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Etiquette

Cake and punch reception with gap

mlynn93mlynn93 member
First Comment
edited November 2018 in Etiquette
Hello,

My fiance and I are planning our wedding on a bit of a tighter budget. Our wedding will likely be at 2pm on a Saturday (we are currently just penciled in until our meeting with our priest). We had an idea of having a cake and punch reception from 7pm to 10pm later that night. The wedding would go from about 2-330 (it will be a Catholic Mass), so there would be a gap from about 3:30-7. Then, we would take pictures and have dinner with our wedding party and come back for the reception. We would make it clear on the invitation that it is a dessert reception and we would recommend restaurants for our guests. My parents seem to really prefer that we would have a meal, but that’s out of our budget.

The other option may be moving the wedding to 1:30pm on a Friday and having a dessert reception from about 3 to 530pm. Then, maybe we’d go out for dinner with the bridal party and perhaps close family afterward.

My parents have offered to help us financially so we could do a meal, which is really generous, but we also don’t want them to be burdened financially because of our wedding.

Thoughts on these? And thank you in advance for sharing your thoughts! 

Re: Cake and punch reception with gap

  • While a gap between the ceremony and reception is generally expected for a Catholic wedding, a 3 1/2 hour gap is way too long, especially if you're not serving a meal at the reception (and leaving your guests to find their own dinner while you eat without them). I would scrap this option entirely.

    The Friday at 1:30pm option is a bit better, but if you do that, you either need to be confident that a lot of your intended guests will be able to be there, or you need to be okay with having a lot of declines. I have to admit that it also doesn't entirely sit right with me that you would go out to dinner with your bridal party and close family while not offering a meal to your other guests. It feels exclusionary and a bit unfair. 

    I appreciate that you don't want to burden your parents financially, but to be honest, I think you should accept their help and work with them to figure out affordable options. Keep in mind that don't need to serve filet mignon and champagne. You could have a buffet of pasta, salad, chicken, etc., or you could even order sandwiches. Fancy, expensive food is absolutely not mandatory at a wedding.  


    image
    ahoywedding
  • Hello,

    My fiance and I are planning our wedding on a bit of a tighter budget. Our wedding will likely be at 2pm on a Saturday (we are currently just penciled in until our meeting with our priest). We had an idea of having a cake and punch reception from 7pm to 10pm later that night. The wedding would go from about 2-330 (it will be a Catholic Mass), so there would be a gap from about 3:30-7. Then, we would take pictures and have dinner with our wedding party and come back for the reception. We would make it clear on the invitation that it is a dessert reception and we would recommend restaurants for our guests. My parents seem to really prefer that we would have a meal, but that’s out of our budget.

    The other option may be moving the wedding to 1:30pm on a Friday and having a dessert reception from about 3 to 530pm. Then, maybe we’d go out for dinner with the bridal party and perhaps close family afterward.

    My parents have offered to help us financially so we could do a meal, which is really generous, but we also don’t want them to be burdened financially because of our wedding.

    Thoughts on these? And thank you in advance for sharing your thoughts! 

    JIC
    ei34
  • 7 pm is clearly a meal time so even if you make it clear it’s desserts only, you really should be serving a meal. But good news- have your cake and lunch reception immediately after your ceremony from 3:30-6. Then you can go out to dinner with your wedding party.

    Gaps are rude. What is preventing you from having a 3:30, Saturday reception? 
    I appreciate your thoughts! And the wedding can’t start any later than 2pm on Saturdays at the parish because of confessions going on afterward and then the Saturday evening Mass. 
  • MobKaz said:
    While a gap between the ceremony and reception is generally expected for a Catholic wedding, a 3 1/2 hour gap is way too long, especially if you're not serving a meal at the reception (and leaving your guests to find their own dinner while you eat without them). I would scrap this option entirely.

