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How to invite for an opening ceremony

An opening ceremony is an official gathering to mark the opening of a building or the start of an event. Even in our digital age, formal printed invitation cards are still de rigueur for some kinds of events. This need not be the only way you invite people of course. You can also invite people with a poster, newspaper advertisement or through social networking websites.

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Working party

You and all the other people who have worked towards making the opening possible will have friends, relatives and colleagues who you will want to invite. Set up a small team to work out an agreed form of wording for your invitations. “You are cordially invited to our opening ceremony” is a good way to begin if you would like to host a formal opening ceremony. Choose informal wording, such as “Come to our do” for a more casual event.


Award-winning party hosts Marc Friedland and Betty Goodwin emphasise the importance of text styles on invitation cards. The working party should consider several different styles, although be careful not to get bogged down in this. There are nowadays so many different font styles that you could waste hours looking at all possibilities. Narrow it down to a font type, based on the kind of event it will be. Homing in on your chosen font style will then be easier.

Key details

Add the key details of the event including the date and time and the anticipated length of the opening ceremony. Give the full address of the venue, including the postcode and telephone number. You might also want to add directions to the venue for people travelling by car, on foot or by bus. These directions will be welcome, especially by guests who live out of town. Specify whether any food and drink will be available so people know whether to dine before attending or not.

Other details

Don’t forget to mention any dress code you have decided upon, especially if you wish people to turn up in fancy dress. Add details of any special guests as this will make the event more attractive to people. Add "RSVP" at the end, which stands for "répondez s'il vous plaît," meaning "please confirm attendance." Print the invitations on the best paper or card your organisation can afford, or get them printed professionally. Post the invitations in good time, two or three weeks before the event to make sure you give people plenty of notice.

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About the Author

Frank Luger had his first educational resources published in the early 1990s. He worked on a major reading system for Cambridge University Press, became an information-technology adviser and authored interactive whiteboard resources for "The Guardian." Luger studied English literature and holds a Bachelor of Education honors degree from Leeds University.

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