Traditionally the main job or responsibility of the Best Man has been to arrnage the stag party for the the stag or groom. Although of vital importance there are other responsibilities the Best Man has. However the degree of responsibility varies depending on the nature of the couple getting married and how much hands on involvement they want (being polite here but what we actually mean is how much control the bride and brides mother actually want to relinquish and trust the best man and groom with. In reality very little!)
As a guide here are some tips to highlight what tasks you maybe expected to carry out:-
1. A Crutch for the Groom
Metaphorically speaking that is! Or depending on how the stag night goes you may actually need a crutch! You are there to support him through one the biggest events of his life and as a result one of the most stressful as well.
2. Before the Wedding
You should at least offer to get involved in the wedding preparations. From your point of view it will be a result if your offer is turned down. However you maybe asked to go along and choose the grooms suit and don't forget don't encourage him to choose something which makes him look like a total muppet because you'll probably have to wear the same outfit. So if you don't want to look like you're going to a fancy dress party be selective.
You may also be asked for your advice on arranging transport and cars, choosing of the rings, choice of ushers and the accommodation for the groom the night before the wedding, meeting and greeting visiting guests arriving during the build up.
3. The Morning of the Wedding
The obvious thing is that again you are there to support the groom and to keep him calm whether with soothing words or soothing liquid it's up to you. You main jobs are to make sure he's dressed properly and on time - don't forget the buttonholes!. Get him to the church with time to spare and establish where the nearest pub is. Make sure you arrive at the Church with all the appropriate documents, money and of course the rings.
4. Before and During the Ceremony
You need to check that ushers know their jobs and have the order of service to hand out. You may also be handed cards and presents for the couple so have a plan as to how you are going to store and carry said gifts. During the ceremony you stand to the right and just behind the groom so that you hand over thr ings when called upon by the priest or registrar. You also escort the chief bridesmaid into the vestry or to the table holding the register to sign it. You also escort her out of the church at the end of the service. Some are also tasked with paying the marriage fees although it is becoming more common for the bride groom to do this.
5. After the Ceremony
Outside the church the best man helps the photographer get everyone into the right photo at the right time - which is a tall order at the best of times. Use the ushers and get them to help with this difficult task as it can be time consuming with a big wedding party.
If everyone is then moving onto the wedding the Bets man has to ensure everyone has transport and the said gifts and cards also arrive at the venue in one piece.
6. At the Reception
Generally your role to ensure guests know where they are going, the relevant times for starting th wedding breakfast, helping with seating arrangements and generally being helpful before being seated. On occasions he maybe asked to announce guests as they approach the receiving line but this is becoming less common. The Best man introduces the speakers after the meal. And now comes your highlight in your role as Best Man. You're in the limelight because it's time for the famous or infamous best man speech. There's plenty of advice in this blog with best man speech material if you need it.
You are also required by law, not really but it is traditional, to toast the bridesmaids and read congratulatory messages from people who could not attend. Your other job is to dance with the chief bridesmaid, the bride, the bride and groom's mothers and as many female guests as possible.
7. After the Reception
This doesn't happen as often these days but the Best man is to make sure the couples car is all ready at the reception to be driven away for the honeymoon, appropriately decorated obviously. Alternatively if the married couple are staying at the reception venue then there is almost an expectation that the bridal suite will be tampered with in some way.