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5 Ways to Liven Up Your Cocktail Hour

Updated: Mar 23, 2023

The time between your ceremony and reception is one of the most pivotal points of your wedding day and you aren’t even there to see it. Your cocktail hour is more than a transition of activities with finger food and small talk, it gives your guests a sneak peek of the rest of the night. That’s why it should be packed with just as much personality as your ceremony and reception. Here’s a list of five ways to give your guests a memorable cocktail hour experience that will leave them excitedly asking, “What’s next?”

1. Say Cheese. 

Before the dancing commences and the emotional speeches send tears streaming down faces, have a fun photo booth so guests can take pictures while they’re still looking their best. If you don’t want to rent an actual booth, just make your own! Use a custom background, supply props and costumes, set up a photo stand-in or provide some Polaroid cameras so guests can take home pictures as souvenirs!

2. Make It a Game Night. 

If your cocktail hour is outdoors, set up lawn games like ladder golf, corn hole, volleyball or mini golf for guests to play. This is also a great way to occupy any children. For indoor cocktail hours or less-physical games, provide classic icebreakers like Uno, Jenga, Wedding Bingo or fun trivia so people can eat, drink, talk, and enjoy a little friendly competition.

3. Set the Stage. 

Surprise your guests with live musicians to set the mood, dancers to get people moving or caricature artists to give your guests something fun to take home. The more unique your wedding, the more memorable!

4. Mix Up Creative Cocktails. 

Signature drinks are a great way to add some personality to the bar. Name the drink of choice after yourself and your new spouse or something that captures you two perfectly. Personalized glasses, drink tags, and straws are another way to add some fun to your drinks.

5. Say It With Signs. 

Get creative with signage! From the food and drink place cards to the “Cocktail Hour Here” memo, let your imagination run wild. Use unique options like carved wood, letter boards, calligraphy, chalk signs, and fluorescent lighting to keep your guests informed—and impressed.

Incorporate these five fun ideas and give your guests an unforgettable cocktail hour. Now all you need is the right setting for your special day. Contact the wedding experts at the Crest Hollow Country Club to find the perfect Long Island wedding, (cocktail) and reception venue for the perfect day.

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