If you’re having a destination wedding, lots of out-of-town guests or a long wedding weekend, consider these fun ideas to keep guests entertained all weekend long.
Activities are definitely not required (and not every wedding has them), but if you have a little room in your budget, it’s a generous and sweet gift to your nearest and dearest who may not know the location where you’re getting married too well.
Here, some ideas that could fit in nicely with your guest list and wedding theme, from the beginning of the weekend to the end.
“Meet and Greet” welcome party
Throwing a welcome party is a great way to kick off your wedding weekend, especially since your guests will feel like old friends by the time your wedding reception rolls around. It doesn’t have to be fancy at all—laid-back is the way to go.
If your wedding day will be spent at an upscale resort, you should consider hosting a welcome party with finger food and chilled cocktails made with local ingredients. Reserve a space along the beach or in a private garden and bring out colorful and cozy throws to make it feel like you really want your guests to get comfortable.
The welcome party is also a good place to hand out weekend itineraries (or tuck them into your welcome bags, if you choose to have them) and brief guests on anything they’ll need to know for the next few days. Everyone feels confident when they know what to expect.
Part of what makes a destination wedding so special is the location it’s in, which is why giving guests a true lay of the land is a great way to spend the day. Whether it’s a day cruise or bus tour, a wine tasting, cooking lessons or a bicycle tour of the island, treating your guests to a side of town that they usually wouldn’t see is a perfect way to create even more memories.
Welcome activities allow you and your guests the opportunity to meet each other before the wedding day itself. This ‘bonding’ is important to a fluid wedding reception where everyone feels relaxed in each other’s company. You will find that many of your guests will become friends with each other after such an intimate weekend.
Saying goodbye is never easy (especially after a wonderful wedding weekend!), but there are ways to make it better. Brunch is one option. If you go that route, keep it informal and let people drop in anytime between 11 a.m. and noon so they can sleep in and pack. You don’t want to start the brunch too late, especially if out-of-towners are going to be itching to get on the road. Newlyweds can take this chance to thank their guests and spend a bit more time with loved ones who’ve flown in from all over.
Happy wedding weekend!
Pre-wedding day cruise in Paxi island. Photo Ricky Baillie Photography