10 Live Tradeshow Entertainment Ideas that Attract Visitors

The next unique and exciting trade show idea is just a brainstorm away; we’ve taken some of the guesswork away with this list of live trade show entertainers that draw visitors into any trade show booth. These ideas can be a one-of-a-kind standalone draw—or they can complement a modern trade show booth with all the technological upgrades.

The ability to customize acts is one of the key benefits of using live entertainment to attract visitors to a trade show booth. Contact an entertainment agent to choose the right entertainers that can personalize their act and attire to fit the trade show booth theme. 

juggler at mccormick place in chicago il

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jugglers

Performance Art

pictures from digital caricature artist

 

 

 

 

 

 

Caricature Artists

show girl entertainer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Show Girls

acoustic artists

 

 

 

 

 

Acoustic Entertainers

Bands

vintage entertainer serving food

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Refreshment Servers

barbershop quartet

 

 

 

 

 

Barbershop Quartet

stilt walker for outdoor wedding

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stilt walker

game show for corporate events

 

 

 

 

 

Game Show

20 Corporate Children’s Christmas Party Ideas

child with balloon sculpture that makes him look like santa clausDon’t leave your youngest guests off your list of holiday party entertainment. Use these corporate holiday party ideas that keep the kids at your holiday event holly and jolly—and their parents reveling in the holiday spirit. (Contact an entertainment agent to select the very best children’s party entertainment that fits with the event holiday theme.)

These corporate children’s holiday party ideas can be located in a special children’s area or through the holiday party venue for an interactive family event. Whatever the plan, these corporate children’s Christmas party ideas can make your event the merriest yet.

grinch character for holiday parties
1. Grinch
2. Father Christmas
3. Elves
4. Carolers
5. Magician

  • Father Christmas entertainer for office holiday parties6. Cookie Decorating
    7. Face Painters
    8. Balloon Entertainers
    9. Toy Soldier
    10. Ebenezer Scrooge
    11. Gingerbread Man
  • holiday gingerbread man for corporate christmas parties
    12. Make an Ornament Activity Table
    13. Juggler
    14. Holiday Treat-Making Station
    15. Holiday Bingo
    16. Children’s Band
  • child with holiday facepaint for corporate christmas holiday party
  • 17. Make a Snowman Station
    18. Holiday Coloring Area
    19. Mariachi Band
    20. Holiday Bowling Area

8 Unique Chicago Corporate Holiday Party Venue Ideas

aquarium event venue with tables, chairs, and centerpiecesThe foundation of planning a corporate holiday party is the right venue. While some businesses in the Windy City choose to hold their festive company gathering at company headquarters, others opt for a more creative off-site venue with all the holiday spirit and amenities there is to offer. For the latter, we’ve compiled a list of creative holiday party venue ideas to use—-as well as holiday entertainment options that boost company holiday party attendance.

Theater

One of our unique Chicago theaters can be quite the draw for corporate holiday party guests, offering unforgettable entertainment and the perfect setting for a themed holiday party gathering. As an added benefit, depending on the theater, this option gives companies the flexibility of holding an afternoon show away from the office or a formal evening affair. If the theater doesn’t offer entertainment during the holiday season, contact a local entertainment company about their options for a memorable holiday show.

Sports Venue

A sports stadium can be the perfect host for a one-of-a-kind event, such as a venue near Wrigley Field. For a more sophisticated atmosphere, choose a venue packed with interesting sports history, charm, and amenities. These venues can be pubs or a site filled with sports displays, such as the Chicago Sports Museum. To attract a more active crowd, opt for a venue with numerous gyms and spaces for activities that can keep guests moving and entertained.

Museum

A museum can give your corporate holiday party guests something to look forward to—and Chicago has so many wonderful museums to choose from. There are obvious choices, such as The Museum of Science and Industry of the Museum of Contemporary Art, or other wonderful museums throughout the Windy City that are suitable for an adult guest list. These holiday events can be themed to fit the venue and can be paired with appropriate cuisine and entertainment (contact us to help locate the right combination of venue and entertainers). For a family holiday event, pair one of Chicago’s children museums with holiday characters (i.e. Father Christmas, Toy Soldiers, Elves, etc.) to create a draw that employees and their families flock to.

