Larry James' CelebrateIntimateWeddings BLOG

Friday, November 21, 2014

7 Dos and Don’ts for a Perfect STEN Do

Larry’s NOTE: What’s a “STEN do,” you ask? It is a combo party for stags and hens (a combo bachelor and bachelorette party). Traditionally the “last night of freedom,” hen and stag do’s are now basically an excuse to go and have a good time, in whatever format that might take. A STEN do is a joint celebration where they all party together. STEN do parties see couples embarking on adventurous group outings with their friends to celebrate their last night as singletons together, with one party planning company seeing a 100% increase in the last three years.

WED-STEN-DoPopular activities include paintball, whitewater rafting, highland games, as well as less adventurous activities such as recording a pop song or recreating an iconic music video to play at the wedding reception. Consider whether the friends of the bride and groom gel well together or not.

While the idea of having a joint hen and stag party may raise some eyebrows at first, there are some great advantages to having a STEN do; 1. You can save on money by having one party instead of two and 2. It’s a great ice breaker for the hens and stags to get to know each other a bit better (hopefully not too much! 😉 ) before the wedding. A combination of thoughtful planning and fun games is sure to make a hearty party to be cherished forever.

Wedding Ideas Magazine, Guest Author

An increasing amount of people are booking ‘STEN dos’. Although it might not be for everyone, people are seeing the benefits of throwing a joint hen and stag do party. We asked hen and stag do specialists for the dos and don’ts on how to throw a Sten that will please everyone.

The Benefits

It’s just fact these days that most couples are spending longer together before they are married. Which renders the ‘last night of freedom’ concept as rather dead. Their single status and lifestyle has long since passed and some couple’s feel inclined to celebrate their hen and stag do together, seeing it as an extra opportunity to spend some special time together…

Keeping in mind the busy lifestyles most of us lead, it is becoming more common to find couples sharing hobbies and activities to get that quality time together. If this is the case, indulging in your same passions could offer you the chance to save money, or combine both budgets to go bigger and better.

A sten party can also benefit your family and friends! If you have been together for a long time, chances are you have a large group of mutual friends. A sten do means everyone can stick together and enjoy the evening. If, on the other hand, your friends have never had the chance to spend a lot of time together, this is the perfect opportunity for everyone to come together and mingle before the big day.

What can you do?

Couples usually separate during the day and enjoy different activities, and then meet up for an evening meal, drinks or night out. Or the other way round…

There are plenty of day-time activities you can do – whether you and your party are the adventurous type, the explorer type, or the cheesy-fun type. From paintballing and watersports, to a weekend on the slopes, to a more relaxed craft session, you’re bound to find something that everyone would enjoy.

And for the night-time? Well… the list is almost endless. It could be a wild night out for your sten party to enjoy together, a fancy three-course meal, an evening at a comedy club or the chance to take in a casino. Or if you are a music lover, why not all go to a gig of your favourite band?

Dos and Don’ts

• Do it for the right reasons, and not because of trust issues. It should be to double the fun and definitely not just to keep an eye on your partner.
• Do make sure it’s something you both really want. If one of you is pushing the other one, it will only end up in resentment.
• Do ensure that planning is a priority. Joining forces often means a large group, and spontaneity just gos right out the window.
• Do take into consideration the other hens and stags expectations when you make your decision. Will your maid of honour be upset at not being able to make the plans and surprise you? Will your H2B’s friends just want a lads’ night out?
• Don’t get excited too early on with the idea of a joint party. Will you regret not spending that special bonding time with just you and the girls? If you don’t get to see them as much as you used to, it might be the right time to.
• Do make sure it’s fair and balance. You want to avoid any bust ups or arguments so your sten do doesn’t end up like an Eastenders-style drama.
• Do think about the dynamics of the group. Make sure there are no awkward situations between a hen and a stag, and maybe no relationships when they get on a bit too well and slope off early.

Larry’s NOTE: STEN do parties have also been referred to as “Hag do” parties. Definition of a Hag: a witch, especially one in the form of an ugly old woman (often used as a term of disparagement for a woman). NEVER a good idea! 😉

BONUS Articles: Rise of the STEN party!
Joint Hen and Stag Dos – The Rules

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