Post # 1
We are having chef attended food stations – relaxed and fun –> mac & cheese, crab cakes, braised beef short ribs, shrimp… we will have approximately 100 guests. I wanted to just let everyone sit where they want and have reserved seating for family and some special guests. our venue has outdoor area, etc if its nice and if people want to sit there… do we need to have assigned table numbers? Do you prefer picking your own seat or having a specified seat? Does this change if there isn’t a seated dinner?
Post # 3
I think assigned tables are a must, no matter the dining experience. I’d hate for there to be chair grabbing, over-seated and crowded tables, and near empty tables with lonely people/couples.
We were at a non-wedding reception (a religious affair) and there were over 100 people and no assigned tables. Fiance and I were at a huge table by ourselves because we didn’t know anyone and people kept taking our tables’ chairs. It was so awkward and lonely. That would be my fear.
Post # 4
I much prefer to have an assigned table so I don’t feel like it’s a free-for-all. Assigned tables also help to ensure that larger parties are able to sit together. I think guests could still sit outside if they wanted even if there was a table assigned to them…
Post # 5
I just recently went to a wedding without table assignments and it was kind of a nightmare. Those that arrived early scrambled for the best seats/tables and saved seats for people who weren’t there yet and the rest of the crowd that arrived later, just had to take the left over seats. A lot of tables were painfully quiet – I’m guessing they just didn’t have anything beyond small talk to say to each other.
It just showed us how important it is for us to spend some time on table assignments. We want everyone to have fun and not be forced into conversation with people they have nothing in common with.
Post # 6
Thanks for the help fellow bees! i’ve been to a few of both but the ones where there wasn’t an assigned table i guess i knew most of the people so i didn’t notice any chaos but i absolutely see where everyone is coming from
Post # 7
I agree with all of the above posts—assigned seating is a must! Although the idea of picking and choosing a seat may seem nice, keep in mind that some guests may not know the others as well, and this could be an awkard moment for them (choosing their seat). Can you imagine feeling excluded and wandering around with your plate, and nowhere to sit? I think assigned seating ensures that everyone is comfortable, and seating charts can be fun for you to create! 🙂
Post # 8
@BetterSherm: I’ve had this happen too.
Avoid the awkwardness, assign tables.
Post # 9
I much prefer tables! Somewhere to dump your stuff and have a ‘home base’.
Post # 10
I am 100% an assigned tables person. Especially if you are going to only assign some for immediate family and close people, that kinda leaves all of the other guests like huh? I always hate ending up as an outcast with random people at a reception because no one bothered to assign tables with people who might have things in common.
Post # 11
For a more organized reception, and less of a tangled mess I definitely think you need assigned seating. I know you’re going for a relaxed feel (or at least it sounds like it), but I don’t think assigned seating will take away from that.
Post # 12
- Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort
I was just at a wedding 10 days ago with stations and no assigned tables. Honestly, the wedding was awesome and fun, but this was infuriating. It was so difficult to find adequate seating with the people we wanted to sit with. Make a seating chart (per table, not per seat).
Post # 13
I like assigned seating, but I also like what you’re describing with the relaxed atmosphere and the option to sit outside, so I voted for just the few assigned tables. The only thing I wouldn’t like would be if I got up to get my food, and when I came back someone was in my seat. It would be cute if there was a way to mark a seat as “taken” in the non-assigned areas 🙂
Post # 14
If anyone does have an open seating plan, then they need to plan for between 1-5 extra tables (more if it’s a truly large wedding) because people won’t sit in the groups you expect. For the cost of that many extra chairs, tables, linens, and centerpieces, there’s really no reason not to do table assignments.
Post # 15
Its decided – seating plan it is!
Post # 15
I say yes, though I do not feel this is a “must “, but I like the idea of assigned tables 🙂