Post # 1
I went to a wedding this past weekend and it was beautiful! There was one thing that rubbed me the wrong way though…
The invitations and officiant clearly stated that the reception would begin immediately after the ceremony. The ceremony was at 2pm and was finished by 2:30pm. All of the guests left the church and headed to the reception venue… and then sat there for over 3 HOURS until the bridal party showed up. No food. No drinks. No music. No word from the bridal party other than the pictures of them that were popping up on Facebook… they decided to go bar hopping during those 3+ hours between the ceremony and when dinner was scheduled to be served. (Nobody knew when they would show up since everyone thought the reception was beginning immediately… so most people just stuck around expecting them to show up soon… over 100 people. My fiance and I stuck around because we had driven over 4 hours to be there.)
I’ve been to plenty of weddings where the ceremony was during the day and then a reception start time was later that night so that the bridal party and families could take pictures. However, the invitation always stated that the reception would start at a later time. I have also been to weddings where there was an hour or two in between the ceremony and reception but was used as a cocktail hour where appetizers and drinks were provided.
Maybe it was just a slip up on the couple’s part when they printed the invitations saying that the reception was to immediately follow. And maybe the officiant was just reading from the invitation which is why he announced that the reception was to immediately follow as well. At the same time, it seems like the bridal party (bride and groom included) knew dinner wasn’t going to be for a few hours so decided to bar hop instead.
I guess it was just a weird experience. My fiance and I were lucky that we were in good company and kept good spirits. At the same time, it was clear that some family and friends, especially the older crowd, was extremely upset about this. (One man was raising his voice at a bartender because they wouldn’t start serving food or drinks, or playing music until the bridal party arrived.)
Has anyone else seen this? Or did I just get stuck in a weird/possibly poor etiquette situation?
Post # 2
That’s so bizarre! I think I probably would have left after a while to get some food, not stuck around for 3 whole hours!
I am not a fan of gaps, but at least they usually TELL you theres a gap! I wonder what happened. Def not normal.
Post # 3
That is incredibly rude. Ugh. I don’t know if I could be friends with that person anymore. It would be one thing to have pictures run over time but bar hopping? Awful.
Post # 4
Wow, I hate gaps when I am aware of them ahead of time but this is just a whole new level of rude! I would have left and taken my gift with me to buy a nice dinner.
Post # 5
Bar hopping btw ceremony and reception is something I’ve seen only once and have read about a few times here on weddingbee. It seems to be rather uncommon and new-ish, but not unheard of. FWIW leaving your guests waiting then showing up half-hammered to the reception is a horrible idea I hope doesn’t become trendy. And the purpose of bar hopping in wedding party and bridal finery seems more about attention seeking than anything, I want to yell out You are not starring in your own reality show!!!!
Post # 6
underblueskies1016 : I have never seen this or heard of this. If there is a large gap it should be indicated on the invitations. Every wedding I’ve been to this was the case, or if it said “reception immediately to follow” there was always a cocktail hour or the reception really did immediately start. This sounds like a poor etiquette situation to me!
Post # 7
RobbieAndJuliahaha : Although I’ve never witnessed it, my fiance told me that he had been in a wedding where the bridal party bar hopped between the ceremony and reception. The difference was though that the rest of the guests were informed that the reception would not start until later in the evening.
Post # 8
Doesn’t sound like an invitation mistake. Because no one should have a gap that long anyway. They’re extremely rude, they obviously don’t respect the time of other people.
Post # 9
Gaps are so rude! But especially without letting anyone know! I would be so mad.
Post # 10
This doesn’t even seem like a necessary gap. It seems like the couple was so into their day that they literally didn’t care about inconveniencing everyone who had traveled to be there. I would not have waited four hours for them to show up. I would have gone out, done something fun, and posted pictures of that.
Post # 11
- Wedding: September 2017 - Mississauga Convention Centre
Our wedding ceremony will be at 1:30pm and will last between an hour and an hour and a half. Our reception is 30 minutes away. While we will be taking pictures our guests are welcome to come and take pictures with us, or go to our reception venue for cocktail hour.
Post # 12
- Wedding: September 2015 - Hotel Ballroom
I once attended a wedding where there was a FIVE hour gap between the wedding and reception…but they let people know ahead of time so they could make other arrangements!
For our wedding there was an hour gap…but during that hour we did a cocktail hour so guests could mingle and chill while we did our photoshoot. I think we ran a little late with the shoot, but the venue was professional enough to keep the appetisers coming, and the DJ had some ambient music on.
Post # 13
I was part of a wedding recently that did this, too. their saving grace was that they did have a cocktail hour for their guests at the reception, but no food. and they (we – the bridal party went barhop ping with them) were almost an hour later than they were supposed to be.
It was very strange to me, but apparently the tradition in their very small town. I didn’t care for it at all.
Post # 14
If there is a gap, the time the reception starts should be listed on the invitation. Never seen this happen, that is ridiculous and I probably would have left after an hour.
Post # 15
This reminds me a little of a wedding I went to this summer. After the ceremony, the officiant actually said “in lieu of a cocktail hour, the bride and groom invite you to go for drinks in town until 6pm when the reception starts.” Lol so basically, you didn’t want to pay for cocktail hour. Fine. So we do as we’re told, go for drinks with a bunch of people, didn’t have the foresight to eat a ton of food, and got to the reception at promptly 6pm. The B&G showed up at 7:30pm to start dinner. Oh man I was starving, and it was outside with no heaters either.
I think your situation is way worse though, they actually went bar hopping while keeping you waiting? That’s beyond rude and I would have left once the FB pictures started popping up.