Post # 1
I just got engaged a few weeks ago and am a little lost on all the planning and could use some advice or your opinions. My fiance and I are not religious at all and wanted an incredibly short ceremony (15-20 minutes) done by a judge with only immediate family (less than 20 people total) at the beach and then have a large reception (200+) people with dinner, drinks and dancing etc to celebrate the marriage at another location. I just read a post saying it is rude to not invite all reception guests to the ceremony. This honestly never even crossed my mind and I wanted to know if I am in the wrong or if this is acceptable. So the basic question is: we both only want the very immediate family at the ceremony… is it rude to have a big reception later?
Post # 3
i think it’s perfectly fine. if you want a small intimate ceremony, you should have one! i would love doing that since i KNOW for sure that like 60% of my guests will be late.. i had no choice but to lie about the ceremony time. i’m gonna say that it’s 30min earlier than it really is to avoid people missing the whole thing!
Post # 4
I think the outcry earlier was because the bride wanted to invite some guests to the entire reception including dinner and others only to the dancing later in the evening. Your situation is a bit different.
Post # 5
I agree your idea sounds fabulous.
There are a couple differences between your idea and the other post.
1. The other poster was going to have the ceremony and dinner with guest list A – then invite others for the dancing only as guest list B.
2. Guest list B I think was a small number compared to A, so very obviously the B list.
I think an intimate family ceremony on the beach will be fabulous. And your 200+ friends will enjoy celebrating the night with you and toasting to your marriage!
(You might have a couple people ask you questions – just cause it’s a different idea – but I don’t think explaining the initmate family ceremony will offend anyone!)
Post # 6
Thank you all for calming my nerves. Although I do see the differences to the other post, I am so green to all this and a little sensitive to the fact that I don’t want to offend any folks that might not be thrilled we aren’t doing this in a church etc etc etc. In fact I would like to have my brother on my side for the wedding party and likewise for my fiance. Both our immediate families fully support the non-religious, intimate ceremony but I didn’t know what the popular vote was on this sort of thing. In fact, I love the suggestions on the other reception thread of having the invitations say: "Help us celebrate our marriage" so it is clear there is no ceremony involved. Again, thanks for the input! Great site!!!!
Post # 7
We’re doing ours exactly as you’re envisioning yours — non-religious ceremony with about 20 guests at our house, followed by a reception for 80 at a restaurant.
Of course I had to send two sets of invitations. The wording for the reception-only one was:
So-and-So and So-and-So will be married in a private ceremony on Saturday, August 8, 2008. Please join the newlyweds that night for dinner, drinks, and dancing. Seven in the evening, Room, Restaurant, Address.
edit: Yeah, having trouble with the line spacing, but you get the gist.
Post # 8
Wouldn’t worry about the having the brother on your side, everyone will think it is cute. Only the old ladies of the family will gossip about it later behind your back, and they don’t matter.
Post # 9
Your situation is VERY different. You’re inviting everyone to dinner and dance…go for it!