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.

20+ Unique Entertainment Ideas for a Successful Charity Event

aerialist serving drinks at charity eventA successful charity event is an event with an edge; in addition to a large crowd of attendees, there is an element of gratefulness—gratefulness for the charity mission and for a fantastic event experience. The latter can be achieved with a unique atmosphere. The right combination of venue, cuisine, and entertainment draws quite the crowd and produces favorable results.

Once you’ve booked the right venue (use these tips), it’s time to browse through your entertainment options and create a positive atmosphere that aligns with your event goals. Choose unique entertainers that fit the bill; we’ve listed a few possibilities that inspire and entertain.

  1. Aerialists serving drinks
  2. Celebrity impersonator
  3. Caricature artist
  4. Dueling pianos
  5. Game show
  6. Carnivale characters
  7. Ice bar
  8. Performance artists
  9. Holiday carolers
  10. Jugglers
  11. Tarot and Psychic Entertainer
  12. Hypnotist
  13. Roaring 20’s entertainers
  14. Stiltwalkers
  15. Mariachi band
  16. showgirl at elegant gala
  17. Mariachi band
  18. Barbershoppe quartet
  19. Magician
  20. Orchestra
  21. Steel band
  22. Jazz performers
  23. Comedian

To help determine what unique entertainer is the right entertainment for your charity event, contact an entertainment agent to pair the right entertainer with your unique charity event atmosphere.

Hot Tips for a Successful Summer Event

uncle sam on unicycle, a unique entertainer for unique company picnic themeThough summer is the premier time of the year for summer events, we’re not going to mince words about summer: it gets HOT. Our Chicago summers can alternate between pleasant and sweltering. Though it seems like the only weather forecast you need to worry about for your event is rain and thunderstorms, that kind of thinking can’t be farther from the truth. The weather matters to your guests so it should matter to you.

It’s that kind of consideration—and a few other event planning tips—that makes a summer event a success that attendees want to come back to again and again.

Know your audience.

Hopefully, one of the first rules of event planning is at the forefront of the planning process: know your audience. Plan accordingly when choosing entertainment, setting a menu, scheduling activities, and laying out the event.

Cool them down.

If temperatures on the day of the event are closer to sweltering than pleasant, take every precaution to make the event a cool experience for everyone. Use misters and fans as needed at the event; if it is a family event, make the misters and fans a fun activity for the kids. For a more adult-oriented event, use live entertainers to cool down attendees and create a unique atmosphere.

Hydrate.

vintage entertainer serving foodA summer event shouldn’t turn into a series of medical emergencies; plan on providing an appropriate amount of hydration for attendees. To turn this necessary event task into a part of the event atmosphere, use live entertainers to pass out drinks or provide stylish (and tasty) drink stations throughout the event.

Surprise them.

An event surprise is a welcome addition to any event, such as surprise entertainment (or a surprise during the entertainment) or a scrumptious menu item. Don’t hesitate to amaze guests with a surprise appropriate for their demographic or ask the professionals for recommendations for a surprise that everyone’ll remember.

Have a contingency plan.

Summer weather can be beautiful; it can also be unpredictable. Make a plan B an essential part of event planning. Have a back-up venue in case of severe weather and a date that covers those ‘just in case’ scenarios.

Make it interactive.

Interaction is a memorable part of every event. Seize the opportunity, such as using entertainers to serve refreshments or assist attendees with interactive activities. Take every step to ensure an all-encompassing sensory experience that is enjoyable for everyone.

Keep it clean.

Event attendees should enjoy a wonderful summer breeze, not the odor from a trash can. Take efforts to ensure the event venue is kept clean throughout the event or make appropriate arrangements with the venue (use this checklist to choose the right venue for the event).

Fun, fun, fun!

A summer event should be an enjoyable experience for everyone. Don’t let attendees down; tackle the largest details (or contact the pros that can) and meet the small considerations. Your guests’ll appreciate the effort.

25+ Summer Festival Entertainment Ideas

LED EntertainersA summer Chicago festival is a much-anticipated event especially after a cold winter—or it should be, if you have the right draws that attract a crowd. From the moment your attendees are invited to the moment they leave, that anticipation should be the forefront of their thoughts as they look forward to the next treat or the next act. It’s all about creating the right atmosphere; and it can be, if you have the right combination of food, main stage and atmospheric entertainment.

At the center of every decision is the attendees; the demographic of guests should dictate the choice of venue, food, and entertainers (a professional entertainment agent can assist with the latter decisions). The right combination is the key; the perfect mixture of main stage and atmospheric entertainment can create an atmosphere that makes your guests enjoy this year’s festival—and ready for next year’s music festival.

children's entertainer

Kids

  1. Face painters
  2. Magicians
  3. Jugglers
  4. Comedians
  5. Children’s singers

 

Bands

  1. Jazz
  2. Dance
  3. Steel Drum
  4. Mariachi
  5. Reggae
  6. Country
  7. Motown
  8. Tribute Acts (i.e. Beatles, Frank Sinatra, etc.)
  9. Blues
  10. Latin

event entertainers Mardi Gras entertainers

Atmosphere

  1. Glow-in-the-dark entertainers
  2. Barbershoppe Quartet
  3. Aerialists
  4. Carnivale characters
  5. Stiltwalkers
  6. Showgirls
  7. Gangsters
  8. Roaring 20’s entertainers
  9. Tarot and Psychic entertainer
  10. Mimes
  11. Caricature artists

Planning a Company Picnic: A Checklist to a Successful Event

entertainers for company picnicA company picnic can be an afternoon with the family enjoying great food and entertainment. An evening out with your significant other that makes your efforts at work feel appreciated. An afternoon off of work celebrating a year of reaching vital milestones. Your company picnic can be any of the above if you check off the boxes on your company picnic planning checklist.

