To cocktail or not!
Cocktail hour typically occurs after the ceremony has concluded. If your ceremony is held at a different location then the reception, the cocktail hour begins as soon as guests arrive to the reception site. From a wedding planner’s perspective, cocktail hour is great to incorporate in your wedding reception.
Cocktail hour provides your guests an opportunity to mingle with friends and family members after the ceremony. A lot of times they have not seen each other in years. I enjoy walking around hearing or seeing groups of people laughing, sharing stories, and running to embrace one another.
After the ceremony, a bride and groom are focused on getting those formal portraits with family members and/or newlywed photos. Cocktail hour allows your guests to continue in the celebration without your presence.
Another benefit is allowing your guests the opportunity to enjoy a delicious bite and an alcoholic or non-alcoholic cocktail before dinner. After all, no one wants hungry or hangry guests!
In addition, couples are able to customize their cocktail hour. You have the choice of customizing with passed hors d’oeuvres, stations, open bars or signature drinks. Your wedding theme and decor can be incorporated into all of these options.
So, I say yes to cocktail hour! I suggest in your planning process to speak with your caterer and wedding planner on how you want to customize your cocktail hour.