Room with a View

The Windy City has some breath-taking views that capture the attention and leave guests talking even after the corporate holiday party is over. There are a number of options in Chicago, such as the Metropolitan in the iconic Willis Tower or the City View Loft. When guests are not enjoying the views, entertain them with one of Chicago’s favorite bands, orchestra, dueling pianos (playing holiday tunes), or a comedian that is as high-quality as the view (contact an entertainment agent to select the entertainer that fits the atmosphere and holiday party budget).

Historic Venue

Chicago is full of historic venues with unique details and one-of-a-kind stories. These venues can be the perfect site for a vintage holiday party. Depending on the venue, the event can be a jazz lounge from the Roaring 20’s or a classic diner party. Contact a local professional to select the right historic venue for the desired atmosphere and location for the target audience. Location should always be a factor when choosing a venue; this simple step can increase attendance and accessibility for guests.

Wine Cellar/Brewery

ice bar for charity eventsA wine cellar or brewery can be a fantastic site for a corporate holiday party venue, creating a unique backdrop and an opportunity for enjoying local tastes while networking. Add an ice bar to add a holiday flair while guests mingle and enjoy the local tastes of the Windy City. Contact an entertainment agent to locate the right wine cellar or brewery for the specific gathering, then follow up to combine a unique venue with exceptional entertainment that takes the event to another level. There may be some legal risk associated with holding a corporate holiday party at a venue associated with alcohol; contact legal counsel and an insurance provider to ensure that all bases are covered.

Bowling Lounge

A bowling lounge is the perfect foundation for an upscale and entertaining corporate holiday party. To find the right bowling venue for the desired atmosphere, contact a local and experienced Windy City entertainment agent. 

Aquarium

There is no other Chicago venue like the Shedd Aquarium. Holiday party guests are going to rave about the displays and breath-taking views of Lake Michigan. Guests can enjoy the sights and décor; to up the ante, add subtle holiday entertainers (like carolers!). For a corporate holiday party, there is not another holiday party venue like Shedd Aquarium—or a more memorable one.

Small Office Holiday Party Ideas that Make a Big Impact

small office holiday party with man and woman laughing in front of Christmas treeIt’s holiday office party season in Chicago, and not every holiday party has to have a huge guest list to make a big impact. Mix up your company holiday party this year and avoid the same boring pot luck event; instead use these holiday party ideas for small companies that can make a festive impression and create an atmosphere of (fun) office good will.

Comedian

If you want to make your office holiday party a jolly occasion, hire a comedian that can customize their act for your crowd. Don’t just settle for the office clown; select a high-quality comedian (or contact a professional that can connect you) that gives your office staff the “inside jokes” that float around the office until next year.

Game Show

Bring out the holiday and competitive spirit of your staff for a true holiday bonding experience. Add a game show to the office holiday party program for an experience your employees’ll talk about well after the holiday season.

Holiday Show

The holiday season is a hectic time for companies; it’s hard to find time for a company holiday party, but a break from the holidays can be just the ticket you and your employees need (together). Purchase tickets for a local show, or bring the holiday show to your workplace.

Father Christmas

If you need a larger-than-life character for passing out gifts, either to staff or for employees and their families (add elves for an unforgettable family holiday gathering), bring in nothing other than the fantastic Father Christmas. Choose your Father Christmas carefully; nothing but the highest-quality holiday characters can play the part.

Holiday Treat Fun

Holiday treats are a mainstay of the season, and can be a fun and interactive holiday party activity for a small office party. Decorate cookies together, swap recipe cards (for treats or healthy recipes), or bake a fruit cake perfect for a competition (or as a fun fruit cake launching competition).

Piano Duelers

For the perfect main stage holiday show, hire piano duelers that can add to the festive atmosphere. Treat your employees and their guests to this enjoyable holiday party entertainment—with all the fantastic elements of a holiday outing (such as a delicious meal!).

Tasting

An interactive holiday party is more than a one-time event; it’s an anticipated and appreciated experience. Take your office mates out for a cheese or wine tasting (if you choose the latter, be conscientious of their transportation needs after) at their favorite restaurant or destination.

