As the best man at your friend’s upcoming Arizona wedding, it is your responsibility to make the toast at the wedding reception and the rehearsal dinner. Chances are, others will want to speak up as well to pay tribute to the newlyweds, but as the best man you will want to put your best foot forward when giving the toast at the reception. 

Here are some tips for making your toast one that will long be remembered – for all the right reasons:

1. Know the length of time you’ll be expected to speak and plan your toast accordingly. Don’t be too brief or too long-winded. Write it before hand and practice it so you know how long it will actually be. 

2. Make certain your toast is full of emotion and truth and your love for the couple. If you’ve shared years of experience, touch on the best and happiest moments and those which cemented your friendships. Refrain from sharing information that will embarrass either you or the newlyweds or raise any questions you don’t want to have to explain to the parents or grandparents later. 

3. Spontaneity can be good in a toast as long as it’s tasteful and personal. 

4. It’s acceptable to toast with information that is both humorous as well as emotional. 

5. Try to make eye contact with the wedding guests and relax while you’re speaking. It is a big responsibility to have been chosen best man, but it’s your friendship to the couple that lead to that so all they’re looking for is genuine conversation. 

6. While you don’t want to memorize your speech or read from a teleprompter you certainly don’t want to stumble over your words. Consider writing key words on index cards to jog your memory. 

7. Don’t imbibe too heavily before you give your toast. You don’t want to slur your words or be otherwise unintelligible. 

Here are some items you will definitely want to avoid when giving your toast:

1. Don’t apologize for being nervous before you begin. Just stand, smile and jump right into the toast. 

2. Don’t insult anyone in the crowd or be lewd or crude. 

3. Remember no one wants to hear about exes or past relationships while celebrating their new marriage. Keep your toast focused on the newlyweds. 

Relax and revel in the honor you’ve been given to have been asked to be the best man. The wedding toast is a small portion of your duties and will be over sooner than you think.