How To Fill the Gap Between Ceremony and Reception

Wedding Ceremony

The point of your wedding day is the ceremony! You’re not just throwing a party. You can do that anytime. So, you want to have as many friends and family as possible see you get married. Best way to do that? Have no gap in time between the ceremony and the reception. Easy to do if you’re getting married at a hotel, country club, banquet hall, etc.

If the ceremony starts at 5:00pm, have cocktails and hors d’ouerves start at 5:30pm — even if you’re doing photos then. Make it seamless for your guests.But what if you have a gap — for you’re getting married at a church or a chapel? If your reception is elsewhere, you have to have a time gap. Typically, only half the guests show up for the ceremony!

How do you get them to come to the ceremony? Tell them, in advance, where they can hang out between the ceremony and the reception. Guide them to 2 places.(and only two).

#1: Choose one sports bar for friends and relatives your age.

 #2: Choose one Panera Bread or Corner Bakery for older relatives. They will want something quieter, where they can talk.
Otherwise, those who do show up for the ceremony go back to their home or to the hotel and wait for your reception. Later, they hear a relative they haven’t seen in a while say they did the same thing. “Oh, I wish I knew that. We could have hung out together.” When they do hang out, time flies! All of a sudden, they realize it’s time to go to the reception. They had fun. And you paid for none of it!
Put this information in:
  • your invitation
  • your wedding web site
  • an email or text the week of the wedding
Bottom line: If you help your guests fill the gap,
many more will come to your ceremony!
Article from “I Do” Weddings, Ltd. with Rev. Phil Landers

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