If you've ever been a wedding guest, you know there is going to be some downtime. It could be right before the ceremony, waiting on the caterer/DJ/photographer, or it could even be while someone is dealing with a crisis. Our featured Bride from Dec 15th had a family member faint right as she was getting ready to walk down the aisle! As a bride, you won't have time to make sure every individual guest is fully entertained, but if you plan ahead, you can make sure there are things available to satiate boredom throughout your evening. Here are some ideas that I have personally seen done and as a guest, have personally enjoyed!
1.) 2 by 4 Jenga! This one is as simple as a trip to the hardware store. Get a few chunks of wood the same length and arrange them as a Jenga tower either on the ground or a table. The humidity makes the lengths of wood warp, which adds to the challenge for your guests. You can leave them raw wood, or paint them with your wedding colors!
2.) Cornhole! A favorite lawn party game, you can purchase pre made corn hole boards or get crafty with it at DIY. There are plenty of tutorials on Pinterest!
3.) Bride and Groom Trivia! This can be one of several "paper games" that you either have preprinted at every table, or available in a stand by the bar for guests to take if they chose. Have a set of pre-printed trivia questions with or without answer key. Include questions like "Who Said 'I Love You' First" and other fun ideas. You could also do a wedding Mad Libs for guests to turn in and either read aloud during the reception, or later at home after the wedding for your own amusement.
4.) Create priceless gifts! Some examples I have seen are have people write their "key to a successful marriage" on a key and dropping it into a display case for the couple. There once was a couple with a mountain home who loved Adirondack style chairs so they made a mini one and had everyone sign it and write words of encouragement or advice. My favorite was a couple who loved to travel, so they had a large world map on one of the tables and the instructions were to sign an area of the map. Once everyone had signed, they would take it upon themselves to travel to every location on that map within the first 5 years of marriage. An extremely personal way to make your guests feel included in your future, and give you a wonderful momento of your big day!
These are just a few ideas, there are thousands more a quick Google search away! As always, your wedding planner is the best resource for knowing what you can and cannot do at your chosen venue. They will also ensure that everything arrives at the correct location at the correct time, and direct your guests to these fun activities during the appropriate times. Let me know what you did to entertain your guests!