How much is too much? Advice needed please.
We are a couple in our late 50s. This is a second marriage for both. Our wedding will take place about 5 hours from our home, and each of our adult children will drive approximately 5 hours from their respective homes to get there. The wedding will be in the late morning, and we're planning a luncheon from about 12-2 in a lovely old hotel for about 16 adults and 6 grandchildren. About half the attendees are very close friends. We're paying for our kids' lodging and meals for two days but not the friends' lodging and meals. The luncheon will cost approximately $2500. No photog, flowers, music, etc. We want to commemmorate our special day, but not extravagantly. My soon-to-be-spouse thinks we should also treat everyone to dinner that night at one of our favorite restaurants, but that's going to cost another $2500 or so. I think we should tell them where we're going and say we'd love to have their company, but it's their choice (who knows, they may want to go somewhere on their own at that point). We would pay for our kids' dinner, though. The cost of dinner won't kill us, but it would hurt. If it were me, I wouldn't accept a free dinner after just having been treated to a beautiful luncheon the same day, but I don't know what our guests would do. It's kind of awkward, and I'd like some advice. Should we just bite the bullet and take everyone out to dinner, too? Will we seem cheap if we don't?