“The only way to have a friend is to be one.”
— Ralph W. Emerson (philosopher and poet)
Before The Wedding
Attend the groom roast.
Attend the bachelor party.
Attend the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner (usually with a significant other).
Pay for all formal wear needed for the wedding.
Be ready for pictures.
Arrive 4 hours before the ceremony to get dressed (if you're planning to come dressed, then getting there at least 3 hours before the ceremony should be fine). The timing for pictures will depend on whether the bride and groom are going to see each other before or after she walks down the aisle. If they wait, then there will be more pictures right after the ceremony.
Get your boutonniere.
Someone will give this to you, just make sure it’s on your left lapel, stem down.
Light candles prior to the ceremony (if applicable).
Accompany female guests (with your right arm) to their seats, by taking the bride’s family/friends to the left side, and the groom’s family/friends to the right. The significant other should be instructed to follow behind. Single male guests are led to their seat (one usher will typically accompany about 50 guests to their seats).
Distribute programs (if applicable).
Make sure guests are offered one before they enter the ceremony.
Show guests with gifts where the gift table is, and have all guests sign the guestbook.
Add the final touches.
Once guests are seated, you may be asked to unroll the aisle runner for the wedding party. Be sure to roll it back up after the ceremony is complete.
Check for flowers.
Make sure the parents and grandparents of the bride and groom have their flowers before being seated (they usually start the ceremony).
Know your role.
Start the ceremony by escorting the groom’s mother and grandmother(s) to their seats (right side), and then the bride’s mother and grandmother(s) (left side). At the end the ceremony, escort the bride’s mother and grandmother(s) out, followed by the groom’s mother and grandmother(s).
Hand out information.
Immediately begin handing out any maps to the reception (if applicable).