As the best man, you have an important responsibility in planning the stag party. It’s a major tradition that allows the groom to relax while giving the groomsmen a chance to bond and connect before the wedding.
“It’s a great chance for guys to celebrate their friendship with the groom and also a way to break the ice between groomsmen that have never met. This way, on the day of the wedding, everyone already knows each other,” event planner and designer, Danielle Rothweiler told AskMen.
If you’re in charge of planning it, it’s important that you really take charge. The groom should be free to bond with his fiancé and do his share of the wedding preparations.
It’s always good to gather ideas before finalizing plans. Make a long list, including everything you can think of. You can trim it down later, but this way, you won’t miss out on incredible opportunities. You also want to make sure things are fun, but that they’re safe and easy to pull off.
A great party can help the groom relax in preparation of the wedding day. To make sure you get it right, follow these suggestions.
Let the Budget Guide
You can only really do as much as you can pay for, so define that amount as soon as possible. In some cases, the groom and groomsmen will pool money together and in others, each man will pay for himself. It’s typically easier to plan if you’re using a pool of money—that way, no one gets left out of the festivities based on budget restrictions.
The budget will dictate most of your activities. For example, “if [the groom] wants to go somewhere international, that’s fine, but you need to let him know that this will cut the group by at least half or more, and rule out broke people and most people with kids,” warns Kevin Alexander of Thrillist.
If you’re on a budget, it’s best to choose a location where people can have their own accommodations if they wish, but that’s near bars and nightlife. College towns and warm climates typically offer these options, and they will reduce travel costs and provide something to do on pretty much any budget.
Plan an Entire Weekend
A stag party evening might be fun, but if you really want to let loose, break the ice, and help the groom relax, make it an entire weekend. With three days of fun, friends, food, and entertainment, the stresses of wedding planning and responsibilities will melt away for a time, and he can return rejuvenated, just in time to say “I do.”
Don’t try to book all of your travel, hotels, and entertainment separately, however. This will get confusing and overwhelming very quickly. Use an online service that specializes in bachelor parties, like StagMadness. This type of service lets you submit your ideas while an expert organizes and books the entire weekend for you. All you have to do is confirm, pay, and enjoy the party.
Consider the Groom’s Wishes
Since it is the groom’s party, put yourself in his shoes during the planning phase. Think about what he likes to do, not what you or other members of the group would enjoy. Those preferences should be afterthoughts.
“The best man/brother/BFF should be in charge of coming up with ideas of where the groom would love to go,” Rothweiler says. “Is he a skier? Why not take a trip to the slopes like Vancouver, Vermont or Vail? Music festivals are a great way to make a three day weekend happen and there are countless ones across the country for all types of music lovers. The bottom line is: do what he wants to do.”
Prune the Guest List
While you’re thinking about the groom’s wishes, make the guest list. Start with a preliminary list, adding anyone you think the groom might like to have there and excluding anyone who doesn’t fit in. Then, have the groom check it over before it’s finalized.
Unfortunately for you, it’s also your responsibility to handle any uninvited guests who are upset that they didn’t make the cut. Remember that this is the groom’s day, so whatever he says goes. You’ll just have to find a way to let the uninvited down easy.
When you consider the wishes of the groom, define the budget, and use an easy booking service to plan the weekend. All there is left to do is relax and have fun!