Chances are, you’ve already been warned your wedding will go by in a flash – and it’s true – the day you’ve most likely spent a year or more planning will be over before you know it. You’ll want to maximize those precious hours for dancing, so here are a few tips, based on our years of experience:
1. Consolidate your formalities towards the beginning of the reception. As soon as guests are seated, introduce the bridal party, do your first dance, announce all toasts & blessings before dinner (you can save cake cutting & parent dances until after dinner – see #5 for more).
2. Resist the temptation to offer any other distractions for your guests after dinner. We’ve seen couples provide cigar rolling stations, snack bars, outdoor lawn games, etc., all of which sound fun in theory, but could provide an unnecessary distraction. Bands & DJs love a “captive audience” – in our opinion, an open bar and continuous dance music once dinner has ended is enough to create an amazing party everyone will remember.
3. If at all possible, keep the bar in the same room as the dance floor. Kind of an extension of the last point, you don’t want to give your guests any excuse to “escape” the dance floor. It’s too easy for guests to get caught up in a conversation at a bar located in a different room, it’s very difficult to lure them back onto the dance floor if the music is too far out of earshot.
4. Parent dances make the best transition from dinner to dancing. Once your guests have finished dinner, the best trick to shift their focus from table conversation to the dance floor is to announce the parent dances. Then have the band or DJ invite all guests for one more slow dance and BOOM! – Instant dance party! If there is nothing to serve as the transition, it could be difficult getting everyone’s attention.
5. Nothing kills a dance floor like a group photo. If you want the photographer to take group shots of college friends, families, etc, make sure there are taken care of during cocktails or dinner, before the dancing begins. Once a DJ or band emcee has to make any sort of announcement or interruption, guests will stop dancing, and it may be difficult to get everyone back out on the floor again.
6. Dance yourself! No doubt, your attention will be in high demand throughout your entire wedding day. You’ll be pulled here & there for photos, conversations, and congratulations all night, and there will come a time where you’ll have to put your foot down, get out there on the floor and enjoy the party! Guests will most likely follow you to the dance floor – so get out there and move!