Hopiate
Dedicated May 2018

Has anyone had a POSITIVE dry wedding experience?

Hopiate, on June 2, 2017 at 4:19 AM

Posted in Etiquette and Advice 138

After searching these forums pretty thoroughly, I'm genuinely curious - has anyone ever enjoyed themselves at a dry wedding? Most posters just talk about all the negative things about a dry wedding i.e. poor hosting, cheap reception, boring, etc. But have there ever been any positives? We are going...

After searching these forums pretty thoroughly, I'm genuinely curious - has anyone ever enjoyed themselves at a dry wedding?

Most posters just talk about all the negative things about a dry wedding i.e. poor hosting, cheap reception, boring, etc. But have there ever been any positives?

We are going to have a dry reception because of a variety of reasons (religion of guests, medical reasons for myself and guests, AA guests, etc.) and I come from an area where dry receptions are pretty common (LOTS of Mormons) so I'm not worried about my guests giving me side-eye. I just would like to know if anyone here has had a good time at a dry reception, and if you did, what made it fun, despite not having the typical party atmosphere? Was there really good food, a fun non-alcoholic drink bar, or something else?

(I'm not looking for the typical "No. Just don't have one." responses. I've already read plenty of reasons not to have a dry reception.)

138 Comments

  • Macy
    Super September 2016
    Macy ·
    • Flag

    I was the MOH in a dry wedding. The wedding was dry for religious reasons, and most of the guests didn't drink anyway. It was very well done. The reception was beautiful. There was no cocktail hour (obviously), we went straight from the ceremony location to dinner. They did not have a dance floor - just music playing lightly in the background. The food was delicious - this might have been the best wedding food I've ever had. Mostly it was just a nice dinner. People left after a couple hours. It wasn't a bad experience, it was just different. Felt similar to a family reunion or work party, but a bit classier. Would a glass of wine have been nice? Sure, but it didn't ruin my night or anything.

    • Reply
  • Nonna T
    Master April 2014
    Nonna T ·
    • Flag

    Jenny, by Persian I meant with the rituals and all. Not that they are necessarily Muslim.

    • Reply
  • Teresa
    Devoted July 2018
    Teresa ·
    • Flag

    After reading all the comments, I noticed that most of the ones who do not like dry weddings went to ones with other problems(poor food quality/quantity, drink wait time, etc).

    So the question becomes- Is the reason you didn't like the wedding because it was dry, or because of the other issues? Would you have minded the dry wedding provided the other things were not poorly done?

    I already told my family we were doing a dry wedding next year and their response was "Yeah we figured." "Sounds like you" "I wouldn't expect alcohol with you anyways" and my favorite "well yeah, you can't drink it so why serve it?" Yep they know me well enough to know.

    • Reply
  • Bemyguest
    Master April 2017
    Bemyguest ·
    • Flag

    I was MOH in a dry wedding too, and that was terrible. The only reasons were cheap and poor hosting. The first thing that happened was only about half the people who were at the ceremony came to the reception, and then almost everyone else left after dinner. At 8pm. So at 8:10, there's around 10 people left, and the bride is pissed because they have the venue and dj till 11. We danced for about 30 minutes, then helped clean up (seriously, cheap wedding) and went home. She still talks about how mad she is at the people who left 2 years later.

    Now, not one I went to, but heard from a friend... Dry wedding at 2, then refreshments and cake, and the bride had a ton of board games set up for people to play. My friend said they grabbed cards and played euchre the whole time. Wedding was over by 4:30/5, and friend went out for dinner afterward. Since most people don't drink between 2-4 anyway, she said it was more fun than they thought it'd be!

    • Reply
  • K
    Just Said Yes September 2017
    Kyle ·
    • Flag

    I have not been to many weddings but the weddings that I have attended that were dry were far less fun to me personally than the ones that were not.

    In general I feel like this is your wedding and if you want it dry, do it. Otherwise, have some alcohol available. The religion of your guests shouldn't matter IMHO. Medical reasons - same thing. If you are on medical restriction then you should know your limits. The AA guests are kind of in the same boat, but I feel more for this as you don't want to be the one that temps them.

    If you are interested in having some alcohol why not make it a light bar - beer and wine?

    With all that said if you are set on a dry wedding then I think you have to make sure you plan out other things to keep the guests entertained. Food needs to be top-notch. Drinks (even if non-alc) need to be different and delicious. Games for guests to play on their own. Games for the guests to play with/against the wedding couple. Lots of sugar and caffeine.

    GL!

    • Reply
  • PopTart
    Devoted April 2018
    PopTart ·
    • Flag

    Honestly, even if the food is good and everything else is comfortable, a dry wedding will just never be as fun as a regular one. The dry weddings I've been to haven't been torturous, but I also didn't enjoy being there either and have been waiting until it's socially acceptable to leave every time--even at ones where I was the designated driver and wouldn't be able to drink anyway. Even at weddings where a lot of guests know each other, weddings are events where people meet after not having seen each other for a while, and people experience all the conversational weirdness that often accompanies reunions between a large group of acquaintances. Most people are just kind of tense and awkward in such an atmosphere without booze, so if you want a party vibe, you won't get it.

    • Reply
  • Cindy
    Super October 2018
    Cindy ·
    • Flag

    I've been to one dry wedding and it didn't get fun till the last half an hour. Before that everyone was sitting around. My FH and I were outside by the bar for a decent amount of time and I so wanted to crash the other wedding that was going on! lol cause the DJ they had was awesome!

