Wedding Etiquette Forum

Cash Bar? Dollar Dance? Cocktail Hour?

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Re: Cash Bar? Dollar Dance? Cocktail Hour?

  • misshart00misshart00 Oklahoma member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
    I love Maggie's idea of going bar hopping after the reception. That seems like a great idea and you still get to do what you want.
    PrettyGirlLostcowgirl8238[Deleted User]RebeccaB88
  • slothiegalslothiegal The Sloth Farm member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer Name Dropper
    edited September 2014
    kavo0406 said:
    I'm not asking you to validate anything I'm doing - I'm simply asking for opinions. And that was not something I was looking for your opinion on. Right now I'm wondering about the time frame - not being concerned what I'm doing during that time. If I wanted to go swimming quick during that time, that's up to me. The drinks from those bars are also free, it's a small town. I understand this is an etiquette board - which is why I was asking etiquette about the time frame - the whole time frame thing is new to me since I am breaking from my families Catholic tradition and having my ceremony outside, thus changing my time frame from a traditional 4-5p m wedding ceremony, followed by pictures, then our traditional ride around, then our dinner and dance.



    But what you're doing in that time does affect the time frame/your guests.

    Like Maggie said, bar hopping after the reception is a great compromise--that's what DH and I did and it was a blast.

    ETA: Apparently no quote box?  Cool.
    Anniversary

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    PrettyGirlLostSachaBee
  • Fairyjen1Fairyjen1 member
    250 Love Its 100 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    edited September 2014
    kavo0406 said:
    I'm not asking you to validate anything I'm doing - I'm simply asking for opinions. And that was not something I was looking for your opinion on. Right now I'm wondering about the time frame - not being concerned what I'm doing during that time. If I wanted to go swimming quick during that time, that's up to me. The drinks from those bars are also free, it's a small town. I understand this is an etiquette board - which is why I was asking etiquette about the time frame - the whole time frame thing is new to me since I am breaking from my families Catholic tradition and having my ceremony outside, thus changing my time frame from a traditional 4-5p m wedding ceremony, followed by pictures, then our traditional ride around, then our dinner and dance.
          People are giving their opinion that your timeline isn't good. I'm not sure why you came here and asked if you aren't going to listen anyway. 

          It's fine to have only beer, wine and soda, that's what I am doing. I someone leaves the reception area (where the beer, wine and soda are) to go to the hotel bar and get a cocktail they will be the rude ones, not me as I adequately provided for them. 

          Not much bother's me etiquette-wise. I personally don't have a problem with cash bars, honey moon funds don't bother me, PPD's as long as they are honest and there's cake are okay by me. Gaps, don't normally bother me when it's for a scheduling reason (church only available at a certain time and all the venue's in town not available until later. HOWEVER, a gap that happens just because the bride and groom selfishly run around town to bar hop while their guests wait hours for dinner, well, I had one cousin do that and it's the only wedding I RSVP'd to and then left before dinner. My time is too precious to wait around for dried out chicken. Had I known ahead of time I might have only showed up to the ceremony or reception and RSVPed appropriately. I realize I was rude or doing this but that's what you get if you are expecting people to wait around for you.
    [Deleted User]RebeccaB88Ashes_3indianaalum
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I've been to several of the weddings where the Bridal Party get in a party bus and drive around and take pics.  It has always been for a wedding where I have traveled out of town via plane to celebrate with them.  It's frustrating to have to fend for yourself while you're waiting for the reception to begin. 

