Guests Tending The Bar

by admin on April 3, 2013

A couple who is very close to us asked us to bartend their wedding one night after we had a few too many cocktails. We agreed (my fiancé and I) because we were a tad bit tipsy and the couple assured us that the whole thing would be an easy affair. Their wedding is exactly two weeks to the date before our wedding is. Our wedding is very small in comparison to their much more lavish wedding and we are not asking this couple to work for free in any capacity during our wedding.

I received an email thanking me and my fiancé for agreeing to bartend the wedding and attached was a three-page detailed document of our responsibilities. I was taken aback and slightly overwhelmed when I began to read the responsibilities we were tasked with which include but are not limited to: attending the rehearsal even though we are not part of the wedding party to get a lay of the land (this was not required but it was encouraged), arriving 2 and a 1/2 hours early on the wedding date to set up the bar, we have to make all of the simple syrups and garnishes during our own time before the wedding date, the day of the wedding we are to mix large batches of the drinks and set up the garnishes, tap the keg, then serve drinks alcoholic and non-alcoholic during the wedding to over 150 people. At least cocktail hour is only for an hour. In my past experience cocktail hour goes way past an hour, however.

The bottom line is my fiancé and I had been looking forward to attending the wedding but we are both less than enthused about it now. Neither of us have professional bartending experience and our wedding is planned for exactly two weeks after this couple’s. Bartending this couple’s wedding is taking us away from own very valuable wedding planning time. I would feel guilty backing out at this point since I have already committed. The FOG (my groom) says we are being taken advantage of as do some of my other close friends. It is a dilemma for sure.

Also this bride’s bridal shower is the day of the rehearsal dinner. Does etiquette dictate that we should buy them a wedding gift in addition to bartending their wedding? At this point we are planning on buying them a wedding gift in addition to bartending their wedding. When they attend our wedding we just want them to enjoy themselves and not be saddled with any responsibilities.    0402-13

You need to immediately contact the bride and groom and express your regrets that you cannot accommodate their need for a *professional* bartender.   Having examined their list of expectations of your duties, explain that this exceeds your competence and comfort levels.   The main reason is that, depending on your state’s laws, you and your fiance are potentially legally liable for whatever happens to wedding guests who imbibe too excessively.  Unless you have insurance to cover you in that event, your friends are asking you to carry a considerable amount of responsibility for controlling the alcohol consumption of their wedding guests.

And if you both decide you cannot back out on this commitment, be assured that your labor is worth the price of a wedding gift.   The reason why you were asked to serve as bartenders is the bride and groom know how expensive it would be to actually hire one so there is no need to devalue your gift of labor by adding a material gift on top of it.

{ 50 comments… read them below or add one }

clairedelune April 3, 2013 at 8:04 am

This shouldn’t be a dilemma–they made a very bad-faith request, and there’s nothing wrong with pulling out. This is like someone asking if you can give them a ride to work one morning, and after you agree, saying “great! My job is three states away.”

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Jane April 9, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Haha! Great comparison!

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Lo April 3, 2013 at 8:51 am

I couldn’t agree with admin more.

I remember assisting a friend bartending an art show, he was not a trained bartender but did it as a favor and did a beautiful job. It was incredibly demanding work and that was a small affair. Even working as a pair you two are going to be overwhelmed tending bar for 150 people. Please contact them and tell them they must have professionals to do this. Just be truthful. That’s a ridiculous amount of work for two people who aren’t even being compensated.

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sv April 3, 2013 at 8:53 am

Just say no!!! Do exactly as the Admin says, and do it ASAP. If you are not a professional bartender then this is not the gig for you. Undoubtedly the bride and groom will be upset – let them be. They can find another bartender, one who has experience and who will get paid. Bartending is not something that you should be doing unless you are legally insured to do so. Don’t put yourself in that position!

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Carrie April 3, 2013 at 9:01 am

DO NOT bartend this wedding. It has disaster spelled all over it. The biggest reason being that you could be legally held responsible for any inebriated guests. What would happen if a guest who had been drinking from the bar got into their car and killed someone on the way home? You could potentially go to jail with them because by being the “bartender” you took responsibility for any guests who were drinking that night. This is why there are professional bartenders. They know when to cut a guest off and call them a taxi.

The bride and groom took advantage of your tipsy state by asking you to do something, that had you been in your right state of mind, you would not have consented to. It’s no accident that they waited until you were a few cocktails in to ask you to take on this responsibility.

Plus, you were originally invited as a *guest*. You have as much right as any other guest to relax, drink, and enjoy yourself as well.

