Sunday, April 5, 2009
Bachelor party guide for grooms
You're the groom facing the prospect of being roasted by your closest friends and family members. You probably have vague memories of tormenting your best friend at his bachelor party. (What was it that you wrote in permanent marker on his chest?) Whether you're pumped about a night on the town with the boys, or trembling in your boots at the thought of surviving your bachelor party, this guide is for you.
Who's in Charge?
Usually, the task of organizing the bachelor party falls to the best man. While you, as the groom, should be involved to some extent, you shouldn't have to do the bulk of the organization. After all, the whole point of the bachelor party is to show you a good time, not to test your planning skills. Aside from putting the whole shindig together, the best man is responsible for ensuring that you don't do anything that will jeopardize your impending nuptials. Whenever there is a combination of guys and alcohol, peer pressure comes back like a high school ex-girlfriend, so the best man needs to be on the ball to make sure you don't do anything too crazy. As if that's not enough, the best man is also in charge of making sure everyone is included and having a great time. It's a lot of responsibility, but it doesn't mean the best man can't have fun, too. After all, it is a party.
When to have it?
In the Spring or Summer. On a Leap Day or a Sunday or cold Tuesday in January. Any day at all, but under no circumstances will you allow your bachelor party be held the night before your wedding. Typically, the bachelor party is held 2-3 months in advance or on the Thursday night prior to a Saturday wedding.
Mild versus Wild
Long before the bachelor party, the groom and the best man should take some time to discuss the tone. With this guide, you, as groom, are merely along for the ride. Defining the tone in advance is important since it will not be possible to do so on the night of. At the end of the party, you want a party that's going to be a blast for you and keep you out of the dog house with Her Majesty. Keeping in mind that your best man isn't likely to know all of the attendees, setting the tone will also help the best man give guests a heads-up in terms of what to expect.
A mild bachelor party and wild bachelor party are likely to start out the same. While your day may involve a poker tournament, golf or go-carts, you and the boys will invariably go out for a nice dinner. (FYI: Luckily for you, the groom never pays for himself.) What happens after dinner distinguishes this bachelor party from any other. We're going to leave it to your imagination. GroomGroove.com provides information here on planning a bachelor party for your best man.
You and the best man should also sit down and hash out the guest list. As a general rule, twenty is a good number. Anything more than that, and it will be too difficult to control if things get out of hand.
One of the easiest ways to coordinate the bachelor party is with an E-vite. That way, the best man can let everyone know what's on the agenda for the party. E-vites also help the best man keep track of who will be attending and print out the guest list, a vital, but often overlooked item.
Keeping Costs in Line
No matter where your bachelor party takes place, you've got to keep in mind that not all of the attendees will be able to drop cash on a bottle service if they've forked over money to the airline just to attend. The same goes for golf, dinner, hotels and whatever else your best man has got planned. If he's a spendthrift, don't expect everyone else to be.
A good way to cover the costs associated with the bachelor party is to sell tickets to the guests. Not only does this help pay for the event, but it also gives the guests an idea of what they can expect to spend for the evening or weekend. The price of the ticket should pay for some activities (e.g., a round of golf or admission to a club) and a meal. However, guests should be responsible for covering the cost of their own drinks.
You're the Groom, Get a Room!
Whether you are having a mild or wild bachelor party, GroomGroove.com highly recommends that you not return to your actual home after the late partying. Spend an extra $200 and get a room. The next morning you can convalesce on your own, without having to worry about what your bride will think. It's a critical but often overlooked piece of advice.
Speaking of the Bride...
Nothing will ruin a wild bachelor party like loose-lips Larry blabbing all about it to his girlfriend who is best friends with your bride. What happens at the wild bachelor party stays etched in memory alone. It's an unspoken rule. And even if she wants to know, don't you dare tell her a damned thing about how it all went down. She's only looking to feel jealous.
Being a Good Sport
One of the best parts of planning a bachelor party is keeping the groom in the dark about some of it. Once the best man and the groom have laid out the ground rules for the night, the best man will feel free to plan some surprises within that framework. You didn't specifically say that you won't dress in drag and beg hot chicks for smooches? Too bad for you. You need to be ready to dive in and roll with any surprises that come your way. Grooms need to be good sports. A good bachelor party is as much a roast as a celebration.
Staying Out of the Doghouse
GroomGroove.com has heard more than its share of stories about drunken grooms stumbling home to their bride, or worse, their future mother-in-law. A good best man will have a plan laid out to prevent a situation that could best be described as "awkward." That said, you are a man. If there is something that you don't feel comfortable with, you should express it to the best man in advance of the bachelor party. And if the situation arises during the bachelor party itself, there is nothing wrong with passing off the "fun" to another of your friends.
You're only going to get one shot at having a bachelor party. Get ready for the ride!