Rehearsal Dinner

Our wedding rehearsal dinner was intimate, delicious and full of love.IMG_7148

Our rehearsal dinner took place about a block away from our wedding rehearsal at 400 Beach Seafood and Tap House in St. Petersburg.

We all walked over to the restaurant from the rehearsal destination and spent 20 minutes or so mingling, sipping on drinks and enjoying hot 011wedding 005IMG_7147wedding 012Once we all took our seats, Ryan stood up to thank everyone for coming and express our gratitude for the support and love we felt from everyone in the room throughout our lives.IMG_7156We then placed our orders and chatted away while we waited for our food to come out.

Prior to the dinner, I wrote a little poem I planned to read, but I started to chicken out. Ryan asked me when I was going to read my poem and I told him I wasn’t planning on reading it anymore because I felt too nervous!

Apparently my dad overheard this conversation and before I knew it, he and Ryan teamed up on me and started clinking their glasses to get everyone’s attention so I could read my poem. Grr!

Of course I couldn’t back down, so I read my poem and got all teary-eyed. IMG_7161

We stand here before you

In a relationship sent from above

But we know we would not be “us”

If not for your love


Your warm hugs and your support

Your tears and your jokes

All helped us become who we are

You are some very special folks


Friendships as tight as families

And family members who are our friends

We feel blessed beyond belief

To know that upon you we can depend


You’ve been there to encourage us

To lift us up when we felt low

Your unconditional love

Gave us the ability to grow


Tomorrow our lives will change

When we exchange our vows

That’s something we’re ready to do

Because you all showed us how

IMG_7174Though I felt embarrassed at the time, I am glad I shared my poem and hopefully conveyed just how much everyone in the room truly means to me.

After we were all finished eating our main meals, my mom, Ryan’s mom and my sister stood up and surprised us with a beautiful slide show that included baby pictures of me and Ryan that looked oddly similar! IMG_7172They did an excellent job of pairing pictures of Ryan and me doing similar things at similar stages in our lives, which were hysterical and so fun to see. 

Then they surprised us by opening up the floor and allowing people to share stories and talk about us and our relationship.

It was so moving to hear from people we care so much about and many of the stories had us laughing pretty hard.IMG_7178Eventually it was time for dessert which came in the form of pumpkin spice cupcakes that Ryan’s mom brought as a surprise for 008By the time dinner was over, our bellies were full… but so were our hearts. It sounds cheesy (I know it totally is), but it’s true.

The rehearsal dinner was the perfect precursor to a wonderful wedding day!


  1. Jennifer Nimmo says

    Julie~ I absolutely love your blog! Actually, I found your blog when doing a search for Beach Seafood rehearsal dinners! I am having my rehearsal dinner there as well in October. I was just wondering how many people attended your rehearsal dinner, and how spacious was the room? If we end up inviting all of our relatives, we are looking at 65-70 people and the max is supposed to be 60. I would greatly appreciate your opinion on whether or not you think we can fit this many people or will it be too crowded? Thanks!


    • says

      how neat! congratulations to you!!! we really loved our dinner there. i think we had around 50 people and the room felt comfortable and not too, too crowded. i’m sure they can work with you on table arrangements to make it work!



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