There are lots of reasons to include kids at your wedding. Children give a playful, excited mood to the proceedings and after all, kids are often a big part of a marriage. Just make sure you keep them entertained throughout the day or they might just run riot!
Entertainment for different ages
What entertains a child is vastly different from what entertains adults. You also need to consider that 12-year-old children are unlikely to find much in common with two-year-old toddlers.
You also want the parents to have a good time at your wedding. Let them have a bit of downtime where they can chat and catch up with old friends and family, without having a bored child tugging at their skirts or trouser legs.
If you’re having a long wedding day then you’re definitely going to have to have some back-up plans for your youngsters. Just so the little ones don’t end up tired and emotional in the evening, when party starts.
We think it’s best to split the day into various sections for children, so they don’t have time to get bored.
Entertain the little ones
Little children always like to have a job to do. So why don’t you get an usher to hand them cones of petals as they leave the ceremony. They can then shower the new bride and groom as they leave the venue.
At place settings, you can give goody bags for the kids as their favours. You can seat children at their own table, in their own age groups. If you can afford it, you can have a nanny at the table to supervise the fun.
The age of your guests will determine what goes into their goody bags. Young children will enjoy colouring books and Playdough, but be careful when choosing edible treats.
Big kid entertainment plans
For the over fives, a disposable camera will provide hours of activity. Create a photo scavenger hunt and at each place setting and provide a list of shots you’d like each child to capture. They could be things like the bride kissing the groom, somebody dancing, a particular tree in the garden, a certain flower. Make sure you give each child a prize for taking part, we wouldn’t want any arguments over who’s best.
Instead of giving children a formal sit-down dinner with three courses, maybe alter the menu slightly to give them food they want – pasta or maybe nibbly food on the table – carrot sticks, sandwiches, plates of chips, young children are great grazers.
If you’re getting married in the summer, have some outdoor games in place for the children so they can go and play while the speeches are going on. Believe us, they are not going to find these as interesting as you will. Giant Jenga is a favourite for all ages. You could have a supervised bouncy castle, which you could possibly put up indoors if your venue has a large enough room, just make sure you don’t have little kids on it as the same time as older ones.
Face painting also goes down a storm for younger children and is pretty easy to organise, and while a children’s entertainer isn’t particularly cheap, a room of entranced children watching a magician intently will give the parents some much-needed respite. If you’ve had young bridesmaids and pageboys, get the entertainer to make a bit of a fuss of them by getting them involved in helping with the magic tricks so they get to take centre stage for a while.
If you’re getting married in the countryside and there’s a paddock nearby, how about organising some pony rides for the little children? They’ll queue up happily for quite a while waiting their turn.
Time to chill out
Finally, it’s also worth having a chill-out room for kids if you have space. Make sure there are a couple of TVs in each room and put on a DVD. At some stage, kids who’ve been running around all day will enjoy some quiet time and teenagers can just hang out together and chat.
Think about the kids and their ages and ask the parents what they enjoy doing and pop on some entertainment for them. You’ll enjoy yourself more knowing they are having a good time and they’ll remember your wedding as being fun, fun, fun!