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The Wedding Rehearsal Dinner

Updated on March 10, 2014
Wedding Rehearsal Image
Wedding Rehearsal Image | Source

"Let us celebrate the occasion with wine and sweet words."~Plautus

Once you have rehearsed walking down the aisle, figuring out where everyone is supposed to stand, and what everyone is supposed to say or do on the wedding day, it is time to share some good times and a fabulous meal together. The Rehearsal dinner is a pre-wedding day get together for the bride, groom, attendants, immediate family members and any special guests you wish to invite. Typically, it is an informal or formal meal following a wedding rehearsal which is traditionally held the night before the wedding. It's also an opportunity for the bride and groom to thank everyone for helping them out during the wedding planning.

Where To Host

If you're wondering where to host a rehearsal dinner, here are a few great ideas:

-If you are looking for a more formal feel, then a sit-down dinner at a hotel or fine restaurant would be appropriate. You can also choose a country club as well.

-A buffet dinner is also a great idea. There are many casual restaurants that offer buffets exclusively.

-If you are planning an informal affair, a house party or an inviting backyard barbecue would be perfect. Also, this type of rehearsal dinner in most cases, is far more cost effective.

-Another great idea is to eliminate the dinner aspect entirely and host a post rehearsal cocktails and hors d'oeuvres get together. This can be held pretty much anywhere, i.e. hotel, restaurant, at home, museum, art gallery, etc. It's important to indicate on your invitations that cocktails and hors d'oeuvres will be served. You don't want your guests assuming that there will be a meal.

Rehearsal Dinner Al Fresco
Rehearsal Dinner Al Fresco | Source

Inviting Guests

If your rehearsal dinner includes guests other than parents, attendants and immediate family members, you will have to send out invitations. If you are sending separate invitations for your rehearsal dinner, be sure to send them out shortly after you send out the wedding invitations. It is perfectly acceptable to place a telephone call to your guests or you can also send an e-card. Your invitations can be either printed or handwritten. Remember, if the wedding rehearsal will be taking place just before the dinner, be sure to include both the time and place of the wedding rehearsal and the time and location of the rehearsal dinner on the invitation.

Guests At Wedding Rehearsal Dinner
Guests At Wedding Rehearsal Dinner | Source

Preparing And Sending Out Invitations

If you are wondering what to write or print on your rehearsal dinner invitation, here are a few ideas:

1) If you are going to send your rehearsal dinner invitation as part of your wedding invitation, you can word it like this:

Please also join us for a Rehearsal dinner in honor of

Angela and John

Friday, July 28th at 7:00p.m.

Spuntini Restaurant and Bar

116 Avenue Rd.Toronto, Ontario

Please reply to Julianna

(416) 555-5555

2) If you plan on sending your guests a rehearsal dinner invitation separate from the wedding invitation you can word it like this:

A Rehearsal Dinner...

In anticipation of

Angela & John's special day,

Please join us

Friday, July 28th at 7:00p.m.

for sumptuous food, drinks, and cheer

Spuntini Restaurant and Bar

116 Avenue Rd.Toronto, Ontario

Please reply to Julianna

(416) 555-5555

3) If you plan on sending your guests a rehearsal dinner invitation via an email, you can word it like this:

Please join us to celebrate with

Angela & John

at their rehearsal dinner

Friday, July 28th at 7:00p.m.

Spuntini Restaurant and Bar

116 Avenue Rd.

Toronto, Ontario

Rehearsal immediately preceding dinner

at Our Lady Of The Annunciation.

RSVP to Julianna (416) 555-5555 or please reply to this email.

Wedding Rehearsal Dinner Invitation
Wedding Rehearsal Dinner Invitation | Source


Toasts are common at rehearsal dinners. Generally the toasts begin following dinner. If the groom's parents are hosting the dinner, his father or both his parents make a toast first. They usually toast their soon-to-be daughter-in-law and her family. The next toast is made by the groom to his bride-to-be, the guests and the hosts. However, the bride and groom can choose to give a toast together.

Quotes To Include

Here are some special quotes you can use in your rehearsal dinner toasts. They can also be incorporated into your wedding reception toasts as well.

