• Images
  • Text
  • Find a Couple + Registry
GO
Reception Ideas

Tearing down tables to dance

I have an issue I have been dwelling on. My reception is capped at 120 people because it's a small venue problem is we may have to tear down a few tables to make extra room for dancing.. How do we make this a smooth transition without interupting things.
«1

Re: Tearing down tables to dance

  • So some people will lose their seats part way during the reception?  I would rethink this plan.  People like to have a place to take a break from dancing, leave their purse, leave their water/drink, etc.  Can you move something else out of the room?  We had the bar right outside the reception room--kind of in between the ballroom and the bathrooms and the outdoor patio.  Can you have a slightly smaller dancefloor?

    grumbledoredoeydo
  • JoanE2012JoanE2012 Exit 21 (Jersey!) member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    Torie8907 said:
    I have an issue I have been dwelling on. My reception is capped at 120 people because it's a small venue problem is we may have to tear down a few tables to make extra room for dancing.. How do we make this a smooth transition without interupting things.
    You can't tear down tables.  That's rude to those guests that were sitting there and will no longer have a seat to sit at or leave their belongings at.  Honestly, this is one of those things you should've thought about BEFORE booking the venue.

    Can you ask your venue what previous couples have done?  Surely you're not the first couple at max capacity.  
    doeydo
  • You'd need to make sure alternate seating is available to the displaced guests. And that they know where it is!

     

    As for smoothing it out.....maybe ask folks to come to the other end of the dance floor to watch the first dance...if they can fit, have folks stand in a circle or semicircle.  Though you'd need to make sure the guests who will lose their tables bring all of their things (purse, suit jacket, etc) along.

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    Torie8907
  • I don't see a problem with removing the tables once the chairs remain. There's less room needed at tables at that point as people are finished eating so more can be put at each remaining table.
    Torie8907
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I don't see a problem with removing the tables once the chairs remain. There's less room needed at tables at that point as people are finished eating so more can be put at each remaining table.
    But where are people supposed to put their crap?  When I go to a wedding I bring a clutch, a camera, a wrap in case I get cold and then most likely I am getting a favor.  So when my table is gone where am I supposed to put all of that?  Am I just expected to hold all that shit in my lap when I sit at my seat that no longer has a table in front of it?

    And sorry, but I like having my stuff at my own place setting and not randomly thrown on another table because my table had to be moved because the couple was not good at planning and choose a venue that didn't offer enough room for all the tables to stay out and dancing.

    doeydoAprilH81Blue_Bird
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I wouldn't do this.  The guests who lose their seats are going to feel hurt and uncomfortable.  Their comfort should take priority over dance space.

    I'd talk to your venue staff about this for other ideas.  Maybe they can put serving tables (as opposed to dining tables) or large equipment in another area to enlarge the dance capacity after dinner and bring it back into the room later.
    doeydo
  • So some people will lose their seats part way during the reception?  I would rethink this plan.  People like to have a place to take a break from dancing, leave their purse, leave their water/drink, etc.  Can you move something else out of the room?  We had the bar right outside the reception room--kind of in between the ballroom and the bathrooms and the outdoor patio.  Can you have a slightly smaller dancefloor?
    Something to think about if you are considering this...from my experience and advise, if you put the bar outside of the reception room, people tend to gather around that instead of the dancefloor. Then they are socializing outside of your reception.
  • NYCMercedesNYCMercedes BOS, NYC, DC. Forever a city girl member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    @torie8907, imagine you, yourself, sitting at one of those tables, and then staff come along and ask you to move so they can take the table. Awkward? Uncomfortable? Displaced? Yes.
    doeydoBlue_Bird
  • Havana2014Havana2014 member
    10 Comments First Anniversary 5 Love Its
    edited September 2013



    I don't see a problem with removing the tables once the chairs remain. There's less room needed at tables at that point as people are finished eating so more can be put at each remaining table.

