“So, what’s a fall bride to do?”

I’d say reschedule.

There are a few things to come to terms with once a fall wedding date is set in stone. First, don’t be surprised if your football-crazed guests send their regrets. Sure, Barbara and Tommy had a tough conversation about to handle the South Carolina vs. Georgia rivalry that weekend, but ultimately, their season tickets trumped your ceremony. Don’t take it too personally.

If making a friend choose between SEC football and your wedding isn’t personal, I’m not sure what qualifies.  Friends don’t make friends choose like that.  But if you must, even from your most loyal of mates, don’t expect them to act like normal wedding guests.

Second, guests missing a game, no matter how big or small, are going to search for a way to keep up with the score. They’re Southern football fans, after all. They can’t help but crave a play-by-play. It’s up to you to determine how important it is to save them from feeling compelled to stream the game during your first dance. Less traditional brides may be open to a television by the bar for important games only, but we will warn you that this tends to draw the crowd away from the dance floor. Others might consider more creative ways to update guests, like incorporating a well designed scoreboard into your reception décor or requesting intermittent score announcements from the band. Best yet, if you think guests can resist their smartphones during your celebration, record the game and host a watch party after the reception.

“A well designed scoreboard into your reception décor”?  Well, at least you’d give them a memorable reception experience.  I suspect they’d be talking about that for a while.

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22 Comments

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22 responses to ““So, what’s a fall bride to do?”

  1. Dawglicious

    “That’s a tough way to find out who your friends are.” –a co-worker of mine’s advice to his daughter about 15 years ago in Atlanta when she wanted to schedule her wedding on a Georgia home game Saturday. He suggested she take an informal poll of her friends when she insisted that her friends weren’t like that. Two days later, spring wedding scheduled.

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  2. We got married in the fall … back when there was an open date between the WLOCP and the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry. It can be done, but you better plan it right.

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  3. Gaskilldawg

    How many times have you heard from the bride and her mother, “It is only a football game!” My standard response is, “Yes, it is only a football game but CBS is spending $50 million dollars to televise the football game. How much is it paying to televise this wedding?”

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  4. Hillbilly Dawg

    Planned my daughters around an open AppState date; my son was playing there at the time. AND we got lucky cause the Dawgs had a noon cupcake. The wedding was at 3:00pm .

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  5. KornDawg

    My wife let me choose our wedding date. I picked April 30, no conflict with football, and easier to remember because it’s the last day of the month. I’ve only had one instance where a wedding conflicted with UGA football, but luckily it was a road game. I was watching on my phone until the wedding march started, and promptly continued after he kissed the bride. By the time my daughter is ready for marriage, she’ll know better than to schedule her ceremony during a UGA game.

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  6. Macallanlover

    Host a watch party after the reception? What the hell are they thinking? There are 52 weekends to choose from (and weddings can be on other days besides Saturday) why do people dig their heels in? Finding an open weekend is no solution either, there are 6-8 other games fans want to see besides their top favorite.

    I am not a ceremonial wedding guy, have your vows with a small group of friends/family (5-6 witnesses seems plenty) at the courthouse then have a big party on Friday night to celebrate, and maybe show a video of it. That is much cheaper for them, and their guests, very considerate. If you insist on a $30+K extravaganza to draw attention to yourself, live with the fact that others may have conflicting plans…especially on Saturdays in the fall, in the South. We discuss this every year, and neither side blinks. Live with it, no hard feelings.

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    • A Southern wedding with a 20-minute ceremony and a 2-hour reception where people could come and go as they pleased is what we did. It worked and nobody (especially my father-in-law) complained. The fact it was a Georgia open date helped a lot.

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      • Macallanlover

        It wasn’t as big an issue when there wasn’t 30 games on TV from all over the country covering noon until after midnight (yeah, I saw the Pirate pull out a W at 2:45 AM Sunday morning. It isn’t that brides cannot choose any date they wish, they can, but they just shouldn’t be surprised when some choose to make their own choices. Only 14 Saturdays a fall, and one in the Spring for the Masters, be considerate of the friends and don’t make them feel bad for not honoring your selfish decision

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        • I agree about not attending if you don’t want to for whatever reason. I also don’t think that a bride having a fall wedding or a wedding on Masters Saturday is being “selfish.” I’ve been to weddings of close friends on tech weekend and a Masters Saturday (was in both). Those friendships are a lot more important to me than a football game or a golf tournament.

