50 Wedding Reception Entertainment Ideas for 2021

We’ve got an awesome list of entertainment ideas for your wedding reception!

You want your guests to talk about your wedding for a long time afterward? There’s one thing you should make sure you plan well – your wedding entertainment.

We want to make your life super easy so here’s a list with the best of the best and most popular wedding reception entertainment ideas.

Children’s Entertainer

Let’s start things right. If your event is child-friendly, then having some sorts of entertainment for them in a separate room/corner is a must. This means that parents get to enjoy your wedding so much more! Also, the risk for trouble is much lower, so it’s all for a good cause.

If you want to skip hiring another person, you could organize some face painting, animal balloons, games, coloring books, bubbles, dress-up party corners to give kids plenty of activities to keep them busy!

Budget for this, you’ll thank me later.

children entertainment ideas for weddings

Photo Booth

Did you know photo booths are one of the most sought-after means of entertainment at a wedding? Well, that’s what we believe, at least!

This is a shameless plug, but if you don’t know, we also have a photo booth business, Mad Hat Photobooth. It’s such an exciting and fun part of the business and we love sharing this with everyone!

Having a photo booth for your wedding day is truly worth every penny (and so affordable, as well!)
You can also organize a photo booth yourself but you’ll soon realize you’re not saving that much money and you’re also not left with any good quality photos in the end.

If your budget doesn’t stretch for a photo booth or you simply prefer to do something else instead, what about this? Get an Instax mini 11 camera with 50 film shot pack (you may need at least a couple of film packs for a wedding).

Buy Instax camera

mad hat photo booth cotswolds photo booth hire for weddings and events

Outdoor games

There are so many ideas for outdoor games during the wedding day! From ping pong to cricket to Giant Garden Jenga, any game that brings people together and has them interact is brilliant!

If you’re looking for wedding cocktail hour games, we actually made a list of 15 tips for your wedding entertainment ideas you can easily plan both indoors or outdoors.

Outdoor wedding cocktail hour games

table tennis

croquet or mini-golf

giant garden Jenga

bouncy castle

connect four

life-size chess

sack race

bowling pins

ring toss

limbo set

wedding pinata

 

Indoors wedding cocktail hour games

beer pong

I spy wedding game

wedding bingo

picture scavenger hunt

 

garden games for weddings ideas

Marshmallows by the fire

No matter how big or small the event, something sweet by the fire will always be a welcomed treat, for all ages! Especially if you’re planning for a Summer/ Autumn wedding, having a fire outside when the weather is nice is never a bad idea!

If your event is on private land, you might need some roasting sticks for the marshmallows. They are extendable and perfect if you have children joining and want to keep them safe. You can also reuse them long after your event!

Here’s the entire wedding we shot in the mids of a forest, so you might want to see this.

marshmallows by the fire for wedding reception ideas

Limbo Dance

limbo dance for wedding entertainment

 

Whiskey Tasting

 

Morning Yoga

Do you plan to have a 2-day event or maybe you hired a venue somewhere on a beach and your guests arrive the day before? Then why not start with some morning yoga to get everyone refreshed and excited for the day to come?

Props for your guests

There’s one common thing that unites all of your guests – they all want to have fun!

So whether you’re getting lots of masks some props they can use on the dance floor,  it will always make for great fun and awesome pictures!

You can get something really cheap and simple but very effective, like some pixel sunglasses or an inflatable props set, they are equally fun!

Buy inflatable props set here 

wedding masks and props for wedding entertainment ideaswedding props on the dance floor during the wedding reception

Funfair

bride and groom on a horse for a carousel ride at preston court wedding venue by Canterbury wedding photographers

Role Play

Loved this idea! If you’re from an artistic background (don’t have to be, though) and maybe have some friends who are talented “actors”, ask them to do a role play for your guests!

