Ron Ruth, Guest Author
Begin by developing a timeline that provides an even-paced flow of events. In doing so, you will prevent the most memorable moments of your reception from flying by too quickly.
A comprehensive timeline will also keep your event from coming to a standstill and boring your guests to tears. But, be practical, respectful and flexible with your timeline.
It is a given that, as the Bride and Groom, you are the guests of honor. But, you are also the host of your celebration. Be respectful. Remember that guests are waiting on your arrival at the venue. Work with your photographer to organize and maximize the time for your post-ceremony photos so you can arrive at the reception venue no later than an hour after your guests… 45 minutes would be better.
Visiting every table to welcome each guest individually is certainly polite. However, it adds an avoidable lull that will have many looking at their watches. Refer back to the section where we discussed creating “Moments and Memories.” If you really want your guests to feel welcome and know how glad you are they have given of their time to be with you, keep them entertained.
Be practical in timeline assessments. On an average, it is not necessary to allow more than 45 minutes to an hour for dinner. As the guest of honor, you will most likely be served, first. That means you’ll be done eating first and can move on to fun activities and/or formalities that your guests can enjoy while they’re finishing their meals.
If you choose to include a memory video as a scheduled activity in the reception, limit your video to 7-8 minutes. As entertaining as you may think it is to view every baby photo ever taken of the two of you, guests will quickly lose interest. A short and entertaining memory video, however, can make for a great transition between dinner and toasts.
Always remember that timelines are subjective and the unexpected can cause a need to hold off on certain activities or create a need to move forward, ahead of schedule. Either way, be flexible.
Once you’ve created your plan, share it with every member of your wedding reception team so they can help you stay on schedule. And, finally, assign someone with the responsibility of keeping you on track. But, whatever you do, make sure that “someone” isn’t you… or other family members!
Copyright © 2015 – Ron Ruth. Ron Ruth is the only certified, Wedding Entertainment Director™ in the central Midwest and the owner of Ron Ruth Wedding Entertainment; a Kansas City based wedding DJ company. He is a 20 year veteran of the wedding entertainment industry and has helped over 1,000 couples and their guests enjoy unforgettably fun wedding receptions. Ron serves on the WED Guild™ Advisory Board, is a member of the Association of Bridal Consultants and National Association of Catering Executives, and a credited contributor to Peter Merry’s celebrated book of fun wedding ideas, “The Best Wedding Reception…Ever!” Ron is also the author of two highly acclaimed wedding workshops for engaged couples and a nationally recognized speaker in the wedding entertainment industry. Visit Ron’s Blog.
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