Newbie August 2020 British Columbia

Sooo.. About Rehearsal Dinners

Krizia, on 15/May/2019 at 04:52 Posted in Before the wedding

I'm recently engaged (woot woot!) and new to the wedding wire community (BIG woot woot) and my fiance and I have already run into our first dilemma, so I thought I'd come on here and ask for some opinions and thoughts (since we're generally in the same boat).

My sweet and romantic fiance and I have decided to have our wedding next year, the day AFTER my inlaws' 50th wedding anniversary. I know what you're probably thinking, why share an anniversary with my inlaws? I honestly don't mind so much, and hey! If we shadow their anniversary, maybe some of that good joo joo will rub off on us! I mean, 50 years? That deserves an award!

Anyways, my mom brought up the other day, that the day before the wedding there usually is a big rehearsal dinner. Now, I don't know if its because my mom is filipino, but it sounds like its supposed to be this big event to mingle, stuff your face, etc.

Because its the inlaws anniversary, we were planning on having a dinner, but it'll be a small event, as per request of the mother-in-law, so my extended family won't even be invited.

So I'm having some mixed feelings here. I know I'll be having some friends and family traveling in for the weekend, so I definitely want to see them and mingle the day before the wedding, but is this like another meal that we have to budget for? Are big rehearsal dinners a normal thing? Should I be allocating a lot of our time into this event? Or is there anyway I could possibly do both? A small 50th anniversary dinner with the inlaws AND a big rehearsal dinner? Because my mom definitely doesn't think we can. Help!?



  • Amie
    Devoted August 2019 British Columbia
    Amie ·
    Your mom is right as far as when the rehearsal is typically done.

    I dk how the wedding is being financed, but generally the groom’s family pays for the rehearsal dinner. Traditionally, the wedding party is invited and anyone who has a role in the ceremony (readers).

    Like you, I will have friends and family coming in from out of town and I want to visit with them. Most of them though are in the wedding party or are attending as a plus one.

    Would your in-laws be open to having somewhat or a joint rehearsal/anniversary??

    Im sure it could work. Otherwise, have a small rehearsal dinner, then suggest a venue for everyone to get together afterwards to visit and celebrate the anniversary.

    Let us ya know how it goes.
  • Alix
    Featured June 2020 Saskatchewan
    Alix ·

    I think it is really up to the couple if they want to do a rehearsal dinner. Like you said, it is another expense. I don't think we are having one. We plan on decorating our venue the evening before our wedding. Maybe we'll order some pizza for the bridal party and we can have that while we decorate or something but I think that's all we're going to do.

  • L
    Curious June 2020 Ontario
    Leanne ·

    I definitely get the cultural thing. In Canada, rehearsal dinners are usually just for the bridal party and close family and my European family does it that way, but my Lebanese family has the "night before" dinner for all out-of-town guests, so it's much bigger in size and a bigger deal if you skip it. Talk to your mom about her traditions and expectations, but it sounds like you have a good plan going now to make it on Thursday! Good luck, you have plenty of time to figure it all out.

  • Krizia
    Newbie August 2020 British Columbia
    Krizia ·
    Thank you everyone, I definitely have some thinking to do but I feel pretty good that we could do both or maybe a rehearsal dinner the Thursday before. Thanks for the help!
  • Kelly
    Expert September 2019 Manitoba
    Kelly ·

    Yay! Congrats!!

    This shouldn't be a problem. It'll be a busy week for you guys though haha! Have you picked a venue yet? When you go look at venues, bring the rehearsal up and ask them when rehearsals take place. My venue offers 6 time slots the week prior (3 on Tuesday, 3 on Wednesday). The 3 couples (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) pick which time slot and day they want on a first come/first serve basis.

    Usually there's a dinner that happens afterwards for immediate family, bridal party, and any out of town guests. Our rehearsal is going to end at 8:30pm and is the night before our wedding, so instead of a full dinner thing, we'll be doing drinks and appys.

  • Chelsea
    Featured June 2020 Alberta
    Chelsea ·
    I’m doing my rehearsal and dinner on the Thursday before my Saturday wedding! I figured it would be too busy to do it the Friday!
  • Tori Doll
    Featured October 2019 Manitoba
    Tori Doll ·

    Congrats on the engagement and welcome to the community!!

    I would say that it is most common to have your rehearsal dinner the night before your wedding - but by no means is that a MUST HAVE. I have seen many brides on here state that they are only doing a rehearsal and no dinner as they can't shell out that money. I've also seen brides say that they will just ask that the people coming to the rehearsal pay for their own meal at a restaurant. AAAAND I've even seen some brides have their rehearsal dinner the week prior and not even on the day before!

    It's really up to you and your FH on what you want to and can do. Either way, it doesn't need to be the night before - it's just usually because you have the venue space already or to keep the rehearsal in your brain for order of events for the very next day.

  • Sharlene
    Devoted August 2019 Alberta
    Sharlene ·

    We are getting married on August 3 and it will be my parents 50th anniversary on September 19. I couldn't afford or handle the stress of planning a wedding and an anniversary, so we will have a cake for them at our wedding and possibly a slide show to honor them and their milestone. It will be good time as a lot of extended family should be at the wedding.

  • Becky
    VIP September 2019 Ontario
    Becky ·

    Congratulations and welcome! Usually the day before you set up anything that needs to be with the wedding party and parents. You don't nee dto have a rehearsal dinner- the rehearsal is to make sure people understand where to be and when to be there and you go through rehearsal of ceremony.

  • Vinod
    Featured August 2017 Ontario
    Vinod ·

    We had a welcome dinner the night before the wedding and every parents pay for it in the Indian culture. As for the rehearsal dinner that's held, speeches for the most part are made except yours at the reception. That being said, the idea of combining dinner for welcoming your guests and parents anniversary so that you save the time the day after.

    Cultures have different ways of events happening and how many of them before the actual wedding.

    Our welcome dinner was for family that came from the states and local/wedding party (2 MOHs/flower girl) came out that evening too and turned out great. They were our guests staying at the venue and was nice to spend time with them as your doing. My parents paid for the dinner for us.

  • Casey
    Featured October 2019 Ontario
    Casey ·
    Congrats and welcome to the Wedding Wire community!
    Rehearsals are usually the day or 2 days before the wedding put on by the grooms family. Mostly for out of town guests to welcome them, but you can really have who ever you want and however big you want.
    Like Stephanie said you could also do rehearsal drinks instead if your in laws are having dinner.
    But it doesn’t have to be this super big thing if you don’t want
  • Stephanie
    Frequent user July 2020 Ontario
    Stephanie ·

    I think the rehearsal dinner is more for the bridal party and people playing a part in the ceremony.

    We will be having a small rehearsal dinner ourselves.

    You don't have to do a rehearsal 'dinner' either. You could have a late rehearsal and then have like a late night drinks and apps type thing.

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