How to Plan a Manitoba Wedding Social

Here are some helpful steps to plan a Wedding Social in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

  1. Find a Social Venue.

    Most community centres and halls will host a wedding social. Some night clubs are also an option. A night club can be a great choice if they still allow the club to be open to the public on that night, which means more guests and more profit for you.

    Some venues take care of drink sales for you - this means you do not profit from drink tickets. However, even if you have a crowd who loves to drink (who doesn’t) the markup from drink sales is not great. Your profit will be made from attendance tickets and silent auction tickets.

    Some venues will offer a late night snack option for your guests. For the venues that do not, many couples choose to place a large pizza order ahead of time and serve that to their guests around 11pm.

  2. Book your Social DJ.

    You will want to book someone who is good at reading the crowds energy and skilled enough to keep them on the dance floor! We always recommend Andre from Great Times Events for both your Social and Wedding Day.

  3. Apply for your Social Permits.

    The Manitoba Liquor, Gaming and Cannabis requires you to have two permits when holding a Manitoba Social. You will need a Social Occasion Liquor Permit and a Social Occasion Raffle License .

  4. Order your Social Attendance tickets.

    Once you have your date and venue chosen you can order your social tickets. Tickets are often sold for $10 a piece. Some couples choose to offer two kinds of tickets (support tickets and regular tickets) so they can get an accurate idea of attendance. Support tickets are sold to people who know they cannot attend the social but who still want to support you. Regular tickets are for those who will attend your social. You can order social tickets from BasicInvite and use our promo code for 20% off.

  5. Number your Tickets.

    Number each and every ticket you hand out to sell so you can keep track of who sold what and how much money you are to collect. The same number on each side of the ticket is also needed if you want to rip the ticket in half at the door and draw for a door prize.

  6. Start selling your Tickets.

    It’s never too early to start selling. The more you sell, the more you make. Give multiple tickets to your bridal party or parents to sell to their social circles as well.

  7. Start collecting Silent Auction prizes.

    Reach out to your community and local businesses for social donations. Many companies ask for a Social Donation Letter which includes your reason for the social, the date, venue and an attached void attendance ticket. Here are some Businesses in Manitoba who will Donate.

  8. Prepare your Prize Tickets.

    The MYLGCA has Raffle Rules in place for Silent Auctions, 50/50 draws and Perfume Draws. You can purchase tickets for these from various Dollar and Party stores but make sure the numbers do not repeat in different bundles. Some stores will allow you to return unopened tickets.

    You will want to prepare bundled packages of these tickets ahead of time and have them ready to sell as people walk in. Some couples will have one price for regular prize tickets and a more expensive price for grand prize tickets. Having a price sheet with different bundle options is also helpful. (one sheet of 10 tix for $20, three sheets of 10 tix for $50, four sheets of 10 tix + 5 grand prize tix bundle for $80 etc).

  9. Wrap your Prize Packages.

    Once you’ve collected enough prize donations (and purchased some) it’s fun to categorize each package as some type of theme if you can. ex. Girls, Guys, WPG Jets, Camping, Romantic, etc. Some couples will opt for higher priced items as “Grand prizes” allowing them to sell these auction tickets at a higher price. Wrapping the items in cellophane wrap or some kind of visual packaging is a great way to display the prizes at your social. Make sure you have a list of all items included with each package so your guests know what they’re entering to win. You’ll also want some type of small bag with each prize where people can drop their tickets in.

  10. Prepare a Float.

    You’ll want to have a cash box and a float with small cash increments for the night of your social.

  11. Delegate Responsibilities.

    On the night of your social you and your fiancé will be busy greeting and mingling with everyone who arrives. You will want to delegate certain tasks to your bridal party or close family/friends to ensure things run smoothly throughout the night. Have two people at the door at all times handling raffle ticket sales. Have one or two people walk around and sell 50/50 tickets and perfume draw tickets. Have someone who can gather the cash that’s been made every hour and keep it in a safe place.

  12. Draw for your Prizes.

    it is best to draw for your prizes around midnight. Turn down the music, turn on the lights, get on the mic and have your prize bags ready to go. Some couples will only opt to draw for their grand prizes and will write out the regular prize winning ticket numbers on a large sign which allows guests check for their own winning number. This will avoid a long gap in your party and prevents guests from leaving sooner.

Where To Shoot For Engagement Photos

The number one question couples ask when planning their engagement photos is “What’s a good spot?”  We ask them two things, what’s your story and what’s your wedding style?  

