Who says you have to save the fun wedding entertainment for your reception? The cocktail hour at your wedding is a pivotal moment of your day, literally. The formalities of your ceremony have passed and your guests are getting ready to celebrate. It’s the transition time between your beautiful vows and your energetic party. To set the tone for a high vibe at your reception, serve up some fun wedding entertainment at your cocktail hour! We promise you don’t have to wait for your reception to pull out all the stops for an amazing experience!
1) Lawn Games
Spring & summer weddings are a great excuse to break out the lawn games at your cocktail hour! We love bocce ball, horseshoes, cornhole, and those oversized family game night classics like Jenga or Connect Four. If your wedding venue is indoor/outdoor, they might even already have some of these on hand! If they are not provided by the venue you can rent or buy them. Have your planner or day of coordinator set them up in a common area near your cocktail hour. But also close enough to your reception for the guests that want to enjoy them a bit longer. They are super quick & easy to set up and great to experience with a drink in hand!
2) Face Painting
For the kids, the kids at heart, and everyone in between! A face painter is a whimsical way to add wedding entertainment to the cocktail hour of your wedding. Depending on the size of your guest list, you may have to work with your vendor to create a “pre-approved” list of designs. It’s purely a time thing. After all, you don’t want anyone to get cut off from having a little fun with face paint, right? Or, if you’re keeping the face pointing open strictly to your smallest guests, you can provide your artist with a list of names. This will allow them to keep on top of make sure everyone is painted and in character for the evening. You’ll have a wedding reception full of little unicorns, butterflies, and superheroes running around the dance floor!
Having a magician perform for the guests at your wedding has become a sort of modern-day must-have! If you’ve experienced a magician at a wedding, you know it’s not your typical performance. The magician will walk through your cocktail hour and interact with your guests while performing up-close tricks. Once your guests meet through your Guestie event, having a magician at the cocktail hour of your wedding will be a great enhancement for amping up the vibe of the hour with laughter & amazement. They’ll all be enthralled at the up close acts of magic and chatting about how it was done right before their eyes!
4) Cigar Rolling
Hiring a cigar roller is a great afterparty go-to. But why not start your day with cigar rolling? That way all of your guests can get in on the fun! Here’s how it works! An expert cigar roller will set up a small station at your cocktail hour & roll cigars, in real time for your guests. Your guests will be able to ask all the questions while requesting a cigar out of the assortment of choices provided by your cigar roller. It’s a fun interactive experience. All of your guests will enjoy looking on in amazement, even if cigars aren’t really their thing! The only caveat with hiring a cigar roller for the cocktail hour at your wedding is to double-check with your wedding venue about any restrictions on smoking. That way you can properly communicate to your guests where they can light up.
5) Live Painter
Ok, maybe your day is not as whimsical as having a face painter at your cocktail hour but you still love the idea of creative wedding entertainment. A live painter during your cocktail hour will be fab! Your live painter will typically start during your ceremony, and continue on with their canvas during your cocktail hour. Your guests will be able to watch your live painter, in real-time, create a scene from your ceremony, using a photo of you & your partner for reference. It’s amazing to watch it come together from start to finish. And it makes a wonderful gathering place and point of conversation for your guests! As if you needed yet another reason to bring together those singles from your Guestie event. Wink wink nudge-nudge!! Bonus! Once the painting is complete, it will be displayed on an easel for the rest of the evening throughout your reception.
Having a tropical wedding? Or are you just in love with the idea of honoring Polynesian culture by having a firebreather at your wedding? No, your guests won’t catch fire. Your firebreather will ensure a safe distance between you and your guests. The act of firebreathing produces crazy big crowd-pleasing flames. In fact, the highest flame ever recorded was 26’ 5 at a show in Vegas! So the act of firebreathing is quite a site to behold and a fun way to delight your guests during your cocktail hour!
7) Bounce House
Have you ever seen a luxury bounce house for a wedding? They are ultra gorgeous, major fun, and a focal point that your guests will not stop talking about! Luxury bounce houses are typically white, ivory, or blush. They are three “walled” with a completely open front so you can see all the fun going on inside. And, they are decked out in gorgeous balloon arbors that match the color palette of your wedding.
And if you really want to be “extra” about the decor, you can totally put a lit marquee on the lawn off the side of the bounce house. Because, why not? Having a luxury bounce house as your wedding entertainment is a great way to bring unrelinquished joy to your guests. By the way, those guests that are on the fence about stepping into the bounce house won’t be able to resist once they hear the eruption of laughter coming from that direction!
8) 360 Photobooth
360 photobooths are brand new in the world of weddings and events and they are a fully immersive experience with all the fun vibes! Most couples wait until after dinner service at their reception to open up their photo booth to guests. Totally cool. And if you’ve already hired a photobooth vendor, you can still absolutely do that. But why not have a 360 booth at your cocktail hour too?
The fun part about a 360 photo booth is that its actually a video booth with a camera on a long metal arm. You and whoever else stand on a platform with your props to pose, dance, or get silly, and the camera rotates to take the image. 360 photobooths produce slow-mo videos, boomerangs, or regular videos but the end result is nothing like your “standard” photobooth. It comes out amazing and your guests will hardly be able to pry themselves away from “trying” it again!
9) Circus Performers
Look, clowns are scary for some folks, and we totally get that. But acrobats, jugglers, stilt walkers, and aerialists require zero killer clown attire to perform and interact with your guest during your cocktail hour! And if we’re being honest, the performance artists we just listed are really just the tip of the iceberg! There are all kinds of fun interactive performers who can serve up awe-inspiring wedding entertainment for your guests during cocktail hour. Extra bonus points from us if you decide to delight your guests with fun fair food bites to go along with your signature drinks! It doesn’t have to be a whole circus theme per se, but blending the theme of your entertainment with complimenting food and drinks is a great way to enhance the experience of your cocktail hour!
10) Palm Reading
Curious to know which of your guests will be next to walk down the aisle? A palm reader might just be able to clue you in! Palmistry uses 5 major lines on the palms of your hands to read your fate. Hiring a palm reader for the cocktail hour at your wedding can be a fun form of mingling & entertainment for your guests! If you decide to hire a palm reader to determine which of your guests is “next”, they’ll work in one of two ways.
The first is to have the palm reader set up a small table that your guests can approach to have their palm reader. The second is for the palm reader to integrate themselves into the cocktail hour & go from guest to guest offering to foretell their fate. If you decide to go with the latter option, be sure to clue your guests into the fact that you’ll have a palm reader in the crowd during your cocktail hour. We love doing this through the message board of your Guestie event. That way your guests will know you’ve hired a professional to give them insight into their future!
11) Lookalike Performers
Is there anyone better to serve drinks at your cocktail hour than Marilyn Monroe, Lady Gaga, Elvis, Audrey Hepburn, or Captain Jack Sparrow? Of course, it might be best to create a specific genre of celebs and stick to it, but you get the idea! Having lookalike performers walk around with trays of your signature drinks during cocktail hour is a fun way to fully immerse your guests in your wedding day experience! Bonus fun points if your lookalike performers sing or recite lines from movies they’ve “starred in”. If you have to ask yourself if it’s cheesy, you are not ready for the level of fun they’d bring to your cocktail hour!