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Etiquette

Activities ideas between ceremony and reception?

My ceremony is starting at 3pm and the wedding coordinator at my church said it should take about 30 mins.  My reception doesn't start until 5pm and is only about a 30 min drive from the church (with traffic).  The wedding coordinator at my reception site told us that if any guests show up early, they will not be tended to and there will nothing for them to do because the staff will be getting ready for the wedding to start at 5pm.  So now my mom is freaking out because of all the out of towners....So including pictures after the ceremony, its one of those things where there's just enough time to kill but not really enough to plan a whole activity to keep them busy... any ideas?  Thanks!

Re: Activities ideas between ceremony and reception?

  • Dreamergirl8812Dreamergirl8812 your closet member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    Viczaesar said:

    My ceremony is starting at 3pm and the wedding coordinator at my church said it should take about 30 mins.  My reception doesn't start until 5pm and is only about a 30 min drive from the church (with traffic).  The wedding coordinator at my reception site told us that if any guests show up early, they will not be tended to and there will nothing for them to do because the staff will be getting ready for the wedding to start at 5pm.  So now my mom is freaking out because of all the out of towners....So including pictures after the ceremony, its one of those things where there's just enough time to kill but not really enough to plan a whole activity to keep them busy... any ideas?  Thanks!
    You need to host something between 3:30 and 5 pm.  Gaps are unacceptable.  Don't think in terms of activities, think in terms of food and drink. If your reception venue won't let you host something before 5 pm, how about at the ceremony?  You could host refreshments for your guests from 3:30-4:30 pm while you do pictures, have the half hour of driving time from ceremony venue to reception be from 4:30-5 pm.
    Cosigned.



    Anniversary
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  • Viczaesar said:

    My ceremony is starting at 3pm and the wedding coordinator at my church said it should take about 30 mins.  My reception doesn't start until 5pm and is only about a 30 min drive from the church (with traffic).  The wedding coordinator at my reception site told us that if any guests show up early, they will not be tended to and there will nothing for them to do because the staff will be getting ready for the wedding to start at 5pm.  So now my mom is freaking out because of all the out of towners....So including pictures after the ceremony, its one of those things where there's just enough time to kill but not really enough to plan a whole activity to keep them busy... any ideas?  Thanks!
    You need to host something between 3:30 and 5 pm.  Gaps are unacceptable.  Don't think in terms of activities, think in terms of food and drink. If your reception venue won't let you host something before 5 pm, how about at the ceremony?  You could host refreshments for your guests from 3:30-4:30 pm while you do pictures, have the half hour of driving time from ceremony venue to reception be from 4:30-5 pm.
    Cosigned.

    And again. Maybe if the weather was nice you could set up a few lawn games, but nothing is needed other than light refreshments.
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  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    Yeesh, sorry for the terrible grammar/writing.  Clearly it's time for a nap. 



  • doeydodoeydo Southwestern Ontario member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    My ceremony is starting at 3pm and the wedding coordinator at my church said it should take about 30 mins.  My reception doesn't start until 5pm and is only about a 30 min drive from the church (with traffic).  The wedding coordinator at my reception site told us that if any guests show up early, they will not be tended to and there will nothing for them to do because the staff will be getting ready for the wedding to start at 5pm.  So now my mom is freaking out because of all the out of towners....So including pictures after the ceremony, its one of those things where there's just enough time to kill but not really enough to plan a whole activity to keep them busy... any ideas?  Thanks!
    Even if it is outside, you need to have something for your guests to do within that time.  They also needs refreshments.
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    Blue_Bird
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Seventh Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    This is the exact same issue my sister is having.  My parents literally live 5 minutes from the church and will be hosting all guests with light refreshments and snacks after the ceremony.  Is there a space available at the church to host people until its time to head over to the reception.  But as PP said, you need to host something.
  • My ceremony is starting at 3pm and the wedding coordinator at my church said it should take about 30 mins.  My reception doesn't start until 5pm and is only about a 30 min drive from the church (with traffic).  The wedding coordinator at my reception site told us that if any guests show up early, they will not be tended to and there will nothing for them to do because the staff will be getting ready for the wedding to start at 5pm.  So now my mom is freaking out because of all the out of towners....So including pictures after the ceremony, its one of those things where there's just enough time to kill but not really enough to plan a whole activity to keep them busy... any ideas?  Thanks!
    This is called a gap, and it's considered unacceptable and rude, so please don't do it.

    Your options are: 
    1. Move your ceremony back so it starts at 4 p.m., ends at 4.30 p.m., and your guests arrive at the reception venue at 5 p.m..
    2. Move your reception up, so it starts at 4 p.m., which means your ceremony can start at 3 p.m., end at 3.30 p.m., and your guests can be properly hosted at the reception starting at 4 p.m.
    3. Work with your venue so you can have a cocktail hour between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m., so that when your guests show up, they are given refreshments -- drinks (they don't have to be alcoholic) and appetizers.

    What you cannot do is keep people waiting for an hour -- bored, hungry, thirsty -- so that you can take photos. Trust me, they will remember that, and they will be annoyed by it, and it will affect your relationship with them.
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    I'm gonna go with 'not my circus, not my monkeys.'
    simplykayladoeydoBlue_Bird
  • Fran1985 Fran1985 Narnia member
    Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    My ceremony is starting at 3pm and the wedding coordinator at my church said it should take about 30 mins.  My reception doesn't start until 5pm and is only about a 30 min drive from the church (with traffic).  The wedding coordinator at my reception site told us that if any guests show up early, they will not be tended to and there will nothing for them to do because the staff will be getting ready for the wedding to start at 5pm.  So now my mom is freaking out because of all the out of towners....So including pictures after the ceremony, its one of those things where there's just enough time to kill but not really enough to plan a whole activity to keep them busy... any ideas?  Thanks!
    Talk to your reception site about moving it up so it starts at 4, you need to host them in between

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    doeydoBlue_Bird
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    You need to close the gap.  Drive time is fine, but you can't leave them with an empty hour between ceremony and reception.

    Either you'll have to push the ceremony back to 4:00 or you'll have to move the reception up to 4:00.  The only other option is to host something for an hour at a third location, but that should be a last resort, as it's a pain for everyone.  
    Blue_Bird
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