Creating a wedding reception timeline can help your wedding day run smoothly. There are many aspects to think about when preparing a timeline. As an experienced DJ, Bryan Vitta understands why a timeline is important.
Below is one example of how DJ Bryan Vitta guides along a wedding reception:
Depending on the planning of your reception, cocktail hour normally begins after the ceremony, before the bridal party arrives at the reception. It typically lasts at least one hour. The bar will be open for guests and the staff typically serves hor d`oeuvres.
Once the guests find their seats, the wedding party is gathered together in a room or hallway just outside the reception hall. This is typically done by the DJ and/or a member of the venue’s staff. The grand entrance is the formal introductions of the bridal party.
Timing works great when you go from the grand entrance right into the first dance. It keeps the flow of the reception moving along. You can dance for a full song, or slowly fade out after 2 minutes. Halfway through the song, you can invite the guests to join in, if you wish to do so.
While there are a handful of toasts made at each of the events leading up to the big day, the wedding reception toasts are the most formal of all. Traditionally, the best man kicks off the wedding toasts, followed by a toast from the maid/matron of honor. In addition, the parents of the bride/groom may be invited to say a few words.
The two most common reception dinners are plated sit-down and buffet-style. The most traditional is a plated meal, which is what the majority of the couples choose. A buffet-style offers the most variety for your guests. The most important item to consider is how to get your guests through the food lines as quickly and efficiently as possible. Having your DJ call tables is the most effective way to do so. During dinner, DJ Bryan Vitta likes to play easy listening as background music.
If you are doing the father-daughter and mother-son dances, a great time to do them is immediately after dinner.
This is the time to get the party started by switching to high-energy music and your band or DJ should encourage everyone to join you on the dance floor. Some couples like to come up with their own music playlist. If not, a more experienced DJ can read the room and come up with music that best fits the crowd.
Cake Cutting, Bouquet Toss and Garter Toss
First up is the cake cutting. DJ Bryan Vitta likes to have the bride hold the knife, with the groom’s hand on top of hers. Then, have them start cutting the cake and pause. This is a great way for the photographer to get pictures, as well as the guests. Then of course, cut the first slice. The bride feeds the groom, and vice versa. Then, the cake is cut into slices and given to all the guests. This is also a good time for the newlyweds to say a few words and thank the guests for celebrating their special day with them. Then, this is followed by the bouquet and garter toss, if those are the traditions that you are keeping.
Dance till the end!
Say your final goodbyes and hug your guests. The band or DJ will have the guests head to the exit for the preparations of the grand exit. This is a great opportunity for the newlyweds to have a private dance on the dance floor. If you are having a sparkler exit or other festive flairs, have a member of the bridal party or someone from the venue organize all the guests along your exit path as well as hand out all the sparklers or other items. Then, grab hands and make a dash for your happily ever after!