    But where are people supposed to put their crap?  When I go to a wedding I bring a clutch, a camera, a wrap in case I get cold and then most likely I am getting a favor.  So when my table is gone where am I supposed to put all of that?  Am I just expected to hold all that shit in my lap when I sit at my seat that no longer has a table in front of it?

    And sorry, but I like having my stuff at my own place setting and not randomly thrown on another table because my table had to be moved because the couple was not good at planning and choose a venue that didn't offer enough room for all the tables to stay out and dancing.

    --------------------------------

    A table that seats 10 to eat can sit more than that when people are not eating and are up and down dancing, mingling etc. I've never been to a wedding where I ended the night in the same seat I started in! It's straightforward enough to redistribute the seats from the tables that are coming down.

    Most weddings I've been to have had some variation if doing this to accommodate dancing. It's never been too traumatic having to carry my bag and jacket a few feet.
    Torie8907bitney17
  • photokittyphotokitty where I want to be mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    Are you having a head table? Those can take up more room than a traditional table or sweetheart table. If so, instead put guests at rounds and save space. You can break down a sweetheart table, gift table, buffet tables, but not guest's tables. 

    Also maybe you'll have some declines and the problem will sort itself out. Or if you have not sent your invites, invite few guests so everyone can fit.

    GL!
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

    Torie8907bitney17
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I don't see a problem with removing the tables once the chairs remain. There's less room needed at tables at that point as people are finished eating so more can be put at each remaining table.
    But where are people supposed to put their crap?  When I go to a wedding I bring a clutch, a camera, a wrap in case I get cold and then most likely I am getting a favor.  So when my table is gone where am I supposed to put all of that?  Am I just expected to hold all that shit in my lap when I sit at my seat that no longer has a table in front of it?

    And sorry, but I like having my stuff at my own place setting and not randomly thrown on another table because my table had to be moved because the couple was not good at planning and choose a venue that didn't offer enough room for all the tables to stay out and dancing.
    -------------------------------- A table that seats 10 to eat can sit more than that when people are not eating and are up and down dancing, mingling etc. I've never been to a wedding where I ended the night in the same seat I started in! It's straightforward enough to redistribute the seats from the tables that are coming down. Most weddings I've been to have had some variation if doing this to accommodate dancing. It's never been too traumatic having to carry my bag and jacket a few feet.
    Well unlike you a lot of people prefer to have a "home base" and having to shuffle around while tables and chairs are being moved and then having to find a new table to sit at without any direction is just inconveniencing your guests.

    It all comes down to planning.  If brides just planned their night right from the get go then this wouldn't even be a problem because there would be plenty of room for all the tables and dancing without any finagling needed.

  • And as a guest it wouldn't bother me in the slightest to be inconvenienced for a few minutes if it meant the couple didn't have to slash their guest list. Oh, I know I can't speak for all guests but it seems a little precious to get upset by something so small, in my opinion.
    Torie8907CrazyCatLady3Iffer1991
  • JoanE2012JoanE2012 Exit 21 (Jersey!) member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited September 2013
    And as a guest it wouldn't bother me in the slightest to be inconvenienced for a few minutes if it meant the couple didn't have to slash their guest list. Oh, I know I can't speak for all guests but it seems a little precious to get upset by something so small, in my opinion.


    What's going to happen when the venue comes around with coffee and tea and cake?  Are those displaced guests going to just have to squeeze in at a table?  That makes absolutely no sense. 

    Again, this is something that should've been thought of BEFORE booking the venue and deciding the guest list.  Poor planning on the host's part is not a good reason to inconvenience the guests.

    doeydoBlue_Bird
  • And as a guest it wouldn't bother me in the slightest to be inconvenienced for a few minutes if it meant the couple didn't have to slash their guest list. Oh, I know I can't speak for all guests but it seems a little precious to get upset by something so small, in my opinion.