Carolers

Nothing can add a touch of the holiday spirit to an office holiday gathering like carolers. Don’t subject your co-workers to just any group of bad singers; sub-par singers may give everyone a laugh back at the office, but it doesn’t add the intended festive atmosphere you’re trying to achieve.

Jazz Lounge

An office holiday party with a creative theme is a memorable date that’ll make employees look back on their calendars fondly. No office holiday party theme is more Chicago than a jazz-themed holiday; go all out with a wonderful venue and fantastic jazz singer belting out wonderful holiday tunes.

7 Entertaining Corporate Holiday Party Themes

employees at holiday party enjoying corporate holiday party themeEvery company holiday party is different, but there is a commonality among the successful holiday office gathering and corporate holiday event: direction. A corporate holiday party theme provides just that, guiding the decisions for almost every corporate holiday party detail. We’ve listed several corporate holiday party themes, along with the holiday party ideas that make these company holiday gatherings festive—and the entertainers that make them memorable (and a frequent topic of conversation around the water cooler!).

Ye Old Christmas

A classic holiday party should embody all the tastes, scents, and décor of a traditional holiday. Think gingerbread, cranberries, ice skates, and all those cozy and old-time holiday associations. The exact décor and entertainers depend on the audience demographic and desired event atmosphere (contact an entertainment pro to choose the right entertainer for the holiday event).

Entertainers: Home for the Holidays show, Carolers, Toy Soldiers, Father Christmas

Tropical Christmas

A tropical holiday theme warms guests up in spite of the cold Midwestern winter. In addition to a warm and welcoming venue, tropical theme details should make the holiday party feel like a day in a tropical paradise. To that end, tropical beverages, cuisine, and décor are a vital part of establishing a holiday party paradise. Contact an entertainment pro that can select the right high-quality corporate holiday party entertainment to complete the formula.

Entertainers: Steel drum band, Mariachi band, Reggae band

Winter Wonderland

With a Winter Wonderland theme, bring the beauty of an ice-cold winter day indoors (without subjecting guests to the freezing Midwestern temperatures). This beautiful corporate holiday party theme can be brought to life with snow-colored décor (and even a hint of shine like the snow of a bright day, if that is your desired atmosphere), strategic lighting, and all the tastes that warm up a cold winter day. For a twist, a Winter Wonderland can be altered to a Blue Christmas holiday party theme with blue décor and beautiful lighting.

Entertainers: Carolers, Home for the Holidays show, Father Christmas, Atmospheric musicians, Bands

Holiday Movie

Themed parties centered around a favorite holiday movie are a holiday party guest favorite. Use the primary guest demographic to determine the right holiday movie for the event. From there, choose the right entertainment, food, and décor that makes the movie a holiday classic.

Entertainers: Grinch, Scrooge, Celebrity Impersonators, Home for the Holidays show

Santa’s Workshop

A Santa-themed event deserves a venue with all the details that guests picture at the North Pole—plus Kris Kringle himself. Pack the corporate holiday menu with festive treats and activities that guests flock to, including a visit by the Santa Claus. If gifts are a part of the corporate holiday program, make sure to have elves on hand that make the delivery a jolly holiday memory.

Entertainers: Father Christmas, Elves, Carolers, Toy Soldiers, Musicians

Holiday Ball

A holiday ball should be a grand corporate holiday event, complete with the multi-course dinner, décor, and atmosphere completely fitting of a formal reception. Picture an elegant venue with an over-the-top holiday atmosphere. Treat guests to a hearty holiday menu that is fitting of a sophisticated palate, a formal reception with lighting and stylish décor, and the entertainment that ties it all together.

Entertainers: Aerialists, Carolers, Atmospheric musicians, Bands

Around-the-World Holidays

This corporate holiday party theme celebrates the holidays with all the event details from holidays around the globe. From the moment guests walk in the door, create a holiday party atmosphere that transports guests to another place with international tastes, décor, and performers.

Entertainers: Steel drum band, Mariachi Band, Reggae Band, International Performers

10 Fun Family-Friendly Company Holiday Party Ideas

girl with holiday face painting on cheek at holiday partyNothing shows employee appreciation like a company holiday party planned specifically for staff and their families. Nothing captures their attention and instills the wonder of the holiday season like these family-friendly company holiday party ideas.

