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11 Wedding Reception Ideas That Will Make You Say “I Wish I Did That!”

Getting Your Wedding Event Right

Your wedding may represent one of the most important days of your life. It’s a transition into a new frontier. You and your spouse are going to become more well-rounded people. There’s every likelihood you’ll become more integral players in your local community, and you may even bring new life into the world if you haven’t already. Two families are coming together through your marriage. Many members on either side will be meeting for the first time.

The thing about a wedding is: it’s really not just about you and your spouse-to-be. The new husband and wife are a focal point, but new relationships are being forged, new alliances made, and new dreams dreamt. A family represents an oasis against the wasteland of singlehood. It represents a component of economic stability. Marriage as an institution has many collateral benefits you won’t even realize until you’ve been in such a relationship for a number of years. With all these things in mind, beyond your actual ceremony, you really want to get the reception right. To that end, following are several wedding reception ideas to help stimulate your imagination and make your wedding one to remember.


Include A Luxe Wedding Reception Lounge

A “luxe” reception lounge can be the thing which saves your reception. If you’re married at noon with a one hour ceremony, then have to travel to the reception venue, it will likely be another hour or two before the reception gets fully underway. You’re going to have a dinner, speeches, drinks, snacks, dances—the list goes on. Once the formalized aspects of the reception are finished, your noon wedding has stretched into early evening territory. It’s conceivable the festivities will continue past midnight.


Don’t Forget Guest Event Transportation!

Your guests will need to get to the venue after the wedding ceremony. Certainly some weddings have reception and ceremony at the same location, but others do not. As you put together wedding reception ideas, be sure to include some kind of transportation solution between locations.

Certainly guests may drive themselves, but this can be dangerous; especially if you’ve provided pre-ceremony cocktails!

Pre-Ceremony Cocktails – Yes.

Wedding ceremonies are beautiful. They also take a while, and if you’ve seen a couple—or are married yourself—you understand that sitting through even the most unique ceremony can be a bit of an ordeal. You know one of the best wedding reception ideas to curtail this?

Cocktails before the ceremony. You’ll have guests from both sides of the family aisle milling around for up to an hour before the actual ceremony. If they’ve got a drink to lubricate their thinking, it can definitely make things more smooth.


Don’t Forget To Provide Childcare!

There is no doubt about how much fun it can be to celebrate with children.  Certainly young boys and girls in tiny suits and dresses can be convinced to sit still and practice good manners for an hour or so; but if there’s a reception that goes on well into the night, they’re going to get tired, cranky, and act as children do. Or they could go running about getting into mischief. Either way, you may want to have some kind of childcare option. This will allow your guests to really let loose and enjoy themselves. A wedding is a celebratory occasion, and everybody should be able to have fun and let go of some of life’s responsibilities for a few hours.


First Dance Confetti Drop

The first dance between the bride and groom is a beautiful thing to watch. There’s going to be joy and laughter, and one of the more popular wedding reception ideas to further enhance this moment is the first dance confetti drop. As the bride and groom step out on the dance floor, the confetti comes down to that first tune. It can serve to make this moment one of the most memorable of the reception.


Video Confessional Booth

The groomsmen, fathers, mothers, and bridesmaids are likely to have some speeches to give; but these aren’t the only folks who will be affected by the wedding ceremony! Additionally, the bride and groom will be so busy, oftentimes it can be difficult to get a private word with them. As well, sometimes what you want to say has a private nature to it that benefits from distraction elimination. Modern tech has made recording a video message for the bride and groom more convenient than ever. It’s like a photo booth, but for video. Guests, bridesmaids, relatives, groomsmen, and even some of the kids can get in there and give the new couple honest well-wishes to be cherished for years. This is also one of those wedding reception ideas that is pretty cost-effective.


Hip After Party

Some people will tire early, possibly the happy couple themselves after a long day.  Others will want to stay up all night. A great way to bond and build trust with others is to change venues.  Now you can just cut off the party when the reception ends, or you can allow the guests to continue celebrating as long as the most party-hearty member of the group can.Book a venue with a totally feel and different entertainment than the reception like karaoke or an after-hours DJ. If you really want a memorable reception, this is a good way to achieve it.


All Over Lighting

You’ve likely seen this. Sometimes colored lights shine up walls, a monogram is projected, lights in strings are strung all across the wedding reception area, sometimes you’ll have illumination that matches the wedding’s theme everywhere. But wedding lighting is an aesthetic touch that is very affecting, and worth looking into.


Killer Midnight Snacks

All that dancing is going to make people hungry! It’s not just about the guests at this point; the bride and groom will likely work up an appetite as well! So make arrangements for some later food provision toward the end of the reception. In some cultures, wedding celebrations will last for a week or more. That’s not usually the case in America, but planning for a long reception is certainly a good idea!


Social Media Integration

It’s the future alright. We don’t have flying cars and jet boots, but we do have the internet at our fingertips continuously. So play into that. Have a wedding website made, or create a Facebook event page or group. Use social media to create a buzz before the ceremony, or have us provide a #Hashtag Print Station as an affordable alternative to a full service photo booth rental during your reception. This will increase anticipation among guests, and can really serve to enhance the big day.

Keep Your Helpers Happy

Videographers, wedding photographers, caterers, DJs, Entertainers—these folks are a big part of making your wedding reception a success. So don’t treat them badly!

Certainly, they’re getting paid; they can sustain a little bit of abuse, but why should they?

It’s an affair that brings two families together and can make a new family unit which becomes a community bastion. So keep your help happy, and you’ll see them do a better, more passionate job.

Most pros can discreetly take care of their own needs, but allow them scheduled breaks during downtime, and to be fed and watered.

A Reception To Remember

There are a lot of great wedding reception ideas out there that can help your wedding be something remembered for years by friends, family, and most importantly you and your future spouse. Take some time to search around and get an idea of what you want. The reception may not be the fundamental “main event”, but it will be a very important part of your new life with your new spouse. Very literally, it’s the first thing you’ll do as a married couple. So give it your best shot!

by Kevin Bennett

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