    The Friday at 1:30pm option is a bit better, but if you do that, you either need to be confident that a lot of your intended guests will be able to be there, or you need to be okay with having a lot of declines. I have to admit that it also doesn't entirely sit right with me that you would go out to dinner with your bridal party and close family while not offering a meal to your other guests. It feels exclusionary and a bit unfair. 

    I appreciate that you don't want to burden your parents financially, but to be honest, I think you should accept their help and work with them to figure out affordable options. Keep in mind that don't need to serve filet mignon and champagne. You could have a buffet of pasta, salad, chicken, etc., or you could even order sandwiches. Fancy, expensive food is absolutely not mandatory at a wedding.  


    The generalization of the "Catholic Gap" really boils my blood.  There is a rude AF/poor hosting gap.  DD had a properly hosted reception immediately following her Catholic, full nuptial gap.  I have attended several Catholic weddings with receptions immediately following.  Have I attended Catholic ceremonies WITH a gap.  Absolutely.  I have also attended several secular, Christian, and Jewish weddings with gaps as well.  These gaps occur because the hosts CHOOSE to create a gap so that it fits their wedding narrative or their pretty picture time or some other excuse. 

    OP's post is the PERFECT example of someone choosing to create a gap. 
    All I meant was that because Catholic weddings have to take place in a church, nobody expects to be able to walk into the reception a minute after the ceremony is over. It is inevitable that there will be a small gap where everyone needs to get to the reception venue. While effort should certainly be made to keep it as short as possible (the last Catholic wedding I went to, the reception venue was literally a 5-10 minute drive away), unless someone is having their reception in the church hall, there is going to be some time between the two parts of the wedding. 

    Regardless, the gap OP is suggesting is far too long and would be rude no matter what kind of wedding she was having. 
    image
    MesmrEwe
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    What? No. This is so rude. 


    image
    ahoywedding
  • LondonLisaLondonLisa London, UK member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    7 pm is clearly a meal time so even if you make it clear it’s desserts only, you really should be serving a meal. But good news- have your cake and lunch reception immediately after your ceremony from 3:30-6. Then you can go out to dinner with your wedding party.

    Gaps are rude. What is preventing you from having a 3:30, Saturday reception? 
    I appreciate your thoughts! And the wedding can’t start any later than 2pm on Saturdays at the parish because of confessions going on afterward and then the Saturday evening Mass. 
    I understand that- but what is stopping you from having your reception immediately after your ceremony?
    charlotte989875missJeanLouiseSTARMOON44ahoywedding
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    7 pm is clearly a meal time so even if you make it clear it’s desserts only, you really should be serving a meal. But good news- have your cake and lunch reception immediately after your ceremony from 3:30-6. Then you can go out to dinner with your wedding party.

    Gaps are rude. What is preventing you from having a 3:30, Saturday reception? 
    I appreciate your thoughts! And the wedding can’t start any later than 2pm on Saturdays at the parish because of confessions going on afterward and then the Saturday evening Mass. 
    The time of your wedding ceremony is irrelevant.  You can either CHOOSE to host properly or not. 
    ahoywedding
  • MobKaz said:
    MobKaz said:
    While a gap between the ceremony and reception is generally expected for a Catholic wedding, a 3 1/2 hour gap is way too long, especially if you're not serving a meal at the reception (and leaving your guests to find their own dinner while you eat without them). I would scrap this option entirely.

    The Friday at 1:30pm option is a bit better, but if you do that, you either need to be confident that a lot of your intended guests will be able to be there, or you need to be okay with having a lot of declines. I have to admit that it also doesn't entirely sit right with me that you would go out to dinner with your bridal party and close family while not offering a meal to your other guests. It feels exclusionary and a bit unfair. 

    I appreciate that you don't want to burden your parents financially, but to be honest, I think you should accept their help and work with them to figure out affordable options. Keep in mind that don't need to serve filet mignon and champagne. You could have a buffet of pasta, salad, chicken, etc., or you could even order sandwiches. Fancy, expensive food is absolutely not mandatory at a wedding.  