It can be a day in the life of the couple or how they met or any story that’s truly fun and can be slightly exaggerated! It will make everyone laugh with tears, I promise you! It’s such a great ice breaker during the canapés time, for example.

role play wedding entertainment ideas

Scottish Medieval Games

 

Axe Throwing

Darts

Image Credit: Unsplash

 

Hire a magician

Seriously, you NEED to hire a magician! I’ve rarely seen so many faces drop and people being so entertained and laughing whilst having their necklace stolen in front of them. It’s such a brilliant idea for your wedding reception entertainment and we know just the guy you will want to hire! He is incredible! We know of an awesome magician to recommend for your wedding or event! Check out Matthew Le Mottee, he’s incredible!  We saw things with our own eyes and still have no idea what had happened!

magician for wedding entertainment ideas

Slideshow Sing-Along

Another one of my personal favorite ideas – slideshow sing-along.


This one works really well for the groom actually- last chance to embarrass him with pictures from College, in front of his new wife and family.  Simply ask the groom’s friends or family who know him best to put together a slideshow with some really funny or embarrassing moments from his childhood. Make a poem or sing a song to describe the images.

It can go on for ages and gets the best reactions from everyone! It is also totally free!

slideshow sing-along wedding reception ideaswedding entertainment ideas slideshow sing-along

Famous Person Impersonator

Yes, this is actually a thing. And yes, Michael Jackson is not dead!
This was the first time we’ve seen an impersonator but it got everyone so excited and started cheering whilst he was doing the famous dance moves! Nobody knew this was coming, so definitely a night to remember!

If you want to check out the France wedding that revived Michael Jackson, here’s the entire story, it might give you an idea or two!

famous person impersonator wedding reception entertainment ideas

Acrobatic Musicians

If I was to rate the most exciting and memorable wedding entertainment I’ve ever seen at a wedding, it would be this one – an acrobatic musician.

This girl played her songs so perfectly and beautifully as I’ve never heard before – all whilst spinning around and turning upside down with a huge circus circle! Everyone was speechless and for the best reasons! If you ever hire them, please have us shoot your wedding. We’ll even give you a discount, just so we can listen to them again, for real.

A couple who tried this and proved to be a fantastic idea is Jess + Moses, whose New Forest wedding we shot a while back and I still remember it as if it was yesterday!

acrobatic musicians for wedding and events entertainment ideas

Glow Sticks

Love how creative people are when it comes to their wedding reception entertainment and having glow sticks is so much fun! Makes for great photos during the evening reception and also for great entertainers for your guests!

Buy glow sticks here

glow sticks for wedding reception entertainment ideas glow sticks fun wedding entertainment ideas

Pizza Van

Whilst having a pizza van for your wedding isn’t necessarily a game or an entertainer for your guests, it’s certainly a way to make everyone happy and also seems to bring people together!

I vote that every wedding should have a pizza van at one point in the evening.

pizza van wedding reception ideas

Roast Hog

Ice Cream Truck

Are you planning a Summer wedding? Do you love ice cream? No happy human would say NO to this. Then, you need an ice cream truck.

Here’s how this couple did this and made for a wonderful addition to their wedding!

ice cream truck for wedding reception ideas

Popcorn Stand


Image Credit: Unsplash

 

Hot Chocolate bar

Image Credit: Unsplash

 

Signature cocktails

 


Image Credit: Unsplash

Bouncy Castle

Another fantastic idea if you have children attending your wedding – have a bouncy castle to keep them happily entertained outside. You’ll soon find everyone loves it and grown-ups will most likely be trying it, too. Another one for your wedding entertainment ideas list!

Buy a bouncy castle here

bouncy castle for children and adults for a wedding or events reception idea

Flash mob

Have you ever seen a flash mob on YouTube and really wished you were there, too?! There’s something so exciting about watching people dancing out of nowhere, with the same moves!

Imagine surprising the bride and groom with a flash mob on their wedding day! Or you could even get them involved, too, and simply surprise everyone else present at the wedding! I bet there will be some awesome reactions! So so lucky to have seen this happen during this Scotland wedding! The bride’s reaction was priceless, as this was one of her dreams!

flash mob during a Scotland wedding

Sack race

Especially if you have a marquee/ outdoor wedding, a sack race would be incredibly fun! Probably more fun for those watching!

