We have had a lot of experience with this seemingly unimportant question, or is it? How often do you get engaged and are there a group of incredible friends and family that would like to share in your happiness? Of course there is and something should be done to include them in this special moment, but not until after a couple of things have been confirmed—some of which you may have been thinking about for years. Please consider these few items in your planning process:
1. If you are going to agree to have an engagement party, make certain it is about 2-4 weeks after you received your ring. When you receive your ring you are really walking around in a beautiful puffy cloud… but when you finally come down to earth and think about the entire wedding, you will find a way to determine whether this particular event fits into the scope of the overall wedding experience for certain family and friends.
2. Not everyone elects to host an engagement party! However, your engagement is a serious celebration. A lot of people choose to host pre-wedding festivities such as showers, bachelor or bachelorette parties, and rehearsal dinners… but trust me, you can do what you and your friends and/or family elect to do! Let’s start with who should actually host this party? It could be your parents or his or the family… Also, you can host your own party—although I would not recommend the latter!
3. Should you and your soon to be spouse determine that you would like to host a destination wedding… this might be a good time to invite those who may not be able to attend or if you two recently bought a new home together, you could host an engagement/housewarming party.
4. Should you accept gifts? Not necessarily, but today many brides are registering at certain places for certain things—wedding and engagement; do inform your guests. However, if the invite says gifts are not being accepted and you would like to present the couple with something to congratulate them, perhaps a nice or vintage bottle of wine or champagne.
5. So, there are many places to hold a party; what works for you? For intimacy, your family’s home, yours or an intimate room in a restaurant or club. Ultimately, the right place for the celebration depends on the guest list; appropriate venues include a person’s home, backyard, a restaurant, or a country club. Note to self: If older family members are attending, please don’t take them to the nearest nightclub.
6. Lastly, for the bride and groom or anyone that’s planning the party, enjoy your time and most importantly the people you love and don’t have an engagement party so fabulous that it might upstage the “main attraction”: Your Wedding!
Marsha Jews is the Editor-At-Large(USA) for World Bride Magazine and the founder of Marsha Jews & Company a full service marketing, business development, Wedding/Events/ Conference planning & management; and communications company. Marsha Jews is the Founder/CEO of WKIMRadioNetwork.com.
and the former Founder/Curator of the Herbert Bearman Art Gallery & Director of Events & Weddings at the Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park Museum.
Marsha was Project Director on two community technology development grants: Harlem Renaissance 2K1 and NY-OneNet at the Institute of Learning Technologies and the Institute for Urban and Minority Education at Columbia University, New York.
As President/COO/Associate Publisher at Career Communications Group Marsha managed Black Engineer/Hispanic and Information Technology Magazines; the Black Engineer of the Year Awards Conference and was Co-Founder of the Women of Color Technology Awards Conference; Black Family and LaFamilia Technology Awareness Week(s).
The former Executive Director of the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater Foundation of Maryland; presenting Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Ailey II and AileyCamp and Director of Advertising for the 125-year-old Afro-American Newspaper, Inc.
Marsha was Vice President of Operations for the Marine Corps League Exhibit Company, and was the first black woman to produce the Modern Day Marine Force in Readiness Military Exposition and Awards Gala a program of the United States Marine Corps, Capitol Marines and the Marine Corps League, while simultaneously the Director of Advertising for the Amphibious Warfare Review Magazine.
Marsha is active in the community; former board member of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and was the first Black Trustee to chair their Annual Gala; Commissioner- Maryland Public Television Commission; Founding board member of the Maryland Association for Nonprofit Organizations; former trustee for the College of Notre Dame and the Maryland Institute College of Art; Trustee at the Enoch Pratt Library, and has won numerous awards; Co‐Author in Incredible Business and is an avid volunteer and speaker.