Ideas to Make Your Reception Fun

  1. Select a theme that can span more than just decorations.  Like football?  Toss the garter on a game ball of your favorite team.  Foam/nerf balls are safer for use in an indoor space.  Like movies?  Select a movie like Mission Impossible and add a puzzle to your invitations or perhaps to the buffet dismissal process.  Like musicals?  Perhaps your bridal party will sing/rap part of their toasts/speeches during the reception, or, ask guests to stand and sing a song with the word “love” in it, to get the happy couple to kiss.
  2. Select an entertainer that’s interactive with you and your guests.  Provide some song suggestions but don’t go overboard.  Too many requests in advance and you might find yourself listening to music that you were in the mood for when you created the list but have since found some new favorites.  Make sure that there’s flexibility for your guests to hear what they are in the mood for too.
  3. Choose food stations that will be open while activities takes place and you and your guests mingle or dance.  Guests can eat when they want to and may not choose a specific seat at an assigned table but rather move about and interact more with more people.  Use high-top tables with stools.
  4. Plan an “After Party”.  These are very popular in other areas of the country and take place in a different place/area than the reception.
  5. Separate your ceremony and reception times to include a photo or written clue scavenger hunt to entertain your guests after the nuptials but before the doors open to the reception.
  6. Plan a grand entrance to your reception that includes funny introductions, sound clips and effects.  One couple I played for asked for two clips of music be played as they burst through a cloud of fog with purple and white light beams moving and flashing around them.  Others have chosen my Grand and Legendary packages which include clever and personalized greetings for each person in the wedding party as well as a mini-pep rally feel to pump up the audience just before the grand entrance.
  7. Include a video or photo montage showcasing fun things that you like to do and have done separately and together.  This will bring you closer to everyone in the audience when they learn that they have more in common with you than even you knew.
  8. Do a newlywed quiz during the reception.  This can also be referred to as the “Shoe Game”.  Much laughter will ensue.
  9. Ask guests to fill in cards with “words of wisdom” as they enter the reception, then have some of them read aloud and see if anyone can guess who wrote them.
  10. Incorporate a fun way to award guests with the centerpieces.  Ask your entertainer what they might suggest to make this fun.
  11. Dollar dance: This can be fun for everyone who participates.  Some couples prefer a non-dollar dance or a charity dance where all the funds go to the local shelter or environmental center.
  12. Game tables: pool, foosball, checkers, even beer pong have made their way into receptions and are lots of fun.
  13. Wedding party dance… One couple spun this tradition on its head by having me create a medley of four songs that the guys and gals could practice dance routines to, in advance of the wedding day.  At the reception, they took turns, like a competition, then the 4th song was longer and the wedding party went out into the audience to snowball guests to begin dancing.  Many other couples have chose fast songs for the wedding party dance… Something fun that could even be a sing-along for them and the guests.
  14. Add a photo booth to the mix.  This is not a substitute for a professional photographer but rather an entertaining keepsake for you and your guests.
  15. Add an interactive dance floor that lights up when your guests participate.  See http://rhythmsystem.com/interactive-digital-dance-floor/
  16. Create the colorful atmosphere that you and your guests are used to dancing in.  Uplighting is popular to decorate with your color scheme but dance area lighting will change with the mood of your reception and create the visual stimulation that will make a huge difference in participation.  I offer a lot of enhancement options.  Click here for more info.
  17. Choose creative photos from your past and/or words (adjectives to describe each other, places you’ve been or aspire to visit…) for each guest table, in addition to table numbers.  Guests will visit other tables to see what’s on their table ID card.

Want more?  I will be posting more ideas here next week.  Be sure to come back or, if you prefer, get immediate personal assistance with planning your wedding day.  Contact me at 717-540-8826 or use this form.

Matt Saltzer