          That’s what a DVR is for. 🙂

          I have daughters and, while I will have a voice over how much the wedding costs, I’m not going to tell them they aren’t going to get married on a specific date or time. I would prefer to stay married to my wife/their mother myself.

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          • Macallanlover

            Perhaps “selfish” comes across too strong but come on, there are other options. Nothing is particularly sacred about a specific date when there is a known conflict that will but a lot of their friends out. Take the easier path, but if not, don’t be surprised that people make a different choice. Missing a live chance to witness a ceremony, or a party afterwards doesn’t mean you don’t care about them, or don’t have the rest of their lives to do things together.

            A marriage is so much more than the ceremony. FWIW, I feel the same way about destination weddings where attendees spend thousands of dollars and days off to be a part of something someone else determines is something they should do. Many of the younger friends, in particular, need that money/time for higher priorities in their own lives. I just feel we have the ceremonial part way out of proportion to its value. And of course I wasn’t saying one should miss their daughter’s wedding, perhaps just should have worked on the training. 🙂 Easy for me to say, my daughter gets the ban on fall football season thingy.

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            • My daughters will get the ban on the fall wedding thing especially on a Georgia home game weekend, but I can’t tell them no when we had a fall wedding ourselves. If they want to get married on an away game weekend and will commit to a way for friends & family to watch the game if the events conflict, I’m fine with that. If they’re disappointed that some friends or family didn’t attend as a result, I’ll tell them I told you so while at the same time, I think that’s 1 or 2 mouths less to pay for. 🙂

              If one of my daughters wants a destination wedding, we’ll have the conversation about that. The wedding ceremony itself may be about the bride especially, but the reception is the parents’ party. 😉

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  7. Russ

    Met a nice young couple of Dawg fans (maybe?) in Chicago this weekend for the game. Talking all things Dawg and then they casually mentioned they are getting married. This fall. On the Florida weekend. And they couldn’t understand why their friends were balking at attending. “But we’ll have it on at the reception!”

    Nice couple otherwise. 🙂

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    • They may have been a nice couple but I would still double-check their sanity and UGA street cred. I’ve heard of people scheduling weddings on a UGA football weekend- but never UF, Auburn, GT, well hell- NEVER! Many years ago I was invited to a wedding of a UGA alum that took place while playing GT. What mattered worse was UGA lost, suckiest wedding ever!

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    • Our friends (both Georgia grads) that got married on tech weekend (game in Atlanta) said the same thing. We got to the reception, and there was no TV. A number of us huddled in the corner where we followed most of the game on ESPN Gamecast (in the days before live streaming).

      The lesson there is “Beware of the bride’s promise.”

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    • AusDawg85

      She’s extremely attractive, wealthy, or both!

      Cool readers poll: If you were to marry (or get remarried), how much would you want to have it scheduled on GA/FL weekend? For me, Daddy would need to be in questionable health, have a very prosperous business that I know a lot about, no succession plan, and she have no siblings. Otherwise, that Samford weekend or off week works just fine, thank you.

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  8. DawgPhan

    put me in the camp of I would rather spend time with my family/friends while they celebrate a important milestone in their life.

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  9. Russ

    I’m in the camp where I try to be a good friend and accommodate my friends. If my best friend has a family reunion scheduled for a weekend, I’m not going to schedule on top of him and make him choose. Nine free months in the year, it’s really easy to accommodate people if you want to.

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  10. Ok, so I know I’ll be ridiculed for this, but my wedding will be this year on GA/FL gameday. Forgive me father, for I have sinned, but please allow me to explain. I’m a wedding DJ, and I never miss the game. I refuse to book weddings that day, and take vacation every year from my main job to be in Jacksonville. When my fiancee, a Georgia grad, and I were planning our wedding, we knew we wanting it to incorporate our love for the Dawgs. We weighed our options and settled on throwing a huge GA/FL Party with a wedding to open it up. The wedding is at 1, with a short reception. At 330 the game will be on 3 different big screens and played through the sound system in and outside the venue. Our wedding invites are made like tickets, and every aspect of the wedding is game themed. We even have hedges lining the aisle. We will be dressed in Red and Black, Georgia attire in abundance, and the bride will walk down the aisle to Larry Munson and the trumpet doing the game intro. Our ring bearers will be in Dawg jerseys, and our flower girls in cheerleader outfits. Our officiants will be dressed as refs. It may be a sin to have it on gameday, and we have lost a few guests to the game, but all in all, this will be as Georgia of a wedding as possible. I just hope the Dawgs make me proud.

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