 

Champagne tower

 

Caricaturist

Hiring a caricaturist for a few hours during the wedding reception is such a brilliant idea! It also creates an instant keepsake for your guests and something so special to remember your wedding day. Highly recommend this one! Can’t wait to actually see it at a wedding!

Piñata

If you’re the non-traditional type, then having a Piñata for your wedding is the best idea ever! It can be hung from a tree outside or somewhere inside the venue and it can even replace your wedding cake! Fill it with candies and let the fun begin!

This is an Etsy shop that has lots of cake piñata and all sorts of ideas, including custom orders!

Buy cake piñata here

pinata instead of wedding cake for wedding reception entertainment ideas

Heads or tails/ Answer fun questions

A game we absolutely loved seeing during a wedding reception in the Cotswolds, was a heads or tails game.

Have someone organize it and get people at the tables to actually flip the coin. The last one standing gets to win a prize, of course! A bottle of champagne or a chocolate box is a simple and cheap idea to get everyone entertained. Wish I had thought of this for my wedding!

heads and tails wedding reception game ice breaker

Selfie stick on dinner tables

Do you have lots of younger people invited to your wedding?

Then have a selfie stick on the tables and make sure you create your wedding hashtag so they can tag you if they post the photo on social media! That way, you get to see lots of fun and silly poses during the wedding reception.

selfie stick on dinner tables for wedding reception ideas

Table Trivia

Simply prepare a set of questions about the bride and groom and at the end, the table who got the most answers right should receive a prize- like a bottle of wine or champagne.

 

Make Your Own Wedding Cake

Another unique but incredibly fun experience was seeing the chef bringing out all the components for the wedding cake – for the guests to put together!

Gloves were involved, of course, but instantly, a few guests turned into children whilst playing with fruits and cream to build up a delicious-looking cake! Everyone else was taking photos on their phones and sharing them! What a great way to have people talking about your wedding – or your wedding venue! Another one of my favorite wedding reception entertainment ideas!

It’s so hard to name my top favorite wedding reception ideas, but making your own wedding cake is definitely one of the top 5, at least!

make your own wedding cake for the wedding reception wedding reception idea making your own wedding cake with your guests

Mr & Mrs Quiz

Whilst I see this game less and less at English weddings, many countries do still love it and so many couples love playing it! A great way to get the audience laughing and maybe find out a thing or two about each other.

These people know how to have fun, for sure! Check out their Norway wedding to see more good stuff!

Mr and Mrs Quiz wedding reception ideas

Say What?!

Have you tried speaking to the dentist whilst he was working in your mouth? Quite silly, right?
What about shouting at your future mother-in-law words that there’s no way in the world she would understand with headphones on and very loud music!

Well, nothing is too silly when it comes to wedding entertainment ideas!

All you need is to get a box of Cheek Retractors and make a list of words or short sentences for people to pronounce. Definitely getting the bride or groom involved is a great way to make everyone laugh!
Also, Norwegians definitely know how to party and have fun so lots of ideas from weddings we shot along the years there.

Buy cheek retractors here 

Wedding Reception Entertainment Ideas for weddings or eventsgames for a norway wedding in haugesund

Temporary Tattoos


Image Credit: Unsplash

Glitter Station

glitter artist for a wedding reception idea

Concert wedding

Do you have lots of musician friends? Or maybe you’re one yourself? Why don’t you turn a corner of the venue into a stage so that you can have your friends or yourself perform for the rest of the guests?

We’ve seen this happen at more than one wedding and let me tell you- the atmosphere was fantastic! It’s like having the best gig especially sung for you on your wedding day – YES, please!

Want to see a wedding that truly went all in and planned an entire evening of gigs for their guests? This Cotswolds wedding in Stroud is one of a kind!

concert style wedding gig style reception

The bride/ groom to DJ

If you or your husband are passionate about DJ-ing, your wedding can be a perfect occasion to do this! Even if it’s just for a little fun, you can make some awesome beats and have the best time ever, too!

bride or groom DJ for wedding entertainment music

Live band

One thing we say to people over and over again – music at your wedding makes or breaks the atmosphere.
If there’s one thing you should truly invest in your wedding entertainment, that’s a good band! A well-thought playlist and a brilliant sound system are all you need to get everyone dancing all night long! Nothing can make a wedding more boring than a strange selection of music or none at all. Please, please, think twice before you hire someone to play at your wedding! There are some incredible musicians out there, so have a good look around!

