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ELSA VERA PRODUCTIONS

Wedding and event planning in Sonoma and Napa wine country.

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Celebrating Dad, even on your Big Day!

Today is Father's day. So let me share some thoughts on how your Dad can be a part of your big day.

It used to be that the Bride's family (Dad) paid for the wedding. Remember the film Father of the Bride with Steve Martin (you know that's the remake and the original was with Spencer Tracy acting as Elizabeth Taylor's dad - yes a really long time ago, but still holds up today!)?Well today, with so many couples paying for their own wedding, some Dad's don't always feel that they have a role, or aren't sure how they can help.  But some of the sweetest moments at the wedding are when Dad's around.

Whether you have 1, 2 or a 'father representative,' there are many ways to include him in your wedding. Lets list out a couple for you to consider.

Planning: around, or not, as you grew up, some Dad's will help out with some of the expenses. If he is willing to pay for a certain item (or the whole shebang!) Its helpful ask what the budget is. Even if it feels awkward, go for it! Better a little awkward now, than later when you're expecting him a to cover a $8k bar tab when he was thinking it would be more like $500.

Ceremony: Most Brides & their Dads have imagined walking down the aisle together as he 'gives her away.' More common now, and according to some cultures & religions, both parents have that honor.  But unless deceased, or not on great terms, Dad is usually the main guy for that job. Also, did you know, that the Bride's father will walk in on whichever side puts him in between the bride & groom? So in a non-denominational or Christian ceremony the FOB (father of the Bride) is to the Bride's right. While in Jewish ceremonies he is on the Bride's left. The idea is that the FOB is the last protector of the bride,  even from her Groom - until he hands that job over to her him. In some ceremonies, the FOB is even asked "Who gives this woman to be married/ or to this man"... lots of ways to answer this one!

Toasts: the FOB can often be the one to give a welcome toast at the beginning of the reception or the dinner. Its traditional for the hosts to do this, and/or give the final toast. But todays couples may still give the honor to her Dad even if the couple is paying for it all on their own..... FOG (father of the groom) will often host the Rehearsal dinner, and so will say his toast the night before.

My two favorite moments in any wedding are 1)watching the bride walk down the aisle as Dad places her hand in the grooms, and 2) the FOB's toast. When done right, he will give us a glimpse into her childhood, tell us when he knew this was her guy, and wish them the best while holding back a tear. Cue the hankies!

FDD: Father - Daughter Dance! You see all sorts of routines choreographed and rehearsed, being done these days. They're so fun! But a sweet, sincere dance to a song that means something to the Bride & her Daddy just can't be beat.

So call him, email him, whatever you do, find a way to include him that leaves you both feeling great about your Dream Wedding Day! The memories will be priceless!!