Ever been on a dance floor where everyone starts to crowd around that one person totally tearing it up? Some people have this natural ability to dance like it is nobody’s business, while others can barely get by with a two-step. If you and your partner are in that second camp, not to worry.
With a bit of imagination, there are plenty of ways to have fun beyond dancing. So, whether you’re stuck with two left feet or just not feeling the dance party these days, we’re here with our best list of alternative entertainment ideas.
So, rather than being dragged onto the dance floor, you’ll be living it up in your own way. Let your personality and venue be your guide in choosing what works best for your Big Day. Also, please don’t feel like it has to be one or the other. You’re free to steal one of these suggestions and leave that dance floor intact too.
Photo Credit: Megan Markham Bucknall, Unsplash
Turn it into a Live Concert
Just because you aren’t that into dancing doesn’t mean you want to ditch the music. This is the perfect opportunity to host a live concert featuring low-key musicians or your favorite local band. Are you having a formal affair? Go with classical string musicians or dueling pianos. Is your wedding more rustic? A couple of folksy acoustic artists would be right on tune. Hosting a beach wedding? The sound of steel drums against the ocean is divine.
Whether you hire soloists for background ambiance or go for a full-blown rock band concert, it’s hard to go wrong with live music. Guests can appreciate the performance, with or without dancing. You might even catch yourself swaying in your seat (don’t worry, we won’t tell!).
Let the Games Begin
This next idea is a simple way to add a lot of fun to your wedding: bring out the games. We’re talking corn hole, ring toss, giant Jenga and Connect Four, croquet, horseshoes, or bocce ball if your wedding is outdoors. For indoors, make it a game night with your favorite card games, chess/checkers boards, or board game classics like Monopoly.
Don’t pressure anyone into participating. Just place these in convenient spots set up by your lounge area or open space. Those who are interested will take advantage of the games.
How about renting ping-pong, foosball, or air hockey tables for those who prefer a more interactive experience? If you want to win your guests over, you could even create a mini-golf or obstacle course at your venue.
Are you hosting a kid-friendly event? Check out those cute white bouncy houses we keep seeing on Instagram; they are perfect for your photo ops and the kiddos too.
Photo Credit: Flow Clark, Unsplash
What better way to let your creativity shine than with actual art?! Hire a painter to memorialize your wedding day in the most extraordinary way possible. Let them set up in the center of the action, where they’ll have a great view of the space. Guests will marvel at their progress and, of course, the finished work.
Want a more collaborative work of art? We love the idea of a wedding mural. Hire a muralist and let free-spirited guests add their brushstrokes to the larger-than-life creation. Don’t limit this to only one medium; this idea could also work with a mosaic or collage.
We hear non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are all the rage, so maybe you could even get a head start on creating the next big digital work of art at your wedding.
Photo Credit: Michael Morse, Pexels
Fun with Photo Booths
Despite some wedding blogs calling for the early death of the photo booth, guests have spoken loud and clear: they love to strike a pose, so photo booths are here to stay. Plus, there is literally a photo booth for every type of wedding with all of the different varieties.
Go full-on celebrity with boomerang video booths or 360-degree ones that tie into your social media feeds. Kiss your cutie in a vintage photo booth trailer, go modern with a mirrored high-tech booth, or create a ton of selfie stations with exciting backdrops. These photo strips and digital snaps also double as a great favor for guests to remember your wedding day.
If you don’t have spare change in your budget to rent a photo booth, consider the cheaper option of creating a DIY station. Grab some instant cameras and film, and let your guests literally “shake it like a polaroid picture.” Then have a guest book or photo wall station to share the photos for all to see.
Let the Good Times Roll
They say the stakes are high when it comes to love, but we think the reward is so worth it. If your winning wedding day odds leave you in a gambling mood, consider some casino-themed entertainment. Rented blackjack, roulette, poker, or craps tables will add a Vegas flair to your reception.
