In our other post about how to create a totally unique and unforgettable reception venue, we looked at some ways we could give our guests an out-of-the-ordinary experience as far as the reception venue is concerned. But aesthetics do very little when the ceremony itself is boring. Here are some ways to give your guests a kick out of the reception ceremony.
#1: Turn ’em all into photographers
Want to keep your guests entertained and also get extra photos from your wedding? Ask your guests to use their cameras to capture great moments that even the best photographers miss. You can give them ideas on “I Spy” cards at the tables as well as an address they can upload the pictures with or a hashtag they can use for easy identification. This way, they also feel involved in your wedding. #weddingoftheyear #mimiwedsmichael #samiraslaysbawumia #dappercouple.
#2: Get Mad Libs for your guests
Mad libs are a fun game played by coming up with words – adjectives, nouns, etc. – to fill gaps in sentences that end up making a hilarious story. This time, you can give your guests an opportunity to tell you something on your special day. Leave a copy on each table and your guests have a great chance to bond as they ask each other questions (of course, they’ll be filling out the card together). Plus, you’ll laugh yourself to death as you read all the hilarious responses after the wedding.
#3: Leave booklets on tables for their ideas
Another way to hear from your guests that does not restrict them too much is to leave them booklets and pens for them to put down their thoughts. To guide them, you can come up with a question for each table. Some suggestions are what you should name your first child or what they believe the secret to a happy marriage is.
Also, you could give each booklet a number and ask guests to write a message for you to read on that anniversary. No peeking please – let the excitement build up!
#4: Make a wedding piñata
Get your guests to write you a note for your first anniversary and drop them in a piñata that you’ll open a year from your wedding day.
#5: Prepare a spot for the kids
We are familiar with the trouble of taking toddlers along to functions. Even if you don’t have any kids of your own, you’ve undoubtedly seen at least one frantic mother chasing her energetic son all over or a father scolding his twin girls because they just can’t seem to sit still. And some kids are so good at it – everyone within reach must have a feel of them. So, if you want your guests to really enjoy themselves – and I don’t mean just the parents – they’d be better off without kids for an hour or two. Get a room for them under the custody of an experienced babysitter. They can go there to relax, play and nap. Make sure there are enough age-appropriate games and activities around to keep them entertained and distracted for long enough so the adults too can have some fun.
#5: Play the Shoe Game
This hilarious game is a great way to help your guests know more about you as you also find out what you really know about each other. Two chairs are placed back-to-back and the bride and groom remove both their shoes. Each of them then trades a shoe with the other so they both have one of each. Then a designated person asks a series of questions about the two of them and their relationship. After each question, each of them holds up the shoe of the person they think is the best answer to the question. It’ll amaze you how excited you’ll get your guests as you answer the various questions.
#6: Plan a Surprise
Surprising your guests with a little extra entertainment is sure to delight your guests. Bringing in a poet, caricaturist or a group of dancers out of the blue will sure excite those who are around. A popular musician or comedian will be great if you can afford one.
#7: Play “Stand up, sit down”
This is a nice icebreaker that can be introduced especially when the atmosphere is gradually getting boring. You start by asking everyone to get on their feet. Then you read out various statements like “If the day of the month in which you were born is a prime number, sit down” or “If you had to ask what a prime number was, sit down”. You can also bring people back into the game. For instance you can say, “If you are a man and can successfully prepare banku (or Ghana Jollof) from scratch without any assistance, get back up”. The last person standing wins a prize.
#8: Get Grandma to be your flower girl.
Well…not exactly a reception tip – more of a bonus. But who says flower girls have an age limit? Let your grandmum toss the flower petals on your special day. Think of how adorable she’ll look.
The great thing about these things is that your guests are always kept entertained – never a dull moment. But be sure not to insert too many. It’ll make the programme unnecessarily long. You don’t want to wear your guests and yourself out on your wedding day.
If you have not read our previous post on how to spice up your wedding venue, click here.