The Rehearsal Dinner

It’s almost unfair how easy the job of parents of the groom is.  Our son Cory married the love of his life this past week-end, and other than showing up and having fun, our biggest assignment was the rehearsal dinner.  And when the rehearsal dinner happens to fall on the 4th of July, the theme and decorations are no-brainers.  We had a wonderful time, the event was amazing, and the photos are just breath-taking.  By the way, the wedding day photographer was Joel Sartore, considered one of the best in the world.  While we have every intention of giving a complete wedding wrap-up next week, today we want to share the rehearsal party with you.  We just landed last night from our wedding trip to Nebraska, we have a blog conference this week to prepare for, and frankly, there’s a pile of laundry waiting for my attention.  So, the wedding blog will have to wait a few days.

Rehearsal - The 2 Seasons

During rehearsal, Josie and Cory carefully listened to their instructions from the monsignor who flew to Nebraska from Washington, DC to officiate at the ceremony.

 Invitation - The 2 Seasons

Now, if you are expecting a Pinterest-worthy event, you’ll might be disappointed.  We planned the whole rehearsal dinner long-distance and had to box up decorations and have them transported to the mid-west.  We had one venue to work with, and it was amazing.  Plus, we had to plan a menu with the caterer by phone, and it turned out perfectly, too.  So, all in all, we hit a home run.  Since the party would be held on July 4, we didn’t have to work hard on coming up with a theme.  We found these adorable blue and white invitations, and the little napkin actually becomes a drink coaster.  We thought it would set the tone for the party which we called an indoor picnic.


Favors - The 2 Seasons

We decided to furnish everything rather than renting it.  Instead of using the typical plastic picnic plates, I bought red and blue melamine plates, but I didn’t take a photo of them.  For napkins, we used the cute Ikea cream with red stripe dish towels.  We wrapped the utensils and a box of sparklers up in the towel/napkin and tied them with red and white butcher’s twine.  The sparklers served as our guests’ party favors.



Place setting - The 2 Seasons

We had these cute place mats custom-made, and set everything up on the morning of the party.  With the bar’s character, and the red, white, and blue, everything looked great.


Venue - The 2 Seasons

The venue was perfect.  It was an historic bar that had just been refurbished.  The original tin ceilings were very high, the walls were brick, the floor was old and full of character (and stories, I’m sure).  There were 69 of us in total, and we had plenty of room for cocktails, and the caterer had room to set up in the back.  I ordered a dozen balloons that were 36 inches in diameter, and they were our decorations. It was just enough to add some atmosphere without taking away from the bar’s cool ambiance. In the photos the balloons look teeny, but imagine a 36 inch circle, and you can get a feel for how tall the ceilings were.   Flowers would have just disappeared, so we decided not to use them.



Venue - The 2 Seasons

Many of us spent the hot afternoon baking in the sun while playing pasture golf, and this cool room was very inviting after a rest and a shower.



Rehearsal party - The 2 Seasons

It was a fun evening with family and the wedding attendants, and it was one of many great week-end events.  Here the bride-to-be Josie and our son Cory are sharing a moment with Jordan and Charles.



Rehearsal party - The 2 Seasons

Because everything was done in advance and because the caterers were so good, Mr. Right and I were able to relax and enjoy our guests.


Take care.


  1. Beth Lowe says

    I love how good-lookin’ your party turned out!! Kudos to you. Thanks for sharing your family event!’

  2. Kathy says

    I am planning my daughter’s wedding which is in September so I loved seeing this post. (I can’t wait to see the wedding!) I loved your very first sentence! But, as much work and as expensive as it all is, I am loving being able to do all that we are doing for our daughter. Thanks for sharing! ((P.S. For future reference, where did you order the placemats? We have an unmarried son.)

    • says

      Kathy,treasure every minute of the planning and preparations. For Jordan’s wedding, we didn’t stress. We decided ahead of time that if anything went wrong (it didn’t), then that would be a memory. We ordered the place mats from a shop on Etsy called Boutique Monogram. They have lots of styles, fonts, and colors and were excellent to work with. They emailed proofs before printing.

  3. says

    Congratulations to you and your family. I’m sure that your meticulous planning is the reason things went off without a hitch. I love the Ikea towel-turned-napkin idea.

  4. Cheryl Ann says

    Very nicely done…I love the 36 inch balloons and place mats with monogram. Cheryl Ann