Opinions Needed: Friday Night Weddings?

Okay, gang, here’s the dilemma: the fiancé and I really would like to get married Saturday, April 7, 2001. That date is not particularly flexible–the week following is Bri’s spring break; mine is the week after that. We’re both going to take an extra week off for the other’s spring break, allowing for a two-week honeymoon period before returning to the teaching grind.

Anyway, it is a serious pain in the ass trying to find a church to house the wedding (we’re not dead-set on a church wedding, but prefer it). Our church is unavailable on the 7th because the 8th is Palm Sunday; various rehearsals, stage set-ups, and etc. are happening that Saturday. Other churches I’ve been recommended to and called have these problems: 1) We don’t host weddings for people who aren’t members of our church; 2) the date is already set for another wedding; 3) the wedding coordinator is inaccessible (I’ve left several messages).

Today, this option presented itself: Our church is available Friday evening, April 6th. Do we want a Friday night wedding? It isn’t conventional, certainly, but not exactly wildly unconventional. Our church is gorgeous, and would make for a lovely setting. But…how inconvenient is a Friday evening wedding for our guests?

I’m curious, for anyone who’s had/been to/have thoughts on a Friday evening wedding…what’s your opinion of them? What made them work, or not work? What time was convenient, or was there any? Help us out!

Thank you! :slight_smile:

The only problem I see with a Friday wedding is people who have to get off work for it. Family will get off work fine, but the rest might not. As for the conveinance of Friday, I don’t think I would have any problem with it. It would probly be lots of fun. Everyone anticipating their weekend gives it a great atmosphere.

I say if your dead set on your church, go for it…

I’d go… and enjoy it.

Is it just the wedding by itself, or are you having the reception after?

I wouldn’t worry about it at all. Candlelight weddings are awesome - just beautiful - although the ones I’ve been to tend to be more formal. They also limit the length of the reception, which could be a cost saver if you plan on an open bar. It will also give people 2 days to recover before they have to go back to work.

FWIW, a long time ago there was a Catholic priest up in my neck of the woods who banned Saturday weddings. It seems people were regularly too hung over to attend mass on Sunday morning!

Well, I look at it this way: I would attend a Friday evening the same as I would attend a Saturday afternoon wedding. But if the ceremony is earlier (like in late afternoon), I would go only for someone I was close to. There’s a girl at work, for instance, who is getting married at 4:00 on a Friday this September. Omega Red and I are planning to head to the 7:00 PM reception, but we’re not taking off part of a day or a whole day of work for the ceremony.

If you’re worried about how many will go to the actual ceremony, then I would say to try to stick to a Saturday. If you’re concerned about having people at the reception, I think a Friday night would be just fine. Just MHO.

Must…use…preview option…

Argh! I did not mean to use italics for the whole damn post…

I went to a Friday night wedding, and the main difficulty in my view was the fact that I had to leave work early (the ceremony was at 17:30 = 5:30 PM!) To go home and put on formal clothes, that’s just not enough time. I made the effort anyway, but I hesitated since this was someone that is not one of my closest friends. Many of the guests were not present at the church ceremony, but attended the reception. I personally think the ceremony is the important part, and I would want guests to attend it if they could.

Repeating what Jeannie said:
Of course, your best friends and family will make the effort, but you will end up having less guests (which might be a good thing if you’re trying to save money.) A Friday event is also much more difficult for out-of-town guests to attend. At what time would you schedule the ceremony if it were to be on Friday? In my opinion, any time before 19:00 (7:00 PM) is too early.

Also I will point out the obvious: a wedding can also be on a Saturday evening (though probably not possible in your case.)

I’d have it, if I were doing this (thank the Lord I’m not), have it around 4 PM. that gives long-distance people time to get plenty lost and all that, and still make it. That also makes the reception be a bit of a sunlight affair, and when people leave they don’t have the danger of driving drunk and in the dark. It also gives them time to sober up before dark and still make it to the airport for the last flight back or whatever.

I say such an early time because the earlier you decide the more advanced notice you give people.

If you have it late enough to go home and change before the wedding, it would be ok, but they wont have time to eat, better have a decent meal afterwards.

This might be better for people who dont want to tie up the whole weekend for a wedding too.

My first wedding was on a Friday evening at 7:00, followed by an informal reception (hor d’ouevres, cocktails, finger foods, no sit down supper - this was indicated on the invitation). It gave people the opportunity to get home and change beforehand, and we got quite a few compliments.

Too bad the groom wasn’t worth it :smiley:

My sister got married on a Friday evening. Yes, quite a few people had to take Friday off (either the afternoon or the whole day), but since many of them were coming from out of state, most of them would’ve had to anyway. The banquet hall where she held the reception did provide a free ice sculpture and tiered wedding cake for holding the reception on an “off night”, though. If you do end up choosing the Friday opening, see if you can find someplace (banquet hall, photographer, videographer, etc.) that offers perks like that.

Oh, yeah, forgot to mention in my previous post…

There was a ??deoderant?? commercial a while back in which the groom knocked at the bride said something like, Why didn’t we elope?. Be like Veb, babe, go for that :slight_smile:

I got married on a Friday. We had the ceremony at 4pm, the cocktail hour started at 7, and dinner was at 8. All of our close friends and family came to the church, and those that weren’t able to take time off for the ceremony had plenty of time to get to the reception after work.
I was also able to have more ‘extras’ at the reception, like a full dessert bar, because the catering hall charged $10 per person less on a Friday. We were also able to have our pick of catering halls, because most of the ones we visited were free that night.
Go for it.

How much are the guests gonna travel? You have a lot fo out-of-state 4 hr trips, it’s inconvenient for them, but it is YOUR day. Your options are limited, they should understand. You have locals, try for 7 PM.
As far as reception, a few cases I’ve seen got some substantial savings (30+/plate.)

I think the idea of a Friday evening wedding is fantastic–it’s a change from the usual Saturday get-up.

You may have a few guests not show because of having to take time off of work–but, then again, doesn’t that happen to people who work on Saturdays? You’re not going to please everyone, and that’s the point.

This is your wedding, and if you two want this special church, then by all means, have it on Friday night. The people who love and care about you will be there.