    The DJ at the wedding I was at was boring and what killed my mood was the bride was over an hour late for the ceremony! So after the ceremony everything was pretty rushed after that so it could end on time so yeah and the soft drinks were serve yourself....

    I'm sure your wedding will be great though!! If your in an area where dry weddings are common.

    • Reply
  • L
    Expert April 2018
    lindabelcher ·
    • Flag

    Yep! I don't care about dry or wet weddings. I have never understood this "people won't dance unless there is drinking and music." I am the DD for my friends, and I know I have fun with no alcohol involved when I'm at the club. A good DJ can make anyone dance!

    • Reply
  • Red2018
    VIP August 2018
    Red2018 ·
    • Flag

    I've never been to a dry wedding. But I'm not sure I would dance. However your food options sound great, and I'm all about food. I'd stay for a little while but maybe leave after dessert

    • Reply
  • J
    Super September 2017
    Jenny ·
    • Flag

    @Nonna, well I thought we were talking about alcohol sorry. Obviously for Muslims it's one of the pillars of their religion, and many Muslims take it very seriously, so that's why it was dry.

    • Reply
  • Chip
    Master March 2018
    Chip ·
    • Flag

    I've been to two dry weddings.

    One was awful - my cousin got married in a park on a rainy day and had BBQ catered in.

    One was last year - 4pm wedding with a 5pm dinner was over by 8. The food was great (we're using the same venue which does their own catering), they had a large candy bar and dessert spread, and the cake was fabulous. The DJ was awesome (a personal friend of mine, small town and we're totally using a friendor) and FH and I danced every chance we got. There were quite a few on the dance floor, but mostly the younger college age crowd (but granted the bride and groom were 22)

    FH and I are having our reception at the same place with the same caterer and the same DJ, so I know the food will be great, the DJ will be awesome, and everyone will have a chair to sit in, a plate of hot tasty food, a slice of delicious cake, and a refreshment. Dry weddings are normal around here, and we are choosing to do so because of religious reasons - not because we're cheap. None of our guests would bat an eye at a dry wedding, and those who do drink know ahead of time and will have the option to attend the hosted after party my non-religious mother is throwing at a local bar.

    • Reply
  • Nessa
    VIP December 2017
    Nessa ·
    • Flag

    I did, but the reception was so short, there really wasn't any time to drink. This is the only way I can imagine it to somewhat work.

    Reception immediately followed the ceremony (except for about a 30 min break, with apps, no drinks so we can't call it a cocktail hour).

    Then they did speeches, highlight dances, dinner &a cake. Almost 15min after everyone was done eating, it was send off time. It lasted maybe 2.5hrs?

    I went into it thinking it would suck, but upon arrival I learned that all of the guests, but about 5 of us, didn't drink... so I had a bit more understanding for it.

    • Reply
  • Ricotta1
    Devoted May 2017
    Ricotta1 ·
    • Flag

    I've been to one dry wedding. It was at an outdoor venue in the middle of nowhere in July. The heat was miserable, the food was mediocre and the dollar dance went on forever. Nearly everyone left early. All I remember thinking was how I wish I had known it was going to be dry beforehand so I could've brought a flask in my purse.

    • Reply
  • Jennifer
    VIP July 2017
    Jennifer ·
    • Flag

    I think you will be fine. If your friends don't really drink anyway, they won't feel the need to consume alcohol in order to have a good time.

    I would make sure you pair people well at tables keeping good conversation in mind (similar careers, for example, might enjoy a table together). Make sure you offer lots of variety in refreshments, not just soda but soda, water, coffee, tea etc.

    I think, considering your area, that your wedding will be fabulous!

    • Reply
  • Tattooed Bride
    Dedicated November 2017
    Tattooed Bride ·
    • Flag

    I have been to two dry weddings. The best thing I liked about one of them is that they had really creative mocktails that were really good.

    • Reply
  • TheFutureMrsWalker
    Super August 2017
    TheFutureMrsWalker ·
    • Flag

    I have and we left after eating and one dance. To each their own but it wasn't the greatest time.

    • Reply
  • Kelsey
    VIP September 2017
    Kelsey ·
    • Flag

    All weddings and parties for me are dry because I've had one sip of alcohol in my entire life and never drank it again (I'm 28). I always have a good time.

    • Reply
  • QueSeraSera
    VIP December 2017
    QueSeraSera ·
    • Flag

    I went to one and everyone had a great time! We all knew beforehand itd be dry with no dancing

    • Reply
  • Teresa
    Devoted July 2018
    Teresa ·
    • Flag

    Celia- for me(Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints), it is because alcohol changed how your brain acts. It affects you, although temporarily and makes you more susceptible to the negative and immoral ideas of the devil. To us, those substances are to be avoided as to avoid those that are immoral and keep us choosing the right so we can be with God in Heaven again.

    That's why drinking is not permitted. And while that may not be true for every religion it is for mine.

    • Reply
  • Caitlin
    Master July 2017
    Caitlin ·
    • Flag

    I have been to 1 dry wedding. It was my mom's to my step-dad, but they had a cake and punch reception that lasted 2 hours and was in the church. No one minded because it was so short and the cake was banging.

    • Reply

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