Invited to the Wedding Feast, not the Ceremony-would you be offended?

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    One of our daughters is engaged. We are a small family, the chasan is also from a small family. Our daughter has always wanted to be married in our home, not a catering hall or shul. We have a lovely vine covered Pergola by our pool that has been used for a chuppah previously. We can seat 85 for a sit down dinner inside or up to 200 out of doors.

    Wife and daughter want to make a small intimate (family and closest friends) ceremony and luncheon at our home in CT and then throw a gala wedding feast/celebration that night in NYC for all their friends and not so close relatives.

    If you were a 2nd/3rd cousin or a former classmate at Seminary/Yeshivah, etc. would you be offended if you were not invited to drive a couple of hours for a 11:30 am wedding and luncheon, but instead were invited to an in-town wedding feast that night with shmorg/sit down dinner/bar/band/speeches, etc.

    My wife thinks this is horribly insulting. I think I would gladly not travel for the wedding of a not so close relative. It reminds me of my younger days 45 years ago when all the Yeshiva friends were invited to the chuppah and schmorg, but not the sit down dinner.


    My vote’s with you. Ceremony invitation suffices.


    If I was the chosson, I would object to having a wedding that essentially lasted 12 hours.


    Popa – it’s a good thing you’re not from England. Over there, that is routine. Chuppah is in the afternoon and then everybody goes home and comes back around 3 or 4 hours later for the meal. Whole thing probably lasts 6-8 hours.

    Joseph – I think you have it backwards, he’s NOT inviting for the ceremony, just the simcha.

    CT – I would call it something like “Simchas Chosson V’Kallah”. Here in EY a lot of people are not invited for the meal but since there are no RSVPs over here, people just write the above phrase to indicate that there will be a bar set up (not alcohol, just a variety of food) at the time indicated and they hope that friends and distant family will come from that point forward to joint in the simcha. Nobody is insulted in the least.

    If you are worried about what Popa points out, which is a chassanah of extended/tiring proportions, consider making it a 2 o’clock chuppah rather than 11 or 12, and I would order a limo for the chosson and kallah to take them to the simcha in NYC in style and perhaps if they aren’t too busy with each other, they will have a chance to rest up a bit before the big affair.


    Halachically, I believe the meeting in New York is a Sheva Brachos (the luncheon is the wedding meal), so the question is about inviting someone to a gala Seva Brachos but not to the wedding.


    It’s hard to judge what offends individuals, especially sensitive ones, but I think many people would be glad not to be invited especially if their relationship was distant. Curious why your wife feel it is insulting?



    If I had a question about halacha, I wouldn’t be asking it here. OI labeled the evening affair a wedding feast, because it is a feast given in honor of a marriage. That fact that there may also be be Sheva Brachos is incidental to the question posed.


    The son in law to be likes whatever my daughter likes and whatever I’m paying for.


    It seems to be a ‘girl’ thing…they get off on watching the Kallah in her gown come down the aisle to the chuppah.


    The old-time American weddings were like that: the chupah, followed by a reception, then a meal for close family/friends. It certainly has its advantages.


    I think people are understanding the situation backwards. If I understand correctly, CTLAWYER wants to have a small Chuppah and small seudah in CT, followed by a large seudah in NY. There will therefore be many people who are invited only for the large seudah but not the Chuppah.

    I think you should invite everyone to everything, but somehow (in a nice way) make it clear to them that they have the option of only coming for the large seudah. That way they will understand that you don’t expect them to make the drive, but also they won’t be insulted that they weren’t invited.



    You understand most of the question.

    My daughter wants the small chuppah and meal in CT. There is a maximum of 85 people who can be accommodated indoors or 200 outdoors. This would more than handle close relatives and close friends.

    The NY Feast that evening would be for the 300-400 extended family relations and not so close friends (former classmates, bunkmates from summer camp) and acquaintances.

    Inviting that list to the chuppah would not work, because if even 30% decided to make the drive we could not physically fit them in addition to the original chuppah/meal list.

    If I had my way, the chuppah/meal would be in CT and We’d host a lavish Shevah Brochos in NYC during the week.

