best man speechYou may be tempted to focus your energy on planning the bachelor party, but don’t forget that one of your most important duties as best man is to give a best man speech the closing toast at the wedding reception! Here you can find some guidelines to help you give a great best man speech!

Focus up!

Great best man speeches should primarily be about your relationship with the groom. Maybe he’s your best friend from childhood, your big brother, or your sister’s future husband – whatever your connection, make sure that your toast focuses on the time you’ve spent together and how your relationship has developed over the years. Think of a few stories and anecdotes to share with your audience – but make sure that they are appropriate! While it’s okay to make one or two suggestive jokes, don’t spend your entire speech recounting drunken frat parties or reminiscing about the nights you spent at the club trying to hook up with girls. Remember that the bride (and her closest family and friends!) is in attendance as well. Guy talk is fine with the guys, but not in front of a large audience, some of whom won’t know you very well. If you’d like to look at a few examples of best man speeches to see what sorts of anecdotes or jokes work well, click here!

How the best man speech can have the audience in stitches, not in shock

Popular convention dictates that the best man’s wedding toast should be rude, lewd, and even crude. But this is NOT the case in good best man speeches! Think about your audience – there will likely be elderly guests, such as grandparents and great-aunts and uncles, and children, none of whom should be subjected to stories involving the groom, a hot tub, and the local roller derby team! It is never appropriate to bring up the groom’s ex-girlfriends or sexual history, nor should you make callous jokes at the bride’s expense. This is her day as well, and it would be considered quite offensive to insult her or to make a mean-spirited remark about her during your speech. Funny best man speeches are great, but make sure they’re tasteful as well!

Best man toasts should thus strike a balance between funny and emotional – the stories you tell should obviously recount memorable times you spent with the groom, but they should also have a meaning behind them. Was there a particular moment that you knew you would be best friends, or when a brotherly bout of rough-housing turned into a moment of shared laughter? Think of your speech as a story on its own, with a beginning, middle, and an end. When did your relationship start; what was a time that strengthened it; and how do you support each other and enjoy one another’s company today? Telling a story to your audience that includes funny (but tasteful) memories will be sure to make an excellent wedding toast!

Great best man speeches don’t forget the wedding party!

Though your wedding toast should primarily focus on the groom, do be sure to acknowledge the other members of the wedding party. Traditionally, only the father of the bride, groom, and best man make speeches at the wedding reception – this makes you the only representative from both the bridesmaids and groomsmen. Start your speech by recognizing the bridesmaids – even if the maid of honor is giving a toast (a common practice at wedding receptions today), you should still say a few kind words about the bridal party. You should also thank your fellow groomsmen and let your audience know one or two ways in which you all assisted the groom as he prepared for his wedding day. Most importantly, make sure to have a sincere word or two for the bride at the conclusion of your speech. Maybe there was a moment that the groom confided to you that he knew she was ‘the one’, or perhaps she won all of you over with her incredibly delicious nachos on Super Bowl Sunday. Speaking about the bride towards the end of your speech allows you to transition into a closing statement concerning the newly married couple’s happy future together, a sentiment that all great best man speeches should end on.

Hopefully you now know all you need to know about what makes an excellent best man wedding toast. For more tips, tools, and tactics on giving a great best man speech, click here!

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