Let’s be clear here: no one should bet real money. Weddings offer enough drama; we don’t need to add gambling losses into the mix. Instead, play with chips that can be traded in for fun prizes.
Combine this idea with cigar rolling, whiskey tastings, and professionally dressed dealers and croupiers to create a high roller atmosphere.
Invite the Party Animals
Who can resist a cuddly animal? Some of our favorite wedding moments and photos are with beloved pets. Whether it’s your best pup or a rented exotic bird, we love the idea of including animals in your wedding festivities. Truthfully between their floral adorned collars and freshly brushed coats of fur, we think these furry friends are some of your best-dressed wedding guests.
From alpacas to ponies, lizards to koi fish, there are many options. Make sure to talk with your venue first to see what their limitations and rules are. Also, work with a professional handler or farm to ensure proper treatment of these special guests. Keep the photographer and lots of water nearby too. Your guests, especially the younger ones, will love grabbing a photo with these cute creatures.
Photo Credit: Robin Battinson, Unsplash
Performances to Remember
Most people remember the first time they went to the circus or an amusement park show. Usually, it’s because of the memorable performance artists: acrobats, fire breathers, or magicians who wowed you. It proves that live entertainment is so much more than musicians. Why not surprise your wedding guests with unique acts they will remember?
From roaming card magicians to caricature artists, living statues to fire hula hoop spinners, plenty of talented entertainers are available. Be sure your selection matches the feel of your wedding day, and get clearance from your venue first (especially if a fire performance is involved).
Feel free to combine options with specialized artists, such as an aerial violinist or an acrobat bartender. We’re sure this will be a special unexpected touch.
Sometimes keeping guests entertained is simple: invite them into your reception, add some music, light candles, and let them mingle. Weddings are one of the rare times when you have most of your friends and family in one room. The downside is you typically only have enough time to say hello.
One of the best gifts you can give everyone in the room is the time to catch up with one another or connect in a more meaningful way. By creating a dedicated lounge space and removing many formal dances, you can do just that.
Create lounge vignettes scattered throughout the room using combinations of chairs, sofas, and coffee or end tables. This way, guests don’t feel restricted to their assigned tables and can move around the room.
You might also want to add some meaningful dessert or appetizer trays to the lounge areas as conversation starters. For example, you could have a tray of cannoli made from your Grandmother’s recipe along with a cute sign explaining their significance. Something like this is sure to spark wanderlust conversations about Italy.
Tap into the talent surrounding your wedding and local vendors to create a unique hands-on DIY experience at your wedding. This can be anything from crafts to personalized favors or interactive food stations.
Are you getting married at a farm? Arrange a mini cheesemaking course accompanied by a cheese and beer tasting. Hired an amazing stationer? See if they’ll set up a station for creating watercolor stationery or adding personalized vinyl to favors like candles or water bottles.
So many amazing ideas can come from this; we’ve seen everything from mini macrame workshops to custom on-site glass etching. Speak to your venue, vendors, and locals to get ideas that fit into your Big Day.
Photo Credit: Caleb Oquendo, Pexels
Wow Them with Fireworks
You’ve seen it in the movies and on television. There’s no more fabulous wedding exit than one with fireworks. Put on this crowd-pleasing display minus the loud decibels with newer “silent” fireworks. They pack the same explosive color in the sky without the deafening sound.
If a fireworks display is more of a dream than a reality, you can get a similar impact for less with sparklers. Hand them out to guests after the sun goes down. Add some cute tags that say something like “let love sparkle,” then get ready for some stunning group wedding photos.
Other similar options include a digital laser show, or “indoor fireworks,” which produce flameless sparks up to 16 feet high.
See, we told you there was plenty of wedding entertainment beyond dancing. Not all of these ideas will fit your vision, so pick and choose the ones that do or create your own. This day should highlight you and your partner’s interests, talents, and love story, and if dancing is not a part of that equation, don’t force it. Carry on and party the night away in a way that is uniquely yours.