Call them up, tell them now that you’re thinking clearly and see their list of expectations, you won’t be able to tend bar and they need to spend the money on a professional bartender.

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Shoegal April 3, 2013 at 9:16 am

Asking friends to work your wedding for free? Bad form. Three page outline of their responsibilities? Ridiculous. This would be completely different if the OP had offered and her and her fiance are very enthusiastic amateur bartenders or better yet, are professional bartenders and had insurance. It would also be a little different if all they had to do was pour. Pour beer, pour wine, champagne -
but they want simple syrups, garnishes, mixed drinks, full bar?!??!!? If it were me, I’d feel taken advantage of and I would have to think twice about our friendship. Good grief – are you wearing uniforms – actually be serving the bride and groom – waiting on them? This is bad. Do yourself a favor – and just say, “we are totally unprepared to do this – and we don’t want to ruin your day in any way – we are going to have to back out.” If it ruins your friendship then you have to conclude you really weren’t good friends to begin with.

If you did this, I certainly wouldn’t give a gift – this is above and beyond – think about what they would pay actual bartenders.

I don’t really understand needing bartenders for a one hour cocktail hour. What happens afterwards? Does the caterer come in and tends the bar? Rest assured – that one hour is going to be a living hell. Usually, people storm the bar after the ceremony – you are going to work hard!!!!

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Bint April 3, 2013 at 9:42 am

OK, this one is outrageous.

You are not wedding guests to them, I hope you realize. You’re unpaid servants. The fact they asked you for something of this level is not a compliment; it’s an insult. It is taking massive advantage of you both. This isn’t bar-tending – a pretty cheeky thing to ask of itself – as Admin points out, it’s their way of dodging the cost of professional staff, and given the brass neck they’ve got with everything they’re asking, I would also bet they asked you because they know you’re good-natured, kind-hearted and will find it very difficult to say no.

You are being used. And don’t kid yourself it’s not consciously done on their part.

Get out of it NOW, while you can give them the most notice. In your place, I would pull out of attending their wedding altogether, send a present and leave it. After all, you were never a wedding guest. You were invited as the hired help, to stand on your feet all night running around and trying to supervise the drunker guests. How is that offer to you anything but humiliating and offensive?

Say what you have to but do not do this. To ask this much of you is not the act of friends. In the best scenario, they have simply not realized and will apologise when you point everything out. I hope they do. However, given these are people who confused friends with paid staff, I doubt it.

There is no dilemma here. They have asked way, way too much of you. This request could even be dangerous for you, as Admin notes. Do not do it and see if they still welcome you to their wedding as you deserve.

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InNM April 3, 2013 at 10:08 am

My advice: decline the bartending responsibility. Not only is it a legal liability, it sounds like a way to exploit free labour to have this expensive wedding. In my state, the person who is pouring the alcohol is responsible if another person commits an alcohol related offense, like a DUI. This knowledge, plus the stress of bartending is going to make this a stressful (think a bunch of guests screaming their drink order at you and getting agitated about how slow you’re moving; not to mention the drama cutring that one alcoholic off, and the bride and groom complaining that all the screaming is ruining their wedding) and unhappy job.
Question: are you even able to serve alcohol at the venue? My venue told me I had to have a professional caterer and bartender, with their licences on their persons, at our reception.
I don’t kno your friends nor do I trust them. They waited until you were drinking (impaired) to ask you a “favor” and are now trying to make it binding. From what I could read on contract law (Google), by waiting to approach you with the question (or verbal contract) after you had a few drinks, you would have been considered reasonably impaired at that time; and that any contract you have with them void.
Go ahead and send your regrets about bartending their wedding. You don’t need the added stress or liability, nor does it sound like you had a contract with them to provide services in the first place.

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Michelle C. Young April 12, 2013 at 3:30 am

Oh, yeah, you might show up all prepared, only to have the venue manager stop you from serving, because you are not licensed.

This whole thing is a really bad idea.

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Sarah April 3, 2013 at 11:04 am

this is likely illegal. With most places, if they allow/require you to provide your own bartender, it has to be a licensed bartender. you cannot just throw anyone behind there (unless I suppose the venue is a family home or something).
Regardless, in most places the bartender is held responsible if a guest drinks too much than hurts themselves or others in anyway. THis is why you want a profession-they have insurance (and know more about when to make someone stop drinking.)