"Night and day you are the one, Only you beneath the moon and under the sun." ~Cole Porter

"I am like a falling star who has finally found her place next to another in a lovely constellation, where we will sparkle in the heavens forever." ~Amy Tan

"I have spread my dreams under your feet. Tread softly because you tread on my dreams." ~William Butler Yeats

"Marriage is like a golden ring in a chain, whose beginning is a glance and whose ending is eternity." ~Kahlil Gibran

"Grow old with me! The best is yet to be."~Robert Browning

"I love you, not for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you." ~Roy Croft

"At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet." ~Plato

"You're nothing short of my everything." ~Ralph Block

"One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life: that word is love." ~Sophocles

"The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds, and that's what you've given me. That's what I hope to give to you forever."~Nicholas Sparks (The Notebook)

Wedding Rehearsal Toast Quotes And Speeches
Wedding Rehearsal Toast Quotes And Speeches | Source

Helpful Tips

Traditionally, the groom's parents host the rehearsal dinner. However, today both sets of parents or pretty much anyone can host the gathering. To keep you on track, here are a few tips to remember when hosting a rehearsal dinner:

-If you are having a rehearsal dinner with a particular theme and or colour scheme, make sure that it differs from that of the wedding.

-Ensure that you don't serve the same type of food at your rehearsal dinner that you will be serving at your reception, i.e. chicken.

-Traditionally, the rehearsal dinner guest list includes the bride and groom, of course, the bridal party and their spouses or dates and both immediate families. However, it is really up to you as to who you wish to invite. For example, oftentimes the officiant and his or her spouse are invited as well as any out-of-town guests.

-The rehearsal dinner is the perfect time to present the gifts to the attendants, especially if it something they need to wear the day of the wedding, i.e. jewelry. If you have presents for the parents, you can choose to give it to them at the dinner or better yet, in private.

-Take this opportunity to introduce your guests to one another. You can choose to introduce your guests formally by making your rounds to each table or by casually mixing and mingling.

-Don't forget to thank your parents and future in-laws. It would be a wonderful gesture to propose a toast at the rehearsal dinner in recognition of all their love, support, understanding and help throughout the wedding planning process.

-Be smart and don't indulge in too much alcohol at the rehearsal dinner. You want to look and feel your best on the wedding day. You certainly don't want to have a hangover or look like a mess.

-Entertainment is always a great idea so a video or a slideshow of the bride and groom as children, is always fun. Perhaps a mini, lighthearted toast and roast might be in order.

-If you want to ensure that everyone knows what's expected of them on the wedding day, the rehearsal dinner is a good time to go over it. It's smart to deal with last minute details with your family and wedding party just in case someone doesn’t know where and when they are supposed to meet the next morning or if they have been assigned any particular responsibilities.

-End the party early so everyone has a good rest before the wedding day. Try to keep your rehearsal dinner to a maximum of four hours.

Wedding Rehearsal Attendant's Gift
Wedding Rehearsal Attendant's Gift | Source


Whether your rehearsal dinner is a large and fancy sit down meal, cocktails and finger foods or a casual t-shirts and jeans barbecue, remember to relax and enjoy the company of your family and friends. That being said, as I have mentioned already, try to wrap it up early so that you can get plenty of beauty rest for one of the most important days of your life.

Wedding Rehearsal Dinner Accessory Ideas


Do you think a Wedding Rehearsal Dinner is Necessary?

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    • rose-the planner profile imageAUTHOR

      rose-the planner 

      5 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

      Thank you so much DDE. Rehearsal dinners are always wonderful because it is the last event to unwind with loved ones before the big event. Take care! -Rose

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      A useful and interesting hub on this topic, you certainly did your research to the point, voted up!

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 

      5 years ago from Texas

      You are welcome Rose, you have a wonderful day also. --Shyron

    • rose-the planner profile imageAUTHOR

      rose-the planner 

      5 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

      Thank you so much for stopping by Shyron. I really appreciate your kind words and vote up. Take care and have a wonderful day! -Rose

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 

      5 years ago from Texas

      This is very nice, Rose, this is very useful, beautiful and interesting.

      Voted up-UBI and shared.


    • rose-the planner profile imageAUTHOR

      rose-the planner 

      5 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

      Thank you so much Rajan Jolly for stopping by and for voting up. I really appreciate it. In North America, the rehearsal dinner is quite popular. Take care! -Rose

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      5 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      This is something that we do not have in our country. An interesting read and very informative.

      Voted up and interesting.


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