    ^ agreed. They took away a few tables at my friend's wedding & we had to stand for a bit, but I didn't really care as long as the bride & groom were having a good time! And the older people leave early anyway so we all eventually got a table again. In the meantime we danced, drank & mingled with each other! And I had a purse, camera & wrap also - not a big deal to hold them for a little while!
    Torie8907
  • shelyg89 said:
    So some people will lose their seats part way during the reception?  I would rethink this plan.  People like to have a place to take a break from dancing, leave their purse, leave their water/drink, etc.  Can you move something else out of the room?  We had the bar right outside the reception room--kind of in between the ballroom and the bathrooms and the outdoor patio.  Can you have a slightly smaller dancefloor?
    Something to think about if you are considering this...from my experience and advise, if you put the bar outside of the reception room, people tend to gather around that instead of the dancefloor. Then they are socializing outside of your reception.
    I didn't notice that at our reception.  Or at least, the dancefloor was pretty full most of the time, and if people wanted to step out to the bar or patio to grab a drink or get some fresh air, why would I want them not to enjoy themselves that way?  

    And I have been to a wedding where we moved to a separate room for dancing where not everyone had a seat.  It was awkward trying to dance while holding my clutch and wrap, and we didn't stay too long.  

  • E+R2014E+R2014 member
    10 Comments 5 Love Its
    edited September 2013
    We might have to remove a few tables at our reception. It's not really the ideal situation but at some venues that's just what you have to do. I don't think it's necessarily rude, it's just how it's got to happen. If you have assigned seating, maybe assign people who are more flexible to sit at those tables. If you have a buffet, maybe remove the buffet table and shift the rest of the tables. If you have a DJ, maybe ask if they have a clever way of letting people know. Maybe have your bridesmaids or groomsmen let the people at the moving tables know so that they don't lose track of their stuff. Not all people leave things at the table for the night. I agree that you can probably put a few more chairs around each table after the eating is done. Just make sure you have enough seats for everyone, even if they aren't at a table. Don't worry too much about it! Just make sure everyone is done needing a place to eat before you do it!
  • JoanE2012JoanE2012 Exit 21 (Jersey!) member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    E+R2014 said:
    We might have to remove a few tables at our reception. It's not really the ideal situation but at some venues that's just what you have to do. I don't think it's necessarily rude, it's just how it's got to happen. If you have assigned seating, maybe assign people who are more flexible to sit at those tables. If you have a buffet, maybe remove the buffet table and shift the rest of the tables. If you have a DJ, maybe ask if they have a clever way of letting people know. Maybe have your bridesmaids or groomsmen let the people at the moving tables know so that they don't lose track of their stuff. Not all people leave things at the table for the night. I agree that you can probably put a few more chairs around each table after the eating is done. Just make sure you have enough seats for everyone, even if they aren't at a table. Don't worry too much about it! Just make sure everyone is done needing a place to eat before you do it!
    No, it's not "just what you have to do".  What you should've done was picked a venue that accomodated your guest list properly that was in your budget.  If you did that from the beginning, you wouldn't have the problem of having to take tables away.
    doeydoBlue_Bird
  • Dreamergirl8812Dreamergirl8812 your closet member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    E+R2014 said:
    We might have to remove a few tables at our reception. It's not really the ideal situation but at some venues that's just what you have to do. I don't think it's necessarily rude, it's just how it's got to happen. If you have assigned seating, maybe assign people who are more flexible to sit at those tables. If you have a buffet, maybe remove the buffet table and shift the rest of the tables. If you have a DJ, maybe ask if they have a clever way of letting people know. Maybe have your bridesmaids or groomsmen let the people at the moving tables know so that they don't lose track of their stuff. Not all people leave things at the table for the night. I agree that you can probably put a few more chairs around each table after the eating is done. Just make sure you have enough seats for everyone, even if they aren't at a table. Don't worry too much about it! Just make sure everyone is done needing a place to eat before you do it!
    Make it your table.