Goal

An event without a goal is an event without direction. Your company picnic goal dictates many decisions: activities, entertainment, favors, etc. For example, if team building is the event goal, choose entertainment and activities that align with the goal. Before you start choosing the venue or décor, or start planning the menu, choose a goal as a foundation for your company picnic planning.

Guest List

A guest list gives you more than a number; it also gives a general demographic that steers event choices. Frankly, it’s a list with a lot of clout in the process. The number and demographic of guests plays a large role in choosing the venue and entertainment, and setting the menu. For a company picnic planned for employees and their families, choose a family-friendly venue that can fit all the guests and schedule activities for adults and kids.

Budget

Event planning is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. Plan a budget that can get you to the finish line; allocate accordingly for large-budget items, such as the venue and food, and make sure there is enough included for big impact items, such as entertainment and favors.

Venue

If you have a choice of venue, use your goal and demographic to select a venue that draws a crowd. Choose a venue in a location that is convenient for your guests and fits the desired atmosphere of the company picnic. For a company picnic with a country fair theme, search for a venue with enough space for the right entertainers (contact us for quality, reliable themed entertainers for your picnic). If there are any specific event needs (i.e. handicap accessibility, staffing, A/V, kitchen), add those factors to the company picnic venue checklist.

Entertainment

vintage entertainer serving foodOnce you have all the major details confirmed (the who and where), now it’s time to book the main stage entertainment OR the entertainers that make the atmosphere. To find the right, reliable entertainers that fit with your company picnic atmosphere, contact a professional who can recommend and coordinate the right professionals perfect for an enjoyable event.

Food

The right menu can reinforce a company picnic atmosphere. In the case of a country fair theme, food stations with cotton candy, popcorn, and other treats can be a big hit with picnic guests. Add entertainers who can serve the right company picnic menu and you’ve got a dynamic event atmosphere that guests’ll remember well after the end of the company picnic.

20 Entertainers for the Perfect Company Anniversary Event

aerialist at company anniversary eventIn today’s competitive business environment, a company anniversary (25, 50, 100, etc.) is a milestone that should be applauded. Celebrated. Commemorated. Frankly, it’s a big deal that should be celebrated with a large corporate event or a small, intimate gathering.

Whatever the decision, a corporate anniversary event requires planning to coordinate an event that suits the target audience and builds employee morale. A half-hearted attempt is going to miss the mark (use these tips to plan a successful company anniversary event that employees want to attend). That same strategy applies to event entertainment (ask us for more information on choosing the right entertainers), which can serve as both a draw and a focus of the event.

  1. Aerialists
  2. Mariachi band
  3. Comedian
  4. Jazz band (or another entertainer from the time period when the company was born)
  5. Magicians
  6. Caricature artist
  7. Hypnotist
  8. Jugglers
  9. Dueling pianos
  10. Reggae band
  11. Steel drum band
  12. Barbershop quartet
  13. Orchestra
  14. Celebrity impersonators
  15. Gameshow (perfect for involving audience)
  16. Blues band
  17. Country band
  18. Carnivale entertainment
  19. Ice bar
  20. Latin dance band

To choose the right entertainer, contact an entertainment agent that can select the right entertainers that fits with other event details and makes an impact as profound as a successful company.

Company Picnic Activities & Entertainment: What fits your event?

uncle sam on unicycle, a unique entertainer for unique company picnic themeCompany picnics should be an event that employees look forward to, not a required event they feel they have to attend. A good program filled with company picnic activities and entertainment is just the ticket to draw a crowd—and make them want to come to the next company event.

Choose the right company picnic activities and entertainment

Instead of throwing darts at a random board and hoping for the best, a good company picnic program has activities and entertainment specifically chosen for the attendees. To do so, use a guest-centered focus at the start and throughout the company picnic planning process.

Set goals for the company picnic. Draft a plan for the picnic that accomplishes those goals (or consult the pros that can assist with expertise in company picnic planning) with an audience demographic (i.e. adults only, families, age range) the picnic is planned for. The plan should include a venue ideal for guests and event needs (more information for selecting a company picnic venue and company picnic venue ideas here), activities and entertainment targeted for the specific guest demographic, and a menu of dishes that fits with other details.

For a company picnic targeted at families with a country fair theme, contact the pros to connect with reliable entertainers. Consider company picnic activities and entertainment, such as jugglers, yard games, dunk tanks, and face painters. Set a menu of country fair favorites: popcorn, cotton candy, corn dogs, and all the mouth-watering flavors of a delicious day at the fair.

For a Chicago lakefront, adult-only gala, choose activities and entertainment suitable for a formal night out. Contact a local agent to choose the right formal venue and entertainers that creates an unforgettable evening.

Company Picnic Activities and Entertainment Ideas

The exact combination of company picnic activities and entertainment ideas right for a company picnic depends on the guest demographic, goals, venue, and event details. Contact a professional to select the right entertainment ideas from the list (though this list is not complete).

  • