Out of all the elements that go into wedding planning, most seem to fall under the purview of the bride. Admit it, do you really want to make the decisions on what the “colors” should be or if raspberry filling is just “too sweet” for the cake? However, there is one significant part of the festivities leading up to the wedding that the groom is responsible, other than getting the tuxes and groomsmen gifts, for and that is the rehearsal dinner.

Traditionally, the rehearsal dinner is held the night before the wedding and is paid for by the groom’s parents. It’s a great way to break the ice between the families of the bride and groom who may have never met before. To make sure that the whole event goes off without a hitch (and the bride is still talking to you in the morning), follow these tips to ensure success.

Behave: Because you may be making plenty of first-impressions at the rehearsal dinner, make sure that you are on your best behavior. This means, no cursing, bawdy stories, wandering eyes or disrespectful behavior in any way – remember to tell any groomsmen you have invited to follow the same rules. If you’ve purchased engraved flasks to give them as gifts for the groomsmen, don’t fill them up with the hard stuff!

Introductions: During the course of the event, make sure that you have enough background information on guests (on your side) that you might not actually know too well, like thrice-removed cousins, far-away aunts and uncles, and friends of your parents that you aren’t acquainted with. Make sure everyone at the dinner gets, at a minimum, a handshake or hug and short conversation. Consider your job for the night as host with the most and chief introduction maker.

Bride: With all the stresses of the dinner, making sure everyone is happy and such; don’t forget to make sure your bride is happy too! While you may both be busy, going in different directions to keep guests busy, it is essential to check in with each other a couple times throughout the night to get status updates. And, before you leave, remember to steal a kiss – it may be the last time you see the bride until the wedding aisle.

Gifts: Many grooms find the rehearsal dinner an appropriate time to present groomsmen gifts. Typically these key players in your wedding party have been invited to the event, and it’s a more formal way to stand up and say, “Hey, thanks for being a great friend” than just tossing a groomsmen gifts at them after the fact. If you’re stuck as what to get the guys, Groomstand.com has a wide array of personalized gifts for groomsmen that will show your heartfelt sentiments.