Wow...What a party and what a mess!
At the end of the evening, when the bubbly is gone and your guests have gone home, the wedding night clean up begins. Some vendors refer to this as break down, some refer to it tear down. Either way, it’s important to know what to do. What happens and who does it will depend entirely on you. Here’s a list of all the items that need to be taken care of and what typically happens.
If you hire a full service caterer, they typically will help with cleaning up their dishes, flatware and linens. Some caterers will help with trash disposal. If you book a cater who offers a "drop off" service, then you'll be stuck cleaning up everything at the end of the evening. A drop off service essentially means they will drop off the food, drinks and paper products. You'll be responsible to throw everything away since there is nothing to wash or keep.
In addition to bagging up the trash, there are just a few things that the venue requires at the end of the evening in order to get your deposit refunded.
Return all of the benches, tables to their original position.
Stack the chairs
Turn out the lights and lock the doors..Easy!
If you borrowed decor, clean and return it to the carts to be checked in the next morning. We inventory lanterns and a few other things after every wedding to make sure future brides will have them for their event.
However, if you'd like to hire a cleaning company to cleanup the ballroom for you, let us know in advance. We will email you some referals. You'll contact them and make the arrangements. If you leave at the end of the evening without following the "end of evening" procedure, you'll lose 100% of your deposit. It's cheaper to schedule them in advance.
Your wedding planner should stay until the end of your event and follow up with all the vendors to make sure this break down happens according to your plan. They typically help with making sure all of your items are sent home with the right person, the rentals are all accounted for and packed away for pick up, the florist picks up all their containers (and none were taken home by a guest who didn’t know any better), and to check if there are and damages you will be responsible for. If she has questions, have her call our after hours number listed in your questionnaire. This all factors into that “peace of mind” when hiring a planner to help with your wedding day, whether full service or as a day of wedding planner. We hope this helps you to understand what to plan for at the end of the evening!