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June First April 3, 2013 at 3:07 pm

Agreed. In my state, if you are cited for serving alcohol without a license, it could follow you for years to come.
They’re being ridiculous. You’d be wise to follow admin’s advice and tell them they need a *professional* bartender. If they try to guilt trip you into it, just point to the law.

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Jenn50 April 5, 2013 at 11:41 pm

Where I live, bartenders have to take an online course which takes 20-30 minutes to complete and costs around $30. That, and a $30 liquor license, and anyone over the legal drinking age of 18 can tend bar. Not saying it’s a good idea, just that it’s not particularly burdensome to do it legally.

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Cat April 3, 2013 at 11:07 am

My first thought is, if you are drinking enough to agree to something like bartending for a wedding, you need to severely limit your drinking. Sober would answer, “Oh, I am so sorry, but I want to attend your lovely wedding as a guest.”
You thought you’d agreed to stand behind a bar and to hand out drinks for an hour or so and they have turned it into a major professional engagement. Tell them they need to hire a pro and you’ll be happy to hand out the olives.

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Surianne April 4, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Implying the OP has a drinking problem is completely uncalled for. She mentioned they were “tipsy” and didn’t realize the extent of the favour being asked of them until they received the list of duties. It’s possible to have made the same call while sober and simply enthusiastic about a good friend’s wedding.

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Allie April 3, 2013 at 11:17 am

Admin is spot on here. You need to advise them politely but FIRMLY that having read over the duties, you cannot accept the job. They are not just looking for someone to “man” the bar for an hour. They are looking for a professional service for free. It is unfair to make these demands of you. Asking you to help out is one thing, but this goes well beyond. If you do end up doing it, I don’t think any other shower or wedding gift is required. Bartending would be your gift to the couple, and a very valuable one at that.

Incidentally, in my husband’s culture it is standard practice to have an open bar at any function. 95% of what is served is beer and high balls, so the job is very easy. My husband almost always ends up behind the bar at family and friends’ functions. He can’t help himself (he has a background in restaurant management, a natural tendency to “take charge” and there is always a need for an extra pair of experienced hands behind the bar). However, this is entirely different from your situation. He enjoys this role and knows precisely what he is getting himself into (including the applicable laws and licensing requirements).

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just4kicks April 3, 2013 at 11:40 am

Please don’t do this! Its not worth the liability or stress. I had a good friend who has a couple of teen age boys, at the time, (this was about ten years ago) were 18 and 19 1/2 years old. An acquaintance who was getting married asked my friend if her boy’s would like to earn a few bucks bartending their wedding. Sure! Why not? Well…many guests proceeded to get quite drunk, taking advantage of young boys who didn’t know how to “cut off” obviously inebriated guests. Some came up and went behind the make shift bar and helped themselves. Several fights broke out and at one point, the bride (who asked them in the first place) came up to the boys in a fit of rage and tears saying they were ruining her wedding by “letting uncle so-and-so” have too much to drink!!!! At this point, my friend collected her sons and husband and told the bride and groom they were leaving….now! The boys were understandably very upset, and my friend and her husband held their breath for the next few days, hoping they wouldn’t get a phone call about any car accidents that may have occurred on the way home from the wedding.
And, in case anyone is wondering, my friend cut all ties with the bride after that night.
Please don’t put yourself in that position, OP. Good luck!!!!

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Bint April 4, 2013 at 4:49 am

Astounded here at the bride *and* the friend. I wouldn’t let my 18 year old son tend a bar at a wedding for a second! I think most people could have seen this one coming a mile off. Really, friend’s sense went wandering there!

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NostalgicGal April 4, 2013 at 9:42 pm

Some places it is illegal for anyone under legal drinking age to be a bartender or server when it involves alcohol. Most places in the USA are 21 drinking age so if you are not that age, don’t serve alcohol to others. Liability is so not worth it.

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Jenn50 April 5, 2013 at 11:43 pm

In Canada, the drinking age is 18-19 depending on the province, and it is absolutely illegal for anyone under that age to handle alcohol for any purpose.

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Jennifer April 3, 2013 at 11:40 am

Look at it this way, if you’re feeling bad about telling them to go to eHell.

You’re not experienced bartenders. You’re being asked to do the job of an experienced bartender – making the garnishes and the drinks, and serving 150 people over a one hour cocktail period. Assuming 2 drinks per person (alcoholic or not), you will be taking orders and serving at a rate of 5 drinks per minute, minimum.

