The activities you plan for your wedding reception depends on the theme (the general tone or ambience you desire), the venue (indoors or outdoors), the number of guests invited and your budget. But whether your reception is in a hotel or on a riverboat, on a farmhouse or in a disco, some essential elements have traditionally been a part of the ceremony for ages, and are sure-fire ways of ensuring that your guests have a good time.
First, make everyone feel at home and very welcome. Greet them with flowers and small gifts (inexpensive ones will do, itís the warmth of the gesture that matters). Ensure comfortable sitting places for aged guests, as well as for people to rest in. There should also be enough space to stroll around, play or dance in. See that there are good refreshing rooms and loos, sufficient water and clean towels.
The speeches by the father, the bridegroom and the Best man are traditional parts of wedding receptions. Donít make these long and cumbersome. After the father, the groom may say a few lines thanking loved ones, friends and other people who have helped make the reception a success. There should be plenty of good wine to toast the newlyweds and to make the guestsí eyes sparkle. Also pass around relishes and tangy finger food to add to the general warmth. The Best manís speech needs to be really humorous and enlivening. He can make it memorable by sharing funny, nostalgic or naughty anecdotes from the groomís childhood, so as to let the guests know the kind of person his friend or sibling really is, at a comfortably personal level.
Provide music in the background. If it is a truly romantic setting, you cannot go wrong with violins and saxophone, played live if possible. If it is a disco, let the music flare and add energy to the occasion, as well as encourage and cajole people on to the dance floor to have a really good time!
Be creative and think of fun games on the themes of love, togetherness or bonding in general. The games should draw out the most reticent members and let them enjoy! The activities should be in sync with the theme of your reception. For instance, crushing grapes together to create wine at a farmhouse setting, or guessing the identity of your partner and bonding with people at a masked ball or a fancy dress event!
The kind of food you provide should also fit in with the ambience. If it is a rooftop event, you could have a cozy barbeque. If it is an event in a ballroom, you could all sit together at a formal dinner and enjoy being served in the old fashioned way.
Whatever you do, plan well in advance to make your reception utterly unforgettable!