Post # 1
Hi Everyone! I am in desperate need of help planning the timeline for my wedding events. Our wedding is on a Tuesday evening, it is formal with a sit down dinner and we are estimating 150 guests. Now here come the problems….
1. In order to give people time who are getting off of work at 5 we had initially said the ceremony would be at 6:30. However if the ceremony is at 6:30, ends at 7, and we take photos nobody would be eating dinner until 8 or 8:30 which we realize is super late and I really dont want to make our guest miserable.
2. If we have the ceremony at 6 there will be people who either can’t make it or won’t attempt to even come because of traffic and having to come straight from work.
Its not an option to see eachother before the wedding for pictures so what do we do? Some have said we should consider letting the guests eat while we take photos so they don’t have to wait but many think its rude for them to eat without us. We can’t afford hors d oeuvres on top of the formal dinner. Is it inappropriate to make them wait for us for so long? Should we just have it at 6 and whoever can make will be there (although that may cut out some important people)?
The wedding is December 28th so we desperately need to get our invitations printed and mailed within the next 2 weeks at the latest. Please help! 🙁
Post # 3
Hm. What it will really come down to is what you’re willing to do and what you really want. For example, if it’s more important to you that everyone is present, then let them know that dinner will be later and set the ceremony at 6:30. If it’s okay with you that a few people miss it (which is sounds like it isn’t), then start earlier. I think that your guests eating without you may be slightly awkward, but not rude. That sounds like the best option off hand.
Post # 4
So you intend to have a ‘cocktail hour’ withour cocktails or hors d’eouvres? I think you should consider taking your formal pictures after dinner so your guests won’t have to wait so late to eat dinner.
Post # 5
I think it’s more important that people be able to get there on time than if dinner’s a bit late. A dinner at 8:30 is a bit awkward for some, but not exactly unheard of or shocking. However, I think you should print on the invites that dinner will be late-ish. Then people can prepare by having a late lunch or a snack or whatevs and they can’t complain.
Post # 6
I would say keep it at 6:30 and just let people know a time line a bit on the invite.
(i.e. dinner will be served at 8pm, dancing after dinner until xpm)
Is there anyway you could bring some food in for a “cocktail hour” like fruit & cheese plates from a local grocery store?
I honestly don’t know anyone who works a 9-5 job any more. My hours are 8:30-5:30 and most people think I get off work early because their day doesn’t end until 6.
Post # 7
I would have to leave work early or take the afternoon off to attend a Tuesday wedding at 6 or 6:30. A half an hour really wouldn’t make too big of a difference.
Also without hors d oeuvres what exactly are your guests going to be doing for an hour while you take pictures? Maybe you could at least serve the salad during the waiting period before you and your bridal party get introduced? I think asking people to wait around for an hour with no food or drink is a bit tough.
Post # 8
Can you condense your photo list so it only takes 30 minutes?
One idea is to take any photos that do not involve BOTH you and your groom earlier in the day. For example, all of your bridal party photos, photos of just you with your family members, etc., as well as any photos of your groom with his groomsmen and family members, can be taken before the ceremony (in separate shifts so you don’t see each other). That way, only the shots that require both of you need to be taken after the ceremony, and maybe you can get that done in 20-30 minutes. Then I would also make sure that dinner is served as quickly as possible upon your arrival.
Post # 9
If you have a way to feed your guests while you’re taking photos, a late dinner won’t be a big deal.
Post # 10
Wow! Thanks for all the input everyone! Its really helping me sort through all the different ways of handling this. I think I’m going to go with 6:30 and as one poster said take every last photo that can be taken before the ceremony. We have a very large wedding party so it would be tough to get all the shots after the ceremony in 30 minutes but still that would be better than trying to take all the pictures after the ceremony.
I may be able to get with the caterer and see if we substitute some of the sides on our menu for appetizers instead? If so, that would really help our guests and I’d feel less guilty about them waiting for us.
Okay, moment of truth…If you were invited to a wedding on a tuesday night and the invitation said dinner to be served at 8pm how likely would you be to attend? How late would you stay? From a guests perspective does that seem crazy to you?
December 28th is our anniversary and it means the world to us which is why our wedding wound up on a tuesday. We really couldn’t picture it any other way but there are a lot more complications than with a Saturday wedding. We are planning an all out dinner, dancing, photo booth, drinking, etc and I just don’t want our money to go to waste (parents aren’t paying)if people don’t stay and enjoy the festivities we’ve planned.
Post # 11
I think attending a Tuesday wedding comes down to a lot of factors: how well do I know you, how far do I have to travel, etc. Whenever I am invited to a wedding (whether local or not), I usually always book a hotel room for the night so that we don’t have to worry about drinking and driving, can enjoy the after party, etc. Given that December 28th is around the holidays, and given that I will be taking other days off around then to celebrate with family, I would probably have to work the 29th and therefor wouldn’t stay late at the wedding, or book a hotel room because I would want to use up a vacation day that could be used for christmas. If I did go, I would certainly stay till 10-ish (depending on the travel involved), but probably not much later.
Also, do your guests understand why December 28th is special? If I didn’t know that the date had specific signifigance for the couple, the idea of a tuesday wedding would raise red flags for me…
Post # 12
Yes most of them are aware that December 28th is a special day for us. The word has been spread fairly well through us and the wedding party, parents, etc.
Luckily most of our guest live probably no more than 10-15 minutes from both the church and the reception location so that shouldn’t be too hard on people. We decided from the start if we wanted to do it on Tuesday that we would have it very local the make it easier on our guests.
Post # 13
@jemaclea: it really depends on your guest list. If it’s a younger crowd, I’d think they would be more prone to stay late and not be that concerned with work the next day. But, I’d imagine, that you’d have some guests leaving on the early side. I felt like I had guests leaving early (9:30pm) and mine was on a Sat night! You also have the holiday burnout factor in play, IMO – where there are so many events leading up to the holidays that this may be ‘just another party’. But, again – it all depends on your guest-list. People will come and celebrate, but just don’t get disappointed if they are unable to stay for the whole time you want them to and you have a high go-home early rate.
How long would you ideally want people to stick around?
Post # 14
I would definitely do a Tuesday wedding if it were somewhat close.
I have the luxury of a flexible schedule at work though.
Post # 15
I wouldn’t plan to stay any later than 10 or 11 at the very latest. I will have to work the following day and the day of the wedding (which means waking up early and being tired earlier at night).
Post # 16
You know most mid week weddings would alarm me…. but I guess I figure anything goes for the week between Christmas and New Year’s! I would schedule it earlier.