Photo: Haring Photography
Why have an ordinary grand entrance when you can have an extraordinary one? It is your big day, after all! Whether you’re working with an unlimited budget or you don’t have a ton of money to spare, there are so many ways to arrive at your reception in style that you might as well do something out of the box.
1. Organize a flash mob with your wedding party
What better way to surprise your guests than with a flash mob only your wedding party knows about? Regina Osgood, owner of Meant2Be Events, had a couple that decided to go this route and it was a huge hit. “The bridal party was allowed to enter just as they normally would, but they were in on what happened next,” she tells us. “Once the bride and groom were announced, the DJ changed the song, cuing the full ballroom of guests to come to the dance floor where the flash mob began. Everyone talked about it all night long!”
2. Go big or go home
For brides whose wedding budgets know no bounds, it doesn’t get any grander than showing up at the reception in a helicopter. Wedding and event planner Courtney Hammons of A Magical Affair has literally seen it all. “We recently had a couple that did a kabuki drop for their grand entrance,” she says. But her personal favorite? The couple that arrived via ski boat to their reception.
3. Use a “built in” grand entrance
“Many catering halls have dramatic entrances built in, such as coming up through the floor in a glass elevator or doing a stage curtain entrance,” point out Lynn Jawitz, owner of Florisan Wedding and Event Design in NYC.
4. Try a rose petal, confetti or balloon drop
All of these things can be done either expensively or inexpensively depending on your approach, notes founder & CEO of Vow To Be Chic, Kelsey Doorey. For example, you can buy a few thousand rose petals online for cheap (less than a hundred dollars) to create a beautiful and fun entrance, she says. “If you want a big bang while saving your bucks, you could run through a paper banner with your new spouse, like the finish line of a race. Decorate the banner with your married name or paint it to match your wedding colors.”
5. Put on a show
Impress your guests with some talents of your own! “Breakdance your way onto the dance floor, sing for the crowd or find yourself a great costume or mask to wear,” recommends Florida-based wedding planner Aviva Samuels of Kiss The Planner. Snow machines, fog machines and confetti cannons will also liven things up a bit.
6. Play with the lights
Key Largo wedding planner Lynn D’Ascanio of D’Asigner Events once worked with a specialty lighting company that projected fireworks and 3D flying dragons onto the ceiling of a tented event for a Chinese wedding as the couple walked in. If your theme lends itself to something cool like this, we say go for it!
7. Get some sparklers
“If your entrance is outside and after dark, super long wedding sparklers can make a really spectacular picture as you dance your way through them to the real dance floor to do your first dance,” says seasoned wedding planner Sandy Malone of Weddings in Vieques.
8. Do a silhouette entrance
According to Stefany Allongo, founder and chief consultant of The Majestic Vision, something different and fun is using a projection screen to create your silhouette for your guests to see. “You can start your first dance behind the screen and then proceed to the dance floor. It makes for a gorgeous photo.” Plus, it’s a total crowd pleaser too!