Unless you’ve got amazing natural skills, you’re going to do a lousy job. Everything will take longer than you think, you’ll spill stuff as you try to rush, the garnishes are going to wilt between when you make them and when you serve them (and will probably look amateurish), people will be lined up 50 deep, impatient for their drinks, and then the happy couple are going to get mad at you and throw a fit for spoiling their special day with your incompetence at being unpaid servants.

If the couple throws a fit when you decline the job, hey, you can decline the invitation with a clear conscience, and save yourself the cost of a wedding gift.

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Lou April 4, 2013 at 10:38 am

I second this – I was a barmaid for a few years in my 20s and it took me several weeks to get the hang of things and be able to serve people quickly, accurately and in order at the same time as smiling and being friendly (which is really the least most people expect from a bartender). So if you’ve never done it before, plus they’re expecting full-on cocktail service (which is not as easy as a lot of people imagine), I really don’t think a wedding is the ideal spot to practice and it’s silly of them to have come up with the idea in the first place. I’m UK-based so don’t know about the legalities of serving alcohol in the US, but over here the premises have to be licenced even if only for the day – no idea whether that’s occurred to them or not!

You might be best making the ‘polite but uncomfortable’ phone call: explain that the job sounded fun and easy when your ears were muffled with cocktails but in the cold light of day (and their little employment contract!) you’ve realised that you’d be biting off more than you could chew, would hate to risk spoiling their cocktail hour with your inexperience, and would really prefer to enjoy the wedding day rather than being mobbed by thirsty guests and getting your new frock splattered with sugar syrup, red wine and/or Pernod (which will happen – trust me, new barstaff are magnets for any kind of substance that stains, smells or leaves sticky patches, which is why most of them wear black!). I know it’s hard but that phone call would take 5 minutes of uncomfortableness as opposed to weeks of resentment in the run-up to the wedding and hours of stress and irritation on the day itself. If they have any sense whatsoever they’ll find the extra cash to pay for a proper bartender. Good luck! x

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CatToo April 3, 2013 at 11:50 am

I would stress less the liability issues than the fact that given that you are not professional bartenders, your understanding, based on their assurance that this was going to be an “easy affair” was that you were going to be serving wines and scotches, and everything would be provided for you. Having seen the list of requirements, you can see this is clearly a job that you are not able to handle, and is far more than you understood you were agreeing to. So with apologies, if this is what they want, you cannot provide it.

Remember – if they’re crunched it’s because they misrepresented what this job entails, NOT because you signed up for something and instantly regretted it. If all you had to do was show up a half hour before and be pointed at the bar, stocked with single ingredient drinks, would you still be feeling overwhelmed about this?

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eddie April 3, 2013 at 12:21 pm

It should be pretty simple to explain that someone advised you of legal risk involved, which you hadn’t thought through before agreeing. Even though the whole truth is that they are asking too much of you, I would personally have a hard time saying that and would embrace this “easy out”. Professional bartenders cost around $150 for a multi-hour event. If they just need a bartender for an hour, I would assume they could get a pair of professionals for under $200, which is a drop in the bucket for a wedding of this size.

If you still want to help out, but to a more reasonable degree, you could offer to help make the simple syrups or help with the bar setup. This is entirely optional, of course.

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Aly April 3, 2013 at 12:36 pm

I agree that this is likely illegal.

It’s also bad form to have someone agree to something and then sent them a long list of their duties that far exceed the original commitment.

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ferretrick April 3, 2013 at 1:32 pm

If you are insane enough to actually do this, do write back and let us know if you get a thank you note. My guess is no.

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Ellie April 3, 2013 at 9:32 pm

Haha! I love this. I’d love a follow-up too. Hopefully that they declined, but I’d also love to hear how it panned out if they do somehow get stuck bartending.

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Angel April 4, 2013 at 11:23 pm

LOL! These were my thoughts too–right after–no way in hell would I ever do this. Not even if I was getting paid. But you’re not getting paid. And doing a lot to boot. The liability issue would also be a huge concern for me. Not a good idea at all.

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Hawkwatcher April 3, 2013 at 1:44 pm

I agree with the Admin and the other posters that you need to get out of this now. I also agree with InNM that it wasn’t accident that they waited until you had a free drinks before asking.

And even if you had been 100% sober at the time you agreed to serve as their bartenders, you would still have a right to back out. When you agreed, they told you that this would be a simple matter. After reading their contract, it is pretty clear that it is not a simple matter. In other words, you should not feel guilty for backing out. Indeed, feel angry that your “friends” would try to take advantage of you. Good luck!

