For some couples getting married on April Fools Day, the temptation to pull a few pranks is just too hard to resist. Although not a national holiday, April Fool’s day is recognized in nearly every corner of the world and has been celebrated with trickery and foolishness for over 500 years.
You see, until 1582 April 1st was the beginning of the calendar year. Along comes Pope Gregory XIII who orders everyone to change to the Julian Calendar and when some people resisted they were referred to as April Fools. So while everyone else was ringing in the New Year in January, these fundamentalist hold-outs were maintaining April 1 as New Years Day. As such, they were considered fools and were the butt of many jokes and pranks. I’m sure there are many Chicagoans who can sympathize with the hold-outs considering the whole Sears/Willis Tower and Macy’s/ Marshall Fields debate that still conjures emotional outrage from some die-hard fans of the previous residents of either building. To them I say, “Happy New Year!”
So, how exactly would you go about pranking guests on your April Fool’s Wedding Day? It is tough because emotions are high and when under that much stress, most people seem to respond negatively to pranks and practical jokes. To prank like a pro, follow these Do’s and Don’ts:
Do anything that even suggests break up, fights, cheating or anything else tawdry. This is beneath you - only amateurs will resort to the lowest common denominator.
Pranks that involve property damage or stains are also low-brow.
Avoid anything that involves physical antics or you may risk injury at your wedding.
THE #1 DON’T: Don’t plan a prank at someone’s wedding without their approval. The bride and groom should always be aware of any hi-jinx so they can enjoy it and not be on needles and pins, or worse, be caught off guard by something that could potentially become a source of embarrassment.
Consider small gag gifts in place of wedding favors. A lovely wrapped box at each place setting and when they open it …BOOM! The classic snake (formerly in a can) pops out!
Instead of a toast, recite a monologue from a movie that you know most everyone has seen. Something completely out of context would be good. You could also do a montage of famous movie quotes. Either way you will have most people scratching their heads and/or laughing.
Arrange for one of your guests to be in on the joke; when the officiant asks if anyone objects- someone stands up, adjusts their clothing and sits down. Hearty laughs will follow.
Know your audience. If you are both Master Pranksters and all of your guests know this, they will be expecting something, going small might be out of the question. If you are low-key and hardly ever engage in anything less than serious, your friends and family will react differently when you pull off the prank of all pranks.
The end result should be a day of joy and merry-making, not a a three ring circus where everyone is trying to out-prank one another. A few light hearted jabs here and there will definitely lighten the mood and lift everyone’s spirits… even the hold-outs!
-Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago