Rehearsal Dinner Ideas: What If Alice Went To Morocco Instead Of Wonderland?
The rehearsal dinner brings together those closest to you the night before the wedding. After a bit of practice walking down the aisle, you all get to eat and drink and celebrate love, and there’s nothing better than that. So, here are eight ways to make this part of the wedding weekend even more memorable — perhaps even as special as the big day itself.
Bring in a Band
Rehearsal Dinner: What If Alice Went To Morocco Instead Of Wonderland?
A surprise splash of live music will take your rehearsal from dinner to bona fide party. Of course, that’s only if you want to hire a high-energy musical group, such as a mariachi band, to surprise your guests. You could go a little more low-key, too, if you prefer a jazz band, Spanish guitarist or another, more romantic genre. But the inclusion of a musician will certainly make your rehearsal an unforgettable one.
Set a Theme
Rehearsal Dinner Ideas: Not your typical rehearsal dinner party.
Remember all of those theme parties you went to in college? Of course you do, because it was so much fun to get all dressed up, take pictures and celebrate like you were in a different era. You can bring the same excitement to your rehearsal by setting a theme for it, too.
Again, you can choose to keep things simple and classy by making your theme food-related. A fondue rehearsal dinner, for example, will encourage your guests to mingle as they dip handheld bits of bread, meat, veggies and fruit into hot pots of cheese. Or, you can go into full-on party mode with a casino night or bowling extravaganza. Just make sure it ends early enough that the wedding party gets plenty of rest ahead of the ceremony.
Play the Game(s)
Game Ideas: How To Glam Up Your Public Park Wedding
Having an outdoor rehearsal dinner? Don’t forget to bring along the best backyard games, like bocce ball and cornhole. Even if your rehearsal’s taking place inside, you can still come up with some friendly competition for your guests. Maybe you can play trivia, or bring enough of your and your fiancé’s favorite board games so that everyone can play while they wait for dinner. This is a great icebreaker for your wedding party to get to know one another, too.
Plan an After Party
After Parties: 5+ Reasons Why After Parties Are Always a Good Idea
Some brides- and grooms-to-be will invite any out-of-town guests to their rehearsal dinner as a thank you for their travels. However, this can get expensive if the majority of your loved ones have traveled to see your nuptials. So, stick to your family and wedding party for the meal, but plan after-dinner drinks for everyone who’s in town for the big day. Even if you only stick around for a drink or two, it will be memorable for you and for your guests to mingle and catch up.
Photo: Emma Hopp Photography
We’re not talking about Instagram. Instead, print out photos of all the couples in your family who have helped guide you to this moment. Frame them and display the wedding portraits of your great grandparents, grandparents, parents, siblings, aunts and uncles, etc. Your guests will love to peruse the table to see where their photo appears.
Or, you can entertain your rehearsal dinner guests with a slideshow that charts the course of your relationship with one another. Baby pictures, awkward teenage photos and your first photos as a couple will be an adorable and potentially hilarious way to commemorate your journey together.
Choose an Unexpected Venue
Sailboat Wedding Rehearsal : Not your typical rehearsal dinner party.
A rehearsal dinner has to take place in a restaurant, right? Not exactly. Some couples have started to branch out into unexpected venues that are — you guessed it — memorable for everyone who comes along. You could go old school with a trip to the bowling alley, so long as you cater dinner or choose swankier lanes that serve tasty pub grub. You could also hit the local minor league baseball field, a small concert, a park with a stunning picnic site… the choices are endless.
Serve a Signature Cocktail
Signature Wedding Cocktail: How To Have A Tropical Themed Boho Inspired Wedding
You might have considered — or even chosen — a signature cocktail for your wedding reception. Why not invent one for your rehearsal dinner, too? The process is a fun one for you and your fiancé. Start by considering your go-to drink order, so the flavors represent you. Or, choose a cocktail that matches the theme or flavors of the night. If you’re extra creative, you can give your finalized concoction a funny name that you and your guests won’t ever forget.
Personalize the Table Settings
Place Setting Ideas: What If Alice Went To Morocco Instead Of Wonderland?
At your wedding, guests will find their table number, sit down and enjoy the flower arrangements and candles you’ve chosen to decorate the reception space. At your rehearsal dinner, though, you can have a bit more fun in personalizing everyone’s seats. This could be something as simple as a name card written for every single guest. Or, you could give your attendees hand-selected gifts or special notes to thank them for coming from far and wide to celebrate you.
Get Ready to Wow Them
These tips will certainly make your rehearsal dinner an even more memorable affair. And, having a unique, personalized send-off before your big day will wow everyone — almost as much as your walk down the aisle the next day.
Kacey Bradley is the lifestyle and travel blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Follow Kacey on Twitter and subscribe to her blog to keep up with her travels and inspiring posts!