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Dec 17, 2012 10:50 AM

Rehearsal Dinner in/around Plymouth?

Rehearsal Dinner in/near Plymouth?

Getting married in Plymouth in August and looking for a good place in the area for the rehearsal dinner, either as a venue or potentially as a caterer. I've seen a couple people refer to Plymouth as a "culinary wasteland," so we don't mind driving a bit for good food.

We were thinking seafood would be great and feel "local", though other suggestions welcome. Probably going to have around 100 guests.

Any thoughts??

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  1. 100 is a lot for a rehearsal dinner, most likely you are going to need either to take over a restaurant or look for a smaller wedding type venue.

    What’s the price range and are you thinking “local” as in casual lobster/clambake type deal? Or are thinking more upscale buffet or sit down dinner?

    4 Replies
    1. re: foodieX2

      Agreed -- it's a big crowd.

      In terms of style, I think a relatively casual and fun seafood meal (though not necessarily a strict clambake) would be ideal -- not too formal. And we'd like the price point to reflect that, although we haven't figured an exact budget at this point (we're still figuring out what the market is) -- not fancy fine dining, but not clam strips and fries, either.

      1. re: aweiss

        A traditional lobster boil/clambake could be fun. We did that for our rehearsal dinner. There are lots of places here that do all work but you have to provide the venue (and the booze). Where are you getting married?

        I live in the area and wish I could be more help but the head count is too big for my favorite places.

        1. re: foodieX2

          Agreed. 100 people is tough. Do you have a location and just need a caterer/ If not, you'll probably need to stick with one of the wedding venue type places like the john Carver Inn. Expect to pay about $50 per head plus tax and gratuity so about $6500 for the group plus any booze or wine.

          Keep in mind that August is prime season so that will limit options as well. Maybe one of the many golf courses or country clubs?

          1. re: CapeCodGuy

            Good point about golf courses/country clubs. The Pine Hills come to mind. Even Green Harbor (Marshfield) but you will need to get a caterer.

            100 people is a typical "small" wedding these days (which I find crazy personally) so the cost is going to be in line with the same.

            The clambakes I have been to and/or hosted run you about $30-$40 a head for that many people, so you are looking $3-4K before booze and venue.

            Curious- rehearsal dinners are traditionally just for out of town guests. How big is the wedding? Or is this a destination where basically everyone is from out of town?

    2. I would recommend the Plymouth Yacht Club. We had our wedding reception (just over 100 guests) there a couple years back and it was excellent, the view of Plymouth Harbor can't be beat. They use Plymouth Bay catering as their caterer. We had a full dinner menu and everyone raved about the food. I know that they also specialize in clambakes if you wanted to go down that road. I know that at the time, we had to be "sponsored" in order to get a date at the club, but things may have changed since then.

      1. Hey guys -- this is great stuff, thank you!

        In answer to a couple questions, yes, this is going to include pretty much everybody attending the wedding -- they're mostly out of towners. And we're probably getting married at Plimoth Plantation.

        We don't currently have a rehearsal dinner venue in mind, so having it catered is an option (we have local family with backyards), though we're not tied to that idea.

        It seems like the lobster/clambake option is a little on the pricey side. Does anybody do something in that spirit -- casual, fun seafood -- that's a little lower on the price range? (Say, somewhere under $30 a head?)

        Thank you so much for your help!

        3 Replies
        1. re: aweiss

          If you have a place where you can have the dinner, Plymouth Bay catering has some fair options for their clambake.

          1. re: aweiss

            If you go the catered route you may come in around $30, see dordalina's link below. But even their cheapest option at $24 is over $30 with tax and tip. Plus that doesn't include any beverages. You'd also need to provide tables and chairs for 100 guests which will cost almost $1000 from a rental company.

            Lastly, have you not yet booked Plimouth Plantation? It's peak season, are you sure they have availability still at this point?

            1. re: CapeCodGuy

              Agree with CCG. Unless you forgo the lobster and just do a simple clam boil with sausages and /or chicken or do a lobster boil without the extras (no clam chowder, etc) you are going to be hard pressed to get in under $30 including tax/tip. And as he noted you still need the venue and the drinks-even plain soft drinks for a 100 will run you some money.

              If you and your fiancé are paying (or if tradition has it that your future in-laws are paying) I think you need to all sit down and determine your total budget for the rehesarsal, In essence you are basically planning two weddings and it’s important that you have a realistic framework and budget.

              There are lots of ways to do this with less money but many are not “popular” and have the potential to “hurt feelings”. Sounds like you are settled on a hundred people for the wedding and rehearsal so now you have to figure out how to pay for it.

              -Limit the guest list for the rehearsal. While tradition states that it should be for the wedding party and out of town guest these new destination weddings are getting expensive for all involved. Why just not just include the wedding party and immediate family?

              -Forgo the “dinner”. Opt instead for a picnic lunch/dinner on a nearby beach. Many deli’s can make box lunches with a simple sandwich, snack, chips and a drink for $8-12. Don’t like the picnic idea? How about a simple reception with beer/wine only and light appetizers?

              -Or maybe you need to look at both events together and compromise. Maybe there are xtras from the wedding you can without to fund the rehearsal? Forgo expensive favors, get rid of alcohol and just have wine and beer, or go the dry route altogether. Limit flowers, get DJ instead of a band, satellite radio instead of a DJ….

          2. We had our wedding reception at Plimoth Planation as well....15 years ago. We got married on June 21st and had to book almost 2 years in advance. If you are looking for an August date, and have not booked yet, I HIGHLY suggest you contact them sooner rather than later, especially if you want to main reception room (Gainsboro).

            I agree with everyone about Plymouth Bay if you want to do a clam bake and also suggest Clambakes by Bob Barlow, which I believe is a part of Family Crest Catering our of Hanover.