    Anniversary
    image

    image
    NYCMercedesmanateehuggerdoeydoBlue_Bird
  • Ok while appreciate the response I can do without the criticism. We have looked at multiple reigption venues, this is thy best or for our budget and whe itsjustthg ride and groom paying for it then yup have to worry about budget and we fairly takes up 2/3 of the guest list it becomes difficult to cut people, we're not even talking extended family this is immediate! So helpful tips please and thank you.
    Iffer1991
  • To all who have given me insight I thank you good and bad, we have talked to others about this and there is a way without leaving guests to stand. We will take our head table away first there are benches for seating and we can still leave the chairs. I asked for help on THE TRANSITION not if it's ok to do it sony helpful tips on how to transition it would work we will lake sure everyone has a place to put their things so I'm not worried about that. How do I say it or how do I get them out of their seats while we move some tables.. Again constructive replies welcome I don't need criticism.
  • When I've been at wedding were tables were taken down or moved someone from the venue just discreetly comes over to the the table that needs to be moved to let people know.

    Usually after the meal there's a natural move around of people when they've finished eating - people go to the bathroom, the bar or out for a smoke or to chat with friends etc. Maybe it's different here but people tend to move after the meal - tables are allocated for the meal but it's more fluid for the dancing, people move to tables with friends etc.

    If it was my wedding I'd be mindful of who I put at that table eg I wouldn't out my elderly uncle there. My work friends will need two tables for the meal so moving one of those tables and adding some people to the other wouldn't be an issue for any of them - chances are they'd all end up gravitating to the same table anyway.

    Are there extra chairs in the venue that could be brought in first and added to tables? Then that way when people move, the chairs are there already rather than having to wait for yours to be moved for you. Chances are the venue have done this before so know the most seamless way to do it.

  • By far the most helpful advice yet Havana! My reception is at sweet arrow lake state park clubhouse. It's not to small that we're rally squished but it's small that we will need to move some tables to get the dancing going. We have the dj and a photo booth in the building which need to both stay inside. We plan to take the head table away first so we are not disturbing anyone else after that it would be just moving a couple of tables back or taking them down I guess I can ask the dj to come up with something so we can make more room, there is no bar, we are providing our own drinks set up at the window for the kitchen, but the outside is the big hitter I'm sure plenty will be outside and mingling and at the photo booth so I'm just trying to come up with a transition or distraction maybe?
  • doeydodoeydo Southwestern Ontario member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited September 2013
    Try to see if the tables can be arranged so that there is more room on the dance floor.  And I don't mean move them part way through the reception, I mean before the guests arrive have the tables staggered or something to make more room.  Perhaps you could look at doing different kinds of tables, round vs. rectangular, smaller vs. larger, and see what will make the best space.  I really advise against taking tables away from any of your guests.  ETA I missed an "s"
    image
  • JoanE2012JoanE2012 Exit 21 (Jersey!) member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    Torie8907 said:
    To all who have given me insight I thank you good and bad, we have talked to others about this and there is a way without leaving guests to stand. We will take our head table away first there are benches for seating and we can still leave the chairs. I asked for help on THE TRANSITION not if it's ok to do it sony helpful tips on how to transition it would work we will lake sure everyone has a place to put their things so I'm not worried about that. How do I say it or how do I get them out of their seats while we move some tables.. Again constructive replies welcome I don't need criticism.
    Please move your ass.  We chose a reception venue that couldn't properly accommodate the number of guests we invited and we need to make room for more important things.  Outta my way, the music is starting!

    Oh, and you can't dictate how people post.  
    NYCMercedesDreamergirl8812QueerFemmeBlue_Bird
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    Torie8907 said:
    Ok while appreciate the response I can do without the criticism. We have looked at multiple reigption venues, this is thy best or for our budget and whe itsjustthg ride and groom paying for it then yup have to worry about budget and we fairly takes up 2/3 of the guest list it becomes difficult to cut people, we're not even talking extended family this is immediate! So helpful tips please and thank you.
    So you just want people to tell your that your terrible planning is just fine?  

