Almost every wedding that takes place at French’s Point is a family affair for our clients. Often times parents and other family and friends participate in the wedding planning at various points in the process. Many hands make light work, right? With such a momentous occasion to look forward to, it is very common for the family to offer their assistance as wedding plans are being made. We find that many mothers of the bride and mothers of the groom, in particular, really want to help. However, they don’t know exactly what they can do to help the happy couple with their plans, without overstepping the bounds of “helpful.”
In this How Can I Help? blog series, we will offer some ideas about how you can help your son or daughter and their partner with the planning. In a prior post in this series, we offered ways you can assist with the Venue Search and also thoughts on how you can assist with a Rehearsal Dinner or Welcome Reception. This time, we will discuss how you can provide support regarding the farewell brunch.
A farewell brunch is a great way to have some relaxed, low-key time with friends and family after the wedding reception. It’s a wonderful opportunity to thank everyone for attending the wedding before bidding them farewell. Only 27% of our clients opted to host a farewell brunch in 2016, making it the least commonly included of festivity of the weekend wedding at French’s Point. There is certainly no expectation that you should host this event as part of a wedding celebration schedule, but if you and the happy couple decide that this event should be included on the weekend wedding itinerary, there are a few things to keep in mind while planning this event.
Sure, it can be tempting to invite the whole wedding party, but the truth is after hours (or days) of mingling and hosting, the wedding couple might need to catch their breath and want to relax the next day. Talk to the couple and be sure you understand their desires around this event. Perhaps you keep this event small and include only the immediate family and wedding party as a way to thank your nearest and dearest for making the wedding possible. Also, keep in mind that not all of your guests will be able to attend the farewell brunch. Many will need to hit the road to catch flights or make the drive back home. If you invite all of your guests to attend, expect 75% or fewer to attend, unless this event was included on formal invitations with an RSVP required.
As mentioned, some of your guests will want to get up and get on the road the day after the wedding, so consider a drop-by event that accommodates the early risers as well as the slow-to-roll guests. We find 8 a.m. to noon is a good timeframe for this style of event. Guests can come grab a bite and a cup of coffee, say goodbye and head home. If you would prefer a more formal brunch with a full meal, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. tends to be an ideal time for this event. If you opt for this route, be sure to include this event on your wedding website and weekend itinerary. Some host locations, and even caterers, will require a headcount for an event of this nature, so this style of event may require an invitation.
When planning, many couples can’t imagine being hungry the day after a wedding feast but trust us, the newlyweds and their guests will wake up the next morning feeling famished from all the dancing and energy they have exerted on the big day! So really think through the brunch menu. After a night of drinking, be sure to include good sources of protein (eggs, yogurt, and of course BACON!) and hydration (through juice, fruit and certainly COFFEE!). For a drop-by event, we suggest portable menu items like delicious breakfast sandwiches, fruit and yogurt parfait cups to-go, and serve juice and coffee in disposable cups so they can take it for the road. We have had Urban Sugar bring their donut truck to serve hot, fresh donuts for a quick but delicious brunch. They were a huge hit! For a full brunch, consider either a simple buffet of quiche, cut fruit, yogurt and bagels. For a full menu for a more formal event serve eggs benedict, waffles, or blueberry pancakes, sausage, bacon, steel-cut oatmeal with brown sugar, pastry, muffins, juice, coffee, and mimosas and bellinis! Certainly, either route you opt for with the brunch, no one will go home hungry.
You can host a farewell brunch open to the whole guest list right here at French’s Point! Or consider hosting it at a restaurant located in one of the local hotels where many of the wedding guests will stay. Both of these alternatives are convenient for the guests and easy for you. A drop-by brunch can also be hosted at Beach Rose Farm or one of the larger rental cottages. Just be sure to consider the parking limitations and be mindful of the guest count restrictions at these settings. Always check with the property owner first to get permission.
Above all else, we suggest you do not worry about decor, or concern yourself by offering a fancy meal. Keep it simple, remember these tips, and have a great time!