75 Grand Army Highway (Route 6) Swansea , MA 02777 • MA Line: (508) 678-3901 • RI Line: (401) 861-2780 • venus@venusdemilo.com



Planning a Wedding Reception 101: South Coast Reception Hall

Planning a Wedding Reception 101: South Coast Reception Hall

If you have not attended a lot of weddings in your lifetime, you might not know what is expected when you begin planning a wedding reception. There are a lot of events that happen between the ceremony and the honeymoon, so it pays to take some time to do a bit of research. Guests will come to the MA wedding and banquet facility and expect certain things to happen. While you don’t have to indulge in every tradition at your Swansea wedding reception, there are a few things that can be fun to share with family and friends. Once you choose the South Coast reception hall where you will host the reception – and possibly the ceremony if you choose to do it all on-site – you can start making plans with the event coordinator for the celebration.

Cocktail Hour

This is an optional part of a traditional Swansea wedding reception that is designed to feed and entertain guests while the couple and wedding party are otherwise occupied. Some couples use this time to take photos after the ceremony, host a receiving line to greet guests, or simply spend a few moments alone together before facing everyone at the MA wedding and banquet facility. You can choose custom cocktails, basic beverages, an open bar, served hors d’oeuvres, and provide some background music. Some couples choose to get the party started with activities designed to get families and friends chatting and mingling during the celebration. A guest book station, photo booth opportunity, and other options can be included to keep everyone occupied during the hour.

Grand Entrance

The DJ, bandleader, or emcee of the event will typically announce the couple and introduce them to the crowd when they arrive officially at the Swansea wedding reception venue. Sometimes the entire wedding party is announced as well, beginning with the parents of the bride and groom, maid of honor, best man, and all of the bridesmaids and groomsmen. Flower girls, ring bearers, and anyone else involved in the ceremony can also be introduced to everyone at this time. The newlyweds should come last and head straight to the dance floor for their first dance or go to their assigned table to the dinner can begin on time.

Dance Floor

When planning a wedding reception, make sure to take into account space at the South Coast reception hall for dancing. Even if you aren’t big on it yourself, you will at least want to do the first dance, father-daughter dance, and mother-son dance for your guests. Beyond that, just providing music and space for your guests to enjoy the night at your Swansea wedding reception is a great way to keep everyone entertained and ensure that they have a good time. Many people look forward to dancing at weddings more than anything else. Choose a band or DJ that will play songs that you like and offer special wedding dances that everyone knows. If you aren’t picky about music, but have a few must-have songs or don’t-play songs in mind, go over them with the vendor to make sure they are included or never played regardless of guest requests.

Food Service

There are a few ways to go about food service when planning a wedding reception. You can have a formal plated service, buffet-style self-serve presentation, family-style options, or simply offer platters of meat and cheese or other appetizer-style menu items. Go over your ideas for foodservice with the MA wedding and banquet facility. Some will have guest minimums as part of the wedding package, so be prepared for that. You will want to schedule a tasting so you can pick the menu selections that you want to include and also have alternative options for vegans, vegetarians, allergies, and those with other dietary restrictions. Try to keep it simple and offer the options in your RSVP card when you send out invitations so you can let the South Coast reception hall know what is needed.

Traditional Activities

There are lots of activities that couples choose to incorporate into their Swansea wedding reception, either as a cultural or religious tradition. Some are just for fun, while others can have great meaning. The toasts from the father of the bride, father of the groom, best man, and maid of honor can be a lot of fun. Unity ceremonies with candle lighting or sand pouring are also quite popular. Cake cutting can be a lot of fun, including a quick speech from the couple, or as a symbol of providing for each other. Bouquet tosses, garter tosses, broom jumps, smashing dishes, and an array of other traditional events can all be scheduled throughout the celebration, depending on your preferences.

The Grand Exit

At the end of the afternoon or evening, the newlyweds have one more dance, and then the guests line the doorway to say their good-byes as the couple runs off to their honeymoon. Some blow bubbles, others toss rose petals, some even make a bridge with lightsabers to wish the couple well on their journey into marriage. Whatever your preferences, make sure to work with the Swansea wedding reception venue to make sure there aren’t any restrictions. Some locations are bound by local laws that forbid things like rice throwing or the use of sparklers by guests, for safety reasons.

Schedule a Tour of Venus de Milo
The best way to determine if our MA wedding and banquet facility is right for your wedding celebration is to take a tour of the venue. We can show you all of the options for ballrooms, indoor and outdoor ceremonies, parking areas for guests, catering options for foodservice, and answer any questions you might have about our South Coast reception hall. Contact our team at 508-678-3901 and schedule a tour of the world-famous Venus de Milo today.

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