Rehearsal Dinner? Host One Without Breaking the Bank!
Rehearsal Dinners Aren't What You Think They Are...
Wedding rehearsal dinners have gotten out of hand. Sometimes they turn into “mini-weddings” held the night before the event, and that’s not the idea.
The idea is that the bride and groom, with their bridal parties and immediate families, have a chance to relax and have a bite to eat after the rehearsal, hence the rehearsal dinner.
Rehearsal Dinner Rules
Rehearsal dinners have guidelines to follow which keep them in perspective. Here are the rules to follow:
* Rehearsal dinners take place after the wedding rehearsal, normally the night before the wedding. They may be held at a restaurant, club, in a park, “at home”, or anywhere of the bride’s and groom’s choosing.
* It was once tradition that the groom’s parents hosted the rehearsal dinner (while the bride's hosted the wedding) but the rules have changed. The families together may host the rehearsal dinner, or even the bride and groom may do the honors.
* Rehearsal dinners should be informal, or casual chic affairs. They are not designed to be “mini-weddings”. I’ve actually had clients’ host “formal” rehearsal dinners. Hogwash!
* Rehearsal dinners are a time when the bride and groom extend gifts to the bridal party and hosts of the wedding. They may also exchange gifts with each other.
The Most Cost-Effective Rehearsal Dinner
The most cost-effective rehearsal dinners are ones hosted at the bride’s and groom’s home, or at the home of one of their family members. If hosting an “at-home” rehearsal dinner, have it catered. The last thing the bride and groom and their family members should be thinking about the night before the wedding is preparing and serving food and cleaning up.
The following people are invited to the rehearsal dinner: Your immediate families including step-members and grandparents; your bridal party (include dates/and or spouses if the bridal-party members are from out of town. It would be tacky to leave their dates and/or spouses sit in a hotel room); the officiant and musicians if they’re NOT paid vendors; and the ring-bearer and flower-girl(s) and their parents.
Follow the above guideline to host your rehearsal dinner. If you decide to ask more guests than required that decision is up to you and your budget.