Elves

Holiday elves are a company holiday party favorite for every member of the family, especially to younger guests. Elves can also play an integral role in the execution of a company holiday party family program, such as by delivering gifts, assisting Father Christmas, or helping guests with another activity.

Father Christmas

Father Christmas entertainer for office holiday partiesAn employee plus family holiday party isn’t complete without a visit from one of the most infamous holiday characters of all time. Just the mention of Father Christmas or Santa Claus can also serve as a draw for employees and their family who flock to the chance for some time on Santa’s lap. Contact an entertainment agent to hire the best Santa that guests love.

Face Painters

Face painters are a sure-fire way to please a crowd; it’s also a fun holiday party favor for guests, who are going to be busy taking photos and heading out the door with beautiful face art. To leave employees and their families with a wonderful sentiment, hire a quality face painter who does quality work that everyone can be proud to wear.

Carolers

holiday party carolers in chicago ILIt’s hard to venture out during the holiday season without hearing carols; recreate that atmosphere at a company holiday party by adding carolers to the holiday party entertainment line-up. Carolers are also incredibly versatile, either as wonderful background music during meal times or as main stage entertainers that put your employees and their families in the holiday spirit.

Toy Soldiers

A life-size version of a popular holiday toy is integral to creating a sense of holiday wonder. A toy soldier or gingerbread man can do just that, creating a whimsical holiday atmosphere to a family holiday party.

Magicians

toy soldier at holiday eventThe magic of the season shines through with a quality magician. The best magicians can customize their act specifically to the occasion (and the season). Use a magician to entertain the whole family or to occupy younger guests while their parents mingle (or ask us for other ways to incorporate a magician into an employee family holiday party).

Jugglers

Jugglers are a source of fun any season—and a unique addition to any company holiday party entertainment line-up. These entertainers are a great way to ensure that kids at the party enjoy themselves—and their parents can appreciate the gesture.

Mariachi Band

child with balloon sculpture that makes him look like santa clausA mariachi band is the perfect fit for an employee family holiday party with an international theme. A quality mariachi band is a unique entertainment that employees (and their families) are going to talk about well after the holiday season is over.

Grinch

Bring the holiday season to life with a family holiday character that guests of all ages recognize and appreciate. Contact an entertainment agent who can make any well-known holiday tale a part of a memorable company holiday party.

Balloon Entertainer

Balloon entertainers are a one-of-a-kind holiday party entertainer, producing unique balloon sculptures that every guest—both young and old—can appreciate.

20+ Fall Festival Entertainment Ideas

child with spider face paintingFall festival entertainment should be described in a lot of ways: fun, exciting, never-ending—especially since the success of a fall festival is almost entirely dependent on the entertainers. A harvest festival should be an enjoyable experience for everyone in the family, from the youngest to the most experienced family member. That’s why we’ve put together a list of fall festival entertainment ideas that’s sure to please everyone in attendance.

As you plan a fall festival, keep in mind that harvest festival entertainment should be more than a half-effort. To ensure the success of the event—and makes them want to come back—all fall festival entertainers should be high-quality and reliable. To ensure both of the latter, contact an entertainment agent for the best live harvest festival entertainers perfect for a fall event.

  1. Face painting
  2. Apple bobbing (or grabbing with a utensil)
  3. Magic show
  4. Playground
  5. Corn maze
  6. Pumpkin painting
  7. Wagon rides
  8. Bounce house
  9. Bingo
  10. Story readers
  11. Haunted attraction
  12. Musicians
  13. Caricature artist
  14. Glow-in-the-dark artists
  15. Photo booth
  16. Hay bale maze (or obstacle course)
  17. Night movie
  18. Costume party
  19. Pumpkin bowling
  20. Bean bag toss
  21. Ring toss
  22. Sand (or corn) box

Fall Event Entertainment Ideas That’ll Leave Your Guests In Awe

child with face painting of pumpkin at fall eventBeautiful fall scenery. Changing leaves. Cool autumn weather. Caramel apples. Fall is a unique season full of seasonal associations and temperatures that practically scream autumn events. For those of us in the Midwest, it’s also the chance to celebrate the great weather before the snow falls.

