Unless you have specifically noted, either verbally or on your invitations, "no children" under a certain age; it's probable that you will have at least a few young guests at your wedding reception. Unfortunately having young guests sometimes means having the issues associated with them (outbursts, taking over the dance floor, etc.) To prevent the possibility of problems plaguing your peaceful event, we suggest a few simple ideas to help make the event enjoyable for both you and the youngest guests on your list!
* Special Seating - we like to call this the VILP section; very important little people. If possible, keep child seating away from the main dinning room, but don't make them feel like outcasts or they won't want to sit there! Decorating with special table linens, centerpieces and even giving them special seating cards will entice them to stay at their own VIP tables. Special non-alcoholic drinks in fun, bright colors and cool party favors can't hurt either!
* Menu - for most young children, eating something new is not an easy task. Therefore, why force strange food on them at your event? Asking your caterer for a kids menu will save you from having hungry, cranky kids and will save you money. Most caterers will gladly offer you a kids menu selection, which is much cheaper than your general guest selections. Entrees range from hamburgers, chicken fingers, grilled cheese to hot dogs & fries. These selections keep kids happy and satisfied.
* Games & Activities - idle hands and minds can cause nothing but trouble, so keep them occupied! Why not include games and activities on the table for kids to use. Covering the table in white paper and giving them crayons is always a fun idea, but doodle books, mazes & word finds are also fun. Make sure your games don't have too many small parts; that's just asking for a mess! It's also great to have the games go with the event theme if you can. For example; if you theme is a beach wedding, why not give each young guest a beach pail with their name on it, filled with activities!
* Supervision - while it's great to give the kids enough activities to keep them busy, it's not a great idea to leave them on their own too long at your event. To ensure that everyone enjoys the reception to the fullest, hire an "non-guest" to supervise the children during the reception.
With their very own seating area, special menu, activities to keep them occupied and adult supervision, your young guests will be happy and your event trouble free! Knowing that the kids are enjoying themselves is going to allow your guests to have a lot of fun themselves - giving you an awesome reception!