    I get that it's tradition, but it still doesn't change the fact that I felt like I was left to my own devices to entertain myself until the cocktail hour started.
    PrettyGirlLost
  • Just curious, but how often do brides/grooms/wedding party show up late in your town? Because I'm not sure I can believe a group of people can take pictures and go to multiple bars around town for drinks and still make it to the reception in under an hour.
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    PrettyGirlLostbeharrington
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
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    kavo0406 said:
    Hi all....I have several etiquette questions/opinions that I would like an opinion on. 1.) Our ceremony is going to be at about 2pm and last about a half hour. The doors the the reception would open at 3pm and we would serve drinks only until about 430 when they would then set out the appetizers; dinner would be between 6-630 (we are still deciding this) Is there to much time in between drinks-appetizers and appetizers-dinner? 2.) Speaking of drinks....is it acceptable to only have beer, wine and soda as "open" and mixed drinks as cash bar....and if no, why not? If I'm already feeding the guests and giving them soda, (water and coffee with dinner), beer and wine. 3.) Dollar dance- I have read several boards that say this is tacky....however, if both families are used to it/expecting it, is it then acceptable?
    1.)  PLease serve your apps along with the cocktails during cocktail hour.  As a guest to your wedding, I'd likely not be able to eat lunch and so waiting until 4:30pm for something to eat after only eating a late breakfast will be too long a wait.

    So cocktail hour- including apps- from 3pm-4:30pm, and then start dinner at 4:30pm.

    2.)  No, host only what you can afford to host.  There is nothing wrong with a limited bar- that's what we are doing.  But guests should not have to open their wallets for anything at your hosted event.  Make signs listing what you are hosting and have them posted on the bar and perhaps the dinner tables as well.  This will clue your guests into the fact that liquor is not being hosted, and so they shouldn't try to order any.

    3.)  The dollar dance is rude and tacky because it's essentially you and your FI begging for money.  Again, your guests shouldn't have to open their wallets at your hosted event.  It's irrelevant if it's a "Family tradition" or a "cultural tradition."  I come from a culture where the dollar dance is "accepted" and we are not doing it.  Guess what?  Family members have thanked me for not doing it because they say it's rude and tacky.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    kavo0406 said:
    One of my best friend's wedding was cash bar - only those in the wedding got free drinks - and no one complained.  Is it kind of a regional etiquette thing?  No, it's just that your BFF's friends and family were polite enough not to openly complain at the wedding reception about the lack of hosting. 
    My reception is going to be in a special events room at a restaurant, so if guests want mixed drinks, they're going to pay for them regardless b/c they'd just go up to the bar in the main restaurant so would it not be better to have it right at the reception then? If you are having your reception in a private room, and you are having a limited bar, then it would be rude for your guests to leave and go to the main bar to by liquor.  They would essentially be saying that what you are hosting isn't good enough for them.  Do not have a partial cash bar in your private room.  Host what you can afford and clearly list what you are hosting. 
    Also what about drink tickets?  I was at my brother in laws wedding and I talked with most all the guests there (who will also be at our wedding) and they all thought it was a great idea and weren't offended when they had to then pay for their own drinks.  Tacky, tacky, tacky!  Your reception is an event you are hosting.  It's not a country fair or an amusement park!  No tickets, host only what you can afford.
    We will be doing a receiving line after the ceremony - before we go and take pictures.  that will eat up about a half hour there, and then the drive back to the reception area is about 10-15 minutes.  



