Congratulations on your engagement!
The next big thing on your mind is how to plan your dream wedding. Well, a lot goes into achieving a perfect wedding, and one of them is having an amazing reception. After all, the reception is where the actual party goes down. It is where you will toast to a happy marriage with friends, do your first couple dance, and listen to heartfelt speeches from friends and family.
Yes, planning the perfect reception can be nerve-racking. Luckily, we have compiled a few wedding reception tips to help you along the way.
Know Your Timeline
The first tip for planning your wedding reception is deciding on the wedding date. The time of year you choose for your wedding can significantly affect the availability of venues. Which makes it advisable to set a date that is far enough out to give yourself time to plan your wedding without having to rush.
After setting the date, you want to look for a beautiful venue that accommodates that date. Sometimes, you might find a perfect venue, only to find out that it is completely booked for up to a year or more. In this case, you will have to weigh which option you are willing to compromise on; the venue or the date.
After settling on a venue and date, the next step will be to set a reception budget. The budget helps you prioritize the essential elements of the reception without compromising on the small details. Most reception sites will need an estimate of your guest list to have a rough idea of the total costs, so it is important to have this information.
Working with a wedding planner on the budget is advisable to ensure all items are captured.
Decide on Key Elements
The secret to achieving an amazing reception is planning it meticulously and to the last detail. As such, you need to decide on the following key elements.
What type of reception do you want?
You can choose an indoor or outdoor reception depending on your taste or the reception’s theme. You can also choose whether your guest will stand for a cocktail style reception or sit for a more formal dinner. You also need to decide how the food will be served. Do you want a buffet, plated, or family-style affair? If you choose an outdoor reception, always have a backup plan in case of inclement weather.
Do you want a receiving line?
A receiving line allows you to meet and greet your guests as they congratulate you, but they can be time-consuming. Thus, deciding whether to do one or visit each table as the ceremony continues is important to the flow of the evening.
Do you plan to have speeches?
Speeches are a beautiful moment for both the couple and the guests, but if you plan to include them, make sure they are short and sweet. You should request the ones giving the speech to keep them relatively short.
Is a bouquet or garter toss necessary?
A bouquet and garter toss are classic wedding traditions, and most couples do it because it is fun and engages guests. However, it’s your special day. You can decide to skip it altogether if that doesn’t fit your style or vision.
Do you plan on having special dances?
The first dance, daddy-daughter dance, money dance, and parents dance are all special moments that make wedding receptions extra memorable. It is essential to determine beforehand whether you want any of these dances and liaise with the DJ to choose the music for that dance before the wedding reception.
Should you include other activities?
Having activities like photo sessions in a photo booth can help you capture special memories with guests. An open dance floor can also help crown the day with cheer and fun. As such, it is important to decide what other activity you want during the reception and plan for it (for instance, hire a DJ.)
Sort the Seating Arrangement
If you plan on having a sit-down reception, you should sort the seating arrangement beforehand. Make sure to place parents, family, friends, and bridal parties at their respective tables while paying attention to the elderly and physically handicapped for comfort and convenience. You can use place cards to direct guests to their specific seats or escort cards to let guests pick their seats at their assigned table.
Finalize the Reception Menu
You’ve booked the venue, hired the caterer, and now it’s time to finalize the menu. How do you decide what foods to serve at your wedding reception? What should you include? What shouldn’t you?
There is no reception without food and drinks, and you want to ensure your guests are served the best. As such, you want to plan a tasting. When choosing food for your wedding reception, you want to create a memorable experience for your guests. Make sure to have different foods on the menu to appeal to different tastes and preferences.
If you reside in the Twin Cities or surrounding area, Green Mill Catering can help make your special day memorable with our exceptional catering services. We offer a wide variety of services, including full-service catering, buffet catering, plated meals, dessert bars and even beverage services. We also provide a unique experience where we will work with you to create a custom menu perfect for your event.
Plan the Grand Exit
The grand exit is a classic way to end your reception, and you should inform your guests beforehand. After your guests have danced their hearts out, they can line up to create a pathway where you and your spouse will walk or run as you exit. You can supply them with glow sticks or sparklers to light up the way and make it picture-perfect.
Work with the Best Caterers
When planning your wedding, you want to ensure everything goes smoothly. That means finding an experienced and professional caterer that knows what they’re doing. When you want great food, you’ve got to choose the best caterer!
At Green Mill Catering, we handle all catering services for your wedding reception to ensure you can sit back, enjoy exceptional food, and make memories on your special day. We are known for our top-notch meals around the Twin Cities and surrounding areas. When you work with us, you get the best possible results every time. We know what works and always use only the highest-quality ingredients and pair it with friendly and efficient service. So whether you’re planning a big event or just looking for a great meal, count on us to deliver the very best.
Inquire today to get started planning the perfect wedding reception!