Think back on the weddings you’ve been to- what stands out in your mind? Chances are you remember the times you had the most fun, and the little things that made you feel alive and connected to everyone around you. Now it’s your turn to plan a wedding that makes your guests feel just as marvelous, but where to start?
There’s no better way to woo your guests than to give them the most unique and fun reception they’ve ever attended! After all- your friends and family are traveling from far and wide to celebrate the love you’ve found! It’s up to you to make their trip worth while. Here are a few ideas that can make your reception shine.
Get Fancy In a Photo Booth!
Portable photo booths have become one of the most popular wedding attractions of the past five years. This is a GREAT way to give your guests a chance to be silly, let loose, and even take home their hilarious creations. Not only that, but most photo booth companies give the newlyweds copies of EVERY photo taken throughout the night! (You can imagine how hilarious those pictures get as the night rages on!) You can budget for a photo booth rental, but let’s be honest- sometimes those rates can get a little pricey depending on the company you choose, the city you’re in, and how many hours you want the booth. The good news? Photo booths are probably one of the easiest DIY projects ever. Try setting up a backdrop somewhere in your reception, along with a table full of props.
Get creative! There’s literally no limit on what you can provide for your guests. You can even provide props themed around your courtship and shared interests. For example, say you’re one of those lucky couples who met online. Use a piece of cardboard to create an online dating profile frame for your guests to put their faces into. Sound like too much work, or maybe you just don’t feel like you’re artistic enough to create your own props? No problem! You can easily find affordable photo booth props at craft or party stores. Guests will then use their own smart phones to snap the pictures. Have guests post their photos with your wedding hashtag, or invent a specialized photo booth hashtag, so you can see the hilarious creations they come up with!
Delight Their Palates with Personalied Food Stations!
Who doesn’t like to order specialized food? Chef-hosted food stations are a fantastic way to keep your guests occupied and satisfied. Try serving up some local fare that people can’t get everywhere. After all, people are coming from far and wide to celebrate your big day, and getting something that they can’t get at home will be a treat. Not sure what to serve? Try browsing the menus of your most renowned local restaurants for inspiration, or talk to your caterer. The line for those bourbon glazed, bacon wrapped dates will be longer than your walk down the aisle! Also, consider pairing local food with a delicious local beer. Your guests will thank you!
Let Loose with Untraditional Entertainment!
Wedding guests not only want to feel like they’re an integral part of your big day, but that they’re a part of your love story, too. A great way to do this is to provide specialized entertainment that’s themed around you. Maybe you and your finance love to line dance, or have always wanted to learn how to tango but have never found the time. Try hiring dance instructors who can get the party going and help guests feel less foolish while busting a few new moves. While dancing is usually the biggest part of a reception, it’s important to remember that it isn’t the only way to have fun! It’s great to have many different forms of entertainment, especially for those who aren’t rhythmically inclined. Magicians, black jack tables, and personalized guest book signing stations are always a great way to keep your guests entertained while not on the dance floor. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box, and to look to your own likes and interests for inspiration.
Keep Things Fun With Food Trucks!
After a few hours of dancing, your guests are going to be a little hungry. Surprise them with a food truck! Food trucks are fun and great for wedding days! Taco Tuesday fans? Treat your guests to late-night gourmet tacos. Or maybe donuts are your kryptonite. The best thing about portable food is that the options are pretty endless, and you can choose something completely catered to you and your love story! Plan ahead and give guests tickets or coupons so that they don’t have to fumble with their wallets, and can quickly return to tearing it up on the dance floor.
Provide A Place To Relax!
It’s easy to envision your guests partying all night long, but after dancing for a few hours, people are going to want a place to sit down away from the crowd. Try having a quiet area away from the dance floor where guests can go to enjoy a drink and kick off their shoes. If you’re an outdoorsy couple, consider having a bonfire and an acoustic musician to keep guests occupied and relaxed. You can even incorporate a s’mores bar! Not so hot on the outdoors? Not a problem. Even just providing a small sitting area with a quieter type of music is a nice change from the party vibe of your main reception.
When planning your reception, it’s important to keep your guests at the forefront of your mind. But don’t be afraid to be your own guide. Ask yourself, “What do I like? What do I appreciate as a wedding guest?” And! Don’t be afraid to get creative. Take pride in your own incredible love story, and incorporate it into the entertainment. The most thoughtful, unique, and personalized aspects of weddings are the ones that are most remembered.