    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


  • First I'd like to thank all the honest - not rude and judgmental opinions.  Especially with the time line (especially the food and drinks) and cash bar (only hosting bar/wine and soda).
    Now onto some of your questions and concerns.......the town I grew up in is very small......like 2 bars total - no lie -so to answer one PP question, they didn't arrive late very much since there aren't very many bars lol However, the town we are having our wedding in has a few more bars, but we'd only stop at 2 before the ceremony - the ones on the way to the reception - or we'd just drink on the party bus (since there is a time limit and it's a minimum of an hour so I'd need to use that hour). 
    yes - this (party bus and DD) is acceptable in my "social circle" and my fiance's also - so MY guests it would not seem rude.  In fact - in response to another PP my family would not thank me for not having it, they'd go initiate it with the DJ just so we'd have it - it's the kind of family that i have.
    To another PP, I came onto this board to get opinions - which is what I got and I appreciate everyone taking the time to respond - and some of them I will take into consideration as we do more planning.
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
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    kavo0406 said:
    We where going to do some of the pics before the wedding - Me with the bridesmaids and flower girls, my fiance with the grooms men and ring bearer and then after the ceremony do our pics along with the wedding party pics and family pics (since our families don't get together often this is seriously one of the only times we can get this done) So i know pics will last about an hour Also, where I'm from the bride and groom do kind of a "ride around town" with the bridal party and stop at a few bars (maybe 2 - 3) on the way back to the reception from the ceremony (I know you all will say that's tacky BUT it's how things are done where I live) However, if we did pics from 330-430 then had our limo/party bus take us to a few stops until 5, we could be back to the reception around 5:15, thus making it all work out (we would do the introductions and then start the buffet at 530)
    What the fuck?

    Luckily I have never attended a wedding where the WP did this, but I can tell you what I'd do if I found out these shenanigans were going on while I was waiting around at an over long cocktail hour. . . I'd fucking leave and go out to dinner and then probably go home.  Bar hop on your own time, not mine.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    cowgirl8238[Deleted User]RebeccaB88
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I'm just curious.  What do the guests who are not on the party bus do in between the ceremony & reception? 
  • I'm just curious.  What do the guests who are not on the party bus do in between the ceremony & reception? 
    They sit around (assuming they even have chairs) and just thank their lucky stars that they get to waste two hours of their day doing nothing so they can be a part of the bride & grooms shpeshul day!
    PrettyGirlLostAprilH81cowgirl8238[Deleted User]
  • kavo0406kavo0406 member
    25 Love Its 10 Comments Name Dropper First Anniversary
    edited September 2014
    That is when they'd be driving back to the reception area and when drinks and appetizers would be served. Which is inside to respond to on PP so rude and judgmental response- so yes they will have chairs. So they'd have that time to mingle with each other and snack (our appetizers will be more than cheese and crackers) Most of our guests are family and will need to stay back and take pictures with us And to respond to the "catholic" post....IF I did decide to stay with my Catholic roots the ceremony would need to be no later than 230 since my fiance is not Catholic, therefore I can't have it at 4 - so it's not an excuse it's a rule of the Church.
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I'm just curious.  What do the guests who are not on the party bus do in between the ceremony & reception? 

    She kept the "Catholic gap" without the actual Catholic-wedding-must-be-before-Saturday-vigil excuse. Awesome.

    I've seen this happen several times. Usually we putter around for a few hours. I'm always OOT at these things so I don't have a choice - if there's a group of friends we'll go get coffee or drinks or something.

    Yeah, when I've been the OOT guest, I tag along with others.  It's just so darn awkward. 


    kavo0406 said:
    That is when they'd be driving back to the reception area and when drinks and appetizers would be served. Which is inside to respond to on PP so rude and judgmental response- so yes they will have chairs. So they'd have that time to mingle with each other and snack (our appetizers will be more than cheese and crackers) Most of our guests are family and will need to stay back and take pictures with us And to respond to the "catholic" post....IF I did decide to stay with my Catholic roots the ceremony would need to be no later than 230 since my fiance is not Catholic, therefore I can't have it at 4 - so it's not an excuse it's a rule of the Church.
    So, is this more accurate -

    3:00 - 3:30  -- Wedding
    3:30 - 3:45  -- receiving line (depending on how many guests you have).  
    4:00 -- guests arrive at reception, cocktail hour / mingling 
    3:45 - 4:45  -- Photos + party bus
    5:00 -- B&G arrive at reception
    5:15 -- Dinner
    9:00* -- Reception over
    9:30 - 2am* -- Wedding party and whoever else you wish to invite along boards bus to bar hop.
    PrettyGirlLostauriannaAshes_3
  • That is a possibility - we may end the reception at 1030 though - since we have to have everyone and everything out by midnight so having the last dance/last call gives us enough time to do that and we have a dj for 4 hours so I have to use all that time also. 
    I do like the idea of having anyone who wants to go out with us after for kind of an "afterparty" type thing 

