After social or cocktail hour, most dinner receptions begin with an introduction of the bridal party in the form of a Grand March. Some couples opt for a simple calling out of names as the bridal party walks in, while others encourage their closest friends and family to enter with a dance move.
Traditionally, the bride and groom kick off the night with their First Dance as a married couple. Most couples choose a slow song that has meaning to them, but others have gone with a more upbeat tune. Whichever route you want to take with your new husband/wife, we always suggest listening to the song and practice dancing to it together before the big day to make sure it's a "danceable" song.
The Father/Daughter and Mother/Son Dances traditionally take place after the First Dance. Many father-of-the-brides and mothers-of-the-groom already have an idea in their mind regarding their song choice for their big moment on the dance floor, so we always recommend starting by asking them first.
If you or your parent tend to be on the shy side, we have a few options for you so that you can still incorporate this tradition into your big day. Some couples opt for a combined Father/Daughter and Mother/Son Dance, while others take a long song and have us fade it out after the photographer has some good shots. We also can invite all fathers and daughters and/or mothers and sons to join in after the photographer gets a few shots. This way, you won't be alone on the dance floor for too long.
The Anniversary Dance is a way to let married couples have a dance together and also add a little "competition" to the mix. We invite all married couples to the dance floor and let them dance for awhile. Then, we call out lengths of time and couples who haven't been married for that amount of time must leave the dance floor. At the end, we end up with the longest married couple, and everyone gives them a round of applause. We typically play 1-2 songs for this dance, and you can pick your own songs, or let us decide on some classics!
The Bridal Party Dance is one that has seen some changes lately. Traditionally, this is a slow song where members of the bridal party dance together. This works well if the bridal party is made up of couples; however, it could get awkward if it's not! One option, if you want to keep it a slow dance, is to let the members of the bridal party dance with their dates. Another option is to choose and upbeat song to dance to. Many couples choose to have the bridal party be joined by everyone partway through the song to create an open dance floor. Other couples opt out of the Bridal Party Dance completely - it's up to you!
Calling all single ladies and fellas! For the traditional Bouquet Toss, the bride will be asked to spin around three times, then toss her bouquet over her head to a crowed of single ladies. After, they usually stick around for a "girls" dance. We've also seen some brides opt instead to give their bouquet to the wife who "wins" the Anniversary Dance.
For the Garter Toss, the bride sits down and the groom must retrieve the garter without using his hands; then, he throws it to the crowd of single gentlemen. Some options for this include letting the groom use his hands or having the garter ready to throw (no retrieval). We've also seen the bouquet and garter auctioned off, in place of a Dollar Dance.
Who makes a toast? Do we really have to kiss every time the glasses clink? Here are a few other ideas on how to host a fun, interactive wedding reception that we've seen over the years, including the Dollar Dance.