That’s why we put together a list of fall event entertainment ideas that can take your event to a new level. Don’t forget to pair your fall event with marketing that reaches the event audience and boosts attendance.

Fall Festival

A fall festival is a family event that should include every taste and seasonal activity. For a harvest festival, find fun ways to incorporate items from the field into the festival schedule, such as pumpkin painting or an apple bobbing game. If you are trying to attract a large crowd, give your guests an upscale entertainment line-up that awes and impresses.

Entertainment Ideas: Face painting, Magicians, Jugglers, Pumpkin Painting, Corn Maze, Apple Bobbing, Wagon Rides, Bounce House, Bingo, Kid-friendly Musicians, Puppet Shows, Story Readers

Haunted House/Halloween Event

halloween event entertainer with pumpkin head and orange suitThe success of any Halloween event hinges upon the quality of entertainers; put simply, your guests aren’t going to be satisfied with anything but the best (translation: most scary) experience. Don’t settle for any less than high-quality Halloween entertainment; contact an entertainment agent to connect with high-quality and reliable Halloween entertainers. Remember, too, that for these kind of events, atmospheric entertainment can reinforce and enhance the desired atmosphere.

Entertainment Ideas: Murder Mystery, Bands, Fortune Tellers, Human Statues, Atmospheric Entertainers

Adult-Only Fall Fundraisers

A wine or beer tasting or a fall gala is a premier event that should live up to the title. Because there is so much on the line (such as the event bottom line), special care should be taken when choosing the fundraiser entertainment. Fundraiser guests expect the best; it’s your job to deliver gala entertainment they’ll fall in love with.

Entertainment Ideas: Orchestra (any size), Acoustic Entertainers, Band, Acrobatic Entertainers, Hypnotists, Magicians, Caricature Artists (fundraising idea), Glow-in-the-dark Entertainers

Family Fall Fundraisers

aerialist at event hanging from ceilingA family fundraising event is an opportunity to raise awareness and get the whole family involved in a good cause. Cater to all their interests, both for refreshment (i.e. caramel apples, apple cider, hot cocoa) and entertainment. As tempting as it might be, allocate funds in the event budget for professionals to deliver the most significant activities that families enjoy; a pleasant experience is a valuable part of any fundraising effort.

Entertainment Ideas: Band, Face painting, Magicians, Jugglers, Carnival Entertainers, Pumpkin Decorating, Wagon Rides, Bounce House, Dunk Tank, Family Walk/Run

7 Freaky (and Fun!) Halloween Wedding Entertainment Ideas

A Halloween wedding can be whatever you want it to be: fun, scary, or purely entertaining. Whatever your choice, your Halloween wedding décor is going to need plenty of back-up to give your big day the feel you’re trying to achieve.

Human Statues

Human statues are the perfect Halloween wedding entertainers; they reinforce the atmosphere—especially when strategically interwoven into the evening’s schedule. Contact an entertainment agent to get high-quality human statues and get the expertise that places these unusual entertainers into the best location and time. Human statues can be positioned outside the wedding venue, around the serving line, or in any other place that leaves your guests anticipating what’s coming next.

Murder Mystery Show

child with spider face paintingA murder mystery show is an unexpected main stage act that’ll grab and hold your guests’ attention. When the curtain has set on your Halloween wedding, your guests’ll talk about how much fun they had at the wedding reception long after the mystery is solved.

Face Painters

If you want to create an all-encompassing Halloween wedding atmosphere, include your guests in on the fun. Hire the highest-quality face painters to fulfill their requests and become part of the Halloween wedding festivities.

Atmosphere entertainers

Wedding guests love surprises. A hidden actor is the perfect Halloween surprise that’ll keep your guests looking over their shoulder for the next Halloween entertainer. For a less frightening surprise, add atmospheric entertainers to the line-up and have them mingle with guests. Make sure you mention the surprise to your wedding photographer so they can capture the moment—and your guests’ interesting expressions.

