Planning Your Wedding Reception


"Your evening wedding reception from start to finish ... here's some ideas"

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Your Evening Begins...

The Wedding ceremony is over, the photographs are taken so what happens now?

The Line-Up
A lot depends on the venue you have chosen for your reception but generally the Bridal Party line up at the entrance to the reception room to greet all their guests as they enter.

The Grand Entrance
It's now time for you to make your entrance into the room. Consider entering in style to your chosen musical track so that your guests will remember and talk about it well after you've returned from your honeymoon.

Prayer / Grace
Once everyone is seated a few words of welcome from whomever has been selected for this task then, if required, a prayer of thanksgiving / grace. This can simply be 'For what we are about to receive may The Lord make us truly thankful' or could include other references to the couple and the day.

After the meal it's the speeches, although it is becoming increasingly popular for these to be made before the meal. This is down to personal choice but the decision needs to be made in advance so that the caterers can time their food preparation.

Cutting the Cake
Next is the cutting of the cake. You may want portions of the cake to be served with the tea and coffee which would affect the timing of this event. You should normally allow about 2 hours for all of the above (unless you know that some of your guests are going to make long speeches).

Master of Ceremonies
An additional service some of our members offer is to supply a public address system to play background music during your meal plus the use of a radio microphone for speeches and a 'Master of Ceremonies' to bring it all together. You can obtain a separate price for this service on the Enquiry Form.

Preparing for the Evening
Once the meal and speeches are over you may be required to vacate the room so that it can be prepared for the evenings' festivities or at some venues you may be moved to another function room.

First Dance
Bride & Grroms 1st Dance When all your guests have settled in and your additional evening guests have arrived it's time for the Bride & Grooms 1st dance together as husband and wife. This would normally be followed by a second song for the Bridal Party (Top table). You can also include further songs for Father & Daughter and/or Mother & Son dances if you wish. If you choose one of our members to provide your evenings' entertainment then the choices for your first dances and any other favourites will be discussed during the planning stages.

Song Choices
Some suggestions for songs are provided here but you can choose anything you like and it doesn't have to be slow either! A list of the top 100+ requested songs at Wedding Receptions are here.

Evening Celebrations
That's the formalities over and now it's time to relax and enjoy yourselves along with your family and friends. You may at some point in the evening wish to throw your bouquet. Some of our members also give you the opportunity to include other events such as games and karaoke if you wish.

Evening Buffet / Transport
If your wedding breakfast is early or if you are inviting additional evening guests you may want to include a finger buffet. You can also consider providing buses to transport your guests home. These are options that will largely depend on your budget but guests could share the cost of transport.

That's it! This brief overview covers the basics leaving you to include your own ideas that will make your day (and evening) a unique occasion to be remembered for a long time afterwards.


We've lots of useful information on this site to help you to plan your whole wedding day.