Post # 1
I know a lot of people have already written on this topic. I’d like some help as well.
We are having a sit down dinner for about 110 guests, with people choosing their meals prior to the day (this was stipulated by the venue who wanted meal choices in advance).
Now my parents would like to just assign Table numbers and list people under each table, but not seating specifics and let people sit where they want.
I wanted to do Table Numbers and assign specific seating (but obviously being sensitive to each guest and where they would likely want to sit and with whom), so that the correct meal goes to the right person.
Would the arrangement my parents want work out for the servers? Will they know which person gets what meal? How would this be done?
Since I live in England and the wedding is being held in Toronto it’s a bit difficult to deal with this and my parents keep saying assigning seating is too controlling — which I agree with, but at the same time – HOW WILL THE RIGHT MEAL GET GIVEN TO THE RIGHT PERSON if the servers have no idea where the food is supposed to go, especially with people forgetting what they’ve asked for and choosing their own seats at an assigned table.
I went to a wedding in November and we had assigned tables + seating, but the servers didn’t know what each person wanted, and I had forgotten what I put down on my response card because we had to give it in far in advance – so it was a bit weird when they came round going “beef” — “chicken” and just giving people random food.
My parents have only ever been to open seated receptions with a buffet for which assigned seating is irrelevant (they had a table assigned though), so I see what they’re trying to do, but at a buffet you don’t need to know a specific food preference!
Post # 3
@Apple12Crumble: I will not address the issue of assigned seating dealing with the issue of making sure that there are not gaps at some tables and other tables where people are pulling up extra chairs, nor the situation where there are one empty seat at two tables and a couple has to split up to be seated. You can read about those problems in other posts.
If you don’t have assigned seating, you can have escort cards which indicate the guest’s name and their choice of entree. They carry them to the table of their choice. The waiters then know their choice of entree.
The entree can be indicated by a stamp, colored sticker, different color cardstock etc.
It is also not unusaal for waiters to just ask each guest what entree they chose, or, as you experienced, announce what entree they were carrying and have the guests claim one.
Post # 4
- Wedding: September 2013 - Ontario, Canada
@Apple12Crumble: sorry just wanted to say that I live in the UK and am getting married in GTO as well. 🙂
in answer to your question I think the servers know how many of which is on the tables and have a list in case someone forgets. Also, anyone like me with a dietary requirement usually just let the waiters know when they sit down.
Post # 5
I’ve never been to a wedding where I was assigned a specific seat. I’ve always just been assigned to a table and sat down at random at the table.
Post # 6
I’ve never been to a wedding where there was assigned seating – to me that is just a little bit too much and very time consuming. I rather just worry about who sits at what table and leave it at that.
Me and FH went to his cousins wedding and we had to choose in advance our meal. I was a little confused when the serves came around and said “beef or chicken” since we had given the bride what we wanted ahead of time but I guess honestly there really is no other way. Unless a person has a dietary need the servers really don’t need to know the right meal. If it’s only 2 choices I would think the guest would remember what they chose to eat.
Post # 7
This is what happened at a friend’s wedding last year: Just table assignments and no seating assignments. Each person’s escort card had a colored strip of paper, like red=beef, white=chicken, etc. Most people just put the escort card on the table in front of them, so when the servers brought waters around, they also took note of what entrees to bring.
If you want to do this too, but you’re afraid others will throw away their escort cards, then the servers can just ask people what they ordered. Or you can put some instructions on the escort table to just put their cards in front of them on the table or something. However, this is definitely something you need to coordinate with your venue/caterer.
Post # 8
I did escort cards that had flowers indicating what the persons choice was. Pink-beef, Orange-salmon, Green-Veggie
Post # 9
Check with your venue because they may have a preference on which you do.
I agree with PP indicate name/meal on escort card, and then that person can put that card at their placesetting.
Here’s a vote for makingsure that the card is something that would be easy to identify standing behind someone… Like red cards for beef, pink cards for chicken, white cards for vegetarian and so on (so that the server can see it EASILY as they look at the table.
Post # 10
I’ve spoken to the catering rep and they said they require specific seating arrangements at the venue, though I will get my parents to talk to her when they go for the planning meeting in May. I’m unfortunately not back in Toronto until June 1 so can’t really go to it – the pains of being abroad.
I’m with everyone on the idea of escort cards with some kind of coding on it denoting a food preference — it seems well organized and simple and effective! I’ll just wait and see what happens after my parents get back to me on that after the meeting.
Catering rep. did mention that they have place cards/escort cards.. so it’ll be worth checking out — I’m sure we’ll be able to work it out in the end.
What I’ll likely do because my future SIL is going to help me with DIY-ing an escort board , we’ll do a card which has a name, table number and food preference (we have 3 potential meals). Like people have mentioned, I’ll put a note or something at the card table to have people put their cards up wherever they decide to sit so servers know what food to bring them — I’m sure that the people working aren’t first-timers, they likely know what’s going on/what to do! I’ll also have worked out the logistics with the day-of co-ordinator and people at the venue.
I honestly don’t want to aggravate people and want them to have a good time 🙂 No arranged seating for anyone, just table assignments, people can sit where they wish at said table. I honestly don’t see people forgetting what they’ve ordered and right now there’s pretty much even numbers on everything – but it happens. I just want to alleviate any forgetfulness in an appeasing way for all!