Wedding toasts can be one of the most touching moments of a wedding. BUT, those memorial moments can quickly turn into cringe-worthy memories if the toast becomes a rambling speech or the wrong person gets up to speak. A poignant story from a frat brother turned best man about how he knew the bride was the one for his best friend can leave even the most cynical guest smiling if the speaker remembers to make the bride and groom the stars of the toast. And although the best man leads the way, the father of the bride’s wedding toast is traditionally the spotlight of the evening’s speeches. He’s giving away his little girl, and that’s hard to top. After the best man, maid of honor, and father have spoken, think long and hard about taking the microphone. Anything short of a story about how you and the groom saved a child from a burning building or how you and the bride survived altitude sickness and nearly died when you skied Chacaltaya should be left saved for cocktail conversation. If you are the groom’s second cousin and you're dying to tell the story of how you road dirt bikes around your grandfather’s farm as kids, please save that one for dinner table small talk.
A good toast is about subject matter and the delivery. Keep the message sincere, loving, and tasteful. Weddings and rehearsal dinners aren’t roasts. They aren’t an opportunity to one up a sibling or to outshine the bride or groom. If your goal isn’t to speak from the heart and share in the love of the evening, then stay in your seat and smile. On the fence about whether or not you should give a toast at an upcoming wedding? Check out the chart below.