Once the important bit is done and dusted guests and newlyweds alike are ready for a few drinks and some mingling. This is also a great time to sneak off with your wedding photographer for couples portraits. One question we get asked all the time is “How do I keep everyone entertained at the drinks reception?”. Luckily we have been to so many amazing weddings we know a few great entertainment ideas for the drinks reception.


Outdoor drinks receptions are the perfect place for lawn games. Croquet, giant chess, jenga – the possibilities are endless. Keep kids and big kids alike happy with a few simple games. Couples adore natural photos of their nearest and dearest having fun. A game is a great way to get everyone involved. If you are feeling daring why not go the extra mile and hire a bouncy castle!

Wedding games at Peckforton Castle


There is a musician for every wedding theme. Festival themes can get guests into party vibes with house classics on the saxophone. If the wedding is more formal then a harpist or string quartet can create ambience and elegance. Whatever the wedding style one thing is for sure, music lifts everyone’s mood.

Jennie Swandon

Food And Drink

Traditionally canapés are served during the drinks reception, but this doesn’t have to be the case. We have seen all manner of treats and nibbles to keep everyone well fed. Why not have a prosecco van or a cocktail station? Keep everyone fed with an ice cream van, a huge mezze platter, doughnut wall, or popcorn bar. Just make sure to be aware of everyone’s dietary requirements ahead of time.

manchester wedding photographer

Kids Activities

If you know a lot of children will be in attendance making sure to plan actives for them is important. Parents will want to kick back and have a drink without worrying about bored children misbehaving. A face painter or balloon modeller is a great way to include all guests, big and small.

wedding face painting


The world is really your oyster when it comes to wedding entertainment. We have seen some incredible dancers, flame throwers, magicians etc. Have a talk with your planner or coordinator and try and fit any performers in with your wedding style. Planning a carnival themed event, then a few performers could really create that atmosphere.

wedding magician

Our best advice when it comes to entertaining wedding guests is to make sure everyone is comfortable first and foremost. A drink and something to eat are the biggest priorities. Everything after that is extra. If you do choose to hire entertainment make sure you let your photographer know. A large wedding with dancers, singers and magicians will need a second photographer to ensure all moments are captured. Take a look at our directory of luxury Manchester wedding suppliers for inspiration.

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