After rehearsal dinner party

We are having a wedding in my hometown (we do not live there now and I have not lived there for quite some time). As a result, many of our guests are from out-of-town. We are having a rehearsal dinner with the wedding party, family and a few other invited guests; however, we wanted to have an after rehearsal dinner party (cocktails) for all out of town guests to give everyone who came into town on Friday night something to do. The rehearsal dinner venue has an adjacent space that will be used for the after party. My invitation question is, when should we send the invitations to this event? I want to send them early enough that people can make a decision about coming in Friday night based on this information but I don’t really want to have to send them to everyone on the invitation list (i.e. we have a lot of family members on the invite list that we know will not attend but that we felt needed to be invited). Is it better to just go ahead and send them to everyone or wait until 3 weeks before the wedding when I get RSVPs and send the after rehearsal dinner part invites to those that I know are attending? They are casual informational invites and there is no RSVP necessary.

Rebecca Black, Etiquette By Rebecca

Dear Akistler,

These really should be an insert with your invitations. It can be just a piece of paper. You don’t have to invite everyone. They can be just the few that you want to spend extra time with. But, the idea of having something for them to do is very considerate.

The only problem could be if they know that they are invited to an ‘after rehearsal dinner’ party. It may seem as if they were not good enough to feed. Typically they wouldn’t be invited any way. But, you would have just finished dinner. So, it may be best not to mention the dinner.

Best wishes,

Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites, Inc

Be careful about planning too much the night before your wedding. No one will expect you to be entertaining them, especially the out of town guests. Typically, the out of town guests would be given dining suggestions and sometime they might get together with other family members not attending the rehearsal dinner.