by, Bobbi Hicks
With as many weddings that I do, I most often get two types for ceremonies. One is at the venue where the reception will be held. The other is when the ceremony is at a location, such as a church, chapel, garden, beach, or park, and the reception is in another location away from the ceremony site.
Timing for this type of wedding is extremely important. I have to make sure that all the vendors begin and end at the correct time (so there is little or no overtime), and make sure that the guests are not waiting a very long time before the reception actually begins with the bride and groom. You want the event to run smooth without anyone knowing that there was total control and effort. Staying on task and still looking cool, calm, and friendly is not the easiest thing for a planner to handle. It truly takes a certain personality to be able to pull this off with aplomb.
Let’s assume that the ceremony time is 5:00 p.m. at a church where the actual ceremony takes around 30 minutes. The first thing to remember is that the ceremony MUST begin on time, otherwise everything else goes off schedule and the wedding can go off track.
There are several things you should keep in mind when planning the timing for your wedding. One needs to know the drive time to the reception venue and allow for guests to visit some at the church and then get to the venue for cocktails. During this time, photographs can be taken at the church (after the guests have departed). Once the guests arrive at the venue, you would normally have an hour of cocktail time. This gives the photographer approximately one and a half hours to take photos and drive to the venue. You want to arrive as close to the end time of the cocktail hour as possible. I always allow for a 15 minute leeway.
Once I get the word that the wedding party has arrived and the timing is on schedule, I have the guests seated for introductions. Seating usually takes about 15 minutes. This will give my wedding party time to freshen up and even get something to eat and drink.
Making it seamless without effort and staying on time is the best compliment a family can get from their guests who don’t necessarily realize they are being directed like a Broadway show. It all just happens without glitches. Having a competent, experienced planner coordinating this allows you and your family the pleasure of enjoying your wedding day without stress or concerns.
My wish, for all brides, is that they have the best day of their life - so far.
Wedding Planner, Bobbi Hicks, is renowned and respected by clients and industry professionals. She makes wedding dreams come true. As a specialist in personalized weddings and day- of-event coordination Bobbi provides her professional expertise in wedding services in Sarasota for over 20 years.