The Orange Slate

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How We Planned the Perfect Rehearsal Dinner // 4.

August 16, 2013


Because our wedding required a lot of traveling on the part of the guests and families, the celebration wasn’t just limited to a five-hour event. Instead, the revelry stretched out over several days. Spending a lot of quality time with both of our families and our close friends was one of the best parts of our wedding (and the aspect that took the most strategizing and planning!).

We opted out of an intimate, formal rehearsal dinner for a large, casual barbecue at my parent’s home. Mark is originally from Dallas and we decided to center the evening around a Texas-cowboy theme.

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We were expecting about 70 people for the rehearsal barbecue and so we rented a number of large round tables (the same tables we were planning to use for the reception) and set them up on the large  circle driveway. The food and drink tables were arranged on the brick patio immediately in front of the house.

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Each table was covered with a red-and-white checked tablecloth. We layered a square of burlap and a red bandana over that and spread some small rocks on each table. We created a centerpiece using some of the flowers that we planned to use for the reception (more on that later). Each centerpiece consisted of a clear vase filled with daisies and two small mason jars, each containing a white votive candle.


The catered food also fit into the barbecue theme; we served pulled pork, beans, and pasta salad, red and white wine, and Blue Moon and Corona beer.

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The relaxing evening with our friends and family was so memorable.

I loved the clothes that everyone chose for the evening. Ladies wore beautiful, elegant casual-chic dresses in every imaginable color and the guys wore bright polos or plaid shirts with jeans.

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My dad’s large blue tractor served as a fun photo-station for the evening.

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And Mark’s cousin made the groom’s cake, which we served as dessert at the rehearsal dinner.

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The playlist was full of classic country music and by the end of the evening, everyone was dancing to the familiar tunes against the backdrop of twinkle light.

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The evening before our wedding was celebratory, festive and fun and everything a Texas barbecue should be.

Need more inspiration? This book provided me with so many wonderful ideas during our planning process.

Want some more wedding insight? Check out the entire series below!

Part 1 – an overview of our day.

Part 2 – our DIY invitations.

Part 3 – outfit inspiration from our groomsmen and bridesmaids.

Part 5 – the fun DIY burlap banners we created.

Part 6 – some tips on venues.

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