff can cut it while people are eating dinner. She let me know that a lot of times no one eats the cake if it is cut after dinner because by the time that it is being served (cutting and plating takes awhile) no one is interested because they are dancing.

Just a thought.

Post # 16
2344 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

My DOC made a timeline for us, though we are not having a very typical reception (no dancing or bouquet/garter toss). She did suggest to do the cake cutting right when we are introduced so we look “fresh” for pictures but to me, cutting the cake signals the end of the reception, and without any tosses, I’d like one main event for people to hang around for!

10:30am – Ceremony

11am – Cocktail hour / pictures (appetizers will be brought for us!)

11:20am – Guests are invited to make their way to the reception tent, bubbly is poured at tables

11:30-11:45am – Bride & groom are announced, three toasts are given, blessing is said for the meal

11:45am – Brunch buffet opens, bride and groom are served at their sweetheart table

12:15pm or so, whenever people are through the buffet – Bride and groom go around to tables to greet guests

1:30ish – Cut the cake, guests start to trickle out (it will be a hot day and there will be no dancing so we don’t expect people to stay super long)

We’re not having a formal send off because the wedding is at my parents’ house, so we’ll stick around and open gifts after!

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