(Closed) Those two dreaded words…”Dry Wedding”

posted 10 years ago in Reception
Post # 32
242 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I’ve never been to a dry wedding, my fiance and I are social drinkers, the thought of sitting down to even the most casual weeknight dinner without a glass of wine or beer is alien to me  and I don’t know any couples who both don’t drink….but…. if I did, and received an invitation to their wedding, I wouldn’t bat an eyelash if it were dry. And I’d show up with my dancing shoes on.

Have the wedding that will make you most comfortable. Every one of your guests should be there because they love you, and know who you are. They’ll accept it.

Post # 33
590 posts
Busy bee

I agree with @PinkMagnolia , i was a little nervous about having an open bar because some of our friends and husband’s cousins are heavy drinkers, but people controlled themselves.. no one fell over, started a fight or threw up.. if anyone did throw up they must’ve done it in the bathroom ha ;).. everyone was just dancing and drinking.. it really went great actually.. nothing got out of control.. also you don’t need to have the bar open thru entire wedding, ours was open for 3 hours out of a 5 hr reception. that’s what my bartender recommended so that people have time to sober up before driving home. but go with your gut feeling.

Post # 34
5229 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

I think a dry wedding is better than a cash bar, personally. Have you thought about still having a champagne toast? You could also have wine served at the table to the waitstaff. The waiters then can regulate how often they pour to keep things moderated.

Post # 35
467 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

Why not have a dry cocktail hour and wine and beer with dinner? Once people start eating, they won’t be as likely to drink too much.

Post # 36
922 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I want to throw one point out there…to the posters who recommend telling the bartender to just pour lightly and not overserve the problem drinkers, I used to bartend at weddings and this was my worst nightmare. The bride would come up to me and point out the problem drinkers, asking me to please cut them off or underpour their drinks after 2 or 3. The problem drinkers would sure enough come up for their 3rd or 4th drinks and they would carefully watch me pour. They would throw a fit if I didn’t make their drink strong enough. I never knew what to do in these situations, I never knew who to talk to and so I would usually just pour them a heavier drink. I was scared if I didn’t pour the drink they wanted, they would throw a huge fit and ruin the wedding. I was young and easily intimidated then and would not do the same now.

On a side note, have a dry wedding. They are very common around here.

Post # 37
280 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I have been to a dry wedding and you know what happened? People went to the nearest liquer store and brought their own drinks. I don’t know if that’s technically good or bad. But I’ve seen it happen.  Go with your gut. It’s your wedding.

Post # 38
895 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

If you want a dry wedding, by all means go for it. It is your day and you need to do what feels right for you!

Fiance and I went to a dry wedding recently, and although we were okay with it we felt awful for the bride and groom because NO ONE danced at all. People also left early so by the time 11pm rolled around it was pretty much just the bridal party left.

I went to a dry wedding when I was a teengager and I remember people sneaking out to the parking lot to drink and some even brought flasks. It’s sad to say, but despite having a dry wedding you can’t deter everyone from it. If they want to drink, they will find a way 🙁

Post # 39
862 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

Although NONE of my family drinks due to religious beliefs…we have a blast at weddings. I think if you have good music, good food, and good vibes..why woudn’t they enjoy themselves?

I think it’s just the idea that people are use to wedding = alcohol. Do what you are comfortable with and no alcohol is a lot more budget friendly.

Post # 40
3993 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

We had a dry wedding, though not totally intentionally. We had planned to serve wine & beer, but since it was a mid-day ceremony & reception, the venue was going to charge more. No thanks. No one died or left because of it, though my step-sister DID leave early because she was hungover from the night before. Lovely.

If you think you’ll have issues and want to avoid them, by all means do it! And if people are “bored” enough to go get alcohol then I would assume they are “bored” enough to not come back and eat the food you provide for them. Right? Lol. Unfortunately not sometimes, but people can do strange things.

Also, I wouldn’t do anything where you rely on the waitstaff/bartender to regulate your heavier drinkers. It probably won’t happen because 1 – there are lots of people to keep up with at a wedding and 2- true drinkers KNOW when they are being underserved. And you don’t want an unhappy almost-drunk person at your reception.

Post # 42
31 posts
  • Wedding: September 2013

If you dont want anyone to get sloppy and obnoxiously drunk, have a dry wedding. Im not a big drinker so it wouldn’t bother me but I have alot of my friends who are so I can see your concern. Its your wedding though and what your guests do (or do to each other i.e. ANNOY) is indirectly a reflection of YOU and YOUR Fiance. You may need to do what you can to avoid that!

Post # 43
630 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I don’t think I’ve ever been to a dry wedding so my first reaction was “I might leave early.”  But after thinking about it some more, the only time I’ve actually left a wedding early is when the music was bad and the dance floor was empty – the availability of alcohol didn’t matter.  So as long as you’re providing good entertainment, I think people will stay and enjoy themselves.

Post # 44
2203 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

I personally would never have a dry wedding, but I guess to each their own. I think doing it because you are worried about one or two people drinking too much is silly though. Why punish everyone? People who are fools will act a fool regardless of if you give them free drinks or not. 

Post # 45
856 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

@BetterSherm:  I’ve heard horror stories where people didn’t even come to the wedding or reception because of it.

If people choose not to come to your wedding because you aren’t giving them free drinks, they don’t need to be invited.

Also, like PP said, as a former bartender…please do not try to tell them to serve weak drinks. It’s the worst thing in the world to have some angry drunk eyeing the exact amount of liquor you’re pouring while you try to appease the bride and also avoid a scene!

Post # 46
378 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Most weddings I’ve been to were dry and I wasn’t bothered by it at all. Alcohol is definatly not a must at a wedding. If alcohol is that important to them that they will not come then I think that is low of them and you probably don’t even want them there. They can get a drink after they go home or they can go out to a bar after the reception.

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