Wedding receptions are joyous and loads of fun. And it's no wonder between the amazing food and drink, the rad music, and the killer dancing that weddings are one enormous celebration. I find as a wedding planner that guests often enjoy themselves almost as much as the bride and groom. Almost. And for the couple like me that's slightly nerdy, loves a good game, and is all about guest interaction, then there are a few games you can incorporate into your wedding reception to up the fun ante a notch or two! Read below to learn more:
The Shoe Game
My husband and I played the shoe game at our wedding and it was a HUGE hit! The basic concept of the shoe game mimics that of the newlywed game. How it works: the bride and groom sit back-to-back facing away from one another. They then each remove one shoe and hand it to their partner so that they each have one of their own shoes and one of their partners. The MOH and best man come up with a set of questions about the couple prior to the wedding (around 20 or so) and give them to the band or DJ to announce during the reception. The bride and groom should not know the questions beforehand. As the questions are called out the bride and groom will raise the shoe that they think correlates to the question. An example question could be, "Who is most likely to fall asleep without brushing their teeth?" The couple would then raise the shoe that they thought matched that question. Pretty simple, right?! It can definitely get funny and the audience loves it! To reach out to us for help with planning your wedding click here.
Tip: I recommend doing this after dinner but before dancing begins.
Photos: Taylor Bates Photography
Stand Up, Sit Down
As opposed to the shoe game being geared toward the bride and groom, stand up, sit down is for the audience. Here's how it works: the DJ or band will ask all the guests (that physically can) to stand up at their tables. The bride and groom will then read out statements like, "If you had an easy bake oven as a child, sit down. If you didn't know what an easy bake oven was, sit down" or "If your street name ends in and 'e' sit down." You will keep making statements like these as your guests continue to sit down. You can also have them stand back up by making statements such as, "If you have been to Europe, stand back up." The last person standing wins a prize!
Tip: I recommend keeping this game to know more than 5-6 minutes so you aren't wearing out the knees of some of your older guests!
A scavenger hunt is a great way to keep guests busy and entertained during the cocktail hour. Here's how it works: hide stuff or make a list of items around your venue for guests to search for during cocktail hour. An example could be, "Find our initials on something blue" or "What is the second word on our welcome sign?" Have your guests take photos of what they find on their smart phones or cameras to show to your wedding coordinator or someone else in charge. The first person (or team) to find all of the items on the list wins a prize! Announce the winner and hand out the prize after dinner.
Tip: For a less adventurous or older crowd you could modify this to a game of "I Spy" that can be played during dinner at the guest tables. At each place setting, you would place a list of items for your guests to "spy" like, "the color of the groom's tie" etc. Whoever finds them all first, wins!
Photos via: Wedding Chicks
Unique Guest Books
Unique guest books, like the one featured below are another great way to keep your guests entertained and the possibilities are endless! Some examples include: a Polaroid photo guest book, a "sign your favorite scripture or quote" guest book, a watercolor guest book where guests "paint" you something, and so much more. In this particular spin on the guest book featured on Mon Cheri the bride and groom did something a little different. Here's how it works: the couple filled water balloons full of paint and attached them to a large canvas. Guests then threw darts at the balloons which spread the paint all over the canvas. The couple got to keep the final product as a work of art for their home! How unique and fun!
Tip: This can be very messy so make sure you do it somewhere outside and that you get approval from your venue ahead of time!
And of course there are always the tried and true lawn and table games. Examples of lawn games to include at your wedding: cornhole, ladderball, croquet, hopscotch, bocce ball, giant Jenga, and more! Table top games to include: Mad Libs, Guess Who?, question booklets, board games, and more!
I hope these ideas give you some inspiration when planning your wedding reception! One of the things I tell my clients is that they set the stage. If they are having fun, their guests are more likely to have fun and vice versa! Also, think about your audience ahead of time. Some of these games would not be appropriate for a less adventurous or older crowd.
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