Pre Wedding Party

by Tonya
(Fort Lauderdale, FL)

We are planning our wedding and keep going back and forth between a destination wedding and full-blown traditional wedding. I would prefer a very small gathering, but my honey's family is super-large and he anticipates an invitation list of about 300 people.

We are now considering a pre-wedding celebration to include all of our friends and family. This would be held on the evening before the wedding and everyone will be invited.

We will supply the majority of the food (my best friend and I will cook) and we will ask the attendees to bring a side dish or drinks, etc. It would be a HUGE pot luck.

Then on our wedding day (the next day), we would have the ceremony early in the afternoon with a very small, intimate reception to follow (for about 40 guests).

My concern is asking people to bring side dishes for the pre-wedding party. Is that a tacky request?

Our Thoughts

It is a nice idea to have a party for the guests that you won’t be able to invite to your wedding, and there are a few things to consider in your situation.

Have you considered scaling back your wedding to accommodate more guests? For example, you could trim some of your budget in other areas to enable you to have a bigger budget for food at your reception.

If that isn’t possible, your idea of having a pre (or post) wedding party is a good idea. One thing to keep in mind is that your friends and family will most likely be bringing gifts with them to your party, and some of the guests might find it inappropriate to also have to bring food.

We would not recommend asking your guests to bring food to your party. An option is to ask a few close family members or friends to help out with making food, or try to come up with an inexpensive way to cater the event.

Try to get creative with your options. Have a cocktail party instead of a dinner party, and serve a signature drink with appetizers or other small plates.

Or, have it in the evening and just serve desserts. Themed cocktail events, like a margarita or wine tasting, are always a fun option.

To Your Wedding!
Danielle & Stephen

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