Give them a break—literally.
DJ pool
Credit: Jesse Leake

Vendors are people, too. Though you've hired them to work your reception, the photographer, videographer, event planner, band or DJ, and any assistants aren't superhuman. They need food and drinks and rest breaks, just like you do when you're on the job, to re-energize after a few hours. So even though they're working your event, know that it's still your responsibility to be a great host to the pros you've hired. Here are a few tips on how to treat your vendors right.

Feed them.

Food will keep them energized so they can continue to do a great job at your party. You don't need to give them the same five-course meal your guests are eating, but their dinner should be filling and plentiful, and preferably hot (bonus points if it's delicious and nutritious). Ask your caterer what the options are for vendor meals (simple dishes like pasta and salad or roast chicken and vegetables are fine) and what the cost is. Vendors should eat at the same time as the guest dinners are served. And if you want to serve them the same meal you and your guests will dine on? They'll surely appreciate the gesture.

Let them take breaks.

The band can't play and the DJ can't spin for hours on end. When you're interviewing music people, ask about breaks-how many they need and when they usually take them. (It's typically three or four during the course of a four-hour reception, broken down as one twenty-minute meal break and the rest around ten or fifteen minutes.) Break details should be noted in the contract.

Invite the officiant to the reception-maybe.

Sometimes the officiant is considered a vendor. Whether or not you invite him or her to the reception depends on what type of officiant is marrying you. If it's a clergy member you're close to or one you've become friendly with during the course of wedding planning, by all means extend an invitation. If the officiant is a clerk at city hall who you met moments before the ceremony, you can cross him or her off the guest list.


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