    PrettyGirlLostaurianna
  • I've never seen a dollar dance but it makes me picture a stripper. Do you really want you're guests thinking that? I can almost guarantee there'll be someone that will think that. Even if it's tradition in both your and your Fi's families, what about your cousin Joe's new girlfriend Sue, who hasn't been to any family functions yet. She might not have the same tradition.

    Example: I'll be going to a wedding with my husband soon. It's his cousin. I've only met a handful of the family. I've never met this cousin or his Fi. This is also the first major family function that I've gone to. I'm not familiar with their traditions, other than the ones my husband's told me about. I probably wouldn't judge this but I'd definitely be like WHAT?!?!!
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Tenth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    From my own experience, I can tell you that I know of no one as a guest who appreciated being expected to wait around while the couple bar hopped between the ceremony and the reception, especially if they were expected to pay for their drinks and for dollar dances.

    Regardless of your family's traditions, they just aren't polite to your guests.  And I take it some of your guests are not family members?  For their sake, if not for politeness in general, please, skip these things.
    PrettyGirlLostaurianna
  • sarawifenowsarawifenow Denver, baby! member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Anniversary First Answer

    I just know that I wouldn't want to risk some random person at a bar dumping their drink on my wedding dress before I even get a chance to dance with my new husband at my wedding.

     

    I am with @Maggie0829, I just don't it this and think it is weird. To each their own, I guess. Just as long as guests aren't waiting more than an hour for you to show up at cocktail hour.

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    ashley8918[Deleted User]climbingsingle
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    If you keep the party bus to an hour (90 minutes, tops) and the other guests are properly hosted at the reception, I see no issue with it. The times I've endured a gap, it was 2-3 hours long and we had to find ways to keep ourselves entertained.
    kavo0406chibiyui
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Honestly, just my opinion but I don't get why everyone says an hour and a half is the maximum a cocktail hour should be? Yeah it's "only" a half hour more but that can feel like a long damn time. Maybe because I've been to a lot of weddings where I only knew a couple of people, but standing around mingling for even an hour gets old really fast. Like, we have all night to mingle on the dancefloor! 1.5 hrs just feels way too long.  
    I agree with you and I have been to weddings where the cocktail hour went over by 30 minutes and we were all standing there staring at each other wondering when shit was going to get started.  But just like with ceremonies starting 5-10 minutes late (any longer and I start to get pissy) I think that if the cocktail hour goes over by no more than 30 minutes then I can deal since there is food and drinks and mingling (and Candy Crush on my phone) to keep me some what occupied.  Anything more then 30 minutes and I will want to leave and get a pizza.

    southernbelle0915
  • kavo0406kavo0406 member
    25 Love Its 10 Comments Name Dropper First Anniversary
    edited September 2014
    It is a midwest thing to go to the local bars (I'm from ND so it happens at pretty much every wedding) it happened at the weddings I've gone to in MN, WI and upper MI (mind you, all of these where smaller towns - not in cities like Minneapolis or Milwaukee) 
    But I get what you are saying about a very long gap - like 2-3 hours - which is why I'm going to push to get most of my pictures done BEFORE the ceremony - so we only have about 30 minutes worth of pics afterwards and can then get most of the 1 hr minimum from the limo/bus that is required - thus making our cocktail "hour" into a cocktail "hour and 15 minutes" which will be fully hosted - and then would lead right into our buffet, cake and dance,....and then afterwards when we have to close down anyone who wants to come with us to do an after party and hit the rest of the bars in the area can do so. 
    I do appreciate all the opinions and comments (well, the helpful and not rude ones).
    holyguacamole79PrettyGirlLost
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