Seeking Advice - best man at my father's wedding

My father is getting married in about half a month and he’s asked me to be the best man. Having never done anything of the sort before, I need some advice. What is expected of the best man? What do I need to know about making the toast?

Any advice that anyone can give me would be greatly appreciated.

Normally, he does plan and pay for the bachelor party. Now, I imagine you probably wouldn’t want to get strippers for your dad, and he probably wouldn’t want it either, so maybe you could just take him and some of his buddies out to dinner?

As for the toast, it doesn’t have to be much, normally just congratulatory and pleasant remarks. Depending on your relationship with him, you might also be inclined to add a clever, tear-jerking, romantic, or simply embarassing story. Very seldom have I seen a toast from the best man more than a couple of minutes. There’s TONS of resources on the web for writing a toast; you just need a little Google-fu.

As for your responsibilities in the ceremony, all of that will be covered in the rehearsal.

I’ve never been best man for my Dad before, so I can’t help you there. But I have been a best man a few times, so maybe some generic tips will help.

Spend the wedding day, before the wedding, with your Dad. You’re his right-hand man, and he may ask you to run a few errands: pick up the tuxes, get the boutonnieres, and so on. Or he may just ask you to put on some coffee. On the day itself, before the actual wedding, whatever he wants, whatever he asks you to do (within reason), make it happen.

Make sure he looks good, and does so with enough time to get dressed and get to the church (or wherever)–my best man made sure I’d been to the barber’s and shaved and showered and so on with enough time to relax over a cold beer before getting dressed. We had only the one beer, but that was enough of an incentive to get me moving to get the necessary tasks over with, and still have a little time to relax. Might be an idea for you.

Know where the ring is at all times until it is on the bride’s finger. That’s part of your job too.

The toast isn’t difficult. Really, all you need to do is to mention how pretty the bridesmaids are, and toast the couple. Anything else is gravy. If you’re comfortable and experienced with public speaking, you can add more–humorous stories about the couple (avoid anything insulting or risque though), how they met, and so on. Being your Dad’s son, you might also mention that you’re welcoming the bride into your family. But this is all up to you. Your speech can be short or long, as long as you hit the points mentioned above.

I’m sure there are other points, but these come to mind as the most important. Hope they help!

Number 1 rule about a best man’s speech- say something nice about the bride. Even though they’re marrying each other, it’s her day. There’s a video making the email rounds about the “all-time greatest best man speech” or some crap, the guy spends the entire 10 minutes or whatever making jokes at the groom’s expense and doesn’t even acknowledge the bride except for some reference about “Steve and Sue’s wedding day” or some such. It doesn’t have to be overly wordy or uncomfortable, but something about what a great woman she is and how she makes your dad so happy, and you’re proud to welcome her to the family, etc. If she has family/kids of her own that will be there, it’d be nice to welcome them as well.

Number 2 rule- no references to the groom’s past conquests. Probably not a real concern in this situation, but no bride wants to have any attention taken away from her as the only woman in the groom’s life.

Aside from that, just be tasteful and brief when it comes to the speech. Short and hearfelt beats long-winded comedy routines every time.