What Is A Dry Wedding: Everything To Expect

The answer to what is a dry wedding is from the name itself; it’s a type of wedding reception that won’t serve alcohol. We will talk more about what to expect in this type of wedding, including the etiquette when having one if you prefer a dry wedding for your reception. 

On the contrary, couples who want alcohol at their wedding reception can browse our blog for helpful tips. For example, do you want to learn how to stock a bar for a wedding reception


Etiquette And Expectations On What Is A Dry Wedding

A dry wedding is a wedding reception that has no alcohol. It is a choice by some couples not to serve any alcohol at their wedding, which can be for different reasons. 


Why have a dry wedding

Perhaps the couple prefers a sober celebration, they need to cut alcohol from their wedding budget, or their religion prohibits them from drinking alcoholic drinks. That being said, you must ensure that your guests are aware that you’ll have a dry wedding since alcohol is expected in wedding receptions. 

You want to plan a reception that is entertaining even without alcohol by incorporating engaging activities for the guests. In addition, please keep the atmosphere energetic to motivate people to have fun, where typically alcohol helps to loosen them up.  


How do you say you’re having a dry wedding?

Do you have to tell your guests that you’re having a dry wedding? It’s crucial to let the wedding guests know that there will be no alcohol at the reception to avoid their expectations. 

However, you don’t need to mention this information on the wedding invitation because you don’t want it to influence the decision of some guests to attend. So instead, you’ll spread the word through your close friends and family for a more discreet way of letting the guests know that it’ll be a dry wedding. 

This way, the guests can also ask these people the potential reason why you’re choosing to have a dry wedding. And to ensure that every wedding guest will know, you can always have a simple “we will be hosting a dry wedding” at your wedding website in addition to word of mouth. 


How Do You Host A Dry Wedding?

So how do you make a dry wedding fun? You want to keep a lively atmosphere throughout the evening or plan a shorter reception time to avoid null moments. 


Shorten the reception period

For example, you can shorten the party after the cake cutting or incorporate some engaging activities to keep the guests entertained even if the reception is short.

A typical wedding reception lasts for at least five hours, so why not cut it an hour short. But during the remaining three to four hours, you want an engaging wedding.


Introduce entertaining activities

More than having a form of entertainment like bands and entertainers on the stage, you can include a variety of drinks and foods that guests can interact with. Since you do not have a bar that serves alcoholic beverages, make it a mocktail drink bar or shake bar with munchies instead, for example. 

Do you want an interactive dessert station at your wedding reception? Read how to make a s’mores bar for a wedding


What Do You Do At A Dry Wedding?


Non-alcoholic wedding bar

Various non-alcoholic spirits in the market will make delicious recipes and have your guests forget that they’re missing alcohol. A helpful tip for a non-alcoholic wedding bar to be a sure hit in the reception is to provide the garnishes and glassware for serving the mocktails beautifully. 


Have a charismatic MC or DJ

A charismatic MC or DJ sets the tone of the reception, so choose someone who can keep the guests engaged. Humor is always appreciated in an MC, and a DJ who knows the best hits to play will keep the reception lively. 


Include performances in the program

Do you have a close friend or family member with a unique talent? You can ask them to perform at your wedding or hire a professional entertainer to keep the reception interesting for the guests.


Include fun activities in the reception

Various activities to include in the reception will keep the guests entertained. For example, you can plan games and activities where the winners can get prizes or have important hobbies for you as a couple. 


How Do You Plan A Sober Wedding?


Choose an interesting alcohol-free venue

Your guests will be more accepting of the dry wedding if the reception is somewhere that prohibits alcohol. Some examples are parks, beaches, lakes, and nature preserves. 


Schedule the wedding in the morning or afternoon

Have your dry wedding at a time when people are least inclined to drink. Consider planning it in the morning or early in the afternoon to prevent the expectation for a cocktail. 


Make the wedding child-friendly

Consider making your dry wedding child-friendly as well. For example, it would be less likely to ask for drinks when there are kids around, and you can include child-friendly games in the reception that adults can enjoy. 



And that’s it! We’ve just discussed what is a dry wedding, which is a reception without any alcohol. 

However, this doesn’t mean that your wedding will be boring. You can still make the celebration lively by having entertaining bits throughout the reception. 

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