Post # 1
I’ve got our venue and most of our vendors booked and now I’m looking to book the rehearsal dinner. Our wedding party consist of 4 bridesmaids, 4 groomsmen, 1 jr. bridesmaid, 1 jr. groomsmen, 4 flower girls and 2 ring bearers (I have a lot of nieces and nephews). My fiance and I want to do a casual pizza party, as a couple we always try to do pizza fridays together so thought it would be a fun thing to include in our rehearsal dinner. Just inviting the wedding party/dates and immediate family memebers the total would be around 40 people. My mother would also like to invite out of town guest, which is almost everyone and would bring the total to almost 130. I’m looking to book the small garden club in the town that we have the room block. That way we can bring in our own pizza and beer/wine. The rental of the garden club would be for 8 hrs so I suggested to my mother that we could have an open invite for a set time that people could come stop by for a drink or two. She said that sounded cheap. I was looking forward to keeping this part of the wedding smaller and don’t want it to turn into a wedding before the wedding. Should I include the out of towners for the whole dinner? As anyone else had this issue? My mother is paying for a lot of the wedding but my fiance and I are footing the bill for the rehearsal dinner.
Post # 2
We didn’t invite out of town guests to the rehearsal dinner. It would have been almost the whole guest list! I would stick with just the 40 people. Your mom isn’t paying for the rehearsal so she gets no say in who is invited.
Post # 3
Our rehearsal dinner will be around 40 people. If we invited every out of town guest, we’d have to have another reception, and we just can’t afford to do that.
I have a couple of friends who are getting married this fall. They’re having a 400 person wedding. They’re doing a 200 person rehearsal dinner on Thursday and a huge cocktail party on Friday. Go big or go home! lol
Post # 4
I find the concept of inviting out of town guests to be unnecessary. As a guest, I don’t want to feel obligated to attend any more events than I have to and considering that a Saturday wedding means Friday rehearsal, most people will be traveling all day and might not feel up to it. I personally would invite your immediate family and bridal party (plus spouses, etc) and call it a day.
Post # 5
I prefer that rehearsal dinners focus on the reason they exist in the first place- an opportunity to thank the wedding party for their time and support, and to ensure that the families and wedding party have all met before the wedding.
If you so choose, you could invite the OOT’s to drop by later for coffee/dessert.
Post # 6
On the other hand your parents are footing the bill for the wedding it seems and proper etiquette insists that you extend your out of town guests an invite simply because they are not in familiar territory and have come from a ways away for your wedding.
The polite thing to do is invite them, I think that’s what your mother is getting at.
Post # 7
Our rehearsal dinner was just the people at the rehearsal… so the wedding party, their families, and our immediate families, and that came out to 65 people. If we included out of towners it straight up just would’ve been another reception, we only had a 115 person guest list. Lol
Post # 8
We didn’t invite our Out of Town guests either, because we didn’t want the Rehearsal Dinner to feel like a mini wedding. Our Rehearsal Dinner was wedding party only but near the hotel block so we could hang out with the other guests after the dinner ended.
Post # 9
I’ve said it before on other threads. In my opinion, inviting Out of Town guests to the rehearsal dinner made sense when John married Jane from down the street and everyone knew each other’s families and friends. It just doesn’t make sense today with people living all over the world and marrying people who grew up in other cities. Just the people who are actually in the wedding need to be at the rehearsal. Pizza sounds wonderful!
Post # 10
Shoot, we didn’t even do a rehearsal dinner and I’m so glad we didn’t! We literally met up (just the bridal party and my parents) at the venue for an hour the day before to run through what we’d be doing, and then we peaced out haha.
I can’t imagine hosting something like that, for that long, the day before my wedding!
Post # 11
- Wedding: December 2017 - Lake Louise Canada
We made the mistake of an open invite to a “welcome” dinner expecting maybe 50% turnout. Nope, looks like the ENTIRE guest list is coming out a day early for dinner. The resouces are available so we’re fine but definitely only invite who you want there, don’t assume any “no”s. If you invite 130 people you could legitimately wind up with a 130 person dinner. I dont think theres anything wrong with drop-in but are you prepared to host for multiple hours? That seems like a lot.
Post # 12
Ours is just wedding party and families. We’re doing the rehearsal BBQ on Thursday at my moms, then the Friday were going to this market that is across the street from our hotel and inviting out of towners to join us in the beer garden if they want, but it’s clear it’s not hosted. The welcome party, IMO, is just another thing that gets tacked on to wedding planning, when its just a nice-to-have, not a must-have.
Post # 13
We are having the Out of Town guests at our rehearsal dinner but only because all of FI’s family lives out of state. I realize this is not the norm, so ours will be more of a “welcome” dinner vs a true rehearsal dinner. We are having it at a pizza place since our city is known for its pizza and will have a much more casual vibe than the wedding itself.
We also chose to do it this way because it gives them something to do the night before the wedding instead of just sitting around their hotel. But since so many of them have never been to our city, if they chose to do something else, that’s fine with us.
Most of my friends only had the wedding party and immediate family at their Rehearsal Dinner so I think it would be fine to keep it small.
Post # 14
It’s nice to invite Out of Town guests, but it’s not feasible if that’s all the wedding guest. O:
We only have about 20 invited to our rehersal. We have a relatively small wedding party, half of which are single, and one flower girl who if my FH’s daughter.
I’d explain to your mom that you simply can’t afford it, and also shouldn’t have a wedding before the wedding.
Post # 15
We invited Out of Town guests but we didn’t have a huge wedding. It was fun to spend extra time with them since we never see each other.