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Reception Party & Older Guests

Hello:

My mother is overly concerned with the amount of older guests I will have at my reception. I want a DJ so I can dance the night away with my groom & friends. However, with the amount of older guests there my mother feels like I may be the only one dancing. Help! How can I have my dance party and still include the older folks?

Re: Reception Party & Older Guests

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    Hello:

    My mother is overly concerned with the amount of older guests I will have at my reception. I want a DJ so I can dance the night away with my groom & friends. However, with the amount of older guests there my mother feels like I may be the only one dancing. Help! How can I have my dance party and still include the older folks?

    First, how many older folks are you really having? 

    Second, my parents (both in their 60's) and their friends (also in their 60's and early 70's) love to party and dance and where out in full force on the dance floor at my wedding.

    Third, who is paying for the wedding?  If your parents are then pay for the DJ yourself so you can have what you want.  I would suggest playing a wide assortment of music from different decades that will help get the older folks up and dancing.

    And finally, so what if you and your friends and FI are the only one's dancing?  Your Mom needs to get over it.

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    I don't know what you mean by older folks, but we had a bunch of people in their 40s, 50s and 60s at my wedding and everybody was on the dance floor all night. A good DJ will play stuff from a variety of eras so everyone has something they can dance to.
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    Love you last comment! I would say 50+ are the ages. My parents as well as my groom and I are going 1/2 on a lot of the wedding. I plan on playing an assortment of music, but I can't make people get on the dance floor.

    My finance mentioned just going to clubs afterwards. But why pay for a dj at your reception just to leaving and go partying I other places?

     

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    You are both right. The DJ should be able to gauge the guests at the wedding. I also feel like people shouldn't be sticks in the mud and have a nice time.

    Does anyone have ideas on keeping them entertained if dancing is indeed not their thing?

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    You do not need entertainment for these people.  Adults are generally happy to mingle with their friends/family at parties.  Games or whatever aren't needed.

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    My mother was about a month shy of her 69th birthday when I got married.  She was out on that floor dancing to "Love Shack" by the B52s.  I will never forget that sight.  Her sister who is 4 years older than her and her husband who is even older are amazing dancers and love dancing together.  People were commenting about how great they were.  Just make sure you have a variety of music.  Just because someone is "old" doesn't mean you won't have to kick them off the dance floor at the end of the night.  
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    Just like to add that my parents live in a retirement community in Florida.  I visit a lot and we go down to the squares they have and each time the dance area is full of 55 and older people doing line dances or just getting down with their bad selves.  It really all depends on the music...if the music is good and danceable people will dance.

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    You may also want to explain to your mom that if there isn't a dj there is a fairly good chance that people will eat dinner and take off since there is nothing else to do.  
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    Make sure the DJ plays a diverse selection of music. If you have older guests, play a selection of older music. Some old school motown, etc.   
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    "Mustang Sally" is a favorite among my parents and their friends.

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    Slow dances generally have better participation among older folks.  Try some Elvis or Frank Sinatra.  When Etta James started crooning "At Last" at daughter's wedding, everyone jumped up to dance.
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    CMGragain said:
    Slow dances generally have better participation among older folks.  Try some Elvis or Frank Sinatra.  When Etta James started crooning "At Last" at daughter's wedding, everyone jumped up to dance.

    See, this is why I'm reminded of the "know your crowd" thing.  If we had played Frank Sinatra or Elvis, even our older guests would have been like WTF?
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    LOL!  My father was a big band jazz trumpet player in the 1940's.  Sinatra works for just about everybody, though.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
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    Well I'm close to 50 and my FI is a few years over your definition of older.  We dance up a storm at all weddings/events.  As do all our same age (and older) friends.  And I'm pretty sure our dance floor will be packed all night because we will be dancing.

    My FI used to be a DJ in a former life and this is what he recommends:
    For those 45-55, 1980s music; 55-65 -1970s, and older than that 40s to 60s will do it.
    BTW: A lot of my younger friends are really excited about our featured 80s music (although we will have the DJ play to all types).  But please don't assume 1950-60s music for "older" since the 50-somethings came of age with punk, new wave, etc.
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    @wabanzi - I am going to be 30 in August and I absolutely love 80's music!  That was definitely a featured decade at our wedding by the DJ.

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    We told our DJ to play to the crowd, but also make sure to include lots of current dance music (that's what we like) but to include some polkas too. My family is German & his family is Slovian. So DJ played the polkas earlier on and then did the major faux pas (per my request) got everyone out on the dance floor with a line dance. Personally I think a line dance is a great way to get everyone moving. From there he played music that would keep people out on the dance floor & I told DJ it was ok to take requests as long as the longs were vulgar or depressing. During dinner we had the DJ play a variety of what I called Rat Pack music (Sinatra, Bubble, Harry Connick Jr, etc). I thought it was upbeat but mellow, so perfect background music for cocktail hour & dinner.
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    @Erikan73 We're having "Rat Pack" music during dinner, as well!
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    Most of the music at our wedding was 80s music! It was a big hit!
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    @wabanzi - I am going to be 30 in August and I absolutely love 80's music!  That was definitely a featured decade at our wedding by the DJ.
    emmyg65 said:
    Most of the music at our wedding was 80s music! It was a big hit!
    Awesome!  I am really looking forward to our 80s music mix.  I may insist on a little disco too.  I will want to get my Abba on in my wedding dress :-)
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    My grandparents are in their 70s-80s and some of the older great aunts and uncles are the same...they don't pass up the chance to Jitter Bug or Twist or heck, even Electric Slide! It's so fun to see them look so young again when the DJ plays something they know! A good DJ will play a wide variety, and you can always specify songs you know they'll enjoy on your "must play" list :)
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    edited April 2014
    CMGragain said:
    Slow dances generally have better participation among older folks.  Try some Elvis or Frank Sinatra.  When Etta James started crooning "At Last" at daughter's wedding, everyone jumped up to dance.

    See, this is why I'm reminded of the "know your crowd" thing.  If we had played Frank Sinatra or Elvis, even our older guests would have been like WTF?


    I agree. My cousins and I are in our 50s. We were on the dance floor, as well as my mother, who is in her late 70s, for most DD's 
    reception. Throw in a little Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, Santana or Stevie Wonder to make the old people happy. My mom doesn't even like Frank Sinatra, but Little Richard gets her going.  Just a few songs for us, though, we shouldn't expect to take over the music selection. 

    *stuck in the box, again.

                       
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