Post # 1
We’re having a domestic destination wedding and I’m thinking through whether we have to do table visits during reception or if we can just sit and eat our delicious, expensive dinner instead of running around. We’ll spend the 3 days before getting married with about 35 of our guests at our separate bach parties. Then all 105 guests are invited to a welcome party the day before the wedding. Then about 30 guests will be hanging out w/my FI the day of the wedding because there’s a big sports event and about 10 guests will be with me, hanging out until I get ready.
We’ll take pics during cocktail hour after our ceremony, and then we’re doing a receiving line of just the 2 of us as guests head into the reception to make sure we greet everyone. After dinner, we’ll have dancing and time to hang out for hours- our venue has no end time.
With all that, can we just sit at the head table the whole time we’re eating our 3-course dinner instead of doing table visits? It’s okay by us if guests come up to us during dinner, but I’d like to avoid running around during the whole meal if we can do that w/o seeming odd or rude.
Post # 2
Shkragoldfish: I think every bride and groom should sit down and enjoy their dinner. If you are up doing table visits, not only do you miss your dinner, but you interupt the guests who are trying to enjoy theirs.
The receiving line ensures that you have had an opportunity to greet and thank every guest. After dinner, do still circulate and vist with your guests, but it’s not going to be a crime if you don’t have formal contact with someone.
Post # 3
I think it would be totally fine.
Post # 4
- Wedding: December 2014 - Norton Country Club
Good grief, I hope so! I’m planning on eating…
I know I’ve posted it before (so forgive me if it’s old news) but in addition to the receiving line, FH and I are putting two chairs across from us at dinner. On the back will be “Stop by” and “Say hi!” signs to invite folks to come talk to us too… I think this is from a Swedish tradition? I’m looking forward to it because I know a few relatives who will want to come talk and it gives us time to eat something on a day where I often hear people say they forgot or didn’t have time to eat!
Post # 5
I have never heard that the bride and groom are suppose to skip their meal to go to tables… Sit and eat of course, but I do think you should still try to touch base with every guest at the recepetion. The receiving line is really quick and I think the bride and groom should try to talk to everyone if possible.
Post # 6
Post # 7
I attended a few weddings with receiving lines and table visits. Totally overkill. Enjoy your dinner.
Post # 8
wvlefty: that’s a cool idea. I remember reading somewhere that someone was going to put 2 empty chairs at every table so the bride & groom could move around. that just isn’t feasible for us at all (makes you need tons more tables- that’d be 24 extra seats for us). but maybe we could put 2 empty seats across from us to encourage this. has anybody ever done this before so we can hear how it worked?
ieatunicorns: chatting with each guest as they walk into the reception in the receiving line was our way to make sure we did greet every single guest at the reception. if we still need to talk to every guest at the reception, we’d need to visit tables and that’d take about an hour probably if not more. we want to talk to everybody, but it’s pretty difficult to do that and also enjoy the night. we’re trying to reduce the pressure to have meaningful conversation with every single guest during our reception by having so much interaction built into the 4 days before the wedding & the wedding day.
do you still think we need to try to have conversations with every guest during the reception if we’re able to have longer conversations w/every guest in the 4 days beforehand & on the day of (between the bach parties, a luncheon, a welcome party, and the sports game on the day of)?
Post # 9
Shkragoldfish: I do still think either the bride or groom should talk to as many guests a possible. I am not meaning have long heart to hearts, but enjoying their company at some point in the evening should be a thought in the back of your minds. We had a wedding pretty similar to yours, a long weekend getaway. We managed to do a receiving lione (we actually went back through and ecscused the guets from their seats so they didn’t have to stand in line). Between the end of cockatail hour and the end of dessert before the dances and the reception, either my husband or I talked with just about everyone and had plenty of time for dancing and fun!
Post # 10
We didn’t do a receiving line (as a guest I find them incredibly boring and awkward), and we just ate our dinner and then made our way from table to table. You don’t need to have full conversations at each table, just go as a couple (so neither of you gets stuck) and say hi thanks for coming, etc. Most people were still eating when we made our way around anyway so it was quick and easy. We had the same number of guests as you will, and it was only around 12 tables.
I feel like people are going to expect you to walk around regardless of the receiving line.
Post # 11
ieatunicorns: okay, understood. I’m pretty into logistics and I don’t think what you did will work for us unless we don’t sit and eat for most of our dinner.
we’ll have at least 10 tables (95 ppl, excluding the bridal party), and since we’ll be newlyweds, we want to spend most of our reception together (not split up). It’d take us at least 5 mins at each table, so we’d be looking at talking to ppl for about an hour during our dinner that will take about 1 hr 45 mins (in addition to listening to toasts, maybe playing the shoe game, cutting cake, and saying our own thank you toast). If we did that, we’d have about 15-20 mins left to eat our own meal or drink anything during the dinner portion of the reception.
I know there’ll be plenty of time for dancing after that, but I’d love to sit & relax & eat and enjoy some wine, even while ppl come up to congratulate us and chat. we’ll see. just so hard to do so much in a finite amount of time.
I haven’t seen table visits happen at any wedding I’ve been to where there was a receiving line and it seemed completely fine. I’ve also felt bad for my friends who’ve attempted to visit tables at 100+ weddings because the interations seem so so short, but also take up so much time & the couples usually don’t eat until much later, they have to really rush to cram food down, or they have (very expensive) cold food.
Post # 12
- Wedding: December 2014 - 13th ~ TN
Shkragoldfish: Way back in the old days, when I got married the first time, we did a receiving line. By the time we finished that and took pictures, everyone was done eating anyway, so it did not matter.
Post # 13
AnonymousCupcake: I don’t understand how receiving lines of just the newlyweds are boring and awkward, but the newlyweds greeting each table as they eat is not? don’t get me wrong- I understand that receiving lines can be weird when I’m the date and haven’t met anybody yet I’m supposed to be meeting and congratulating parents, bridesmaids, cousins, etc.
But, if the point of newlyweds greeting everyone at their dinner tables is that they should thank each guest for attending and give the guests a moment to say congrats and snap a quick pic- then what’s so wrong w/a receiving line to move ppl from cocktail hour to reception if it’s only the bride & groom in the receiving line- isn’t that the same thing only better? because nobody’s eating, everybody’s already standing up, ready for pics. and the waiting guests can just enjoy the cocktail hour til it’s their turn?
separately- thanks for letting me know that you think our guests will expect us to walk around. it only dawned on me today that table visits might have become required in some ppl’s minds, so I wanted to check. decisions, decisions.
Post # 14
You need to do one or the other at the minimum, but as host, I think it is appropriate to make an effort during the party as well. With 95 guests it is not difficult. I’ve never been to a wedding of that size where the couple did not manage to get around to all the tables.
Post # 15
weddingmaven: oh, yes. I am not claiming that we couldn’t make it to every table (if we exclude the 15 ppl in the bridal party). We definitely could. I am really asking if we need to go to all the tables during dinner (it’ll take an hour or more). If we need to go to all the tables during dinner, we can, but that basically disrupts our dinner – we’d have about 20 mins to eat once you make the time to visit 10 tables quickly, listen to toasts, maybe do the shoe game, and then say our thank you toast & cut the cake.
If the general consensus is that we’d be odd/rude/not thoughtful (even given our receiving line and other factors) if we didn’t visit every table during dinner, we can do it.