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  • Mindy Abbeduto

Private Ceremonies & Reception Only Celebrations

With many couples scaling back on their wedding day celebrations and choosing to have private ceremonies, we are seeing more and more invitations for ‘Reception Only’ style wedding celebrations. Not only is this option a bit friendlier on the pocketbook but it also allows the couple to have that private ceremony and still celebrate in style without all the fluff, hoopla and stress that comes with full on wedding planning.





Private ceremonies are becoming so much popular these days! That special moment between you and your loved one doesn’t HAVE to be shared with everyone if you don’t want it to be. (Truth be told, if eloping or having a private ceremony was more of a ‘thing’ a few years ago, we would have definitely gone this route!) Perhaps you have special, intimate vows you want to exchange privately or maybe you are just super shy and prefer to not be on display for this special moment. The reason is yours to decide and no one else’s! Whether you choose to get hitched in the court house, a private ceremony with immediate family only, a destination wedding with family and friends or an elopement, there is still a marriage to celebrate and your loves ones want to party with you!




Having your reception after the vows doesn’t have to happen immediately after, either. Some couples choose to wait a few months or even a couple years until the timing is right to throw the celebration they dream of. The best thing about it—there are NO rules! You can choose to celebrate in whatever way you want to!


Here are a few ideas to spark your interest:


· Keep it simple yet casual! It’s a celebration! Don’t make it stuffy and formal when you are doing a reception only type celebration. Your guests likely weren’t at your ceremony or union of vows, so there is no need to follow through with the traditional wedding related events by having a formal dinner and dancing. This is your chance to be able to enjoy celebrating, let loose and make memories!


· Theme it! Give your guests a little surprise when they receive their invite or when they show up to the event by having a fabulous theme for your party. If it works out, have a duo party such as a New Year’s Eve Celebration where you celebrate the holiday along with your marriage, for instance. You could even theme it with your food or entertainment choices.


· Have a fun, unique source of entertainment! Throw a Bonfire, book a live local band, fortune tellers, caricature artist or even live-action dancers! You are inviting all your closest friends and family to celebrate the union of your lives together, why not have great entertainment and celebrate with something your guests will remember forever.




Going this route to celebrate your marriage with your loves ones is surely going to be a fun, memorable experience to plan and execute. You can still share special moments and a glimpse into your ceremony with your guests if you choose to by having photos displayed or having a video playing or by sharing your story aloud.




What do you think about Reception Only celebrations? Have you been invited to any yourself or are you planning your own Reception Only celebration? Share with me your thoughts!!


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