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10 ways to make your party last

Worried about how to keep your all-day guests entertained in the lull between the wedding breakfast and the arrival of your evening guests?

Go live!

There’s nothing like live entertainment to create a buzzing atmosphere and make your guests feel truly involved in your day.

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Bring on the flowergirls

As your guests mill around chatting about the speeches and awaiting the evening entertainment, ask your flowergirls and/or pageboys to take your favours round in little baskets.

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Live entertainment creates a buzz

Surprise them!

Hire acrobats, fire eaters from Staar Productions or an Elvis impersonator to come on in the hour your evening guests arrive, turning the atmosphere from the chilled out post-wedding breakfast feel to party time. Acrobats and fire eaters each cost from £400 for two 45-minute sets. Or stand up and dance to a really funky first dance song such as ‘Brown Eyed Girl’ by Van Morrison.

Take a break

If you’ve not been able to plan your day without a break between the ceremony/breakfast and the evening do, let people know in advance.

Have playtime

Hire or buy oversized games from Sunshine Games, such as Giant Jenga or Connect Four so your guests can entertain themselves. Fours games cost £195 to hire. Or if your venue has croquet, crazy golf or quoits available in the grounds, make sure they make it available for your guests to have go.

Get interactive

Set up a video or photo booth that acts as a guest book – you can invite everyone to pile in and leave you a message on film. Videothequehire out booths from £900 a day, or go for photo-booth style stills with Booth Box (from £500 – £1500).

Create a James Bond or Casino theme

For your evening event and set up gaming tables where day guests and arriving evening guests can while the time to background music until the DJ comes on. Viva Vegas Entertainment will hire you a roulette table – complete with a croupier! – from £300.

Set up a cocktail bar

There’s nothing like a cocktail to welcome evening guests and to entertain day guests (and perk them up!) before the dancing gets underway. All the better if your venue has an experienced mixologist who can put on a bit of a show, and create non-alcoholic cocktails for children.

Guide your guests

Consider hiring a wedding planner and asking their staff to guide your guests from area to area as the day flows on.

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Steal some newlywed moment

If you can see that your guests are happy with their drinks, chatting among themselves and enjoying the entertainment, and there’s a half hour or more to go before the evening guests arrive, sneak off for a glass of champagne together and toast your first moments as Mr and Mrs!