The Eve of your Wedding – Rehearsal Dinner Essentials

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Written by: Phoebe Sebring 

Cover image by: Olivia Jacob Photo

When you signed up for this whole wedding planning thing, I guarantee you didn’t sign up for a part time job in which you had not one, but over 5 events to plan leading up to the big day itself. Nonetheless it is nearly 3 to 6 weeks before your wedding and it is time to send yet another invitation. Did you add more guests to the list? Of course not. It is the perfect time to send rehearsal dinner invitations.

Typically on the eve of the wedding day there must be a dress rehearsal, after all you can’t have anyone tripping down the aisle. After practicing the procession and ensuring the entire bridal party is on their best behavior comes the fun part – the rehearsal dinner! The rehearsal dinner is one of the more intimate nights of wedding celebrations, but still requires some planning to go off without a hitch. Lucky for you IMPACT has plenty of experience with planning ALL of the details of your wedding weekend! Some of our best tips to make the night as memorable as possible. 

The perfect time to welcome your close family and friends to celebrate a weekend of love and new beginnings has arrived, and whether or not you are gathered for a small backyard celebration or more extravagant formal gathering the rehearsal dinner plans have a few essentials. The dinner, the gifts, the toasts, and dessert of course. 

Once invitations are set out and the venue is set it’s time to talk food! Depending on where you spend the romantic evening you will have to find a caterer or work with the Food and Beverage of your venue department to balance your menu with rich food that prepares you for the long day that awaits ahead. We suggest making sure it’s different from the food you will be serving during the night of your wedding! 

Typically the toasts will kick the night off and get the champagne flowing among all your guests. The toasts look different for everybody, but the host should begin with welcoming words followed by the groom, then bride, and conclude with the bridal party. It is a time for laughs and love. Some couples prefer toasting their guests together in a more intimate way. The best part of rehearsal dinner speeches? You can get a lot of the mic time out of the way now and make sure your groomsmen don’t have any tricks up their sleeve. If you’re wondering, stories from the entire fraternity spring break in 2010 count as tricks up the sleeve. 

As the meals are winding down and plates are cleared the perfect opportunity arises to recognize all of the important people in your life that supported you before and through the wedding planning process. If you have gifts to give your parents or your wedding party, it’s best to get it done at the rehearsal dinner so that you will not have to worry about it on the big day! 

Ever heard of a groom’s cake? Well the groom’s cake is a tradition among brides to give their husbands in support of his interests, adding humor to the affectionate gesture. Have something on the little more ridiculous side that you do not want to ruin your beautifully designed wedding photos? The rehearsal dinner is the perfect time to kill two birds with one stone. You can present the cake and serve dessert all in one. 

As your, intimate, romantic, extravagant, whatever you make it rehearsal dinner comes to a close it’s always best to remind your guests of the timeline for the next day. The quick refresher will keep the last minute details off of your mind for a great night’s sleep. 

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