Father of the Bride Speeches – Make Yours a Success
The expectation from long ago is that the father of the bride is the host of his daughter’s wedding breakfast. In times past that meant paying for the reception too, though the costs are usually shared these days. In keeping with that custom, the bride’s father is usually expected to act as the host for the wedding reception.
Sometimes a professional wedding MC is engaged, especially for society weddings. At most weddings the father of the bride is expected to give an opening speech and propose the toast to the newly wed couple at the beginning of the wedding reception.
There are five key steps to a successful father of the bride speech.
At the outset it is usual to say a few welcoming words to set the scene and create a happy atmosphere for a great wedding reception. The main objective is to get the guests to relax. A good way to do this is to talk about the wedding ceremony, the beautiful bride, the venue for the reception or even the weather — things that all the guests have their own views about — and how much you are looking forward to meeting everyone and enjoying the reception.
Secondly, as the host, the father of the bride welcomes all of the guests. It is usual to introduce any special guests, especially the groom’s family and those who have made a special effort to get to the wedding. Missing guests are often acknowledged at this stage also, especially those with close links with the bride or groom who have been unable to get to the wedding. A loved grandparent or favorite uncle who has recently passed away is often remembered at this point.
A third key component of the speech is to build some anticipation about the schedule for the reception, such as the highlight of the best man’s speech and any entertainment planned for during the reception, and for after the reception. Your guests will appreciate knowing what lies ahead for the reception.
As a fourth step in their wedding speech, most proud fathers want to say a few heartfelt words in public about the bride, their daughter. This is often the most difficult part of the speech to prepare for many fathers. There is not just one way to express your love for your daughter. Telling funny stories about your daughter growing up and quoting poetry are popular approaches, among many others.
Finally, to focus the attention of the wedding guests firmly on the newlywed couple it is customary for the father of the bride to call for guests to join him in a toast to the bride and groom. Choosing the right words for the toast is important.
Every father of the bride will use his own personality, humor and feelings into their father of the bride speeches around this or a similar simple five step speech framework.
Because few fathers will have much prior experience speaking at their own daughter’s wedding, most will find a professional wedding speech guide can be very helpful. Speech outlines and example wedding speeches are available, along with checklists of things and people that really should be mentioned, and valuable suggestions, such as popular jokes, quotes and poems to choose from.