long Island Wedding DJ (DJs, Bands) – Wedding Reception Timeline

Below is a  sample of the timeline that we follow for most of our Wedding receptions.  You do have the option of altering it or changing the order to your personal liking. We’ll say this wedding reception is from 7pm-12am.

Tips for  Cocktail Hour 7:00pm
Following the wedding ceremony, the Bride and Groom normally greet all of their guests then they head out for some photo shoot. Whether cocktail takes place in the same location or different location as the ceremony, it usually last for a total of 1 hour. In this case, it would mean 7pm-8pm.

 Preparations for Grand Entrance/Bridal Party Intro. 8:00pm
At this time, the MC (Master of Ceremony) should notify everybody that the Bride and Groom are present. Everybody should be told to take their assigned seats. The MC should check up on the bridal party, make sure that the line-up is correct and double check on the pronunciation of the names. Once ready, the MC must also notify the photographer and videographer so that they can position themselves correctly for the proper shots. The MC will welcome your guests, then follow up with the grand entrance.

 Grand Entrance – 8:10pm (Wedding Reception Timeline)
The order of the grand entrance will be based on your personal preference or the order recommended by your DJ company. A great example would be to call them in this order:

1. Parents of the bride
2. Parents of the groom
3. Bridesmaids and Groomsmen
4. Flower Girl
5. Ring Bearer
6. Maid/Matron of Honor
7. Best Man
8. Bride and Groom

-Your Ring bearer or flower girl may walk down the aisle alone or together.
-Maid of honor and Best man may walk down alone, together, or each one can be accompanied by a different partner.

After the grand entrance, the bride and groom will move into their first dance, at which point the MC should announce the title of the song to which they are dancing.

long Island DJs (DJ, Band) Tips for – Blessing and Toasts 8:20pm (Wedding Reception Timeline)
At this point the mother or father of the bride will say a blessing/prayer, which is optional. Once completed, he or she will thank everybody for coming. From here, everybody should be asked to take their seats, and the main course should be served. Somewhere in the middle when everybody is eating, the toast would be made by the Best Man and Maid of Honor. You may opt to have the toasts take place later if preferred.

This is the time to get the party moving. Some people can go from 0-100 instantly and for others, they need a little warm up time, mostly after having had a nice big meal. It’s highly recommended to start out with a slow love song, which will get most of your couples on the dance floor. From here, keep them on the floor by moving up into a more upbeat song.

This dance set can range anywhere from 30-45 minutes or more. A lot of this will depend on you, the number of guests at your event, percentage of older guests to younger guests, or the catering hall timeline. If guests appear to be walking off that dance-floor regardless of the tunes the DJ plays, then it’s a sign of fatigue or they are just not in the mood to dance anymore “at that point in time.” You may want to stop the dance set at that point and go into the Bouquet and Garter toss ceremony. This will give them a little more time to relax, and get some energy back. In addition they will have had more to drink, which means they will be more than ready to get back on that dance floor (following the garter bouquet ceremony.

 Cake Cutting – 11:00pm – long Island Wedding DJ (DJs, Bands)
The cutting of the cake is a sign that the wedding reception is getting closer to the end, so it’s best to place it somewhere close to the last hour. This is a great time to have the guests come up and take pictures of the cutting of the cake. During this ritual, the newlyweds hold the knife together, cut a piece of the cake and place it on a plate. The bride feeds the groom the first bite, then the groom feeds the bride the second bite. It really doesn’t matter who feeds who first.


Right after the cake cutting, comes the father daughter dance, and Mother and son dance.

Last Group Dance – 11:50pm (wedding Reception Timeline)
Although the reception ends at twelve, you may aim at announcing a “last group dance” 10-20 minutes before the end. The reason for this is that many of the guests will have left already, and the left over guests are probably getting ready to say goodbye to the newlyweds, get their stuff together and leave. All and all, this is a great time to get everybody on the dance floor, remind them what they came for, congratulate the bride and groom one last time, and dance it away. ***Note** We called this the last group dance, not the last dance. The reason being, is that the ending time is 12:00am and not a minute before.