The climax of the party takes place at midnight - oczepiny. The bride has her veil removed and has her eyes covered. All the young ladies participating in the wedding party dance around her and have to try to catch the wedding bouquet or veil. The groom throws his tie or bow-tie towards the bachelors. Catching it means leaving singleness. According to this custom, the favoured young lady and bachelor should dance together.
In order to enable the bride to admire her wedding bouquet for a few days (as well as her veil, which may be needed for the photographic session in the open air) sometimes a spare bouquet and veil or tie are prepared.
The word "oczepiny" comes from the old Polish word "oczepić" which means taking off the lady's coif or garland and greeting her in the company of married women.
Various games and competitions are associated with "oczepiny" and their variety depends on the newly-weds/band/DJ invention and ideas. Competitions can also be interludes throughout the entire wedding party.
One of the most popular oczepiny games is a competition involving collecting money with small plates. The married couple and all willing guests take part in this game. The witnesses are given bowls and they sit down in front of the stage. The married couple starts to dance. The guests taking part in this competition can only dance with the bride or groom, but in order to do it they have to pay one of the witnesses for a dance. The married couple allocates the collected money to their baby's pram. With an element of rivalry, the witnesses count the contents of their bowls. Whoever collects the most, takes the money home with them.
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