    BUT, as my girls know: Daddy will pay, but mommy and the girls decide.

    Now, If you were a 3rd cousin of the Kallah or Chasan (you share common great-great grandparents) would you be offended if you were not invited to an out of town chuppah and luncheon, but an in-town wedding feast that same night?

    BTW>>>all invitations will have words to the effect that no wedding gifts be given, but Tzedaka given in the name of the couple would be appreciated. B”H the couple does not need material gifts or money from guests.


    I think you’ll have less than 30% attend the chuppah & luncheon if you figure out the proper wording to invite everybody, or better yet have a family relative or even the Choson do the explaining. Basically have someone say “My ____ would love to have everybody over for the ceremony, but his house is just a bit too small. And the drive to CT is a big schlep. That’s why he suggests that only those that feel really close should come for the Chuppah”. Then leave it to each guest to determine his/her closeness.

    If you can’t contact everyone verbally, maybe just put all the events in the invitation for everyone equally, but print something like “Intimate family & friends backyard Chuppah followed by homey luncheon at ______ @11:00.” You have the option of adding “Since space is limited please RSVP so we can accommodate all our guests comfortably” and mark the return cards accordingly.

    If you get swamped by positive Chuppah responses and money seems to be no issue, rent a tent so your backyard can accommodate everyone despite possible inclement weather.

    And btw every wedding also has Sheva Brochos, but the reverse is not true…



    The 200 figure outside is using a tent.

    Same invitation is NOT a consideration. Guests will either be invited to a chasunah or to a celebration in honor of a chasunah.

    Many are making suggestions and mean well, but the question asked is ‘would you be offended if you were not a close relative or family friend and were not invited to the out of town chuppah/luncheon, but an in-town wedding feast that night?’


    I remember how impressed I was the first time I received an invitation from friends offering me a choice of attending the tisch and the chuppah or the chuppah and the meal. It not only made sense controlling the astonishing cost of a wedding celebration, but it also afforded the recipient a guilt-free way to manage one’s time.

    Perhaps I would have felt differently were close relatives involved, but for me at least, some of these affairs seem to go on and on beyond my patience to stay (not to mention my bed time).



    Glad you were impressed, but has nothing to do with the question asked.

    Cost is not an issue in this case.

    Not close relative or family friend, would you be offended if invite dto an in town feast, not the actual out of town chuppah?


    As a not-close family or friend I would not be offended at all. Now, if I thought I was close and it turns out the feeling isn’t mutual, then maybe I would be offended. Isn’t that where the sticky situations tend to arise?


    You are absolutely correct! Why shlep for so many hours to be at the chupah – Your daughter can wear her gown at the party, and you can have her and your son in law make a BIG ENTRANCE once everyone is there.



    The relatives on the NY only list are a minimum of 3rd cousins to the kallah or chasan. In almost every case parents or aunt/uncle would have to explain the family connection…they would not recognise each other on sight.

    Not close friends/acquaintances might have been classmates/bunkmates a minimum of 6 years ago, or people the parents do some business with and are invitation obligations, not social friends.

    I have 2 siblings, and only 1 niece and nephew, wife has 1 sibling and no nieces and nephews. No aunts/uncles or first cousins on the chasan’s side.


    Wife and daughter want to make a small intimate (family and closest friends) ceremony …

    My wife thinks this is horribly insulting.

    Which side is your wife on?


    Mazel tov to CTLAWYER and family.

    I’ve never been to an American wedding. But in Europe it is standard to only come to the dinner in the evening. Chuppas and the reception following them are in the afternoon, when people are at work, and generally only attended by siblings and very close family and friends. In the evening, the dinner will take place in a hall (sometimes many miles away in big cities like London) and Chosson and Kallah arrive to a big entrance like ‘Shtusim’ was suggesting.

    In light of that, I would be glad not to have to drive out of town and can’t understand why someone wouldn’t be.

    Slightly digressing, but can someone define or describe a ‘shmorg’ for those of us who have never had the pleasure of attending one.



    I Shmorg (shmorgasbord) is a buffet period before a formal sit down dinner when all sorts of hot and cold appetizers are served along with alcoholic drinks.


