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Rehearsal Dinner Speech [Etiquette + Samples]


There is usually a rehearsal a day before the wedding ceremony, and this event typically culminates in a rehearsal dinner. It is a way of bringing friends and family participating in the wedding activities together before the big day. It is also an avenue of showing appreciation to everyone involved.


Hosted traditionally by parents of the bride or groom, an important part of this dinner is the rehearsal dinner speech. Sometimes, hosts have a problem pinning down their thoughts for this speech or keeping it as short or as long as they will like. Below we have several samples and tips of rehearsal dinner speeches to help you with this particular aspect of rehearsal dinner speech etiquette.

How long should a rehearsal dinner speech be?

A good speech for a rehearsal dinner doesn’t have to be long or complex. Something simple and straight to the point, of just under five minutes, will suffice. Some of the best rehearsal dinner speeches can be saved in the notes on your smartphone, on flashcards, or even word for word on a sheet of paper.

Who speaks at the rehearsal dinner?

Traditionally, rehearsal dinner speeches are given by the Father of the Bride or the Father of the Groom. Sometimes the Maid of Honor, Best Man and Bride, and Groom can give short rehearsal dinner speeches or toasts of their own, but it is not mandatory.

Rehearsal Dinner Speech Examples

For those who might wonder how to write a rehearsal dinner speech, below are a few examples of different kinds of rehearsal dinner speeches for different attendees. Most speeches are short, straight from the heart, but sometimes the speaker might choose to add in some marriage quotes or even romantic quotes for good measure.

  1. Father of the groom rehearsal dinner speech samples

  • [Groom,] as your father I am very proud to know you. I have had the rare pleasure of watching you grow from a little baby into a wonderful young man. You cannot possibly know how pride I am of you and how much I love you. Congratulations to you and your lovely wife on your wedding day.
  • Having a son has been my greatest blessing in life. In many ways, [groom] is like my mini-me and my twin. But over the years, he has grown and he has become his own person. While I have tried to teach him many things over the things, he has taught me caught a few important things as well. [Groom] is someone who really cares about people and he will always go the extra mile for the people in his life. I know that my son will make an amazing husband and God-willing, a spectacular father one day. Let us all raise a glass to [groom] and his lovely bride, [bride.]
  • Here are some hopes and dreams from a devoted father to his loving son on his wedding day. I hope that the two of you live a life together that is long. I hope that this shared of life of yours is full of joy, laughter, abundance, love, and many other good things. May you always have each other to lean on.
  1. Father of the bride rehearsal dinner speech ideas

  • [Bride] and [groom,] as I look at the two of you in your beautiful dress and your nice suit, I am reminded a bit of my own wedding day where there was plenty of excitement, love, and of course some nervousness as well. Take it from someone who has been married for many years. Being in a successful marriage requires falling in love many times, and always with the same person.
  • When you are a parent, you always want the best for your child. My daughter was no different. So it should come as no surprise now that I am thrilled that she has met the person of her dreams. Someone who is her equal, her better half, and a wonderful person. [Groom,] I welcome you into my family and I know the two of you will keep each other very happy.
  • I have always wanted the best for [bride.] From the best teachers and schools, to friends that were a good influence on her, you can be sure that I always wanted my daughter to have the best things in life. But she found [groom] all on her own. You can call it fate or pure luck, but whatever the cause, I am glad that they have found each other.
  1. The best man dinner speech examples

  • So the big day is tomorrow and I am a bundle of nerves. I can only imagine how [bride] and [groom] are feeling. But it is a happy occasion and it will be a day full of love and celebration. I know that I do not just speak for myself when I say that I cannot wait to see what tomorrow brings.
  • Hello everyone, can I have your attention for a moment? I would just like to thank [bride] and [groom] for putting their hearts and souls into this wedding, this special day that we have all been anticipating for a very long time. Thank you both for including us in this special day. Tonight’s rehearsal and dinner is just a taste of the celebration that is yet to come. Let us all raise a glass to the lovely couple and the upcoming wedding day.
  • A lot of blood, sweat, and tears has gone into planning this wedding. And tomorrow is the big day. So thank all of you for coming here to support [bride] and [groom], who both mean so much to me. I cannot wait to celebrate this wedding with all of you.
  1. Maid of honor rehearsal dinner speech quotes

  • Hi everyone, I am a friend of the bride, and after getting to know him, I have become quite good friends with [groom] as well. Watching the love that has blossomed between these two has just been magical and I am so happy that my dear friend has found the perfect match for her.
  • As I look around this room, it warms my heart to see all of the love in here that people have for [bride] and [groom.] If you have been in a wedding before, you know that it takes a lot of hard work and planning. It truly is a group effort and this rehearsal is the last thing on the to-do list before the big day. I know [bride] and [groom] are so happy and grateful to have you all here and I am so lucky to get to meet and eat with all of you.
  • As I look at the face of close friends and family members that are here at this rehearsal dinner, I am happy to know that [bride] and [groom] have such a great community behind them. To have that type of support from the people that you love is truly invaluable. Believe me when I say that this wedding would not have been the same without all of you.
  1. Bride and groom rehearsal dinner speech examples

