Parties of any kind, including wedding receptions, thrive on activity. Since weddings have two distinct parts, it can be difficult to plan and create a party atmosphere with sustainable energy while also working to plan a beautiful and romantic ceremony. To make sure that your after-party does not seem like an after-thought, try some of these tips:
~Keep the dance floor hopping by playing dancey, fun music. A really great way to start this off right is to jazz up your first dance, surprise your audience, and show off some great dance moves. If there is a band, make sure the break music is good too to keep your guests interested.
~Have a surprise planned for the end of the night, and make sure to announce it near the beginning, after all of your guests have arrived at the reception venue. You and your spouse can sing a special thank-you song to your guests along with the band, have belly dancers perform a number, or have a drawing for a give-away. But make sure there is a definite time that you tell your guests this end-of-night surprise will be done. Otherwise, people may get antsy, think it will never happen, and leave early.
~Keep the toasts short. Have a talk with the best man, maid of honor, and any others you know are making a toast, and let them know to keep it short, sweet, and simple. If you open up the floor for toasts, make sure guests understand to make a short toast.
~Take care of the kiddos. If children are invited, consider hiring a babysitter and have a separate room for them so that parents can have a good time without worrying about the kids. Think ahead and have games planned and toys provided.
~Add lounge-type furniture to your venue. People automatically feel more at ease when they are relaxed and reclined rather than sitting on hard chairs.
~Pass out noise-makers, bubbles, or sparklers for an outdoor wedding. Party favors are a sure-fire way to make your reception a blast and the talk of the town the day after.