Interactive Food Stations

halloween entertainer head on the table ready to scare guestsMake your Halloween wedding feel like the best night of trick-or-treat ever. Add interactive food stations, such as a candy apple table, to the wedding reception. Your guests’ll appreciate the Halloween munchies and all the fun that comes with the interactive food stations.

Fortune Tellers

With the right lighting, décor, and high-quality acting, a fortune teller can complete the spooky Halloween atmosphere and become a real conversation starter. Your guests’ll enjoy heading back to the fortune teller to get looks into the future that are more entertaining than any fortune cookie.

Halloween Band

Anyone can find and hire a wedding reception band. However, when every effort has been made to establish an all-encompassing Halloween atmosphere, a regular wedding band just won’t do. Contact an entertainment agent who can find one of the best bands that can deliver an over-the-top Halloween performance that coordinates with every other detail of your Halloween wedding.

10 Outdoor Wedding Entertainment Ideas that Shine

tables at summer wedding decorated and ready for guestsAn outdoor wedding is a chance to capitalize on our warm summer temperatures, but also the chance to create a whimsical affair, an English garden, a country fair, a carnival that entertains for hours and hours. The possibilities are endless.

There are dozens of ways to turn an outdoor wedding into the wedding day of your dreams. Every detail plays into the wedding atmosphere: the venue, wedding menu, décor, and the outdoor wedding entertainment that pulls it all together.

Jugglers

Jugglers are an unexpected surprise—and a versatile one. Jugglers can adapt to any outdoor wedding atmosphere, providing a fun addition to a country fair or a whimsical touch to a garden wedding. For a circus-themed wedding, look for a juggler with a main stage comedy act that keeps your guests (of all ages) in stitches before or after the meal.

fairies at outdoor wedding

Garden Fairies

For a touch of whimsy, add garden fairies to your outdoor wedding entertainment line-up. Professional garden fairies can make your guests feel like they are in the midst of a fairy-tale wedding.

Magician

A magical outdoor wedding wouldn’t be the same without a magician to liven up the wedding reception. The right magician can be an atmospheric detail, mingling in with the guests and doing tricks with a custom flair, or a main stage entertainer that brings magic to every moment (or as a child’s entertainer in a special kid zone). For a personalized addition to the wedding reception, hire a professional who can take details about the newlyweds and turn them into a custom act that guests’ll talk long after the wedding.

vintage entertainer serving food

Food Servers

The right food presentation can significantly add to wedding atmosphere, especially when your favorite wedding foods are served by a professional entertainer specifically attired to the theme. Be creative; contact an entertainment agent who can select the right entertainers that fit with the theme.

Face Painters

Guests expect face painters at a country fair, so why not include them in your fair-themed wedding? Face painters are a draw for guests, both young and old. Professional face painters can even customize their designs to the occasion, such as fairy designs for a whimsical garden wedding or animal faces for a circus theme.

stilt walker for outdoor wedding

Stilt walkers

These entertainers tower over a crowd, making guests feel like they are part of an event that is larger than life. Stilt walkers are an awesome addition to a circus-themed wedding, a whimsical or unique event, or a country fair.

Wedding Painter

A wedding painter captures the moment like no one else, as well as your guests’ attention. Hire an entertainer that creates a memento that you can cherish for years to come and use to relive the beauty of your outdoor wedding again and again.

Psychic/Tarot Entertainer

To take outdoor wedding entertainment to the next level, hire a psychic and tarot entertainer who can tell guests’ fortunes and predict their futures. This can be a real conversation starter, giving guests the chance to discuss the news delivered in a more fantastic way than any fortune cookie.

dance group at adult-only company picnic

Dancers

Hiring dancers for an outdoor wedding can check off many boxes; dancers can create the flash mob that serves as an unforgettable surprise, can play a key part in including your ethnicity in your big day, or can reinforce an atmosphere centered around Mardi Gras or another fantastic festival. When choosing the right dancers, don’t settle for amateurs; contact an entertainment agent to hire high-quality entertainers that can perform authentic dances in the right attire.

Humane statues

Human statues are a unique way to welcome your guests. These entertainers are a memorable way to give your guests a taste of what’s to come. Human statues let your guests know that this is not just another outdoor wedding; your wedding is a distinct occasion to be reveled and enjoyed.