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Margo April 4, 2013 at 5:02 pm

I agree fully with this. I think any reasonable person asked to bartend a wedding they were invited to a a *guest* would assume that this meant pouring glasses of wine or beer. What they are asking is a full-on professional service and you are not (as far as we know) professional bartenders.

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Stefanie April 3, 2013 at 2:14 pm

Sarah is right – this is most likely illegal, depending on your state. My home state, and all other states where I have attended weddings, requires alcohol to be served by a licensed bartender, with a certain number of bartenders per number of guests. This significantly reduces the chance that guests are overserved. If you perform as bartenders without licenses, you could face significant charges in the event that a guest overindulges and commits a crime.

For my wedding, we were required to have a minimum of 4 bartenders for 150 guests. As mentioned previously, this was our state law – not just the requirements of the facility. Do not do this.

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Kate April 3, 2013 at 6:12 pm

I’d be telling them that you cannot accommodate their request because it is most likely illegal and could lead to some hefty fines for the venue, the bridal couple or the two of you. Where I live, you are required to hold a Responsible Service of Alcohol certification before serving alcohol in any sort of official capacity (so pouring drinks at a house party is fine but what you’ve described above is not). Even if they were paying you it would probably be illegal – the fact that you’re expected to do this without pay just adds insult to injury.

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Stacey Frith-Smith April 3, 2013 at 6:27 pm

I agree with Admin- why could you not back out? They asked you to tend bar. They didn’t tell you that you’d need to be a PHD level mixologist. (Okay, simple syrup making and fruit dicing aren’t that bad. But the schlepping of the large batch mixing and setup in addition to service? Yikes!) You could a) back out, b) agree to tend bar, tell them someone ELSE will need to handle setup and cleanup, c) pay for or subsidize a bartender, with or without doing some or all of set-up, d) come up with a really extravagant “help” they can offer you- due and payable BEFORE your agreement to tend bar… make your decision according to their ability to “come through”. Good luck, OP. You’ll have some story to tell when it’s all over for sure!

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--Lia April 3, 2013 at 6:50 pm

Or, you could show up on time, do a bang-up job setting up, then CHARGE the guests for their drinks. Pocket the money. Look surprised and aghast when they complain. hehehehe

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Lola April 4, 2013 at 10:11 am

That’s funny — and my favorite suggestion thus far. Also, set up a tip jar for “Vacation Fund” :)

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Miss Raven April 4, 2013 at 2:30 pm

I was thinking that Evil Raven would be tempted to stick a couple big, gaudy tip jars on the bar that say “OP and OP’s Fiance’s Wedding Fund”.

But Sensible Raven would have made that Uncomfortable Phone Call immediately with her regrets.

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thankyouall April 3, 2013 at 7:31 pm

Thank you everyone for your advice. It has helped me to feel much less crazy about how I feel about the whole thing. I contacted the BTB explaining why we are uncomfortable and must resign from bartending… I am admittedly holding my breath a bit in anticipation of her response. Will update.

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Ange April 4, 2013 at 1:10 am

Thanks for chiming in OP, I too am holding my breath!

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Professional April 3, 2013 at 8:23 pm

This is definitely ILLEGAL!! I am a professional bartender and the advice you are getting is correct. If anyone you serve has an accident because you failed to cut them off and they are above the legal alcohol limit, you can be held responsible.

This is an extreme example, but it has occured. You fail to cut off guest. Guest is driving home drunk and has an accident that kills another driver or person in either vehicle. YOU could be charged and tried for vehicular homicide. Are you willing to go to prison for 5 to 15 years so you can bartend at your friend’s wedding?

Tell them regrettably, you cannot do this. It is illegal and could get all of you in trouble. Accidents happen all the time and depending on each individuals tolerance, a 12 oz alcholic beverage could make them legally drunk.

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Marozia April 3, 2013 at 8:46 pm

I agree with Admin. Pull out and explain to them the reasons why, legal and personal.

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NostalgicGal April 3, 2013 at 11:11 pm

Because of the liability, back out immediately! And use this as your excuse.

If they’re miffed, so be it. Too many have sued everyone in sight over someone getting hurt by their own personal stupidity after having some alcohol.

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WildIrishRose April 4, 2013 at 9:39 am

People just amaze me.

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Lola April 4, 2013 at 10:10 am

I’d tell these “friends” that, regretfully, we’re unable to [spiel about professional bartending services per admin] AND to come to their wedding, due to a [work obligation/oboe practice/anticipated episode of explosive diarrhea]. Send a lovely card and whatever gift you wish. Seriously, how awkward would it be to come to their wedding after backing out of bartending for it? The happy couple shooting daggers at them could make the catered meal not sit so well with these guests.

