“GOAT” wedding tips

We held our first wedding at Bold North Cellars back in 2008. Since then, well over 500 couples have tied the knot here.

GOAT wedding tips
Photo by Tessa June Photography.

We’ve seen many trends in décor, attire, menu, and function emerge, dominate, and fade over the years. For most couples, researching, selecting, and preparing these elements consumes their time for months before the big day. And yet, how many of these choices result in an event that will be remembered as the Greatest Of All Time (GOAT)? In my mind, a few critical choices make all the difference. And they probably aren’t the ones you’re obsessing over on Pinterest. Think of your wedding day through the eyes of your guests and loved ones. What do YOU remember from weddings you have attended? Check out these GOAT wedding tips to help engage your guests and make your wedding day memorable for all the right reasons:

A person holding a child

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Mingle with your guests during social hour.


You are the main event. The people gathered are there to celebrate WITH you.

  • Arrange for all or most of your formal photos to be taken before the ceremony, or during the dance. Have your photographer capture the rest with candids.
  • Bar hopping is for your Bachelor Party. At your wedding, plan to stick around and mingle with your guests. They traveled far, got dressed up, and bought you a gift because they want to celebrate WITH you.
  • Have a social hour between your Ceremony and Reception. You will not see many of your guests prior and during your ceremony, and during your reception you will be busy eating, listening to speeches and worrying about your first dance. Use the social hour as a time to visit with all who have attended (and be sure to get a plate of appetizers!)
Even Kate Middleton and Prince William Have to Wear A Name Tag at Royal Ascot.


Everyone attending your wedding has one thing in common, YOU. And since you may be the only person they know, it’s your job to get them talking.

  • Have a family tradition or song? Introduce it at your reception with your DJ and include all guests in the tradition.
  • Follow the 1st dances by inviting everyone on the dance floor, and then eliminating those who traveled less than a mile, less than five, less than 20, etc. until you identify who traveled furthest. 
  • Try to involve everyone by including a wide variety of menu items, drinks, and music choices. Make sure your band or DJ mix up the song choices throughout the evening. I’m sure we’ve all been to a wedding where everyone over the age of 60 left 15 minutes into the dance because the songs were unfamiliar.

A group of people sitting at a table with flowers and candles

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Keep speeches brief, engaging and few in number. Photo by Graddy Photography.


There will be times when large numbers of your guests will be uninvolved in what is happening such as during the ceremony, speeches, grand entrances and first dances. Those not directly involved lose interest quickly. 

  • Maybe the most important of our GOAT wedding tips – keep those moments short and interesting! Don’t let the best man’s speech go on for 40 minutes (I’ve seen it). A good speech is about 2 minutes, or 350 words long. Same goes for ceremonies, endless first dances, or dollar dances (a great alternative would be to have a “honeymoon” jar by the gift and guest book tables).
  • Keeping the flow from ceremony, to social hour, to reception, to dance moving is key to keeping guests for your whole day. What every GOAT wedding needs is a great coordinator and if you choose Bold North Cellars for your day, one is INCLUDED!

Successful marriages have a support system of friends and family. They are your people. And though they may not know each other, they’ve all been hand selected by you for your marriage journey to come. Follow these GOAT wedding tips and engage your guests for a day that’s sure to be the greatest of all time in their memories and yours!

If you’re interested in learning more about planning an all-inclusive, stress-free wedding, check out the Grand Hall at Bold North Cellars! A celebration venue of unparalleled beauty combined with unforgettable food, wine, and beer makes the Grand Hall the perfect setting for your big day.

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Tami Bredeson

Tami Bredeson


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