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Timeline assurance

McCMalMcCMal member
5 Love Its First Comment Name Dropper First Anniversary
edited March 2014 in Wedding Reception Forum
Ok, after having my wedding planning bell rung by my aunt, I'm doubting some of my details that just seemed so simple. Most importantly, our gap. So I am just hoping I was right the first time, and can ignore the ringing in my ears...
5:00-5:30 Ceremony 
5:30-6:00 Receiving line
6:00-7:00 Cocktail hour at reception site (Cheese, crackers, fruit, veggies and salad will be available, along with several different refreshments and alcohol)
6:00-7:00 Family and WP photos at ceremony site
7:00-8:30 Dinner 
After this I am unsure when to do the cake cutting, bouquet toss, garter toss, first dances toasts etc. We will have a live band, and the evening will be open ended, we don't have to be out by a certain time. I imagine most of the older relatives will leave earlier, while our friends and younger relatives will stay to drink.  I'd like to get all of the 'Wedding' type things earlier, so that those who want to leave can, and it isn't a horribly long evening for them, to get cake and see everything of importance. 
This will be a small town wedding, everyone knows everyone besides my small 20-30 family members who will have to travel and get hotel rooms. 

This has really been my only plans. Am I not managing my time well? I may be completely lost and rude to my guests, I don't know for sure. I want to make sure I am being a good host, and not rushing things, or dragging things. Where do I need to make adjustments? I've been to only about 3 weddings, and one of them made us wait for 2 1/2 hours after the ceremony until the WP arrived. Then it was another half an hour until we actually got to start eating. It was ridiculous, but now I feel I'm rushing everything to not do that to my guests. 

Also, am I being realistic in my cocktail and photo times? And my receiving line times? Am I asking my guests to wait to long to eat, assuming they will be arriving by 4:30 or so and dinner is not until 7?

ETA:
I do feel like I'm asking everyone to plan my whole wedding for me... I hope it's not coming across that way. I've tried discussing it with my family and my FI's family, but every time I do, they say "Why don't you just do punch and cake?"
Because I don't want to do just punch and cake. 
Thank you to everyone that takes time to help me out with this. I have very little experience with full weddings, I've mostly been to punch and cake receptions. 



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Re: Timeline assurance

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    McCMal said:
    Ok, after having my wedding planning bell rung by my aunt, I'm doubting some of my details that just seemed so simple. Most importantly, our gap. So I am just hoping I was right the first time, and can ignore the ringing in my ears...
    5:00-5:30 Ceremony 
    5:30-6:00 Receiving line
    6:00-7:00 Cocktail hour at reception site (Cheese, crackers, fruit, veggies and salad will be available, along with several different refreshments and alcohol)
    6:00-7:00 Family and WP photos at ceremony site
    7:00-8:30 Dinner 
    After this I am unsure when to do the cake cutting, bouquet toss, garter toss, first dances toasts etc. We will have a live band, and the evening will be open ended, we don't have to be out by a certain time. I imagine most of the older relatives will leave earlier, while our friends and younger relatives will stay to drink.  I'd like to get all of the 'Wedding' type things earlier, so that those who want to leave can, and it isn't a horribly long evening for them, to get cake and see everything of importance. 
    This will be a small town wedding, everyone knows everyone besides my small 20-30 family members who will have to travel and get hotel rooms. 

    This has really been my only plans. Am I not managing my time well? I may be completely lost and rude to my guests, I don't know for sure. I want to make sure I am being a good host, and not rushing things, or dragging things. Where do I need to make adjustments? I've been to only about 3 weddings, and one of them made us wait for 2 1/2 hours after the ceremony until the WP arrived. Then it was another half an hour until we actually got to start eating. It was ridiculous, but now I feel I'm rushing everything to not do that to my guests. 

    Also, am I being realistic in my cocktail and photo times? And my receiving line times? Am I asking my guests to wait to long to eat, assuming they will be arriving by 4:30 or so and dinner is not until 7?

    ETA:
    I do feel like I'm asking everyone to plan my whole wedding for me... I hope it's not coming across that way. I've tried discussing it with my family and my FI's family, but every time I do, they say "Why don't you just do punch and cake?"
    Because I don't want to do just punch and cake. 
    Thank you to everyone that takes time to help me out with this. I have very little experience with full weddings, I've mostly been to punch and cake receptions. 



    I think your timeline generally looks fine. I don't think it will take 30 minutes to do your receiving line though. And dinner probably won't take 90 minutes. 

    Is there any travel time between the ceremony location and the reception venue?

    Try to do most of your photos before the ceremony, and leave only the ones between you and your FI after the ceremony, to limit the amount of time you really will need for photos. 

     

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    Since we aren't doing a first look, we have limited options for pictures before hand. But we will try and do the bride and parents, groom and parents before. During the cocktail hour, or as soon as we can we will do quick family portraits, so that the family can all go eat and get out of the sun, and then do the individuals, WP and with close family as husband and wife. If the family portraits go quickly, we can get done hopefully a lot sooner. I just want to allow enough time that we won't be rushed, or end up irritating our guests by making them wait for us to get there. 

    There is a 10 minute drive between locations. 

    I wasn't sure on the dinner either. I figured we could do the toasts at the end of dinner, and kind of transition into everything else.

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    Ok. So, I would do your timeline something like this.  Changes in bold. (PS - consider how long it typically takes you to eat a meal when it's already ready (not ordering, preparing, etc., Just actually eating the food. It's probably about 20 minutes, tops.)

    5:00-5:30 Ceremony
     
    5:30-5:45ish Receiving line
     
    5:45-6:00 guests driving to reception venue
     
    6:00-7:00 Cocktail hour at reception site (Cheese, crackers, fruit, veggies and salad will be available, along with several different refreshments and alcohol)
     
    6:00-7:00 Family and WP photos at ceremony site
     
    7:00 - Bride/groom arrive at reception venue (you can do first dance now, or after dinner)
     
    7:00 cut the cake immediately after arrival and/or first dance.  (if you cut the cake before you start eating dinner, your venue will have the opportunity to cut and plate the cake, so it can be served right after dinner)
     
    7:00-8:00 Dinner (toasts start at approximately 7:30-7:40.  Keep toasts to a minimum)
     
    8:00 - cut the cake (if you didn't do it before dinner)
     
    8:00ish - first dance (if you didn't do it upon your arrival)
     
    8:05-8:15ish - mother/father/special dances
     
    8:15ish - open up dance floor to other guests
     
    9:00-9:30ish - garter/bouquet toss (this can be done pretty much whenever you want, but, you want to do it early enough so most of your guests are still around)
     
     
     
     
     
     
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    Awesome, thank you! I feel better that there weren't any giant glaring no nos. Thank you so much for your advice, I can change up my times for sure. 

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