The rehearsal dinner is a pre-wedding ceremony tradition, usually held after the wedding rehearsal and typically the night before the wedding ceremony.
The guests generally include the couple to be married and the wedding party, but may also include extended family and out-of-town guests parents and grandparents. The rehearsal dinner costs are traditionally incurred by the parents of the groom. However, modern traditions allow for either the parents of the bride or the parents of the groom to incur these costs. Sometimes the Bride and Groom will host this event. Meaning another cost to consider when planning a wedding.
The purpose of the rehearsal dinner is for the relatives and friends of the bride and groom to meet and have a good time. The couple generally takes this opportunity to thank everyone who has put work into helping them with the wedding preparations. Activities generally include toasting and the presentation of small gifts for those who have helped plan the wedding.
If you plan ahead and ask a lot of wedding venues will offer lower cost dinner options prior to the wedding that would work perfect for the rehearsal dinner.
For example here at Menifee Lakes Country Club we offer smaller buffet options at a fraction of the cost for a wedding and since you are bringing in multiple events we will wave the cost of the room fee. Another way to work a discount is consider doing the rehearsal on a Thursday night, many location offer smaller minimums or incentives for weekday nights. Here at Menifee Lakes we keep our bar open late on Thursday nights so you can set up a smaller dinner and have the option of a bar for guests which will eliminate any bar minimums. Cheers to that!
If you are footing the entire bill and trying to keep it inexpensive consider only serving appetizers in lou of a full sit down dinner. Most guests at the rehearsal dinner still have things to do before the wedding like pick up tuxes or get that last-minute manicure so most wont mind skipping the full dinner for a appetizers and time to finish last-minute errands.
If you are worried about giving away the “look or feel” of your wedding at your rehearsal dinner ask about using a different room, or simply a different set up. Maybe family style longs tables if you plan to do rounds at your wedding or one large square table or even cocktail tables for a mix and mingle feel if you are doing appetizers or finger foods.
Plus if you set up your rehearsal dinner at the same location as your rehearsal you don’t have to worry about anyone getting lost driving from the rehearsal to the dinner or skipping out on the dinner portion after the rehearsal. For more tips about planning the timing of your rehearsal check out a past post.
C & C