Thursday 18 February 2010

No To The Bouquet Toss

We received a lot of praises regarding our reception program. Many of our guests congratulated us, saying that they were impressed and truly enjoyed it a lot. It was neither too long nor too short. It was just perfect, they said. Again, thanks to our wedding planner. She did a wonderful job in organizing the flow, advising us on what to do and what to avoid, and recommending the best people (emcee, sounds and lights) to make it work. Truly, she is an expert.

Here are some bits I picked up. I hope these tips will help you plan your wedding reception program.

  • Prepare an AVP that will give your guests the opportunity to get to know you better
The guests in a wedding can only be grouped into two, the groom’s side and the bride’s side. Naturally the groom’s side don’t really know what the bride is really like, and vice-versa. Except your closest relatives and friends, most guests are also not aware of the details of how you two met.

Before we were called by the emcee to make our grand entrance into the reception area, a video presentation of our growing-up pictures, short commentary of who we are as individuals, how we met and how lucky he is to have found me (*wink*) was shown first. The AVP was a gift from our dear friends, the power couple who know best of our love story because they witnessed it right from the start. (They were the matchmakers of course.)

  • Have the requisite traditional elements over and done with as soon as possible because they tend to be boring

After we were finally introduced to the crowd as the newlyweds, we were guided to head directly to the cake for the cake-cutting and wine-drinking.

  • Hire the best, if not really good people

I have nothing but praise for our emcee, Mr. Adrian Ding. He was fantastic. He came there prepared. He’s got a hypnotic DJish voice, which was very effective in keeping us engaged. His wit and his comedic timing were spot on. He is highly recommended.

For Cebu brides I definitely also recommend our band, Infrared. They’re not some kind of an 80’s band or their music didn’t give me a blast from the past. They were able to play many of today’s hits and their upbeat renditions were very good.

  • Skip the most dreaded part of every wedding reception
I lost count of the number of guests who came up and thanked me because we didn't include the part of the wedding reception program they dread the most - the bouquet/garter toss. They said it’s the first time they genuinely enjoyed a wedding from start to finish. Believe me, if most of the single ladies and guys of your guests in attendance are already in their late 20s or 30s (or even beyond!), skip it too. Most grown men or women are extremely uncomfortable at being rounded up for being single and then asked to stand at the front to “flaunt” it. Then to have this moment immortalize in a video is pushing your friendship with them too far.

To break the ice we had a couple's game instead. We called some couples to participate. (All of them were close friends so they didn't really have the heart to refuse, which I admit we counted on that.) Each person was given a bag of marshmallows and at the instructions of the emcee was told to stuff their partner's mouth with marshmallows. They were not allowed to swallow the marshmallows. They had to be creative in keeping those in their mouth. Then each couple were approached by the emcee and asked to shout "Congratulations Harley and Georgia!". The couple who managed to shout those words most coherently would win the game.

The marshmallows game was really hilarious.

  • If your budget allows it, get an Onsite Video package

This is a definite wow factor. Our guests, especially our parents and relatives who belong to the older generation were amazed by the fact that a beautifully made MTV-video recapping the wedding ceremony highlights of barely 2 hours ago was played at the reception.

  • Lastly, Work It Out!
I remember attending a wedding wherein the groom danced to Stop... yeah that one by Spice Girls! I had never imagined he would go to that length to try to liven up the mood of the reception. But I say, that’s very sweet of him. It must be just love.

My groom, who is not even remotely can be labelled as a dancer, also sucked it all up and just danced his heart out in front of our guests for our first dance. And I also did my share – with the help of a glass of wine of course. We did it to entertain our guests. And we were successful. I guess.

Because really, even if you hired the best of the best emcee, band, sounds and lights crew – but if you’re both not game, it will all fail. Like it or not, the bride and groom are the main entertainers and the reception is your show. Might as well just enjoy your 30 minutes of fame :)

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