More than likely the wedding weekend will be packed with to-do lists and last minute details, so brides and grooms may not be able to welcome all their guests as they arrive to town. If this is the case, then think about putting together welcome bags for those guests traveling in for the big day. I’ve put together a few of my hometown favorite welcome bags that will make guests feel at home.


Southwestern Michigan has so many local treasures, so create a welcome bag that highlights some of the local favorites. Located in downtown St. Joe, Purely Michigan offers everything from food to handmade items from Michigan artisans. If food is your thing, then check out Jollay Orchard’s fresh fruit, Kilwins fudge, South Bend Chocolate Company’s popcorn, or olive oil from the Olive Cart. Of course, include a list of things to do and local attraction for your guests to enjoy during weekend downtime.


Need I say more? A bottle of a local wine is a great way to welcome anyone into town. A few local favorites to try are 12 Corners Vineyards, Lazy Ballerina Winery, Dablon Winery & Vineyard, Tabor Hill Winery, and Round Barn Winery. Attach a thank you note and you have a wonderful welcome gift!


Keep it short and sweet and give guests a box of local chocolates or baked goods. Southbend Chocolate Factory and Kilwins are great go-to’s for a sweet treat.


One of the biggest draws to southwest Michigan is, of course, Lake Michigan. Throw together a welcome bag full of beach essentials, such as sunscreen, bottles of water, and sunglasses, even if your ceremony won’t be on the beach! The beach is a great activity for any down time during the weekend as well.


It is going to be a long weekend, so make sure guests have everything they need. Water, snacks, ibuprofen, band aids, toothpicks, and granola bars come in handier than you think!


Pack a bag full of items for your guests to relax with. Include a “Do Not Disturb” sign to hang on their door, a candle, some bubbly, and chocolate. With such a busy weekend, everyone will appreciate a little comfort.


Create a welcome bag with specialties from the couples’ honeymoon destination. Whether it is Cape Cod potato chips and Nantucket Nectar or a couple of Florida oranges, guests will be able to feel like they are you (without actually being with you) long after the wedding weekend ends.


Fill a bag (or a box!) with a few of the happy couple’s favorite things. Whether they are local favorites or maybe an activity they like to do together, guests will appreciate anything that is special to the couple. Add a list of local spots the couple loves to visit as well!

Wedding welcome bags will make guests feel greeted and they are a nice thank you for sharing an unforgettable weekend. Whichever kind of welcome you choose, always be sure to include a thank you and an itinerary for the weekend’s activities.