Second Line Parade.
Perhaps one of the most well-known southern wedding traditions, this one is a lot of fun. Either to celebrate the couple as they go from the ceremony to the reception, or as an end of the night celebration to see the couple off, Second Line Parades bring high energy and liveliness with a brass band, parasols, and guests waving their handkerchiefs or napkins in the air as they weave down a street. Sometimes even excited onlookers will join in to celebrate!
This activity is typically another activity for all the single ladies at the wedding. This tradition, like the Second Line Parade, hails from New Orleans and many bakeries in the area will ask if this is something the bride would like when she comes to design her cake. The cake ribbon pulls are little charms attached to ribbons. Either the bride or the bakery hides these charms in the cake and at the wedding, the bride’s gal pals each pull a charm. Every individual charm has a hidden meaning. A wedding ring charm means they are the next person to get married, an alligator charm means they will enjoy a long and healthy life, and a hot air balloon charm means they will have a life full of adventure and travel.
This pre-wedding luncheon typically is hosted 1-2 days before the wedding so out of town guests can attend. This event gives the bride time to spend quality time with her bridesmaids, and female family and friends before all the wedding festivities commence. This is also a popular time that brides choose to bestow gifts to each member of their bridal party as a sign of their gratitude and appreciation for being part of this important time in her life.
Burying the Bourbon
Want to bring good luck and wonderful weather to the day of your wedding? Consider burying the bourbon. According to the lore behind this tradition, if you bury a bottle of bourbon upside down on the grounds of your wedding venue, this will bring you good luck and beautiful weather on the day of your wedding. Then, the day of your wedding (with all that beautiful weather), the two of you dig up the bottle and enjoy it throughout the day. Sharing with others is optional.
While “something borrowed” isn’t exactly a southern exclusive wedding tradition, we have a very special way of incorporating these “borrowed” items into our southern weddings. Many southern couples choose to have a family heirloom as their borrowed item for their wedding. Be it a veil passed down for decades, bracelets or earrings passed from grandmothers to granddaughters, or pictures of loved ones who are no longer with us, this is a tender way to celebrate the start of a new family with a nod to the family that made us into the people we are.