If you and your financé have a unique story; met at a café, during a baseball game or on a beach, we would love to photograph this milestone in your relationship at that very same place.  

If you don’t have a special go to, then opt for something unlike what your wedding style will be.  For example, if you’re planning a summer country wedding with soft pastels and wild flowers, let’s turn things up for the engagement shoot by adding some bold tones in a sunset urban location.  

If you’re still undecided we’ve put together a Love Story Style and Location Guide with a detailed summary of where to shoot and what to wear. But here is a quick summary of a few of our favourite spots.


In the Comfort of your Own Home
What better way to personalize your photo session than having it in your very own home.  If this is your first professional photo shoot or you’re not sure what to expect, the familiarity and comfort of your own living space can create some spectacular photos.  Whether shooting in your environment for a lifestyle session or setting up a portable portrait studio for a more produced look, shooting in your home can sometimes be the best option.  This will also save on travel time and perhaps allow a few outfit changes should you choose.

The Forks Market / Johnston Terminal
Where the Assiniboine River meets the Red; The Forks offers many indoor and outdoor location options for different session styles.  Some of the highlights include the following attractions

  • The Market

  • Johnston Terminal

  • The Candy Train

  • Inn at the Forks Hotel

  • The Red River Walking path

  • The Canadian Museum for Human Rights

  • The Children's Museum

  • Skate Park Plaza

  • The Esplanade (Provencher Bridge) 

Manitoba Legislative Building
By far one of the most popular indoor photo locations for Weddings.   A government building featuring marble floors, elegant backdrops and a grand staircase.  Booking far in advance is a must.  In the summer months the surrounding grounds are also a magnificent option.

The Hamilton Building
Located in the Winnipeg Exchange district, this beautiful nine story building features a white winding staircase and large window. This architectural style is a perfect romantic location for your photo session.
Additional fees apply to use this location

Red River Collegiate (Downtown Campus)
Located in the Exchange District this location offers the beauty of the architectural stone building with the comfort of an indoor setting.
Additional fees may apply

University of Manitoba
The University of Manitoba campus is a great location for both indoor and outdoor photography.  The campus features classic architecture and well maintained grounds in the summer.

Assiniboine Park / Zoo
Located North of the Assiniboine Forest and along the Assiniboine River this location offers many attractions that provide endless photo possibilities.

  • The Zoo

  • The Park Pavilion

  • Formal and informal gardens

  • A sculpture garden

  • Miniature railway

  • Performing Arts Outdoor Theatre

  • Duck pond

  • Children’s nature playground

St. Vital Park
Located on the east bank of the Red River this location features several hiking trails, a pond, children’s playground and a picnic area.

Kildonan Park
Located in the Northeast of Winnipeg, this location features beautiful flower shrubbery and scenic walking bridges.  It is home to the well-known ‘Witch’s Hut’, Rainbow Stage, a duck pond and wide open spaces.

King's Park
Located in southern Winnipeg this location is known for its beautiful Chinese Pagoda Gardens, bright red bridges and Memorial Labyrinth.  There are also many forested areas and gardens throughout.

Birds Hill Park
Located 10 minutes Northeast of Winnipeg, Birdshill is known for its various trails and deep forest scenery.  This location will capture that countryside atmosphere that your session needs.
Additional fees may apply for park entry

Stephen Juba Park / Waterfront Drive
Located alongside the western bank of the Red River, this location features perfectly landscaped backdrops and is a short walk to the urban exchange district locations.  This is a great option for someone who wants a mix between Urban and Scenic environments.  The Mere Hotel is also alongside this location which can add a great splash of color to any photo session.

Exchange District
Located in the heart of Winnipeg, this location will provide an ‘urban feel’ to your session with its Historic site of terracotta cut-stone architecture.  Adorable shops and cafes lend themselves to the perfect 'Old New York' look for engagement sessions and many graffiti walls and gritty areas for the perfect juxtaposition to your pristine Wedding attire.

St. Boniface Cathedral
The St. Boniface Cathedral-Basilica Parish, built in 1818,  is a major historical site of Manitoba.  Located within the Archdiocese of Saint Boniface and a short walk from the Provencher bridge, another Winnipeg staple.  This is a great location for the proud Winnipegger.

 Gimli Harbour, Manitoba
Located just an hour north of Winnipeg, this rural municipality is found in the Interlake region of south central Manitoba.  Here you will find parks, beaches, and a beautiful harbour all located within this quaint rural town on the lake.