This Plas Dinam Countryside wedding couple definitely knows how to keep everyone on the dance floor!

live band for wedding entertainment ideas for weddings or events

Instrumental music

During the cocktail hour, a beautiful and non-intrusive way to create an atmosphere would be to hire an instrumental band.

 

Ceilidh

With Scotland so near and so many people rooted or having close connections there, having a Ceilidh band is a fantastic form of entertainment for your guests at the wedding! Everyone gets to dance together and it is so much fun, hard to beat this! A favorite amongst so many couples!

ceilidh for wedding reception ideas

Karaoke

Image Credit: Unsplash

Confetti Canons

This is something I’ve seen recently at weddings during the reception. It’s ideal during the first dance when the couple is in the middle of the stage swinging around and feeling slightly embarrassed.
A brilliant way to make this much more fun and to get the party started would be to have some friends launching some confetti on stage.

There are several types you can get, so here are some options.

20 cm Confetti Shooter

Silver 40 cm Party Popper

Gold 40cm Party Popper (like the one in the image below)

Immediately, people would jump in with you and these moments turn out to be some of the most beautiful and fun wedding photos during the reception! Definitely worth doing as it’s really affordable, too!

confetti cannons for wedding entertainment ideas on the dance floor

Silent Disco

We are yet to experience a silent disco wedding reception, but we’ve seen loads of couples having one for their wedding day and it looked like so much fun!

wedding guests dancing with headphones on, during a silent disco at a wedding party

Dance-off competition

Who wouldn’t find a dance-off competition fun to watch??
If you’re hiring a live band for your wedding in the evening, ask them to organize a dance-off competition between guys/ girls or between groomsmen/ bridesmaids, and so on. We’ve seen this at a wedding and let me tell you, everyone rocked some crazy moves on the dance floor!
We were even asked to judge who the winner was! It was hilarious and got everyone started! Best off – this idea doesn’t cost you a penny!

dance-off competition for wedding reception ideas

Beer pong

You may have heard about beer pong before, but have you ever seen it at a wedding? I’ll tell you, it is SO much fun! It brings complete strangers together and everyone has a good laugh! If your wedding venue happens to have a ping-pong table at hand, don’t miss this chance! One of my favorite entertainment ideas!

beer pong wedding reception ideas

 

Bonfire

Organizing a bonfire in the evening doesn’t work for any type of wedding or location but if it does, it’s such a wonderful idea! Having people around the fire is just the right way to end a very exciting day! There’s something truly magical about fire so I don’t need to convince you it’s a good idea.

bonfire wedding reception ideas for outdoor weddings or events

Fireworks

Who doesn’t love some fireworks? Again, depending on the location of your wedding and even of the season, having fireworks is a fun way to get everyone together staring at the sky. It gets lots of fun reactions and some pretty photos, too. It is a bit pricey, of course, but if this is high on your list, then do it! It’s only once you get to do whatever you want.

fireworks for wedding reception ideas for marquee wedding or outdoor event

If you’re planning to have a wedding cocktail before the actual reception, we can help you with that, as well. Here’s a collection of our favorite wedding cocktail hour games for you to keep everyone busy and cheerful.

We always share so many wedding planning tips to help you organize your day the best possible way so do make sure you check our blog!

 

Here are some of the most popular articles we wrote on wedding planning: 

The ultimate list of things to get for your wedding

20 Wedding planning tips to better organize your wedding

Wedding emergency kit list

Children wedding favors ideas

Best sparklers to buy for the wedding Exit- exact kit

What to put in a wedding bathroom basket

Complete wedding timeline for UK weddings

Etsy bridesmaids gift ideas

Etsy groomsmen gift ideas

 

This article contains a few affiliate links meaning, at NO additional cost to you, I can earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase of any of the products. We would only recommend things we trust and have seen work at other events.


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