It might sound like a formality before the rehearsal dinner and welcome party, but a wedding ceremony rehearsal is actually pretty important. After all, practice makes perfect! A run-through with your wedding party and officiant will ensure everyone knows when to walk, where to stand, and what to say throughout your ceremony. In the name of being totally prepared for your big moment, who actually needs to be at your rehearsal?
The Wedding Party and Officiant
The most important people to have at your ceremony rehearsal are anyone who will be participating in some way, whether it's walking down the aisle or doing a reading. Of course, the couple, parents, and officiant need to be present (since you've all got starring roles!). You don't necessarily need to go through your vows line-by-line, but reviewing the general order of things will help ensure that everyone knows when their part is coming up.
Have as much of your wedding party there as possible. If one or two members are on later flights or don't get in until the morning of your wedding, that's fine, but you want the majority of your wedding party there to practice the processional and recessional so they can fill in anyone else.
Younger Wedding Party Members
Do you have little ones participating, as well? The rehearsal is the perfect time to familiarize them with what they'll be doing, as well as to help them get more comfortable in a new space. Show them exactly where their parents will be sitting and where they should go when they're done walking down the aisle so it won't be too scary or new the next day.
Make sure that all of your readers are present, too. Again, they don't need to read every line of what they'll be sharing on your wedding day, but knowing what happens before they're supposed to speak will give them a good cue once the real deal is underway. Try not to have too many extra people around so that the rehearsal can run smoothly and quickly, without distractions. They'll get to see your ceremony IRL soon enough!