Wedding Vows & Ceremony Discussions
Options

Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??

So I've only been engaged 3 weeks and we've decided on Sept. 22/12 as our date!  Which means things are going pretty quick.  We are also on a very tight budget.  We were going to be married in a Catholic church as FI really wanted that, but as many know there's a lot of requirements needed includeding a marriage prep course.  It's all possible, but overwhelming.  So it was enough that the FI said lets just go with an officiant.  Lol.  I'm ok with that, and our families are.  (Dad: "You never go to church anyway"....haha.)

Anyway, the venue we've picked is just a community hall, but isn't ugly and is on the less expensive side, and has a lot less restrictions on it like I don't have to pay a corkage fee (unless I want them to provide that service) and am able to run my own bar instead of paying someone else's outrageous prices.  They will also set up the hall with chairs for the ceremony, and then reset it up with the tables for the reception all included!  Less work for family helpers.  HOWEVER, this place has no windows.  For a reception this is fine because often the reception will have dimmer romantic lighting anyway.  But, for the ceremony, the lack of natural lighting makes me wonder how nice it'll be???  The lights can go bright enough, but it's not natural.

So, my question is, do you think this will make the ceremony seem not as nice??  Will sufficient decorating make everyone not notice the blah light?  Should I ask the photographer about it?  I would hate to have blah photos.  And since this is September 22nd, in Canada no less, in a city with wonky weather, I cannot guarantee it won't be snowing.  So planning on an outside venue just for the ceremony isn't a good idea either.  But I'm really not sure where else I can hold the ceremony that won't just add on the costs.

Thanks for any thoughts!
Wedding Countdown Ticker

Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??

  • Options
    I have a quick question where will your guests go while the chair are moved and the reception tables are set up?
    Wedding Countdown Ticker 66 image Invited
    45 image Are ready to party
  • Options
    klwpazklwpaz member
    First Comment
    edited May 2012
    I would definitely recommend asking your photographer about this. The photos will come out different without natural light, but depending on lighting and equipment the photographer may be able to get good images anyway. He or she should be able to tell you more about the quality to expect.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_ceremony-ideas_ceremony-and-reception-in-same-venue?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:10Discussion:66d38b46-0f96-4f9e-803c-ef43c18ae339Post:1857a6a5-cd2a-46e5-8f44-c87251093ac1">Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??</a>:
    [QUOTE]I have a quick question where will your guests go while the chair are moved and the reception tables are set up?
    Posted by PopPow[/QUOTE
    <div>
    </div><div>That's my question also. Does this community hall have a nice big grassy area around? Perhaps you can have your ceremony out doors and then move the guests inside for reception?</div>
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    As for the guests in between, this was my concern as well.  BUT, if you think about it, when the ceremony is elsewhere guests usually have to figure out how to kill a couple hours before  making their way to the reception.  In this case, they find a way to kill a few  hours, then come back to the same place.  I asked a friend of mine who got married 5 years ago what she did because I was remembering the ceremony and reception at the same place and she said yes, we (as in the guests) just went away for a few hours then came back.  As I was one of them I don't remember it actually being odd.  Lol.  The area this is in is close to a "trendy" stretch of shops and a bird sanctuary, so I think it shouldn't be too difficult for people to occupy themselves.  I hope?

