Article by John Rzasa
The best man is the guy the groom wants at his side while
he transitions from bachelorhood into marriage. His main
job is to coordinate the groom's needs leading up to the
actual ceremony and to handle other details so the groom
can enjoy his wedding day without worries. Usually a brother,
father (in Southern tradition) or best friend, the best
man has several duties leading up to and during the wedding.
Here is an overview of his role and responsibilities.
Before the Ceremony - Supporting Role
Before the big day, the best man is the right hand man, the go-to guy that helps get things done. Traditionally, he begins the groom's transition to marriage by scheduling the bachelor party, which is a celebration of the upcoming nuptials and a last chance to party as a single man.
Next, he arranges the rental of formal wear by the groom and groomsmen. He's there for the fittings and makes sure everyone gets their tux back to the shop afterward. He also confirms the honeymoon travel arrangements in advance of the ceremony, so it's a smooth getaway for the new couple.
His main job is to deliver the groom dressed appropriately and on time for the wedding.
During the Ceremony
At the wedding, the best man is there to stand beside his best friend, brother or son as he confirms his nuptials. He holds the bride's ring until it is time to say vows. He escorts the maid of honor to the reception area following the exit of the bride and groom. Finally, he serves as a legal witness on the marriage license.
After the Ceremony
After the ceremony, the best man turns into host and Mr. Details. He's at the reception for three reasons - to ensure the groom is fed, behaving and not taking care of family or financial matters.
Here are a few details he handles:
- The best man pays the person officiating the wedding immediately following the ceremony.
- He initiates the delivery of toasts and speeches to the bride and groom at the reception.
- His speech should be to thank the guests and wish the new couple happiness.
- He prepares the getaway car and ensures the couple successfully gets to their accommodations for the evening or honeymoon.
- He tends to any final details such as paying or tipping the caterers, servers or bar staff.
Being a best man is an honor that comes with a big responsibility. The groom should consider this carefully in making his selection.
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