In recent years, weddings have switched from a one day affair to a weekend full of celebratory events. From the welcome reception to the post wedding wedding brunch, couples are starting to focus on spending as much time as they can with their guests while they’re in town. Another way to do this is by hosting an after party.

Taking place immediately following the reception, the after party is a more casual get together geared towards spending quality time with your guests. While throwing the perfect after party doesn’t take much planning on your party, there are five things you’ll want to keep in mind while arranging the details.

Reserve a space. Depending on the size of your wedding, you can certainly just walk into the closest restaurant or bar following the reception. However, once you’ve chosen the place you’d like to go, it’s best to give them a call and let them know you’ll be coming. This way they can reserve a private or semi private space for your group and make sure they’re adequately staffed for the evening.

Spread the word beforehand. Don’t wait until the big day to let guests know you’ll be having an after party. Once you’ve made plans let guests know where you’re headed so they can prepare accordingly. You don’t need to send invitations, after all it’s supposed to be casual, but you’ll want to add the details to your wedding website and let friends and family know as you see or talk to them.

Make sure there’s food. After hours of dancing, guests are bound to be hungry. While you don’t need to provide food for your guests, choose a place that has a late night menu with options for guests who need a snack.

Location is key. You’ll want to choose a place that’s not only close to your venue but also to your hotels. This way guests feel comfortable staying and hanging out knowing they don’t have to travel far at the end of the night.

Remind everyone during the reception. Before the night is over, have your DJ remind guests where you’ll be gathering after the reception ends. As an added reminder you can include the detail on your weekend timeline in each guest’s’ welcome basket.

After Party.jpg

Photographer credit Lissa Ryan Photography

About Sincerely Pete

Sincerely Pete is a full-service wedding planning and design company in Washington, D.C. and Alexandria, VA who believes in a personal, curated & customized approach to each wedding couple we work with, taking their values & personalities into account and keeping the relationship as the focus of the wedding. We plan Washington DC weddings, Virginia weddings, Maryland weddings and destination weddings all over the world. 

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