    The point of this board is to get the constructive criticism to avoid the problem with your actual wedding, not to get a bunch of people to tell you that your bad planning is ok.  If you don't care enough about your guests to get some help with hosting them correctly, why are you inviting them at all?  For the gifts?
    doeydoNYCMercedes
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    If budget is a concern then maybe start thinking about downsizing your guest list.

    doeydo
  • I don't think there's anything wrong with removing tables. I work at a small banquet hall and we do this frequently. The tables are not removed until after coffee and dessert service is finished and cleared, so the scandalized people who are picturing guests eating their meal on their laps need not worry.

    My suggestion is to call attention to an activity on the other side of the room. Where I'm from its common to serve a separate dessert, then cut the cake and serve the cake as a late night buffet.

    The timing usually works out like this: tables are cleared, speeches end, mc announces the bar is open and the cake is being cut.
    Odds are most people will either head to the washroom, bar, cake cutting or outside to smoke. Anyone left at the tables being removed is asked politely to pick up their belongings. 4 or 5 staff members swoop in and the tables are gone within 2 minutes. The chairs are added to existing tables. Everyone comes back in and the first dance is done and the guests barely notice the difference. After the first dance the dj starts up and most people are up and dancing anyway.
    My two cents for what it's worth.
    Talk to your coordinator but odds are the staff has done this many times before and can make some recommendations.
    Torie8907CrazyCatLady3
  • I've seen tables taken down for dancing at many of the weddings I've attended. It's not something I wanted to worry about at mine so we made sure to have a big enough venue, but generally there wasn't an issue with the staff taking down a couple tables. It usually was table with younger people like the brides and grooms friends and they didn't seem to mind. I think if you choose the people for the tables that are taken down wisely it won't be a big deal.

    One wedding I went to that had way to many people for the venue only took down one table but then squished all the other tables together so there wasn't enough room for anyone to sit. It was awful. So if you have to take tables down please do it rather than squish everything together and make it impossible for anyone to sit.
    Daisypath Anniversary tickers Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • Torie8907 said:
    By far the most helpful advice yet Havana! My reception is at sweet arrow lake state park clubhouse. It's not to small that we're rally squished but it's small that we will need to move some tables to get the dancing going. We have the dj and a photo booth in the building which need to both stay inside. We plan to take the head table away first so we are not disturbing anyone else after that it would be just moving a couple of tables back or taking them down I guess I can ask the dj to come up with something so we can make more room, there is no bar, we are providing our own drinks set up at the window for the kitchen, but the outside is the big hitter I'm sure plenty will be outside and mingling and at the photo booth so I'm just trying to come up with a transition or distraction maybe?
    Get rid of the photo booth first of all--if it's a photo booth, and room to mingle around the photo booth, that's at LEAST room for one guest table, probably two. And then if you're serving drinks, clearly you're planning to have empty space in front of that area for guests to get their drinks at the window...move the drinks outside and then you have room for another table to stay up. 

    And obviously there shouldn't be a gift table, card table, guest book table, escort card table, etc., in the room if you don't have enough room for all your guests--those should be outside the room somewhere.  

    If you still have to break down tables, DEFINITELY without a doubt break down the head table. Your your bridal party and their dates (who are obviously seated with them at the head table) should be told this well ahead of time, and be expecting it. If you need to breakdown another table, I would also recommend alerting them to it well in advance. 



    If you are choosing to breakdown tables when the room has other non-necessities in it (such as a cake table, a photo booth, or anything of the sort), then I think you are being VERY inconsiderate to your guests. Make all the other concessions first. 
    Maggie0829
  • Well thanks again for your help we have decided to move the dj and dancing and photo booth to the pavilion right next to the clubhouse. We will serve cake and coffee after dinner then invite everyone over for our first dance. Untraditional yes but that is who we are, there is seating for everyone outside as inside seating will remain in there as well and I think it will work much better then removing tables so thanks again all.
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards