Wedding Reception Options

Blog header collage

Wedding Reception Options

Throughout the wedding planning process, you will have several opportunities for your personal preferences to shape your wedding day. Below are a few of those choices for your wedding reception.


The Sweetheart’s Table or Head Table A recent trend in wedding receptions is the sweetheart’s table; a table just for the bride and groom. Traditionally, the bride and groom would sit at a head table surrounded by the bridal party. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Wedding etiquette dictates that the bride and groom should be seated near their bridal party.
  • Consider they layout of your reception room and discuss the options with your venue. A sweetheart’s table does require additional setup, table linens, centerpiece, etc. The table should be placed so that your guests and those offering toasts can clearly see the new couple.
  • If you have a large wedding party, it may be more convenient to have a sweetheart’s table.
  • Your bridal party may be offended if you choose not to dine with them. Alternatively, they might appreciate being able to dine with their date or family. Discuss your decision with them in advance.
  • If you or your fiance are shy, it may feel like more attention is focused if you decide to dine at a separate table.


Buffet or Seated Dinner Most wedding reception venues will allow you the option of a buffet or seated dinner. Here are some things to consider when choosing between the two:

  • Buffet dinners are usually less formal than seated dinners so it is important to consider the overall formality of your wedding day.
  • Seated dinners are typically more expensive due to the additional servers required; making buffet dinners budget friendly.
  • Guests are able to choose more or less of foods that they like with a buffet dinner.
  • Ask your caterer if you will be charged a per plate price with a buffet dinner. Some guests consider buffets an “all-you-can-eat” invitation and may make multiple trips; possibly increasing your costs.
  • Buffet lines should allow access from both sides to keep guests moving through lines in a timely manner.
Open or assigned seating Again, the tone of your wedding reception will usually dictate the level of planning required for dinner seating. A simple, informal reception or one where most people will know each other lend themselves to more casual, open seating. The more formal the wedding reception, the more likely there will be assigned seating. (To learn more about creating seating arrangements, click here.)


Cash or open bar It is generally frowned upon to ask guests to pay for drinks during your wedding reception. However, there are not rules forcing you to have a full bar either. An option that is budget friendly and conforms to wedding etiquette is to offer an open, but limited bar. Your bartender can help you to select a few wines, beers and liquors that will meet the needs of the typical guest. You can also create a signature drink for your event too.


Guest Requests – Yes or No At some point during your wedding reception, a guest will ask your DJ to play their favorite song. It is important to discuss with your DJ in advance how you would like him to respond.

  • The more your DJ honors song requests, the more likely your dance floor will be filled. (For more ways to pack your dance floor, click here.)
  • If you are worried about someone requesting a song you hate, place it on your “do not play list”. Your DJ can then help the guest to pick another song that would be more appropriate.
  • If you truly do not want the DJ to play guest requests, have him inform guests that you have asked him not take requests for the evening.

Cake or cupcakes It is a traditional moment of the wedding day when the bride and groom cut their wedding cake. More recently, couples have begun to share cupcakes as well. If you are struggling between the two, consider the following:

  • Having multiple flavors of wedding cakes will usually require additional tiers. If you would like to offer your guests a large selection of flavors, cupcakes allow more variety.
  • If you have a particular theme to your wedding, each cupcake can be decorated accordingly and presented to guests. While cakes can also incorporate themes, guests will not see that on their individual plates.
  • Having a “cut” cake and sheet cakes for service can be more budget friendly than individual cupcakes.



We’re ready to help you create the wedding reception you want. Click here to get started.

Email us or call (248) 689-0777

Become a Facebook fan.

3 Steps to Building the Ultimate Wedding Package


1. Pick Your Wedding Photographer(s)

Whether you want ultra-creative or classic photos, our professional wedding photographers can deliver whatever kind of aesthetic you’re looking for. Each photographer offers their own unique professional approach to wedding photography, and you can pick the right one for you. The photography is just the start of the ultimate wedding package.

2. Pick Your Wedding Videographer(s)

One of the biggest regrets we hear from the over 25,000 couples we have served is that they didn’t get a professional wedding video made. Don’t let that be your regret! Like our photographers, our videographers can create cinematic wedding videos that spotlight your love. Whatever you’re looking for, our videographers will deliver a wedding video that you’ll be able to enjoy for years and share with future generations.

3. Pick Your Wedding DJ & MC

In order to capture photos and videos of the touching, hilarious and memorable moments at your wedding reception, you’re going to need the right music at the right time. The final piece of the ultimate wedding package, our DJs will bring your wedding celebration to the next level. Pick the music, don’t pick the music, create a “do not play list”, or give us no list at all, we’ll get to know you and your guests and construct a playlist that fits just right. But our DJs do more than just play songs, they bring energy to your wedding with engaging announcements, introductions and more.

30 money saving ways to keep within your wedding budget

Love Our Latest Reviews

Review Stars5 out of 5 stars

When I first walked into the office I was immediately greeted and felt important. My initial appointment was with Kurt and what was supposed to be 45 minutes turned into almost 2 hours...
Read Full Review

Review Stars5 out of 5 stars

From the time we walked in to the office to the followups by the team, we always felt 100% at ease with Mike Staff and the services we'd receive. The week before the wedding, as promised...
Read Full Review

Review Stars5 out of 5 stars

My husband and I had heard of MikeStaff Productions through our wedding planner. We had looked at their website, watched their DJ videos...
Read Full Review

Review Stars5 out of 5 stars

I originally checked out Mike Staff (DJ Services) because of all the good reviews I saw on The Knot & WeddingWire. I am glad that I can now, too, write a 5-star review for Mike Staff Productions....
Read Full Review

Review Stars5 out of 5 stars

Our main concerns in planning our wedding and deciding on vendors revolved around having a phenomenal DJ and great pictures. We got both! Our DJ, Jon Ray, kept the party going ...
Read Full Review

Review Stars5 out of 5 stars

Mike Staff was the best to work with! We were able to view videos of the DJ's available for our wedding, which was really helpful before making our decision....
Read Full Review

Hurry! Dates fill up fast!

About You

How We Can Help

A Few More things

Additional Services

10% of our profits are used to change the world.

A foundational value at Mike Staff Productions is to "Serve Others Well". Check out how we SHARE THE LOVE locally, and around the world.