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Before you can make a decision about where you will 

hold your wedding, you need to decide 

what style of wedding you want to have.

This section looks at style options and 

will assist you in deciding on your venue.


















Whether your reception is formal or informal, following an order of events will keep the affair orderly and running smoothly. Oftentimes the caterer, maitre d' or master of ceremonies will assist you in keeping the show on schedule, so it's wise to review the order of the day (or evening), in advance, with your point person. Consider the following as a suggested guide which you can tailor to your particular needs. 

1. Guests arrive and pass through the receiving/reception line. The reception line should be arranged so that the bride stands to the right of the groom. The line then follows this order: bride's mother, bride's father, groom's mother, groom's father, bride, groom, maid-of-honor, bridesmaids. Although the fathers need not "officially" be in line, it is a nice twist to tradition for them to do so. If they choose not to, they can instead mingle with the guests. 

2. An announcement is made by the Master of Ceremonies announcing the arrival of the newly married couple.

3. The bride and groom lead a procession of the bridal party to the dais (or the bridal party enters and goes to their individual table assignments). If there is a dais or bride's table it should be arranged as follows: 

6, 5, 6, 5, 4, 1, 2, 3, 6, 5, 6, 5, (1.bride, 2. groom, 3.maid-of-honor, man, 5. bridesmaids, 6.ushers) 

4. The bride and groom then take their places. The bridal party is seated and then all the other guests are seated. 

5. The first course is served and the toasts are made.

6. Any telegrams are read aloud by the best man or the Master of Ceremonies.

7. The main course is served and completed.

8. The bride cuts the cake. Traditionally the bride takes the knife in her right hand. The groom places his right hand on her right hand. The bride shares the first piece of cake with the groom. Then the remainder of the cake is cut by one of the catering staff and each guest gets a piece. 

9. The bride and groom dance the first dance. 

10. Next, the bride then dances with her father, the best man, her father-in-law, the ushers, and, then again, the groom. After that, any guest may dance with her. 

11. The groom dances with his mother-in-law, the maid-of-honor, his own mother, the bridesmaids, and, again, with the bride. After that he is free to dance with any other guest. 

12. The bride and groom leave the reception to change into their traveling clothes.

13. The bride returns in her honeymoon clothes and throws her bouquet to the single women guests.

14. The bride and groom say their goodbyes and leave. 


informal version


Introduction of Bridal Party, i.e, the bride and groom are welcomed by the MC (master of ceremonies)
First Dance, bride and groom alone. 

Bridal Party Dance 

Bride/Father Dance 

Groom/Mother Dance. 

Wedding Party Dance (optional). These dances may also be done after the Bouquet Toss and Garter Ceremony. 


After most people have finished the main course, the MC announces the first toast. It is before this first toast that the MC can introduce the members of the wedding party by name. Toasts may also be done after the meal. 
The First Toast is offered to the Bride by a brother or someone close to the groom. 

Parents Welcome the Guests. the brides parents are hosting, they will speak first Guests traveling from afar are thanked by name and any new family member (child, spouse, etc.) can be mentioned. 

Other Parents Response Toast and their own words of welcome. 
Best Man's Toast to the Bride If not done earlier. 

Speaking on Behalf of the Bride, her sister or maid of honor presents a toast to the couple. 

Toast to the Bridesmaids by a Groomsman, if not offered earlier by the best man. "Anybody" Toast for any one else with a special greeting. 
Groom's & Bride's Speech, optional, but becoming more common. They thank guests for coming and toast to their parents. 

MC closes by announcing dancing. 

Cake Cutting 

Bouquet Toss & Garter Ceremony 

MC Final Toast 

Last Dance 

Departure of Bridal Couple 


At what time of day are you planning?

  • midweek weddings are particularly popular for cost-conscious couples. 
  • Midweek weddings, especially in the summer, make it easier for guests to attend. 
  • June weekends tend to be booked solid and guests often find it necessary to choose between affairs.


What type of Ceremony?


Your wedding ceremony is the very core of your special day. 
Making it just right, as with every other part of your wedding, requires 
careful planning and organization. 
Although there are price parameters to be considered here as well, 
the successful ceremony is more an issue of content than of budget. 
There are many different options pertaining to your wedding ceremony.  
If you choose a theme wedding for your style, 
you should make use of the ceremony that pertains to that theme or 
at least incorporate elements of the theme into your ceremony.


As mentioned above, your ceremony requires careful planning and organization.  
We have compiled information pertaining to many different types of weddings to 
help you in the crucial planning of your ceremony.


theme-related or traditional? 


Theme weddings are a lot of fun and guests will remember them always.  
A key element to a theme wedding is ensuring the 
guests remember your wedding for all the right reasons!  
Certain factors are important to consider when planning a theme wedding.


Whether you are a traditionalist or lean toward your own personal style,
you can "go by the book" of a traditional wedding or incorporate alternative
or your own personal elements into your wedding.



How large will your wedding be?

(the larger the number, the less intimate the celebration)
  • intimate or grandiose, 

Will children be attending?



The people-mix will, of necessity, influence the style of your wedding.
Planning who and how many people you will invite to your wedding
requires planning, sensitivity and is also affected by your budget.
Not only will your mix of people influence the style of your wedding,
it will directly impact the atmosphere. 
Take care to take these things into consideration when planning your guest list.



Consider what type of meal you would like to have.

  • sit-down dinners are the most formal. 
  • Buffets are a little less formal, but can also be quite elegant.
  • A multi-course dinner can be replaced by cocktail receptions; 
  • Guests may enjoy a combination of hot and cold hors d'oeuvres that are passed by wait persons; can be complimented by stations serving carved items
  • appetizer only party
Planning your meal also encompasses consideration of factors such as
theme, whether your wedding is formal or informal, your budget etc. 
You will need to know what your meal will be before you choose your venue to
ensure your wishes can be accommodated.
Take the time to plan your meal carefully and make use of the Caterer Checklist.