Your best friend is getting married and throughout the midst of all the preparation and To-Do lists you’ve been recruited to help with, you realize one scary thought: YOU’RE EXPECTED TO GIVE A SPEECH AT THE RECEPTION. Cancel that order for the oxygen tank and bring your breathing back down to a normal level; you CAN get through this. You don’t have to be a professional public speaker to give a great speech that your buddy will love.
Some people can pull off “winging it” during their toasts but let’s face it, that group doesn’t include the majority of us in their ranks. Preparation is a requirement that the rest of us can take advantage of to come off as effortlessly brilliant speech-givers that love our best friends. Preparing for your speech even if it’s only for a day can help calm your nerves to make it through those 3-5 minutes of the wedding when all eyes are on you.
1) Decide on the feeling you hope to get across. Who says your toast has to be formal and proper? If you and your toastee constantly joke with one another, feel free to make your special time one that draws laughs from the crowd, just avoid making fun of the newlyweds if you hope to stay friends with them in the future. Don’t be scared of going to the opposite side of the spectrum either! Weddings are events when tears of joy are bound to show up at so if you want to pour your heart out, go for it. You’re best friends for a reason so being emotional on such a special day is expected and you have nothing to be scared of if your stories make people in the crowd dab at their eyes with their napkins.
2) Write out what you’d like to say. By getting your jumbled thoughts onto paper, you can sort through stories you want to include, memories you probably shouldn’t, and special dedications you’ve been storing up since you deemed the bride or groom your best friend. If you write out what you want to say, you can read it over multiple times and start to remember what you wanted to say. No one is going to think any less of you if you’re reading your speech off of a paper or your iPad. If anything it would show how much you care by being so prepared so grab a pen and get reminiscing.
3) Practice your speech out loud to someone you trust. Don’t make the mistake many bridal party members have made in the past by having the first time you say your speech is when the microphone is in your hand. You may find yourself taking twice as long to get your words out because you’re crying between each line (no really, it happens)! If a wedding planner (such as Celebrations by Amy Bacon) is coordinating the wedding, it couldn’t hurt to ask them to give you some suggestions on your speech. After all, wedding planners have heard dozens of successful (and not so successful) toasts and have been getting to know the newlyweds for months so they are the perfect people to give feedback on your speech. Get used to how your speech sounds, get those emotions out, and get ready for your special moment.
In the end, who’s going to know if you do a Google search for “best friend wedding speech” and just throw in personal touches? They worked in the past so they’re nearly guaranteed to work again. Just remember how much you love your best friend and how you love to see them happy, and your toast will be perfect. Cheers!
Evee and Anthony Married 5.14.11
Thank you to all the professionals listed below that worked to make the day so special ...
Wedding Coordinating - Amy Bacon www.celebrationsbyamybacon.com
Video - Serendipity - www.serendipitycinema.com
Catering - LeFox www.lefoxcatering.com
Bartender - Arizona Bartenders http://www.arizonabartenders.com/
Live Music - Sarah Vanell http://www.sarahsmuse.com/events/
DJ - SKM http://www.skmentertainment.com/
Linens - PROEM http://www.proem.org/
Hair - Lily Delgado
Makeup - Jessica Adarme