Monday, April 13, 2015

Why We Are NOT having Dancing at Our Wedding Reception

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I have never dreamed of having dancing at my wedding reception.  I grew up in the Church of the Nazarene and in that era, they frowned on dancing.  Square dance was not even allowed as a phys ed class.  I never learned to dance, and although I don't see it as a sin (at least depending on the type of dancing), I just had no desire for it at my wedding reception.  Growing up, I always thought I'd probably have the type of reception where everyone went downstairs in the church basement and drank punch, ate mints (and if was really fancy, wedding cake), and as entertainment watch the bride and groom open their gifts.  I have no desire to dance at my wedding reception.
Then I met and fell in love with someone from the city.  Country and city people are radically different.  The first time I mentioned no dancing to my fiance, he was surprised, but we both decided that given the situation, we wanted to come up with a fun alternative.


What is the situation?   Our wide variety of guests.  One book I have referred to often during the wedding planning is A Christ Centered Wedding.  In this book talking about blessing the guests is mentioned several times.  (There's even a section in it about dancing and I love this book doesn't say yes you should or no you shouldn't -- it leaves the decision up to you.)

We had one guest who was so upset by our decision, my fiance un-invited her.  It is so sad to me that someone finds dancing at a reception more important than a dear friendship, but we made our decision months ago and have been trying to work out an amicable solu
tion and was unable to do so.   I know having to uninvite a guest sounds oxymoronic when I just mentioned blessing the guests, but for the sake of the rest of the guests and for our enjoyment of the day, we unfortunately came to that decision after months of discussion. For the most part, though, no one has seemed to mind that we are not having dancing.  It may be unusual, but the majority of people are okay with things being unusual.

Years ago I saw an article in a bridal magazine where a couple had an "Our Favorite Things" themed wedding.  We are incorporating some ideas from that into our reception.  We are, like them, having a game table where guests can grab a board game and enjoy each other's company.  They had prizes for those who played games.  I thought at the time a carnival themed wedding reception would be so fun.  That's not what we are going with, but "Our Favorite Things" pretty much sums up our reception -- we want people to enjoy some of the things we love.  I love deli chicken from Wal-Mart.  I love pepperoni rolls.  I love candy.  I love guinea pigs.  I love my fiance's Cinnamon Apple Upside Down Cake which recently won a prize in a national contest.  Most of our wedding cake we are baking ourselves.

Yet, our guests were still a consideration in the decision to not have dancing.  We have friends from all walks of life -- from Mennonite and Independent Fundamentalist Baptist to Atheist and Jewish.  We are having a number of guests who will be traveling to the wedding without a partner.  There are a variety of ages represented as well.  Yes, it would have been cheaper for us to have dancing because we decided on an entertainer / master illusionist.   Scott Humston is a friend of mine and has even performed at the White House.  I think having someone of his talent is much more fun than dancing.  Everyone will laugh.  Everyone will have fun.  Will some find it unusual we are not having dancing?  Yes, but we have something in store to replace the first dance -- it's common in my area but not in my fiance's area.  We are gathering photos and making a slide show.   

Our wedding is different.  Our wedding is a refection of our personalities, and I don't believe we have sacrificed anything in removing dancing from the wedding.


11 comments:

  1. I love the idea of board games at a wedding... so much more personal than dancing. (admittedly, I'm an awkward dancer anyway!!) Though I love some wedding traditions, I love when people mix it up to suit them.
    When my husband and I were planning our wedding I had said I didn't want alcohol at the reception. My husband drinks, I do not (especially since I was underage-just 19- at the time- but even now at 27 I've never taken a sip haha) and I don't particularly care to be around people drinking either. I had several people tell me that people would not come (my husband and I both come from drinking families!)... in the end we ended up not having a big wedding and no reception at all, so the argument was moot anyway, but still... I definitely see your point of view :)

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    1. Randi, I'm really mixing things up. I had a friend recently say about my wedding, "This is so you". I have always loved hosting parties, and have always provided door prizes at every party. I decided the wedding reception should be no different than my other parties, just one of my parties even better. One year after my annual party in the park, I had a little girl tell me she was RSVPing for the next year. Another thing we are doing is getting a local hotel. We have guests from Connecticut to Florida to Montana and points in between. Some of these family and friends we rarely get to see, so we've got a whole weekend of activities planned from rehearsal dinner on Friday night until brunch on Monday morning That way we can have some alone time and spend time with others! I'll be doing more posts about things we did at the wedding after the fact -- I don't want to spill too much too soon. :)

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  2. I think it is so important to stick to your beliefs and also what makes you comfortable and happy when it's your wedding! Good for you!

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    1. I wish it would have been as big a hit with all our guests. It's such a shame that one person was so demanding on dancing that we felt uncomfortable with her coming with as much fuss as she put up about it. But everyone else has been very supportive, and one person I was telling about some of our ideas said it was the perfect wedding reception for us! I think so too! *grin*

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  3. We ddin't have dancing at our receiption and we had a great time. I love the board game idea. Everyone will remember that.

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    1. My fiance's brother loves games. We are having so many out of town guests that one of our ideas was make a place where people would feel comfortable just spending time -- some of my college roommates are coming and we haven't been together as a group since 1996. We have the hall all day, so why not just provide extra munchies and let game playing go into the evening if everyone wants it to. :)

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  4. weddings are so personal. I love that you aren't going with the grain, but going with your morals and relationship with God. More people should take your lead!

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    1. I also think if more people did take our lead, wedding receptions would be a lot more fun and memorable. This is an event that people won't forget because it's so unique to us and fits our personalities so well.

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  5. I honestly have never attended a wedding reception that didn't include dancing. With that said, I think it's neat that you're going outside of the box and making it more personal to what your favorite activities are.

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    1. Terra, that is interesting. I've only been to 2 weddings that DID have dancing. I think it very well could be more of a local culture where it's not done as much in my area. I

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  6. Stand up for what you believe in - I'm proud of you!! The wedding sometimes seems to be about what everyone else wants, but it's a statement to God about your life. No dancing necessary, just thanks to Him for leading your life! :)

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