    As for maybe having it outside if the weather is nice, I considered that as well but I'm not sure that option is available.  As in I don't know if they'd set up chairs outside, and I think it would be weird to ask guests to stand?  Who would be able to see?  However, it's something I should really ask the hall when I sign the contract on Monday because if it's an option that would be awesome!  There is a field outside I'm pretty sure.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_ceremony-ideas_ceremony-and-reception-in-same-venue?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:10Discussion:66d38b46-0f96-4f9e-803c-ef43c18ae339Post:d78a69dd-98a8-4f8a-96b1-6a5273a9c6b6">Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??</a>:
    [QUOTE]As for the guests in between, this was my concern as well.  BUT, if you think about it, <strong>when the ceremony is elsewhere guests usually have to figure out how to kill a couple hours before  making their way to the reception</strong>.  In this case, they find a way to kill a few  hours, then come back to the same place.  I asked a friend of mine who got married 5 years ago what she did because I was remembering the ceremony and reception at the same place and she said yes, we (as in the guests) just went away for a few hours then came back.  As I was one of them I don't remember it actually being odd.  Lol.  The area this is in is close to a "trendy" stretch of shops and a bird sanctuary, so I think it shouldn't be too difficult for people to occupy themselves.  I hope? As for maybe having it outside if the weather is nice, I considered that as well but I'm not sure that option is available.  As in I don't know if they'd set up chairs outside, and I think it would be weird to ask guests to stand?  Who would be able to see?  However, it's something I should really ask the hall when I sign the contract on Monday because if it's an option that would be awesome!  There is a field outside I'm pretty sure.
    Posted by vantica[/QUOTE]
    Kill a couple of hours?  I have never been to a wedding where I had to "kill a couple of hours".  If you're going to have a ceremony and reception in the same place then you need to provide something for the guests to do in-between time.  Asking your guests to leave for a few hours and then come back to the exact same place is rude.  If your ceremony and reception were in two separate locations then yes, you would probably have an hour (depending on distance) to get your guests between the locations and not provide something for them to do.  In your case you need to provide a cocktail hour somewhere on the property.  Doing anything else makes you a poor host.<div>
    </div><div>During the cocktail hour you, your BP, and family will be able to take photos while the ceremony space is flipped into the reception space.  If you have the tables mostly set up ahead of time, it shouldn't take too long.</div>
    Ignorance is a poor defense. Image and video hosting by TinyPic
  • Options
    Whoa, whoa. Slow down.  You're having a GAP with the ceremony and reception at the same venue?   That's unheard of.   

    It's one thing if you have a church wedding that MUST be done at 2:00 PM and you can't get into the reception venue until 6:00 (it's still rude, but at least it's somewhat justifiable).   It's quite another thing to expect guests to show up at a venue, leave for a couple hours, and return.  

    That can't happen. 

    If I were you I'd keep the guest list small enough that you can set up separate ceremony area.  Guests can leave that area and go to their reception seat. after the ceremony  Then you can ask the venue to remove the ceremony chairs during dinner and convert the space where the ceremony was held to the dance floor.  Don't use family helpers; they are there to enjoy the wedding, not work it.  Hire a couple high schoolers or college kids to handle things like this. 

    In terms of the photography and the lighting; a good photographer can make it work and can tell you what kinds of decorations, lighting, etc. that you can provide to make the most of the space. 

  • Options
     I've been to weddings where the ceremony was at 11:30 am, and reception starts at 5pm.  Reason being is that was when the church was available and then the reception was an evening thing.  Those times were more then a few hours.  I think most people just went home until later.  I don't know.....I've always had to really take my time getting to the venue as there were a few hours even before cocktail hour.  (Except once because we took pics BEFORE the ceremony, and the reception immediately followed.) I don't know, maybe it's a location thing?? 

    Keep in mind we will announce the few attractions nearby for guests, but there's nothing at the hall besides the room that we will be flipping over.  The tables can't really be ready because the room isn't huge, and I think the tables around the edges might be distracting.  We're going to try to keep it close, but it will still likely be an hour to an hour and a half in between.  I don't know what else we can really do besides have the ceremony elsewhere, which I would actually like, but I don't know where either.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_ceremony-ideas_ceremony-and-reception-in-same-venue?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:10Discussion:66d38b46-0f96-4f9e-803c-ef43c18ae339Post:86fc09ea-4ccc-46f0-a667-dc03ca338245">Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??</a>:
    [QUOTE] I've been to weddings where the ceremony was at 11:30 am, and reception starts at 5pm.  <strong>Reason being is that was when the church was available and then the reception was an evening thing.</strong>  Those times were more then a few hours.  I think most people just went home until later.  I don't know.....I've always had to really take my time getting to the venue as there were a few hours even before cocktail hour.  (Except once because we took pics BEFORE the ceremony, and the reception immediately followed.) I don't know, maybe it's a location thing??  Keep in mind we will announce the few attractions nearby for guests, but there's nothing at the hall besides the room that we will be flipping over.  The tables can't really be ready because the room isn't huge, and I think the tables around the edges might be distracting.  We're going to try to keep it close, but it will still likely be an hour to an hour and a half in between.  I don't know what else we can really do besides have the ceremony elsewhere, which I would actually like, but I don't know where either.
    Posted by vantica[/QUOTE]
    But that's because it's a church.  You're not getting married in a church so you're not having to deal with that issue.  If you can find a separate ceremony space, that sounds like it's an ideal solution.  Look into local parks or even a nondenominational church.  If there's a local board here for you, post on there to get some ideas. 
    Ignorance is a poor defense. Image and video hosting by TinyPic
  • Options
    Definitely head over to your local board and ask the local ladies if there are any reasonably priced places you can use for the ceremony.  It's really not okay to just have people leave for an hour while you flip the room.  
  • Options
    We're having the wedding and reception at a historical hotel.  After the ceremony, to allow time for anything that needs to be done and to have a recieving line (with just the Bride and Groom) we're having a cocktail hour complete with a bar and hors d'ouerves.  It might put a bit of a cost up, but it keeps your guests at your venue and occuppied.  I realize that could be hard for a couple of hours, but think of something you could do in between that would eat up that time for your guests.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_ceremony-ideas_ceremony-and-reception-in-same-venue?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:10Discussion:66d38b46-0f96-4f9e-803c-ef43c18ae339Post:9daba239-f48e-4b2d-a5f9-f4cf9374587a">Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??</a>:
    [QUOTE]We're having the wedding and reception at a historical hotel.  After the ceremony, to allow time for anything that needs to be done and to have a recieving line (with just the Bride and Groom) we're having a cocktail hour complete with a bar and hors d'ouerves.  It might put a bit of a cost up, but it keeps your guests at your venue and occuppied.  I realize that could be hard for a couple of hours, but think of something you could do in between that would eat up that time for your guests.
    Posted by gaiajuliacaesar[/QUOTE]

