Making the Most Out of Your Wedding Rehearsal Dinner

3 min read

Making the Most Out of Your Wedding Rehearsal Dinner

Why would anyone bother about the wedding rehearsal dinner when there isn't even enough time to complete all wedding-related tasks as the big day comes closer?

The rehearsal dinner isn’t part of any wedding rule book, but then again, even the so-called rules of wedding planning have been broken from time to time.

wedding rehearsal dinner

Jane and Michael of the TV Series Jane the Virgin in their church wedding rehearsal with Jane’s grandmother, mother, and father. Photo via TV Fanatic

Small and intimate weddings don’t normally require a wedding rehearsal dinner since there are fewer people involved. Bigger and formal weddings require greater coordination. Here, a wedding rehearsal dinner would be warranted to ensure that things run smoothly.

Involve Your Wedding Planner

wedding rehearsal dinner

Celebrity wedding planner David Tutera is every bride’s wedding planner. No one can dispute his attention to detail and ability to save the day. Here he is in one of the episodes of Unveiled, his own TV show. Photo via We TV

Let your wedding planner help you in the rehearsal dinner. Although the rehearsal dinner is for updates and reminders for everyone involved in the wedding, they might get too caught up in the wedding high to remember the little details. If you have a wedding planner, include him/her in the wedding rehearsal dinner.

Schedule it at least 2 Days Before the Wedding

A lot of wedding rehearsal dinners take place a day before the wedding. It’s better to set it two days before the wedding to give everybody time to relax before the big day. 

However, if the night before the big day is really all you’ve got, keep dinner down to just 2 hours at most. Eat a hearty dinner, have a little fun, but get your points across quickly. Save your energy for the big day!

What to Take Up During Wedding Rehearsal Dinner

Your wedding planner can cover this for you but it would still be good to know what’s going on. Here are the things you should discuss with the wedding party.

  • Order of procession and recession. People not knowing where and when they should go is a huge waste of time. Not to mention, it messes up the flow of an important event. You might have a wedding planner to deal with the sequence on the day itself but it’s good to give the wedding party a head start.
  • The flow of the program. Lock this in on the wedding rehearsal dinner so it doesn’t come out half-baked on the wedding day itself.
  • The pace of the walk.Some people still get uncomfortable walking down the aisle, even if they’re not the bride or groom. The rehearsal dinner is the perfect time to tell the people to walk in a pace that allows for photos to be taken without being overly dramatic.
  • Seating Arrangements. There should still be a visible chart on the wedding day for reference but show it to the most important guests, who will most probably be present in the wedding.
  • Assign the readings and other roles. You may have other roles in mind for the other guests. Whether you want them to deal with readings and other ceremonial matters, it’s great to give them a heads-up as soon as you decide who will do what. But if you haven’t, the wedding rehearsal dinner would be a good time to do it.

Wedding Rehearsal Dinners are not just for Rehearsals

Wedding rehearsal dinners are not just for last-minute wedding preparations. They are also the perfect time to celebrate an alternate version of your wedding. Weddings, although solemn and intimate, tend to be strict and formal. It’s a huge day and you want all good things to happen in one day but reality dictates that that’s not always possible.

wedding rehearsal dinner

Use the wedding rehearsal dinner as a time to kick back and relax before the big day. Be inspired by this idea from A Practical Wedding.

If you’re getting hitched in a small ceremony, bring in a big, casual party days before your wedding. If you’re gonna go casual on your actual wedding, incorporate some formalities in your rehearsal dinner if you have those fantasies. Most of all, don’t forget to relax and have fun!