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Wedding Reception Schedule

Whether you are planning a formal dinner reception or an informal gathering of well-wishers, it is important to establish a schedule of events to prevent confusion on the big day!  Don't get too hung up on exact times — the idea is to keep the party moving in the right direction.  While the order of events is entirely up to you, here's a sample of a traditional reception schedule.

  1. Cocktail Hour. 
    This is the time between the wedding ceremony and the reception in which guests are served champagne and hors d’oeuvres while the wedding party is having formal photographs made. 
  2. Grand Entrance. 
    This signals to everyone that the wedding party has arrived.  The traditional order of entrance is
    1. Groom's Parents
    2. Bride's Parents
    3. Flower Girl and Ring Bearer
    4. Bridesmaids escorted by Ushers
    5. Maid of Honor escorted by Best Man
    6. Bride and Groom
  3. Wedding Couple's First Dance. 
    Because traditionally guests are not supposed to dance before the bride and groom, the bride and groom may proceed directly to the dance floor for the traditional first dance to encourage guests to start dancing early.
  4. Champagne Toasts/Speeches. 
    This marks the end of the cocktail hour and signifies that dinner is about to be served.
  5. Dinner.
  6. Special Dancing. 
    The traditional order of special dances is
    1. Bride with her Father
    2. Groom with his Mother
    3. Wedding Party
  7. Cake Cutting.  This signifies to the guests that the party is winding down and that it is okay to leave.  Take care not to do this too soon or your party may end before you're ready!
  8. Garter/Bouquet Toss. 
  9. Last Dance by Bride and Groom. 
  10. Grand Exit. 
    Have guests send you off in a big way!  Exit through tossed rose petals, bird seed, or bubbles!

A great wedding DJ will serve as your event MC and will guide you through events and keep the wedding reception flowing.

Checkout our Wedding DJ Directory here!

 

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wedding reception decor
Wedding Reception Decorations
Once you have decided where to have your wedding reception, you can start thinking about the design of your reception tables and decor. Using place cards and place card holders not only direct guests to their seats, but they are the perfect way to dress up your reception tables or to set a theme. We've put together the perfect little wedding reception decor checklist just for you!
Wedding Reception Decor Checklist

Wedding Reception Music
From Frank Sinatra to the B-52’s and everything in between, the music you choose for your wedding reception helps define your sense of style and express your feelings for one another. The music also can help create wonderful romantic memories for you and your guests — making your big day even more spectacular! Whether you are using a DJ or a live band, we've got an indispensible checklist to help you plan your wedding soundtrack.
Checklist for Your Wedding Soundtrack
   
wedding cakes wedding cake tops
Wedding Cakes
It's a given tradition that the bride and groom share a wedding cake with their guests at the wedding reception, but do you know why? The tradition of the wedding cake can be traced back to medieval times. Back then, each guest at a wedding was supposed to bring a small cake. The cakes would then be stacked on the table in levels and layers. If the bride and groom were able to kiss over the top of the stack it was considered good luck. Find Your Wedding Cake Baker Here
Wedding Cake Tops
Gone are the days of the stodgy traditional wedding cake top figurines. Todays wedding cake toppers are fun, romantic, striking, and reflect your personality and wedding theme. Have fun with your wedding cake topper and make a statment about your relationship and your love. Your guests will enjoy it and you will cherish the memory in photographs for years to come! Today's wedding cakes are creative and whimsical ... deserving of a truly unique cake topper!
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Helping brides and grooms plan their Denver wedding since 2002!

Denver Wedding and Denver Reception Guide, DenverWeddingCenter.com, is a complete wedding and reception planning website for Denver brides. DenverWeddingCenter.com offers Denver Colorado wedding planning resources, a wedding professionals directory, and wedding planning tips unique to the Denver Colorado area. If you are planning a Denver wedding, a themed wedding or a special event such as a Denver reception and need the services of local wedding professionals, we hope to be of service to you! Our team serves all of the greater Denver area, providing wedding information in the Colorado Rockies, including Pueblo, Colorado Springs, Boulder, and Fort Collins. At DenverWeddingCenter.com we pride ourselves on maintaining the most complete and up-to-date resources for your Denver area wedding and reception.