Big Fat Greek Wedding Traditions. Opaaaaa! Ouzo for Everyone!

Greece is suffering some economically terrible times.  However, people are always getting married, and so there are parties going on in the midst of the austerity.  They may not be quite as big and fat as in years past, but a Greek wedding is never anything but a joyous celebration.

Most Greek weddings take place under the aegis of the Greek Orthodox Church, which has some lovely wedding rituals, including the bride and groom wearing ceremonial crowns that are tied together with ribbon to signify the bond between them.  The bride and groom hold lighted candles, and make three circles around the altar to represent their journey through life.

Chris & Alethia's Wedding: Courtesy of

At the reception, the party gets underway.  Live music is de rigeur, Plates are broken for good luck, and money is traditionally thrown at the musicians.  Traditional foods such as spanakopita and baklava are served, and are easy ways to bring a little bit of Athens to any wedding.  Toasts are raised with ouzo, a strong licorice flavored spirit.

One last tradition to be very careful with, should you choose to adopt it, is that of breaking open a pomegranate on the ground representing fertility, and good luck.  As an event planner, this makes me apoplectic.  My bride is wearing white, and you’re stomping on pomegranates?  Where’s the ouzo? Opaaaa!

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