How Long Is Your Wedding Reception?
Cocktail Hour (30 Min – 1 Hour)
The cocktail hour was established for several reasons. The main reason is to keep the guests occupied and entertained while the bride, groom, wedding party, and family members are taking pictures. The cocktail hour also serves as a time to get the guest organized for the reception. Generally the cocktail hour is located in the main ballroom, foyer, or patio. Upbeat background music is played for the guests as they mingle, snack on appetizers (hot & cold) and refresh themselves at the hosted bar. This is a great time to have a Photo Booth.
Grand Entrance/ Dinner (45 Min – 1 Hour)
To formally introduce the parents, wedding party, and bride & groom into the reception hall while building excitement for the reception. The grand entrance takes place through a door that is clearly visible by most, if not all the guests in the room. Parents, grandparents, flower girl, ring bearer, ushers, bridesmaids, groomsmen, and the bride and groom are the usual participants of the grand entrance. Your entertainment should physically line all of the participants outside the door. They should use a pre-planned list of names, spelled phonetically, in the order they are to be announced.
While your guest may have had an opportunity to nibble on some appetizers during the cocktail hour, the bride & groom and the entire wedding party may not have eaten for several hours. By having a time line provided by your entertainer you can tell your venue within 10 minutes (give or take) when the meal should be served. Most venues take great pride in their food service and desire to serve the food when it is hot and fresh. The typical duration for the meal is 60 minutes. Make sure you take the time to eat. You are the star of the show. Your friends, family, and loved ones all want a chance to congratulate and talk with you. In order to do all this and more for the next 4 to 5 hours you are going to need lots of energy, energy you can only get by eating a good meal. (Song List)
Toasting/ Cutting of the Cake (15 – 30 Min)
The DJ will let the room know when toasting will start, so everyone has enough time to grab there drinks. The best man and maid/matron of honor will each present a toast to the bride and groom. It is also traditional for the father of the bride, and the father of the groom to offer a toast. It is important that those who are presenting a toast are aware of their duties. A prepared toast always makes a better toast. A speaker with a written or mental outline on topics they will talk about (not a “word for word” written speech) is best. Most times the speeches will end the bride and groom thanking everyone.
Cutting of the Cake
Cutting the wedding cake together, still a predominant ritual at weddings, symbolizes the couple’s unity, their shared future, and their life together as one. The cake is placed on a plate and the bride and groom feed the cake to one another with their fingers. Traditionally, the groom feeds the bride first, and then the bride feeds the groom. They can also feed one another simultaneously. A champagne toast can also be included before or after the cutting and feeding of the cake. (Song List)
Special Dances (15 Min)
The first dance, for the bride and groom, is a very special moment. It is the first time they will dance together as husband and wife. The first “dance” is a symbol of their new life together. (Song List)
Father Daughter/ Mother Son
These dances give the parents of the bride and groom a chance to dance with the newly married couple. Traditionally two dances take place with the parents; the father and daughter dance, followed by the mother and son dance. It is best to choose a song that reflects the intimacy of your relationship to that parent. To listen to music selections for the parents dance. If your family consists of step parents as well as natural parents, you may want to include them into these dances as well. The entertainer can ask the natural father of the bride to join the bride on the dance floor and half way through have the stepfather step in to share the dance. (Song List)
Wedding Party Dance
To include all persons in the wedding party out to the join the bride and groom on the dance floor. Some of the couples dancing in the wedding party may not know one another and may feel uncomfortable dancing together. A great way to have the best of both worlds is to start out with the traditional wedding party dance. This dance is the first upbeat song of the dance party. This is like a kick start for the dance party. (Song List)
Bouquet/ Garter Removal & Toss (10 Min)
The happily newlywed bride passes on her good fortune to a single woman by tossing the bouquet over her head to a crowd of female guests. The woman who catches the bouquet shall be the next to marry. Traditionally the bride tosses her own bouquet to the female guests on the dance floor. However a new tradition has come to replace that. Many times the bride wishes to keep her bouquet and have in preserved or the bouquet may be to large and heavy and could potentially hurt one of the female guests when it is thrown. Most florists can provide a “throwing bouquet”, designed to look similar to the bridal bouquet but on a smaller scale. There are many types of songs to choose from for the bouquet toss. It is best to choose a song that refers to females or male/female relationships.
Garter Removal & Toss
The garter toss is a parallel custom to the bouquet toss. The groom removes the garter from the bride’s leg and then tosses the garter over his head to the group of single men at the reception in hopes that that male who catches the garter will be married next. Traditionally the bride is seated on a chair in the center of the dance floor. The entertainer will then invite all the single gentlemen to the dance floor to stand behind the seated bride. A song is played as the groom kneels down to remove the garter with his hands or in some cases with his teeth. A different song is played for the toss. The groom turns his back towards the group of men and the entertainer will count off as the groom tosses the garter over his head toward the men. (Song List)
Dance Party (Time Left over)
The purpose of open dancing is to celebrate the newly formed union of your marriage by dancing and having a ball with friends and family. The biggest suggestion we can give to our bride and grooms to create a successful dancing portion of the reception is to stay out on the dance floor as much as possible! Remember that you are the nucleus of the party. You are the center of the universe that day. Where ever you are is where your guests will be. We give you the option to pick as many songs as you want for the dance party. Or we can chose all the song that we know as professionals will work. We have a must play list and also a do not play list. (Song List)