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Keeping Guests Entertained Before The Reception

Hi everyone!

My fiance and I have had a relatively easy time planning our wedding (October 2011), but we're completely stuck on one of the minor points that we feel is typically overlooked.

It's that awkward time between the Wedding and the Reception.  You know, that 1-2 hours where guests are just milling around, supposedly getting to know each other, while they wait for the bridal party to arrive so they can eat, drink, and be merry.  We've been to a few weddings together and have grown to despise this limbo state.  Yes, we're aware that this is "normal" and "expected" (as we have heard many times from our parents) but we really don't want people to be bored out of their minds or awkward. We want them to have a good time while meeting new people.

Our Ceremony is on the same property (but not the same room) as the Reception.  That eliminates driving time and the potential for out of towners to get lost but increases the amount of dead time.

One of my friends attended an "Alice in Wonderland" themed wedding at a garden venue.  After the ceremony, they had the guests make their way toward the Reception hall by navigating a garden maze which featured cookies, tea, tables, umbrellas, and other prizes to take home - everything with touches from the book.  We don't have the luxury of the gardens, but we would like to do something fun and memorable for our guests.  Something to help them pass the time.

Have any of you done something neat for your guests during this down time?  Any thoughts, suggestions?

If it helps, our Reception is "fall themed".  We're using pumpkins as centerpieces accented by fall leaves and wheat.  We've also incorporated Cherry Blossoms (yeah, I know, spring flower) into the theme as well.

Thanks!Smile
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