Wedding Toast Disasters - Tips So You 'Don't Burn Your Toast'

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According to a survey by Modern Bride Magazine, the Best Man's toast is the most stressful event for Brides on their wedding day. For the Best Man and the Father of the Bride, the rule to remember is it's a Toast, not a Roast.

so even PG-13 material may be questionable

The thought of having to give a toast has caused more than a few people to experience panic and sweaty palms. To make matters worse, says Kevin James of, most people don't plan far enough ahead for this important moment, realizing that the last minute inspiration they hoped for fails to rescue them.

The two main problems James sees at weddings are that either the person offering the toast has already had too many drinks, or is attempting to be humorous at the expense of the bride or groom.

Ideally, the Father of the Bride, the Best Man and the Maid of Honor should start to prepare their toast at least a month before the wedding. James advises that it's unwise to rely on "fill in the blanks" toasts which are readily available on the Internet. James recalls a wedding where the Best Man's toast was one that he had seen a few weeks earlier on a free wedding toast website. The Best Man delivered the toast confidently, but the humor was in such bad taste that the response from the audience was unforgiving.

James adds, "one of the biggest mistakes I've seen at wedding receptions is the use of wireless microphones. It becomes too easy for unplanned toasts to get out of hand once the microphone starts to make it's way around the room."

James recommends that a wired microphone be stationed near the Father of the Bride's table for those who will be speaking. This avoids embarrassing situations where a former roommate decides to tell everyone about the first time the bride stayed overnight at the groom's apartment.

Those who will be making a toast need to be reminded that grandparents and children will be in the audience, "so even PG-13 material may be questionable" says James.

James has noticed that at nearly half of the wedding receptions he has attended, the Father of the Bride has failed to offer a toast. He believes that many Fathers of the Bride fall into the mistaken belief that a five or six minute wedding speech is necessary. This is incorrect says James, since most toasts are ideally about three minutes long.

The key to achieve confidence when delivering a toast is to "practice, practice and practice." Once your toast is fully memorized, it's amazing the difference in your level of self-assurance, says James. "It's still a good idea to have notes readily at hand though, just in case they are needed."

Most importantly, says James, "keep the toast positive, and never forget to thank the mother of the bride." Remember, it's a toast, not a roast.

About Successful Toasts:
Kevin James is the creator of, a online web service offering public speaking tips and strategies for delivering wedding toasts.

Kevin James
Des Moines, Iowa


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