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  • Christina Hubeli

Ideas to Fit the Vibe of Your Wedding: Party


Wedding reception dancing
Photo: Colin Lyons Photography

Last week we talked you through important questions to figure out the kind of wedding that you want. If you landed on throwing a big ol’ party for you and your guests to enjoy, we have some ideas to make your special day even more unique!


As with making any wedding enjoyable, the key here is to focus on your guests’ experience and think through the flow of the day so that guests are never left wondering what is happening, what they’re supposed to be doing, or where they’re supposed to be. The ideas below are a wonderful starting point for planning a day that will wow your guests and keep them engaged with your wedding.


While we love all the ideas below, you certainly don’t need to incorporate all of them into your wedding day! Pick and choose the ones that really feel right for you and your partner. And you might even come up with some ideas of your own as you read through!


Cocktail Hour


Bring out the entertainment! When most couples hear the word “entertainment” as it relates to their wedding, the first thought is music and maybe a photo booth. Your band or DJ will play a huge role in setting the tone for your wedding, but there are also endless other entertainment options if you’re wanting to introduce a unique experience at your wedding.


A fun and exciting bar is a great place to start. Hire performing bartenders to entertain your guests as they place their drink orders. These performers go beyond the usual feats of bartending to give guests a real show while they’re creating drinks! This could include juggling barware, pouring drinks in unique ways, or even involving fire! (Check with your venue first on that last one).


Another option could be to hire a mixologist to really bring your bar offerings to the next level. A mixologist can invent a specialty cocktail unique to you and your partner’s love story, educate guests on trends in the drinks industry, and create one-of-a-kind bar set-ups. If the bar is a central part of your wedding day, this is a natural way to get guests to check it out.


Most people think of cocktail hour fairly simply – drinks and light conversation with fellow guests. But why not spice things up with some additional entertainment? You could hire a stilt walker, magician, palm or tarot card reader, impersonator, caricature artist, comedian, drag performer, live painter, mascot, aerialist – truly, if you can dream it, talk with your vendors to see if it’s possible to make it a reality!


Reception


Your dinner service is an easy way to keep the party vibes going and get guests mingling. Family-style dining or stations will get your guests moving around and chatting. Stations can be a create-your-own set-up (think: a burger or taco station with all the topping options), or you can have chefs cooking up dishes live, like sushi, pasta dishes, or an omelet station for a brunch wedding.


Nothing screams celebration quite like champagne! Talk to your caterer or venue (whoever is providing your alcohol and barware) to see if it’s possible to set up a champagne tower. It is such an eye-catching addition to your reception space, plus a super cute photo op for you and your future spouse!


As guests start to hit the dance floor, offer up props to make the dance party even more special. You could pass out glow sticks, funky glasses, light-up jewelry – the options are endless! You can even offer guests cheap flip-flops so everyone has comfy feet while dancing the night away. Make sure to work with your band, DJ, or A/V team to ensure the lighting on your dance floor fits the style you’re going for.


Your guests will be having a blast, and you don’t want to miss the opportunity to capture all the fun. You’ll likely have a photographer or videographer on-site to capture the day, but you can also put the perspective in the hands of your guests by setting out disposable or Polaroid cameras for them to take photos with throughout the night! These photos will be a cherished memory for years to come and help to show off some of the moments of your wedding day you may miss.


As the night winds to a close, a grand exit as you and your boo depart is one last fun and special memory for you and your guests. This could be done with the traditional sparklers, or you could offer guests glow sticks, reusable LED balloons, or lanterns to light your path. Want to end the night with a real bang? A fireworks display is an incredible and mesmerizing way to end the night. Of course, these aren’t allowed in the city, and rules surrounding fireworks can be complicated, so do thorough research or chat with a planner before putting the wheels in motion with this one!


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