Ugh...I'm stressing out too!
I signed a wedding contract and put 50% down on my wedding package. BUT I decided to not sign the group contract because I don't want to have to control how/when my guests book their trips. I know many of them will book through outside websites such as www.travelocity.com because it's more affordable than booking through the hotel.
My sales coordinator from Palace Resorts told me multiple times that if all my guests book through the same website than I can still get the promotions, such as cocktail hours and private dinners. The only promotion that the group contract guarantees is the complimentary nights, which I won't get if I don't sign the group contract. That's ok with me though- I'm really just worried about the dinner and cocktail hour amenities.
I was told I had to pay for bride/groom's full stay at the hotel as well, in order to block off rooms.
Any help with reception details is welcome! I'm lost on reception too, such as music, upgrades, location, etc...