If you’re anything like us, you love to be entertained. And through the years we’ve seen some pretty epic wedding entertainment ideas beyond the DJ or bandstand! If you want to level up on your wedding with some unexpected delights, you may want to consider the ideas below for a surefire way to enhance your guest experience.

coffee cart wedding reception
Photo by Peaches and Mint with planning by Lavender and Rose

modern wedding favors custom charcoal sketches
Photo by Michelle Beller with charcoal sketches from Karina Puentes Arts from this contemporary seaside wedding

live painter wedding reception
Photo by Cinzia Bruschini with planning by The Wedding Care

1 | Live Painter

It’s always a thrill to see a live painter at a wedding! Not only do guests love watching the artist at work, it’s amazing to receive that tangible commemoration of your wedding day with the exact scene + emotions captured on-site. But you can get creative with this too – this couple in particular hired an artist to create charcoal sketches of their guests as wedding favors, and my is it a cool result!

pink craft wedding cocktail
Photo by Mirelle Carmichael with cocktails from Sidecar Cocktail Co.

2 | Mixologist

It’s all about customization here. Not only can mixologists incorporate your personal wedding story + relationship into their craft cocktails, they can wow your guests with completely original concoctions, determined by their unique taste buds. Plus, the result is pretty photogenic too!

ombre lei wedding favor
Photo by Meg Smith Photography with planning from Alison Events

3 | DIY Station

Give your guests a chance to create something, whether it be cigars, lei, flower crowns… the works! They will love the excitement of channeling creativity, especially when it’s something they can wear or experience after the work is done.

unique live performer wedding entertainment with synchronized swimmers
Photo by Peaches and Mint with planning by Lavender and Rose

4 | Live Performers

The sky is the limit with live performers at your wedding. You could bring in synchronized swimmers, strolling champagne ball gowns, aerial silk dancers…. whatever sparks your fancy, it’s sure to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for your guests!

mini prosecco van wedding entertainment
Photo + van by Bubble Bros

5 | Specialty Food or Drink

We’ve all seen the hot chocolate bar or late night food truck, but one thing on the rise that we can’t get enough of is adorable little prosecco vans! Specialty carts like this are a great way to engage your guests and keep them on their toes – we’re also big fans of doughnut carts (for obvious reasons).

river boat wedding idea
Photo by Readyluck with planning by Margaret Cally Events

6 | Snazzy Transportation

If you’re near a body of water, maybe you want to surprise your guests with some scenic boat rides. Or maybe a vintage trolly is calling your name. Going back to cultural entertainment, you could even ride in on a traditional Sardinian coach complete with decorated oxen to raise some brows. Equal parts function + attraction.

ox pulled coach wedding entrance
Photo by Paul Morse with planning by Nowhere Else Events

7 | Cultural Nods

Depending on what your cultural backgrounds are, or even how you might want to incorporate traditions from your wedding destination, there are loads of entertainment ideas to be had! Perhaps you’d like to go all out with a 2nd Line for your New Orleans fete, or maybe you want to surprise your groom with a special hula performance at the reception. Point is, there are endless opportunities cultural manifestation in your wedding.

wild horse with bride and groom
Photo by Kristian Irey via Green Wedding Shoes

8 | Surprise Guests

Now, these surprise guests don’t even need a specialty skill. Their wow factor is all in their genetic makeup! Couples today are going full speed ahead with llamas, alpacas, horses sheep and even exotic birds and truth be told, these furry wedding guests are a fun addition every time.

outdoor chateau wedding reception with carousel
Photo by Dominique Bader Photography

Getting some ideas rolling? We are in serious awe of how couples have gotten creative with their wedding entertainment in the past few years and can’t wait to see how you make these ideas your own. Whatever you choose, let it tell your story and focus on the memories you want to make.

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