    The generalization of the "Catholic Gap" really boils my blood.  There is a rude AF/poor hosting gap.  DD had a properly hosted reception immediately following her Catholic, full nuptial gap.  I have attended several Catholic weddings with receptions immediately following.  Have I attended Catholic ceremonies WITH a gap.  Absolutely.  I have also attended several secular, Christian, and Jewish weddings with gaps as well.  These gaps occur because the hosts CHOOSE to create a gap so that it fits their wedding narrative or their pretty picture time or some other excuse. 

    OP's post is the PERFECT example of someone choosing to create a gap. 
    All I meant was that because Catholic weddings have to take place in a church, nobody expects to be able to walk into the reception a minute after the ceremony is over. It is inevitable that there will be a small gap where everyone needs to get to the reception venue. While effort should certainly be made to keep it as short as possible (the last Catholic wedding I went to, the reception venue was literally a 5-10 minute drive away), unless someone is having their reception in the church hall, there is going to be some time between the two parts of the wedding. 

    Regardless, the gap OP is suggesting is far too long and would be rude no matter what kind of wedding she was having. 
    I must be having a particularly obtuse day.  I do not consider driving from a ceremony to the reception venue a gap.  It is merely an issue of traveling from Point A to Point B.  As long as the reception begins immediately following the ceremony, less the time accounted for to travel, I do not consider that a gap.  Almost every wedding I have attended, regardless of religious or non-religious affiliation, has had a ceremony in one location, while the reception is at another location.   This issue is not limited to Catholic weddings.
    I wouldn't consider the time to travel from the ceremony to the reception a gap at all! That is necessary time consideration. A lot of churches  no longer allow receptions on the premises - DD's church didn't because they have so many weddings on a given Saturday it is like a conveyor belt of Masses. Sorry if that sounds blasphemous. I agree, a change of location isn't limited to Catholic weddings though it is more common because of the requirement of the ceremony being in a church.
    STARMOON44
  • mlynn93mlynn93 member
    First Comment
    edited November 2018
    The church basement isn’t available until 630 on Saturday night, in answer to the question about why we aren’t having the dessert reception on Saturday right after the wedding. 

    After talking about it more, we may do a 3pm wedding on Friday with a cocktail hour from 5 to 6 (the wedding will likely go until about 430) and then a dinner and dancing reception (the cocktail hour and reception would most likely be at a hotel) or else a Friday wedding at 1:30pm to about 3pm with a cake and punch reception immediately after in the church basement until 5:30pm. 

    Thank you all for your thoughts!
    MesmrEwe
  • We’ve decided since we’re having so many out of town guests that we’ll keep it on Saturday and have the Mass at 2pm to about 330pm with a cocktail hour and dinner to follow, with the generous help of my parents.

    Thanks again everyone!
    short+sassyMairePoppy
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    We’ve decided since we’re having so many out of town guests that we’ll keep it on Saturday and have the Mass at 2pm to about 330pm with a cocktail hour and dinner to follow, with the generous help of my parents.

    Thanks again everyone!
    Obviously, other than being properly hosted per the time of an event, guests should not have an expectation of how they are hosted.  However, not only would a huge gap be an incredibly rude gesture in and of itself, a cake and punch reception for guests traveling from out of town would have made me definitely think twice about accepting your invitation.


    MairePoppyahoywedding
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    MobKaz said:
    We’ve decided since we’re having so many out of town guests that we’ll keep it on Saturday and have the Mass at 2pm to about 330pm with a cocktail hour and dinner to follow, with the generous help of my parents.

    Thanks again everyone!
    Obviously, other than being properly hosted per the time of an event, guests should not have an expectation of how they are hosted.  However, not only would a huge gap be an incredibly rude gesture in and of itself, a cake and punch reception for guests traveling from out of town would have made me definitely think twice about accepting your invitation.


     
    I agree 100%. IMO, the level of hosting should at least match the amount of effort it will take for guests to attend the wedding. If there are out of state guests attending, some kind of meal is in order. 

                       
    InLoveInQueensMobKazahoywedding
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