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Bridal Showers, Bachelor & Bachelorette Parties, & Rehearsal Dinners

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There's much more around the wedding than just the wedding itself. You will be the star of the show in all the festivities that surround your big day, including the engagement party, your bridal shower, the bachelor & bachelorette parties, the rehearsal dinner, and other family gatherings!

The Engagement Party

The British used to celebrate a couple's engagement with a party called the "flouncing". Call it what you will, but take some time to celebrate! The bride's parents usually have first dibs on throwing an engagement party, but that doesn't mean you can't host one on your own with some of your best friends.

Here are some ideas:

  1. Take it to the park
    Create a romantic ambience at your favorite park, complete with fresh flowers and a picnic. Decorate with a gorgeous burlap table runner and drink from personalized mason jar drinking glasses. Don't forget the candy striped straws!

  2. Ten pin anyone?
    Have a bowling bash with your best friends. Ask the bowling alley if you can add to the fun with a few decorations.

  3. Make it a Love Fest!
    Invite your best friends for cocktails, appetizers, some cool jazz, and throw in a favorite romantic comedy.

The Bridal Shower

Showering the bride with friendship and love is the purpose of a bridal shower. Usually the Maid/Matron of Honor hosts the party, with help from other attendants and the bride's family.

The guest list should include the bridesmaids, close friends and relatives, and the closest female friends and family of the groom. If you are throwing a couple's shower, then the women AND men who fall into these categories should be included!

Consider having a themed party for the bride-to-be. Popular themes include spa parties, kitchen stocking, fresh linen, and sexy lingerie.

Featured Boulder Pre-Wedding Party Experts

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Dozens of bridal shower games, decorating ideas, favors, and prizes, plus wonderful personalized gifts for your wedding party! on Facebook

The Bachelorette Party

The quick & dirty on bachelorette party etiquette:

Host/s : Virtually anyone can host a bachelorette party for the bride. The wedding party, co-workers, family, or other friends are all common hosts!

Attendees : The invitation list should include the bride's best girlfriends. Unlike the shower, ladies may be invited to the bachelorette party who aren't necessarily invited to the wedding. A smaller number of guests is usually more fun and intimate for the bride. 5 to 20 gals can make for a great gathering!

Date : Whatever you do, don't plan the bachelorette party for the night before the wedding. Hangovers have a funny way of dampering a wedding day. Try to schedule the bash at least 3-days prior. You may even want to have it a couple of weeks before the wedding to help reduce "event overload" on the bride-to-be!

Planning : The party can be planned by one or many! It's entirely appropriate to ask the attendees for a certain amount of money up front (to reserve a room at a restaurant, club, or to purchase the party wares). Don't go overboard and be sure to make this a free night for the bride. She shouldn't have to pay for anything!

Invites : You can purchase invitations at your corner store, online, or make your own. The formality of the RSVP will depend on the type of party you are planning. You can ask the bride, wedding party, and the bride's parents for a list of people who should be invited.

The Party : The type of party will depend greatly on the bride's tastes and the group you are inviting. If the bride is easily offended, then a wild night at a male strip club is probably not appropriate. If you will have attendees who are under 21, then you will have to find a place where they are allowed in with everyone else. The typical bachelorette party involves a bunch of giggling girls and innocent fun. A little light-hearted embarrassment and public attention for the bride is typically warranted!

Gifts & Favors : Gifts are not required at a bachelorette party, but that's not to say you can't ask the ladies to bring something a little saucy for the bride! A nighty, some toys, a how-to book, are all fun little gifts to add a little fun to the night. As the host, you can get sexy favors and party gifts for the girls to add a little spice to the night too!

The Bachelor Party

Let's face it ... this is typically the most dreaded party by the bride-to-be.

Guys, let's just have a frank talk here ... RESPECT YOUR BRIDE. If there's something she doesn't want you to do for your bachelor party, honor that. It doesn't get any easier after you are married, so don't start the days leading in to your vows by doing something that is going put stress on your relationship. And whatever you do, please DO NOT have your bachelor party the night before the wedding. It's simply uncool to say your vows hung over.

Rehearsal Dinner Ideas

  1. Consider a theme important to the bride and groom. If they love movies, make it a Hollywood night. If they love the outdoors, take it to the park. You get the idea!
  2. Plan an informal rehearsal dinner like a barbecue or picnic, complete with games such as a three legged race or tug of war. This is a good way to break the ice and encourage people to make new friends, as well as create a few funny memories of your wedding celebration!
  3. If you are planning a formal dinner, mix up the assigned seating to include friends and family from both sides to reaffirm the joining of the two families.

For local restaurants and caterer information, visit the lists in our vendor directory!

Wedding Golf Outings

For the golf enthusiasts, wedding golf outings can be tons of fun! In some cases, these are called "Groom's Golf Outings", but with the popularity of golf, many brides are learning to play too! So, why not have a golf outing for the entire wedding party and family? This can even be followed by a barbecue or a cocktail party!

Golf Themed Wedding Ideas


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