There is no doubt that one of the major highlights of a wedding is the speeches. Its right up there with the bride walking down the aisle, the ‘I do’s’ and the cutting of the cake.
So how do you get it right? You have your speakers all lined up, you have prepped them in advance, they know they have a strict time limit and the best man knows just how close he can get to the line without crossing it. So what are you forgetting?
Ryan John’s Number 1 Rule For Wedding Catering Etiquette – Don’t Talk With Your Mouth Full!
Well, actually, it is when everyone else’s mouth is full, but that doesn’t sound quite so catchy.
The timing of the speeches and the catering is absolutely vital. You owe it to your speakers to get this little detail right.
Nobody wants to get up there, under the spotlight, ready to deliver the speech they have practised a dozen times in the mirror, only to be drowned out by the din of cutlery banging on plates.
So how do you ensure this does not happen on the day? Well I am glad you asked, because that leads me to this…
Ryan John’s Number 2 Rule For Wedding Catering Etiquette – Nail Your Time Line, Share It With Your Caterer And Then Add In Some Buffer.
If you choose me to cater your wedding you can relax. I will make sure we get this locked away and plan everything meticulously.
Communication is the key. If those involved know the timings in advance, then everything will go to plan. In fact I actually like to help my clients with finalising the timings, as everyone is different and there is no longer a one-size-fits-all approach for a wedding reception.
A lot of my wedding catering clients these days are choosing to break from tradition, both in terms of the catering and the run sheet for the day. And because I have been to more than my fair share of weddings I am able to throw some random ideas out there that you may not have previously considered.
Which leads me to…
Ryan John’s Number 3 Rule For Wedding Catering Etiquette – Rules Are Made To Be Broken
The traditional run sheet for a sit down wedding reception would look something like this:
- The Master Of Ceremonies (MC) introduces themselves and welcomes everyone to the Reception. The MC introduces the wedding party and announces, with great enthusiasm and applause, the bride and groom’s arrival into the wedding reception.
- Entree is served
- The MC proposes The Loyal Toast – if appropriate
- Main Course is served
- The MC introduces the person (usually the Father of the bride) who will propose a toast to the Bride and Groom
- The Groom’s Speech and his toast to the Bridesmaids
- The Best Man’s Speech and his toast to the Mother and Father of the Bride
- Father or Mother of the Bride’s Speech and his/her toast to the Mother and Father of the Groom
- The Father or Mother of the Groom’s Speech they can welcome and toast the traditional guest of honour and their new daughter-in-law, the Bride
- The Best Man speech
- The MC closes the speeches by thanking everyone, and announces when the cutting of the cake will be made.
- Dessert and coffee is served
In my experience there are plenty of Perth couples prepared to break with this tradition and bend the rules a little. And interestingly the wedding catering plays a role here. Let me explain…
If you have opted for a less traditional and more modern wedding catering option, like a gourmet BBQ or cocktail party, then this changes everything. You no longer have a formal setting with people sitting at designated tables.
So use this to your advantage and have some fun with the speeches. Perhaps consider staggering them throughout the night. Get some of the more emotional (or potentially boring) ones done early, when people are less intoxicated and likely to pay more attention. Then when everyone has a few drinks under their belt roll out the headline acts (traditionally the best man should fall in this category).
No matter how you decide to run the event, as long as you keep the caterer up to speed with your timeline and objectives for the day, you will be fine.
That is, as long as you follow my final rule…
Ryan John’s Number 4 Rule For Wedding Catering Etiquette – Leave Enough Time For Dancing!
Everyone loves a boogie, and it is essential to allow enough time for guests to get their groove on! Enough said.