Wedding Party Duties

When it comes to the wedding planning and the events on the day of your wedding, needless-to-say, you (the Bride) and your fiancé (the Groom) have enough on your plates. Not only is your Wedding Party to stand up with you and represent you during the wedding ceremony, but they’re also there to help assist you throughout the planning process, the wedding day and post-wedding.

The checklists below outline the specific duties for each member of the wedding party to include: Maid of Honor, Bridesmaids, Best Man, Groomsmen and Ushers, Head Usher, Mother of the Bride, Father of the Bride, Mother of the Groom, Father of the Groom, Flower Girl and Ring Bearer.

Maid of Honor’s Checklist

_____ Helps the bride select bridesmaids’ attire.

_____ Helps address invitations and place cards.

_____ Attends as many prenuptial events as possible.

_____ Organizes bridesmaids’ gift to the bride. Usually gives an individual gift to the couple.

_____ Makes sure that all the bridesmaids, the flower girl, and the ring bearer are at fittings, the rehearsal, and the ceremony on time.

_____ Is expected to attend the rehearsal and is included at the rehearsal dinner.

_____ Walks in processional and recessional.

_____ Holds the groom’s wedding ring.

_____ Helps with the bride’s gown.

_____ Arranges the bride’s veil and train before the processional and recessional.

_____ Makes sure the bride’s gown is “picture perfect” throughout the day.

_____ Holds the bride’s bouquet during the ceremony.

_____ Witnesses the signing of the marriage certificate.

_____ Stands in the receiving line, when applicable.

_____ Keeps the bride on schedule.

_____ Helps bustle the bride’s dress if needed.

_____ Helps the bride change into her going away clothes.

_____ Takes care of the bride’s gown and accessories after the reception.

_____ Pays for own wedding attire and transportation to the wedding.

Bridesmaids’ Checklist

_____ Assist the Maid of Honor as requested.

_____ Attend as many prenuptial events as possible.

_____ Possibly host or co-host a party or shower (optional).

_____ Assist the bride with errands.

_____ Contribute to bridesmaids’ gift to the bride. Usually gives an individual gift to the couple.

_____ Are expected to attend the rehearsal and are included at the rehearsal dinner.

_____ Arrive at dressing site promptly.

_____ Walk in processional and recessional.

_____ Possibly participate in receiving line, when applicable.

_____ Dance with ushers and single male guests.

_____ Help gather guests for the first dance, cake cutting, and bouquet toss.

_____ Participate in bouquet toss, if single.

_____ Look after the couple’s elderly relatives or friends.

_____ Pays for own wedding attire and transportation to the wedding.

Best Man’s Checklist

_____ Organizes a pre-wedding party for the groom.

_____ Coordinates the ushers’ gift to the groom. Usually gives an individual gift to the couple.

_____ Is expected to attend the rehearsal and is included in the rehearsal dinner.

_____ Gets the groom dressed and to the ceremony on time.

_____ Makes sure the groom’s wedding-related expenses are prepared (Officiant fee, tips, etc.).

_____ Makes sure the groom has the marriage license with him.

_____ Delivers any payment to the Officiant, sexton, and ceremony musician(s), as prearranged.

_____ Enters the sanctuary with the groom.

_____ Takes care of and holds the bride’s wedding ring.

_____ Makes sure all ushers and properly attired and in place on time.

_____ Walks in the recessional.

_____ Witnesses the signing of the marriage certificate.

_____ Stands in the receiving line, when applicable.

_____ Drives the bride and groom to reception if no driver is hired.

_____ Helps welcome guests at the reception.

_____ Offers toast to bride and groom at the reception.

_____ Dances with the bride, maid of honor, mothers, and single female guests.

_____ Helps the groom get ready for the honeymoon.

_____ Gathers up and takes care of groom’s wedding clothes after he changes.

_____ Has a car ready for the bride and groom to leave the reception or perhaps drives them to their next destination.

Groomsmen and Ushers’ Checklist

_____ Participate in the party for the groom, if there is one.

_____ Contribute to the ushers’ gift to the groom. Usually gives an individual gift to the couple.

_____ Expected to attend the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner.

_____ Review any special seating situations with the head usher before the ceremony begins.

_____ Greets guests as they arrive.

_____ Seat the eldest women first if a group of guests arrive simultaneously.

_____ Ask guests whether they are to be seated on the bride’s side or the groom’s side, when applicable.

_____ Offer their right arm to female guests (with the guest’s escort walking behind) or ask couples to follow behind (leading couple to their seat).

_____ Walk to the left side of a male guest.

_____ Hand each guest a program when they are seated.

_____ Put the aisle runner in place after guests are seated and before the processional begins.

_____ Know the order of seating per tradition such as special guests, grandmothers of the bride and groom, and bride’s mother last.

_____ Remove pew ribbons, one row at a time, after the ceremony.

_____ Close windows and check pews for programs or articles left behind after the ceremony.

_____ Are prepared to direct guests to the reception site (having extra maps available, if used).

_____ Possibly participate in receiving line, when applicable.

_____ Dance with bridesmaids and other guests at the reception.

_____ Look after elderly relatives or friends.

_____ Participate in garter ceremony, if there is one, and encourage other single men to participate.

_____ Coordinate return of rented apparel with the head usher or best man.

_____ Pay for own wedding attire and transportation to the wedding.

Head Usher’s Checklist

_____ Expected to attend the rehearsal and is included at the rehearsal dinner. _____ Receives any lists of guests who are to be seated in a specific pew and is aware of the importance and sequence of seating special guests, such as the mothers and grandmothers of the bride and groom.

_____ Makes sure that programs if used, are handed to guests when they are seated.

_____ Checks that all ushers are dressed properly and wearing their boutonnieres on the left side, stem down.

_____ Makes sure that the ushers know how to usher: how to greet guests, how to offer an arm to a single woman guest, and how to precede a couple to their seats.

_____ Helps gather the wedding party for photographs either before or after the ceremony and ensures that transportation arrangements have been made for all members of the wedding party to and from the ceremony.

_____ Completes entire Groomsmen and Ushers Checklist, as needed.

Mother of the Bride’s Checklist

_____ Hosts an engagement party (the bride’s family traditionally gets the first opportunity).

_____ Helps couple to decide on sites or assists in making other big planning decisions.

_____ Usually contributes to the wedding budget.

_____ Assists the bride in putting together the family’s guest list.

_____ Offers suggestions for special family or ethnic ceremony traditions.

_____ May help bride to shop for wedding gown and accessories.

_____ Chooses own wedding day outfit (may consult with mother of the groom about formality).

_____ Along with the maid of honor and bridesmaids, may plan and host a bridal shower.

_____ On wedding day help the bride to get ready.

_____ May accompany daughter and husband to the ceremony.

_____ Walk in recessional with husband following wedding party.

_____ Greet guests in receiving line.

_____ May be announced along with the husband.

_____ Sits in an honored place at parent’s table.

_____ May assist with coordinating vendors.

_____ May host a post-wedding brunch.

Father of the Bride’s Checklist

_____ Hosts an engagement party (the bride’s family traditionally gets the first opportunity).

_____ Helps couple to decide on sites or assists in making other big planning decisions.

_____ Usually contributes to the wedding budget.

_____ May select hotel for out of town guests and reserve a block of reduced rate rooms.

_____ Rents own formalwear (work with the couple to coordinate with wedding party).

_____ Helps pick up out-of-town guests from the airport. May also arrange transportation to and from the wedding.

_____ Typically travels to the ceremony with the bride.

_____ Walks daughter down the aisle.

_____ Gives the bride away during the ceremony.

_____ Escorts the mother of the bride out following the wedding party.

_____ Greets guests in the receiving line.

_____ May be announced with wife at the reception.

_____ May make a welcoming speech.

_____ Sits in an honored place at the parent’s table.

_____ Toasts the newlyweds.

_____ Dances with the bride.

_____ May take care of vendor balances at the end of the reception.

Mother of the Groom’s Checklist

_____ Contacts the mother of the bride if the families are not acquainted (or plans a celebration if you have met).

_____ Attends (first) engagement party if the bride’s family hosts one.

_____ Along with husband, may host an additional engagement party for the groom’s side of the family.

_____ Usually contributes to the wedding budget.

_____ May help couple decide on sites and/or make other big planning decisions.

_____ Helps group to put together family’s guest list.

_____ Offers suggestions for special family or ethnic ceremony traditions.

_____ May help bride shop for her wedding gown. _____ Chooses own wedding day outfit (may consult with mother of the bride about formality).

_____ Along with husband, plans and hosts the rehearsal dinner.

_____ Escorted out following the wedding party and the bride’s parents.

_____ Greets guests in the receiving line.

_____ May be announced with husband at the reception.

_____ Sits in an honored place at the parent’s table.

_____ Does mother-son dance with the groom.

_____ Attends post-wedding brunch (if held).

Father of the Groom’s Checklist

_____ Attends (first) engagement party, if the bride’s family hosts one.

_____ Along with wife, may host an additional engagement party for groom’s side of the family.

_____ Along with wife, may contribute to the wedding budget.

_____ May help the couple decide on sites and/or make other big planning decisions.

_____ Rents own formalwear (after talking with the couple to coordinate with wedding party); attends fittings as needed.

_____ Along with wife, plans rehearsal dinner.

_____ May travel to the ceremony with the groom and the best man.

_____ May escort wife to her seat right before the mother of the bride is seated.

_____ Escorts mother of the groom out after wedding party and bride’s parents.

_____ Greets guests in the receiving line.

_____ May be announced with wife.

_____ May make a welcoming speech.

_____ Sits at an honored place at the parent’s table.

_____ May toast the newlyweds.

_____ May settle final bills with wedding vendors.

_____ Attends or hosts post-wedding brunch.

Flower Girl’s Checklist

_____ Dress and accessories should be paid for by her family.

_____ Attends the rehearsal although she usually does not attend the rehearsal dinner.

_____ In the processional, walks alone directly before the bride and her father.

_____ Often scatters petals from a basket she holds, although this is sometimes too overwhelming a responsibility for a young girl to manage in front of a large group of people. It is usually easier for her to carry either a small basket of flowers or a tiny nosegay of flowers similar to those carried to those carried by the bridesmaids.

_____ The bride may hire a babysitter or ask one of the bridesmaids to look after the flower girl, to be in charge of checking her appearance and making sure she is present for formal pictures, helping her manage her food at the reception, and escorting her to the ladies room.

Ring Bearer’s Checklist

_____ His attire should be paid for by his family.

_____ Attends the rehearsal although he usually does not attend the rehearsal dinner.

_____ He immediately precedes the flower girl in the processional.

_____ Carries either the actual rings or a facsimile of the rings (often a practical idea), on a white velvet or satin cushion. If the rings are genuine, they should be fastened to the cushion with a very thin thread or placed over a firmly fixed hatpin. The best man takes the rings from the cushion at the right moment.

_____ Walks with the flower girl in the recessional, directly behind the bride and groom.

_____ The bride may hire a babysitter or ask one of the ushers to look after the ring bearer, to be in charge of checking his appearance, making sure he is present for formal pictures, helping him manage his food at the reception, and escorting him to the men’s room.

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