The Duties of a Groomsman

At first glance it may not seem that groomsmen have too much to do.  The best man tends to plan the bachelor party and the groomsman just coughs up a little cash and shows up right? Well, looks are deceiving. There is plenty for a good groomsman to add to their to do list.  Here is a good start. 

Look Good - A groomsman is expected to pay for their own attire.  Stay on top of fitting deadlines and go get the tux on the assigned day in case any changes need to be made. Wear the cuff links and the tie according to the groom’s wishes. Make sure pocket squares are folded correctly and flowers or other lapel adornments are pinned correctly.  If a lesson in tying ties or folding pocket squares is needed the attendant at the tux shop can usually help. 

Put Up the Cash - A groomsman will be expected to contribute to the cost of the bachelor party.  The groom should not pay for anything all night. Even though it is a great gift to stand by someone’s side for their wedding, a groomsman is still expected to give the couple a gift.  All of the groomsmen and best man can pitch in to give the couple one amazing gift. Groomsmen, like all members of the wedding party, are expected to pay for their own attire and lodging for the wedding.  They are also responsible for their own transportation unless the happy couple is providing a limo or party bus. 

Be a Source of Information - This may seem like more of a job for the bridesmaids but the groom will be just as stressed as the bride by the time the big day comes. Groomsmen should field any questions about directions or what people should be doing and when so the groom doesn’t have to worry about it.  As a member of the bridal party, a groomsman is considered to be in the know, so they may be asked many questions about the wedding in the days and weeks leading up to the wedding day.  Groomsmen are expected to know the wedding day or weekend schedule and get any answers they don’t have for the askers. 

Serve as Ushers for a Small Wedding - If the bride and groom have not selected ushers, the groomsmen will usually be asked to fill the role.  If there is a rehearsal, the officiant will usually give them pretty good instructions.  In a pinch, all ushers really need to know is what side of the aisle the bride’s family will occupy and what side of the aisle is for the groom’s family.  In most Christian weddings, the bride’s family sits on the left, while in most Jewish weddings it is reversed and the bride’s family sits on the right side of the aisle. 

Be a Partner in Crime to the Bridesmaids - Be sure to coordinate any surprises for the couple, like decorating the getaway car, with the bridesmaids.  Any surprises that involve the couple and not just the groom may benefit from the input of the bridesmaids. 

Have Perfect Attendance - Attend engagement parties, rehearsals, the rehearsal dinner and the bachelor party.  Attend anything else the bride and groom ask the bridal party to attend.  It may seem like a lot of parties to just have a wedding but hey, most of them involve free food and fun. 

Play Support Staff - The day of the wedding will be very hectic for everyone.  The florist may need help getting boxes of flowers in the door, the bridesmaid may need something from the car but it is pouring rain. There are a million little things to be done and oftentimes plenty of them aren’t assigned until the last minute or not at all.  Be an active participant in the wedding day and help where it is needed.  Assist vendors, guests, the rest of the wedding party and of course the bride and groom. Be the one to run to the store if something was forgotten or goes wrong.  Offer to go grab umbrellas if it starts to pour.  Go grab someone’s camera if the photographer doesn’t show and get someone assigned to take the pictures.  Basically, help iron out the little wrinkles that are sure to appear on any wedding day.
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