What does that have to do with a great Chicago wedding? Think about a great date, hopefully with your fiancé. Remember the great energy of the conversation, the connection, the eye contact? You just couldn’t wait until the next date. Even when they called, your heart fluttered. Time just flew along.
Now remember one of your the bad dates, hopefully not with your fiancé. The awkward silences, boring topics, lack of eye contact etc…The check couldn’t come soon enough, right?!
Your Chicago wedding works the same way. There’s nothing worse than being at a Chicago wedding and sitting there saying to yourself, “Shouldn’t there be something going on right now?” That’s a loss of momentum. These lulls will kill your Chicago wedding. Think back to that bad date which seemed to drag on forever…
All great Chicago Weddings, just like all great dates have a spark, a sense of energy, anticipation and enthusiasm.
10 simple ways to have great momentum for your Chicago wedding:
1. Be Organized – A well thought out and detailed schedule will give a good structure to each aspect of your wedding.
2. Strong Leadership – You need to have one person in charge of the evening, usually the Chicago Wedding bandleader or Chicago wedding planner. They will keep all your vendors on schedule and in the right place at the right time. This leadership will keep the energy of your Chicago Wedding moving along. The larger the crowd the more crucial this is.
3. School Days – How did our junior high school keep 2,000 hyper, over sugared 13-year olds under control for 6 hours a day? They didn’t leave us any kind of choices as to what we were going to do next. 9:00- Math, 10:00 Social Studies etc….
You need to do the same thing for your guests. Don’t give them a chance to make their own choices. If there’s nothing going on they may wander off to another room. Keep everything moving forward and on schedule just like Junior High School 7:00pm Cocktails, 8:00pm Ballroom doors open, which leads to bridal party introductions, which leads to then cake cutting, which leads to toasts etc… Everything leads to dancing.
4. Clear Announcements– Your Band Leader should first get everyone’s undivided attention. Once he has a quiet room, then he should clearly announce, “Ladies and Gentlemen, please direct your attention to the dance floor as it is now time for the First Dance”. “For our First Toast this evening, let’s have a warm welcome for the Father of the bride, James Hines” etc… Your guests will feel more energized and enthusiastic when they know what’s going on and they’re focused on the right thing.
5. Get your guests involved ASAP– One of the best ways to jump start your wedding is to have the full Chicago wedding band playing as your guests enter the ballroom. Read my blog about the advantages of the East Coast style weddings. They will become excited about dancing to a full live Chicago Wedding Band instead of having to endure 6 hours of a DJ. With this format you’ll go right into your formal dances and then invite everyone to dance one song. You’ve wet their appetite for an amazing evening of dancing!
6. Invite Fun Guests– We all have friends who are just naturally fun to be around. They light up a room. They love to dance with everybody and inspire those watching to join in on the fun.
7. Know your audience – Think about who’s coming to your Chicago wedding. What are their age groups? What is their nationality? Where are they from? If you can select songs based on these answers your guests will feel appreciated that you took the time to think of them. For example, If you’re family is Polish, play a polka or two. If you have guests that are from New York, wouldn’t they love to hear “New York”? Work with the bandleader to customize the music to your guests.
8. Positive attitude – You’ve done all your homework. Mailed all the invitations, hired all your vendors and selected the perfect venue. Now it’s time for your reward, an amazing night to celebrate with everyone you love. If everyone sees you’re having a great night they will feel it and want to celebrate with you. You will have plenty of time to socialize throughout the night, but be sure to get out and dance. Everybody wants to dance with the bride and see you both having the time of your life!
9. Keep the Focus – One of the biggest mistakes couples make is to have additional rooms, outdoor patios that your guests can drift off to. If your Chicago wedding is in June and you have a large patio next to your ballroom ½ of your guests will wonder off to smoke cigars and enjoy the beautiful weather. In the meantime you’re dance floor is sparce. You’ll be dancing with 10 of your friends wondering where all your guests went. Don’t have your sweets table in another room. It’s an instant Chicago wedding killer. Don’t do it! Keep the focus on your dance floor. There should be only 1 wedding going on, not 2 or 3 smaller ones throughout the venue.
10. Book Extra Time – If you are planning a large Chicago wedding, over 200 guests, you may want to book extra time in case things run behind. This way at the end of the night you won’t get stuck paying for overtime, which is a much higher rate for all your vendors.