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O Ceremony & Receptions
Keeping the wedding small not only cuts costs; gives you the freedom to consider more non-traditional settings like the small country chapel, a small inn, yacht or elegant restaurant. If your guest list just simply can’t be cut, look for a larger venue rather than trying to pack too many people into an uncom- fortable space.
The venue’s event coordinator can pro- vide estimates for wedding and reception seating capacity. Be sure the facility has adequate parking for your guests as well.
Who’s Paying?
Traditionally, the bride’s parents paid for the wedding and determined the number of guests to be invited. How- ever, many couples today pay part – or all – of their wedding tab and are more likely to determine the guest list.
If your parents are paying, talk to
them first about the number of guests they want and how those invitations will be divided between the bride’s parents, groom’s parents and the couple. You may find that your parents have a larger guest list in mind than the ‘small chapel’ wedding will accommodate. If they are paying the bill, try to keep their wishes in mind and negotiate a comfortable compromise you both can live with.
If you and your fiancé are footing the tab, it will be easier for you to deter- mine the guest list size but also be sen- sitive to parents’ wishes. In the end, a few extra guests will not make a huge difference in the bottom line and may be worth adding to avoid hurt feelings.
How Do We Estimate RSVPs?
The formula commonly used for esti- mating how many people will attend is to double the number of invitations you
send and subtract 33%. For example: If you issue 120 invitations, expect 161 guests to attend.
In other words, typically about two thirds of your invitees will actually attend your event. However, these are just guidelines. Don’t invite people thinking that they ‘will never show’. Be prepared for surprises.
It’s not uncommon for guests to mistakenly RSVP for more guests than you invited. Most wedding guest lists end up, believe it or not, with several additional names added by the guests themselves.
How Do We Create the List?
Once you have determined how many guests to invite, divide the number in thirds:
1/3 - Guests of the bride’s parents 1/3 - Guests of the groom’s parents
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