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Offbeat Weddings

Eloping with post-honeymoon reception party

I'm sure I'm not the first person to think my situation is unique, but I'm having trouble finding resources on theknot.com that match up with my plans. I'm hoping someone can suggest a different site or point me to the right sections of theknot.

My fiance and I are planning to get married in Hawaii, but it's not a destination wedding. We aren't inviting anyone and we're hoping to avoid all the traditions of a wedding ceremony. On the day of our wedding, we'll have been together for 10 years, so friends and family have already figured out we're not taking the standard route to marriage!

My parents agreed to host a lunch reception in their city for family after we get back from Hawaii while my fiance and I are planning an evening party with friends on a different date in our city. We came up with this plan because my future MIL will prefer a smaller event that happens earlier in the day and we'd like to be able to do that for her because she's upset about missing the wedding and she's the only family the groom has... I have 45 guests and he has his mom and her husband. 

I wanted to find more information on eloping and if anyone else has ever split their receptions into one for family and one for friends.

Re: Eloping with post-honeymoon reception party

  • I'm glad I'm not the only one!

    My fiance and I have been together for 9.5 years -- we've been engaged for 2.5 years and we've always planned to elope in Hawaii. However, we have a really close-knit group of friends who really want to come along. But if we do a destination wedding, then suddenly it's a wedding and we really don't want that (and while I love our families, I would get really stressed out traveling to Hawaii with friends and family). We don't want to hurt our moms' feelings by having a friends-only wedding, so we're doing this:

    We'll do a religious ceremony with just our families before we leave for Hawaii. I'll wear my dress, but it'll be in my parents' backyard.

    We'll elope in Hawaii but just down the beach from where all our friends will be staying. I want our marriage license to say Hawaii.

    Then we'll do an elopement party on the beach with all our friends to celebrate after. 

    We won't do anything at home.

    I know some people will think we're strange, but I don't want to walk down an aisle or deal with all our family and friends together or any of the traditional wedding stuff. At the same time, we love traveling with our friends and I know I'd like to celebrate after we elope. And, we don't want to hurt our moms' feelings, so this seems like the best way to make everyone happy. 
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