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Bint April 4, 2013 at 11:23 am

Yeah, why do I have the feeling this is quite likely to happen?

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Library Diva April 5, 2013 at 1:30 pm

I disagree. OP described this couple as “quite close” and was surprised by this bait-and-switch, leading me to believe that this behavior is not characteristic of them. If it’s a strong friendship, OP and her husband should be able to get out of this gracefully and still attend the wedding without any hurt feelings. If things go rapidly south when OP breaks the bad news to them, that’s a different story. But if they take it well, it seems a little disingenuous to “suddenly have something come up” on one of the most important days of their friends’ lives. That really COULD end the friendship.

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Sarah Jane April 4, 2013 at 5:09 pm

Definitely tell them you’ve been advised that this is illegal, and you simply CANNOT do it.

If it makes you feel any better, offer to chip in a portion of the bartending costs as your wedding present. I’m not saying this is the most tacky-free offer in the world, but it may soften the blow and help smooth things over.

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Jane April 9, 2013 at 5:19 pm

This issue has probably been resolved by now, but I totally agree with admin and the others: Back out now!

I agree with the others who’ve said it’s a huge liability, and you could face potential lawsuits and jail time should anything happen. Not to mention the venue (if it’s an actual place and not a backyard, etc) likely isn’t going to allow a non-licensed person to serve alcohol.

Good luck – would love to hear from OP how this turned out.

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WillyNilly April 10, 2013 at 11:15 pm

I hope to hear the bride’s response. Just remember not to JADE (justify, argue, defend, explain). Just a quick “this is way more then we can handle” and thats it. I say that for two reasons: the first because its always the quickest easiest way to end something and second because not all the advice here has been universal. In my state for example, a bartender does not need to be licensed, at all. All they have to be is legal to work and 18+ years (supervised) or 21. They are still liable for any drunk driving accidents though.
As a former bartender let me emphasize it is a *wet* job – your hands will be soaked, your shoes will get wet, your clothes will get splashed. It also takes some skill and knowledge to mix drinks – can you make a martini? A cosmo? A manhattan? A bay breeze? A sea breeze? A margarita? Those are very basic, common drinks. And you will have 150 people asking for them all at once.
And its a physical job – who will be replenishing your ice? Your glassware? Lifting a bucket of ice is heavy, as is a pallet of glassware – did you plan on wearing heels? What liquors will you be provided? 150 guests will go through a bottle of vodka in about 10 minutes – then what? Where are the back-ups? How much time does it take you to open a bottle of wine?
In other words, this is way too much to do as a favor. This is real WORK.

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Michelle C. Young April 12, 2013 at 3:25 am

If you MUST do this, and you don’t have either professional training or insurance, then I highly recommend you only prepare ONE drink for each adult guest. That way, no one will get so drunk they cannot safely drive home. And think of all the money you will save for these people who saved money by not hiring a professional.

I’m not saying this to be passive aggressive. Professionals have a duty, and are trained, to know when to cut people off. You don’t have that knowledge, so the safest thing is to give them only one drink. For your own sake, and the sake of your guests, establish a limit, in advance, and stick to it.

Also, unless you know how to mix cocktails really well, you should probably stick to beer and wine.

Now, if you actually do know what you’re doing, and could handle the actual bar-keeping duties, then you might consider getting that insurance, and calling the whole thing your gift to this couple. But for goodness’ sake, please consider the liability issues! Inexperienced bartenders, under pressure, could cause all sorts of problems later. Not to mention the fact that the mixed drinks probably will not be as tasty as those mixed by a professional.

The admin is spot on here, in my opinion.

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Sara April 15, 2013 at 6:25 pm

I am absolutely horrified that this couple asked you to do this! You have to get out of this! I am a non-confrontational person most of the time, but I think even I would really just have to say that I misunderstood when we originally agreed to help out and that it just wouldn’t be possible. If you feel bad about saying that, you can say that you wouldn’t mind helping in another way, but bartending is way out of your comfort zone and the legal liabilities would make anyone nervous. This couple is incredibly rude for even asking this of you, and I would seriously question the friendship. If they are good friends, they would understand why you would just want to enjoy celebrating the day with them. Their wedding planning is not more important than yours, so don’t let them get away with it!

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Cattra April 18, 2013 at 12:53 am

Just wondering, have you had a response as yet from the B2B? I am glad you decided not to bow to pressure and uncomfortable continue with your ‘agreement’.

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