    CTL, I would not be offended in the least, but I don’t get offended easily so you can’t solve this from my opinion. You probably were hoping to do some sort of calculation based on the large number of replies you’d get from your fellow coffee room members, but for the most part they’ve ignored your post. My sympathies… I’ve been at the receiving end similarly. I liked Mammele’s suggestion a lot and am not sure why you remain fixated on two separate invitations. Letting the guests decide saves you from your wife getting upset at the possibility of offending someone. And do you really think some third cousin twice removed will drive all the way out to attend the Chuppah?

    geordie6, the shmorg that CTL described is usually set up here in the US, for the guests to enjoy before the badeken. It can be very elaborate, featuring a vast array of hot and cold dishes and the requisite sushi, or simpler, with just some fruit and cake so the guests don’t starve (Jews are always very careful not to get too hungry) before the festivities begin.


    Hi CT LAWYER. If your interested, and lots of people get insulted, please let me know and I will gladly come to partake in your evening dinner. I can think of many people from my Shul here in Monsey that will also gladly come to help you fill up the hall. Just let me know.



    Yes, my third cousins would drive from NY or NJ to CT to attend the chupah and luncheon if they were invited. They know me well, they know my wife slightly, they have never met my daughter. They know me well because I am on the family cemetery committee and have attended quarterly meetings in NY for more than 50 years.

    I would be more than happy to entertain them in NY in the evening at a time when I can spend substantial time enjoying time with my guests. From experience with older children’s chasunot, my time was occupied with Tisch, Contracts, Photographer, etc. At night all I have to do is get in/out of the limo, make a short speech and write a large check. My wife would also be under far less pressure.


    CTLAWYER, You are truly lucky to have a close extended family, ka”h. Let us know what you decide, and whatever happens, May you and your family enjoy the simcha in good health, and have lots of nachas from the young couple and your other children.



    I had a telephone conversation with 2 of my 3rd cousins and their 96 year old mother today This is when land line phones with extensions are better than cell phones). The mother is one of the few remaining of my parents’ generation on my father’s side.

    The consensus is that the 3rd cousins would not be offended. They would make the effort to travel if invited, but if they only were attending in NYC, they could bring their mother. The female cousin was the most practical: Her wisdom: “If I have to come to CT for the Chuppah and luncheon, then to an evening affair in NYC, I need 2 new outfits, and maybe a 4 O’Clock appointment at the salon, for a comb out and a color change on my nails. The men just need to change to a fresh white shirt.”

    On the other hand, My wife and non-Kallah daughters and Daughters-in law are thrilled to shop for different outfits, wigs, accessories for the two events.

    The decision is made.

    There will be an intimate chuppah and luncheon in our home on a Sunday in early April followed by a feast for 325 that night in NYC.

    If anyone is offended by only being invited to the evening celebration, he/she is welcome to send back the reply card marked ‘will not attend’

    BTW>>>Before someone comments on it being a long engagement, I stop saying kaddish for my mother Z”L in late March.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Mazel Tov.

    It is permissible to make a chasunah for your daughter, and fully participate, even while in aveilus for your mother z”l. Your siblings may not be able to fully participate, but in my opinion, it is more important to not delay the marriage.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Also, if it’s still within the year, I don’t think you gain anything.



    I don’t give exact dates for a reason (some semblance of anonymity). It will actually be a few days after the year. I wouldn’t want my siblings to have restrictions.

    Also, it will be better weather for the outdoor chuppah, etc in our gardens than Feb or March and less concern about travel to NYC in winter snow.

    4 months is not a long time to plan and execute these events. Shopping and fittings for the ladies will take quite some time. The children’s home will be ready by then, and against my better judgment, they’ll both be taking the February CT Bar Exam (they are already admitted in NY). I didn’t want the next generation going into my business, but as I’m thinking about retirement, it might no be so terrible to have them work for me. That way, they’ll stay local. This will keep my wife and her mother very happy.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Regardless of how long it takes to plan, I think shorter engagements are better, even if it means less fancy gowns and such.