  • While getting through a wedding rehearsal is certainly not the most fun thing that you can do on a Friday night, it will certainly help with the wedding tomorrow. I also want to thank you all for your enthusiasm, and for showering us with your love. Your support means the world to us. Now we get to relax and eat and I promise you that tomorrow is going to be a fun day that we will all remember.
  • I want to thank all of you for making it to tonight’s wedding rehearsal. It is a crucial part of making sure that the wedding tomorrow will go smoothly. I know that many of you could be doing something else really fun tonight, but instead you are here helping us get ready for our big day and for that, we are very thankful.
  • Hello, everyone. I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for coming to the rehearsal dinner. It means to world to us that all of you are here with us tonight to help us prepare for our wedding. Now eat, drink, enjoy yourselves, and get a good night’s sleep. We all have a huge day ahead tomorrow.


How To Write Rehearsal Dinner Speech

Whether you are giving a father of the bride speech or even a maid of honor speech, there are a few straightforward guidelines you can follow.

  • First begin with the basics like saying hi, introducing yourself and welcoming everyone to the rehearsal dinner. Next, you can express your joy for the upcoming nuptials of the bride and groom, your reason for gathering. Below are examples of some rehearsal dinner speech ideas which could also be used as a base for wedding toasts. Remember to keep it brief.

“Hi, everyone, and thanks so much for being here tonight. I’m the groom’s dad, George, and I hope you all are looking forward to this beautiful wedding as much as I am.”

“Good evening everyone and thank you very much for being here to celebrate Jessica and Tony’s wedding. My name is George. I am the groom’s father and I am so excited to be a part of such an important occasion.”

  • Next, you could tell a story; this would be a good place to insert some wedding quotes. For some funny rehearsal dinner speech ideas, you could include some anecdote related to the couple on how they met, or something sentimental from either of their childhoods. Could be a sweet memory of the girl the bride used to be or the boy that the groom was.
  • Try to finish with something sentimental. Say something heartfelt about the couple or the wedding and your wishes for them. Another way to conclude would be with one or two wedding toast quotes and have the guests raise their glasses to the happy couple.

Sample rehearsal dinner toasts story ideas

Below are sample story ideas you could use when giving your best man speech, father of the groom speech, or other.

  • The couple’s engagement story
  • A funny story about a parent or sibling’s first impression of the bride or groom
  • The story of how the couple met
  • A double date you went on with the couple and what happened
  • The story of how you met your own partner. You could end this with something sentimental like, “I hope the two of you are as blessed in marriage as I have been”


The Difference Between Rehearsal Dinner and Reception Speeches

A kind of informal wedding reception, the rehearsal dinner usually takes place the night before the wedding, just after the wedding rehearsal. Therefore, the tone of the rehearsal dinner is typically very different from the tone of the wedding reception.
And so many things differ between rehearsal dinner speeches and reception speeches.

  • The first difference is usually timing. Being an informal affair after perhaps a long day, there might be no rigid schedule for the exact timing of speeches at a rehearsal dinner. These speeches can be made during the course of the dinner or at its conclusion. Speeches and toasts at the wedding reception however, usually have a more defined timing. They are usually made after the bride and groom have arrived, and before guests begin to have their meal, and then during the transition from appetizer to main course or to dessert.
  • The order in which speeches are made at the rehearsal dinner is also less informal than at the wedding reception. At the rehearsal dinner, after the host, usually the father of the bride or groom is done with his speech, any other guest who wishes to speak can follow. At the wedding reception, however, it is customary that the father of the bride speaks first, then the best man and maid of honor, and then the groom or the host of the event to conclude the segment.
  • The choice of beverage also differs at each event. While at wedding receptions most couples choose to have champagne for toasts, at rehearsal dinners, there is usually a mix of drinks from water to mixed drinks and sodas, in light of the more relaxed affairs. Speeches at rehearsal dinners might also run a little longer than five minutes due to the lack of urgency, but reception toasts and speeches are usually required to last three to five minutes tops as everything is on a schedule and time.

Rehearsal dinner speeches are usually nothing to fret about as you are with people of your inner circle, friends, and family mostly. This single time before the wedding is a time to relax, enjoy each other’s company and be thankful for the time together and the avenue for a celebration. And so whether you are giving a maid of honor speech or dinner speech best man, it might be much simpler than you imagined.

If you are searching for anything from mother of the groom rehearsal dinner speech examples to rehearsal dinner speech examples bridesmaid, the tips and samples above would be a great place to start.