I am excited to be writing about one of my favorite parts of an Indian wedding, the baraat procession. It’s so much fun, filled with music and dancing, and a great way to start the wedding festivities. Before we look at the various options for the groom’s arrival and entrance before the Hindu or interfaith wedding ceremony, here are some tips when planning the baraat.
Tip #1 Timing. Baraats vary in length from 10 minutes to 30 minutes depending on the couple’s desires and the path in which the baraat will take place. Be sure to give an extra 15-20 minutes prior to the start of the baraat for the groom and his friends and family to gather. After the baraat, also allow some time for any additional rituals that need to occur and for guests to make their way to the ceremony location. By all means, don’t rush. Allow the group to have some fun and work up a sweat!
Tip #2 Location. You will need to find a staging area for the group to gather initially and especially if you are using a horse, a place for the horse trailer to park. Walk around your venue’s property and determine the best routing. You might be by the venue’s entrance, on a terrace, on a driveway, in a common area, in a parking lot, or even on a city street. Consider that you will have a large group of people, and likely a dhol player and a mobile DJ following along. Don’t forget to have a backup plan in case of inclement weather (if indoors, sound limitation might apply). Your wedding coordinator can assist you with these logistical issues. If you are having a baraat on a Washington, DC or Alexandria, Virginia street, city permits are required. Contact us if you need more information on the permitting process.
Tip #3 Hospitality. Consider serving drinks like water, tea or lassi after the baraat, especially if it’s a longer baraat taking place on a hot day. Your guests will appreciate the refreshments
Now, onto the Baraat options! A horse is the most common option. Our favorite partner is Harmon’s Carriages.
Photo by Kurstin Roe Photography
Photo by Balthazar Photography
Or, you can walk with or carried in by your wedding party, friends and family, led by a dhol player.
Photo by Echard Wheeler
Photo by Connor Studios
A baraat is such a fun part of an all-Indian wedding or a fusion wedding and you have many options. Besides the ones mentioned above, the groom could also arrive by a golf cart, a boat or even a motorcycle. If you need help with planning your baraat or any part of your wedding, let us know!