    It’s funny that you say that you didn’t want the next generation going into your profession. I think everyone says it about their profession. 🙂


    I find a mention of anonymity from you amusing,

    CTLAWYER (not that I know who you are yet).


    How much longer do you think it’ll take you, Comlink, to determine it?



    you have misread my post. I wrote that I did not want the next generation going into my business, NOT that I didn’t want them going into my profession. If I didn’t want that, I would not have paid for daughter’s college and law school.

    I had planned to sell my practice to my existing associates, and become ‘Of Counsel’ handling whatever little work I wanted in my retirement. When a child comes into your business, the opportunity for sale is generally lost. They end up with the business and it can create resentment among the other siblings who do not get a piece of the value of the business.

    Joseph/Comlink…I would hope you have better things to do than try to find my real name, etc.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Oh. Then you’re actually one of the few people who don’t have a problem with their kids going into the same profession. 🙂


    It’s much more tax efficient to let them into the business.


    “The men just need to change to a fresh white shirt”

    For the record, if I were attending both, I would probably not change my shirt


    But I don’t think you were invited, hence this thread.



    as my first Tax Professor taught me. First you worry about making the money, then let the professionals handle the taxes.

    as my father Z”L taught me: “You’ve got to make it to pay it.”

    There are many ways to structure the sale of my practice that will not have major tax consequences. I’d rather have the proceeds less the tax bite, than just have one child and in-law end up with it all and have bad feelings among the siblings and their spouses.

    B”H money isn’t everything, there are other considerations.



    According to my calculations, this wedding is soon. When exactly?


    My experience has usually been the opposite. The chuppah IS the wedding. What you are talking about is clearly Sheva Brachos. The kallah is going to wear her wedding gown all day???? Nothing terrible about your plans, but I personally would feel bad to be on the B-List. A second/third cousin or old Senibary classmate, with whom you have little or no contact, does NOT have to be invited if there is no real relationship shaychus to the chosson and kallah. But friends and family members who are close, should be at both, if at all possible.



    In keeping with desire for some anonymity, it is either April 3 or 10.

    Huppah and luncheon in CT.

    Feasting, dancing and celebrating that evening in NY.

    I’ll not reveal Boro or name of hall/hotel, caterer or orchestra.

    The Queen

    Lawyer, mazel tov! the best bubby ever (and I won’t get insulted either) asked a valid question, so I’ll join the yenta committee here. The kallah will be in her gown from morning until late at night???



    read the original post. Close family and friends will be at both. The responses are in. We new we can handle 85 for a sit down luncheon in our home and the yes list is just under that amount.

    We had figured approx 325..not that close family, friends, business obligation invitees for the wedding feast that evening in NY.

    The yes list is just over 300. Approx 70 will attend both.

    No, my daughter will not spend the day in her bridal gown. She’ll be in a different gown for the evening affair. The rest of the immediate family will also be in different clothing. What is appropriate for an morning garden ceremony is not evening wear.

    This is not being a snob or showoff. But I grew up in the clothing business and my paternal grandfather manufactured formal wear. Being involved in politics and attending many of the associated functions, I have plenty to choose from in my dressing room, no clothing expense for poppa for these simchas.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Popa was invited?


    Poppa, NOT Popa………..

    I don’t think I know or am related to popa, so I don’t thing Popa received an invitation. But Popa would be welcomed if so


    On one of those weeks I actually am going to a wedding. I bet I’m related to CT lawyer.

    Let’s make a sign so we can recognize each other. At exactly every 30 and 00 on the clock, I’ll stuff one finger up each of my nostrils as far as I can reach. Please be on the lookout.

    What will your sign be?


    I think you just got uninvited.



    at 15, 30, 45 and 00 I’ll be calling for a fresh glass of Whisky.

    Once the ice starts to melt the Whisky is ruined.


    Mazel Tov, CT! The untereste shura (bottom line) is that it’s your money, your daughter’s simcha, your plan is just fine and some people are gonna be offended no matter what you do.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Yeah, for example, I’m offended that he invited popa and not me.


    If the offended ask, you can say they eloped 🙂

    Mazel Tov, no one should be offended that you and your daughter want a small intimate ceremony.

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