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Who Toasts Whom

In traditional weddings hosted by the bride's parents, the father of the bride gave the first toast and it was to the couple. But times have changed, and today the choices are optional.

  • Best man toasts the groom.
  • Best woman toasts the bride.
  • Bride's father, mother or both welcome the groom to their family.
  • Groom's father, mother or both welcome the bride to their family
  • The host(s) of the wedding acknowledge the guests.
  • The bridal couple acknowledge their parents.

Terrific Toasts

Preparation

The art of giving a toast is to be prepared. Write your speech out, polish it, practice out loud. With this kind of preparation, you will be more comfortable. Then write key phrases on small cards that will remind you of what your are going to say.

If you are still nervous, or you just don't trust your memory, it is far better to read the toast than to stumble.

Getting it Right

  • Don't talk about yourself when making a toast.
  • Do your homework. Collect and recall pleasant or funny anecdotes about the person you are toasting, but keep the humour gentle and in good taste.
  • Do not include anything that is embarrassing to the bride and groom and their guests.
  • Do not make any reference to an old boyfriend or girlfriend of either bride or groom.
  • Be inclusive. Don't tell "inside" jokes or stories which will not have any meaning to most of the guests.
  • Watch your language.
  • Don't drown your nervousness in alcohol.

Etiquette of Toasting

  • The person called upon to give a toast is introduced by the MC.
  • The person delivering the toast opens by introducing himself or herself (again).
  • They establish their connection with the person they are toasting.
  • Guests remain seated throughout the toast.
  • Guests rise when they hear, Please stand and join me in a toast to...
  • The person being toasted never drinks to themselves. Their glass stays on the table.
  • At the conclusion, the person being toasted may stand and say a few words in response to the toast.

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