Keeping your guests entertained has never been so much fun
More and more these days you see couples that are getting married wanting to do it their way, to keep hold of the traditions that mean something to them but not worrying about letting them go if it's not important to them
Alongside this there are more and more DIY wedding elements and I think hand in glove with this you get people wanting to find some entertainment for the drinks reception (or later on) that is a bit different, perhaps something their friends and family won't have seen before
As a wedding photographer I get to see so many wonderful things so I thought I'd share some of the more unusual ideas I've seen for fun & games, to perhaps inspire you!!
So, in no particular order, here we go
1. Wedding Tug of War
What better way to add to the spirit of bonhomie at your wedding than split everyone up into two teams for a good old fashioned tug of war contest?!
This wedding was at the fabulous Fleece Inn, in Bretforton, right on the edge of the Cotswolds. It dates back to the 15th Century and is one of the few (only?!) pubs that is owned by the National Trust.
The huge beer garden is scattered with apple trees (it is near Evesham!) and is perfect for garden games, or in this instance, a traditional test of strength and determination
From somewhere the Groom had acquired a mightily long rope and the guests were split up into a work colleagues team and rugby club squad. Then, all was needed was for the Bride and utter those immortal words, 'take the strain' and away they went
There might have been a little bit of cheating going on involving wrapping the rope around a telegraph pole but hey, that just shows how determined they were to win doesn't it?!
2. Decorate the 'Gingerbread Bride & Groom' Competition
When you get married in the winter, you have got to contend with shorter days and a lot less chance of spending much time outside, but does that mean you can't still have some party games for the guests? Hell no!!!
What better way to find out if any of your friends is a budding Mary Berry than to get them to create their very own miniature version of you....in gingerbread!! After the wedding breakfast everyone cracked open the tubes of icing and got to work, it was amazing how varied the results were
You can also read more about this wedding if you follow this link - A Winter Wedding at Fazeley Studios
3. Duck herding
Yep, you did read that properly, duck herding
You mean you didn't know that was 'a thing'?
Well, me too actually! But once discovered, never forgotten and it's such a brilliant idea.
There was a little obstacle course set up for them including a slide down into a paddling pool which the ducks seemed to love. In fact, to be fair, I think the ducks had a better idea about where they were going than the guests did!!
The wedding was in the Cambridgeshire Countryside at South Farm and the ducks just added to the rural chilled vibe.
Brilliant fun and highly recommended
(In case you were wondering, the ducks didn't mysteriously change colour half way through, they had some of the subs bench to give the first ones a rest - it's tiring being a duck)
4. Wedding Pinata
Now, you'd be forgiven for thinking that this is the preserve of children's parties, but you'd be wrong! It makes for great entertainment at a wedding party, seeing blindfolded guests swinging wildly, trying to whack the rainbow coloured, suspended paper donkey (that's a phrase I never thought I'd type in a blog!)
They didn't quite follow the internationally recognised rules for pinata of one whack each, everyone standing in a line, waiting to take a turn. This seemed to be more of an opportunity for some of the guests to release any pent up frustrations by repeatedly lashing out in the general direction of the paper mache creature, occasionally making contact
It was only a matter of time before the more determined swipers would finally do enough damage for the sweets inside to be released - I think the children at the wedding thought that Christmas had come early as they scrambled around on the floor to collect the spoils
All in all, lots and lots of fun
5. Space Hopper races
When you're in your wedding day finery, suit ironed, hair coiffed, new outfit being worn, what else are you going to do but have space hopper races?!?!
The Bride & Groom at this Hartlebury Castle wedding had hired loads of garden games like connect four, hook a duck and giant kerplunk (genius!) but the space hoppers actually belonged to the venue and suddenly appeared during the afternoon
Although there was an initial reluctance to give them a go, the Mother of the Bride soon whipped people in to shape and led the way, galloping across the grass on the orange inflatable bouncers
There were a few falls, a few guests that ended up flat on their back, laughing hysterically as their bouncing skills let them down somewhat. Meanwhile, I took my life in my hands by effectively becoming the finish line, sitting on the grass, capturing the hilarity as wave after wave of hoppers loomed into view
If you're looking for other ideas when it comes to planning your wedding you might want to check out one of these other blogs
5 tips for choosing your wedding photographer
Unplugged wedding or #thehappycouple?
Or keep your eyes peeled for another blog coming soon with more ideas for wedding entertainment