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How to Throw an Unforgettable Naming Ceremony

Choosing your baby’s name is a momentous occasion. Some names become quite popular in a given year, like Olivia and Liam, the two most popular baby names of 2021. Others are chosen based on important figures in your life or simply because you have always loved the way they sound.

Many parents choose to announce the name of their baby right away, posting on social media or sharing their choice before the baby is even born. What if you want to name your baby in front of all your closest family and friends?

A naming ceremony is one great option for parents who want to do things with a little more pizazz and naming ceremonies are taking off in popularity. How can you plan one of your own?

Read on for our guide to planning an unforgettable baby naming ceremony.

Picking a Naming Ceremony Venue

Unlike something more formal like a Christening, naming ceremonies are secular events that don’t require a specific setting. Some parents choose to have them right at home. However, you may not want to take on the preparation that comes with throwing a party in your home right after having a baby.

Free options can include public parks or the homes of a friend or relative. If you want to guarantee more privacy, opt for the latter.

You can also rent out a venue or head to a restaurant. Remember, you’ll be bringing your newborn who may not enjoy the noise of a restaurant. Find out if your restaurant of choice has a private room or patio area that you can reserve for the day.

Planning Your Guest List

Before you get to the next steps on the list, go ahead and put together your guest list. This will help you decide about other factors like food and entertainment.

If your venue is somewhere like a restaurant, make sure that you know how many people that restaurant can hold. If you plan on inviting more than a handful of people, contact the restaurant in advance to make reservations.

Who do people typically invite to a naming ceremony? A naming ceremony is also sometimes referred to as a welcoming ceremony, as the idea is to welcome your baby into the world. It makes sense to invite people who will be part of your baby’s life, like your parents and best friend; coworkers and acquaintances, not so much.

Putting Together a Menu

Unless you’re hosting your naming ceremony at a restaurant, you’ll need to put together a menu. It’s important to think about the dietary needs or preferences of your guests, but don’t tell yourself that you have to make everyone happy. For example, you may want to include a separate kid’s menu in your planning, but that doesn’t mean that you need to find out each child’s favorite food to serve.

The time of day and length of your naming ceremony will also help to determine your menu. Is it happening midday, between lunch and dinner? If so a few snacks and something sweet like ice cream catering will do the trick; otherwise, plan on serving an actual meal.

Naming Ceremony Entertainment Options

Announcing the name of your baby is the highlight of the occasion but remember, it won’t take very long to do so. You may want to have a few other activities planned to keep the party rolling. Let’s look at a few popular choices that may bring you inspiration.

Readings or Songs

One option is to perform a reading or a song for your baby. Readings can include favorite or insightful poems or passages from significant books. Some parents like to write short speeches making promises to care for their babies and give them the best life they can.

Choosing a Godparent

If you intend to name a godparent (or life guardian or supporting adult–there are several terms to choose from), this is a great time to do so. After giving a reading or singing a song, consider asking the person (or people) you’ve selected if they’ll take on that role. Alternatively, ask the person you’ve selected in advance and announce your choice at the ceremony, allowing them to make a speech of their own.

Keeping the Kiddos Happy

Will there be kids at your baby naming ceremony? They may want some more hands-on activities to keep them entertained. Bouncy houses, water balloons, bubbles, and sidewalk chalk are all good options for some outside fun.

Sending Out Naming Ceremony Invitations

Once you’ve finalized details like a venue, guest list, and time, you can go ahead and send out invitations. If you know that none of your guests are coming from out of town, you can send out invitations a week or two in advance. However, if you have guests that need to make travel arrangements, you may want to send out invitations earlier.

This can get tricky, given that you won’t know exactly when your baby will arrive in the world until, well, they’re already here. One option is to let your out-of-town guests know your intentions in advance, giving them a few possible dates that you have in mind.

Do Naming Ceremonies Have a Legal Element?

Is there any legal paperwork that you need to worry about? Are you actually naming your baby at the ceremony?

Baby naming ceremonies are purely symbolic. You’ll have already given your baby their name, which will appear on their birth certificate, taking care of the legal aspect. During the ceremony, you will announce the name, but you don’t have to worry about any legalities.

Celebrate New Life With a Baby Naming Ceremony

A baby naming ceremony is a great way to celebrate new life and introduce your loved ones to your newborn. With this guide, you can plan your baby naming ceremony with ease.

Looking for more useful guides that will help you navigate life? Take a look around to find information on everything from technology to health.

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