    Im one of my bff's moh and she's doing all of her stuff in one place. She's have a fairly small wedding 75 ppl total she's just having the hall arrange tables so that everyone can turn their chairs to see the ceremony and turn the chairs back around to eat dinner.
    Im not sure how this would work for your situation  but its worth a shot.

    Personally as  a guest I hate long waits between ceremony's and receptions, esp when I have to go out of town for a wedding often I've checked out of my hotel already and have nothing to do in between time.
  • Options
    Unfortunately the local board doesn't seem all that busy, but I tried.  I also asked for suggestions on fb about alternative locations, and so far got a bunch of replies telling me that it is very common where there is a delay between ceremonies and cocktails, same location or not, so not to worry about it, that they wouldn't consider it rude.  The hall really is not big enough to have a separate area for earlier cocktails.  While I would like an open and pretty location for a ceremony mainly for the aptmosphere, if I can't find one within my very very tight budget, then we will have to do it this way.  Like I mentioned above, perhaps it is a location thing?  Here most people are pretty relaxed and flexible and don't really get worked up about things.  Or at least our friends and family don't, so maybe we're just lucky?  Most of the family on my mom's side who will be in from out of town, assuming they make it, will likely find a pub for awhile.  Lol.  There may be about 10 people I can think of who might get annoyed by the proceedings, but then again I guess you can't please everyone. 

    As for family helping out, my FI's cousin is the one who just volunteered to be the day of coordinator.  Or at least help out with it starting after the ceremony.  Actually, we've had so many offers of help for various things that we will really only be able to accept a small portion of it!
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_ceremony-ideas_ceremony-and-reception-in-same-venue?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:10Discussion:66d38b46-0f96-4f9e-803c-ef43c18ae339Post:5960e587-fe34-48c7-9fbe-b275645bc5f0">Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue?? : Im one of my bff's moh and she's doing all of her stuff in one place. She's have a fairly small wedding 75 ppl total <strong>she's just having the hall arrange tables so that everyone can turn their chairs to see the ceremony and turn the chairs back around to eat dinner.</strong> Im not sure how this would work for your situation  but its worth a shot. Personally as  a guest I hate long waits between ceremony's and receptions, esp when I have to go out of town for a wedding often I've checked out of my hotel already and have nothing to do in between time.
    Posted by devilishangel61401[/QUOTE]

    I had a friend do that as well, and her venue was quite small to the point where they wedding party had to walk around the tables and it was quite awkward.  I am considering that as well if it fits in the hall without being awkward......but at the same time, I don't want people distracted with favors or playing with things on the table before the reception really gets started.  There may be several children there.  But still, it's something I can consider!
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    I was hoping to not do my ceremony & reception in the same room, as i do not usually like sitting at the dinner table for the ceremony. We are doing everything at the same venue & weather permitting the ceremony will be held outside at an amphitheater on property & then we will move in for the reception, but rain or extreme heat are things we have to consider as our wedding is memorial day weekend & it's already in the 80s most days (3 weeks out).
    So i have resigned to the fact that people may be sitting with chairs facing forward at the dinner tables. Rather than having to flip the room. In the end it will be a great day & we'll be married so i guess this doesn't matter as much as i originally thought it did.
    Best wishes to you whatever you decide!
  • Options
    Thanks Shellipuppy!  It seems I'm going against the grain on a lot of things than what some people on here find acceptable, but I think I'm coming to the realization that if it's acceptable to the people where I live, then I guess I shouldn't worry what others think about it!  I mean, if I really wanted to spend thousands more then there are some big and beautiful venues around here for a trouble free wedding!  But we really can't justify the added costs, so low key in a one room community hall, but hopefully nice, will have to do.  Unless I can find better for the same cost before I make up invites.  Lol.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    klwpazklwpaz member
    First Comment
    I've been to a couple of weddings where people sat at the tables for the ceremony. I actually liked that I could chat with people a bit while we waited for it to start. People seemed pretty comfortable and no one seemed to mind that it wasn't a traditional setup. I completely understand not wanting to spend the money on a second location. We are doing the ceremony outside and the reception inside at the same location. Is that an option at your location? For what its worth, if I were a guest I would prefer sitting at the table for the ceremony rather than a long wait time in between. Good luck!
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    The reason I asked about the seating was just for this issue. I am getting married and having the reception at the same location in the same room. Our guests will be seated at their tables during the ceremony. We will have the chairs all facing the front of the room and then the guests that need to will only have to swing their chairs around back to facing the table. I would never ask them to leave for a few minutes let alone a few hours so tables could be set up. If I were invited to a wedding like that I'd come to the ceremony, go through the receiving line, give my well wishes and go home. I would not wander around dressed up for two hours just to return to the place I left. Of course friends and family are not going to tell you this is a bad idea because they don't want to hurt your feeling over something you obviously think is a good idea, but I promise you that you will lose guests between the ceremony and reception. They may have all good intentions of coming back, but if in town guests go home (esp. if they have children), they will likely stay home.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker 66 image Invited
    45 image Are ready to party
  • Options
    I would love to have it outside!  But it will be really dependant on the weather (seriously, snow is a real possibility here.  Or hot weather.  So unpredictable.....lol), and if the hall will allow it.

    I don't know, I guess what I was saying is that people here are /used/ to having a wait in between, that it's almost expected.  (Of course not always, but often.)  This is the feedback I'm getting, not just comments trying not to upset me because I was asking for honesty.  I mean, the wedding party has to go take pictures.  Is it really that quick to take pictures? (If it turns out there is enough room for an aisle and the tables are set up, or we can have the ceremony outside, is a one hour cocktail hour really long enough?) 

    A friend mentioned that at her wedding she had a scavenger hunt for people at her location and I had forgotten that because I just sat outside with my friends chatting before cocktails.  So this is an idea I might use since the area my venue is in does have some neat areas to explore.  For the people who might have issues with things, or with kids, I might just suggest to them that they just come to the reception.  I know this can be considered rude, but if the wedding couple give the go ahead and don't mind, then that may work out for them, and I don't mind at all!  I'm also not saying this is the ideal situation, but we may not have much choice. I guess we'll figure it out as we go! Lol.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Options
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_ceremony-ideas_ceremony-and-reception-in-same-venue?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:10Discussion:66d38b46-0f96-4f9e-803c-ef43c18ae339Post:ca1b7764-2547-400c-b69b-f49e413ec2f2">Re: Ceremony and Reception in Same Venue??</a>:
    [QUOTE]<strong>I've been to several weddings where we've had over an hour to kill between the ceremony and cocktail hour. </strong>Most of the time the ceremony and reception were in different venues, but not always. Next month I'm standing for a friend, she only has one venue and they've told her that there will be 45-60 minutes between the ceremony and when the room will be set up for cocktail hour. She isn't worried about the gap - she'll be getting pictures taken outside by the water and family and the wedding party has been and will be letting people know they are more than welcome to join. The wedding planner at the venue said guests often go up to their rooms (since it is in a hotel) to freshen up. And it is also in the<strong> downtown area of the city - if people want to walk around, they're free to do that. </strong>Also, if you're inviting people who haven't seen each other in a while, they may take the time to catch up with one another. Everyone has different (and sometimes strong) opinions about this. But honestly, it's your day. <strong>Sure, I've been to weddings where I thought things could have been better planned, </strong>and guests could very well disagree with the way I do things at my wedding. An hour between the ceremony and reception won't hurt anyone.
    Posted by underthelight2009[/QUOTE]

    Well, I'm glad I'm at least not alone with being at weddings where this has happened.  I see you're also in Canada?  I wonder if it's just more common here for some reason.  I'm also close-ish to downtown, so I'm hoping this will help.  And I also agree that not everyone will agree, but I guess I just need to accept it and keep planning!
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards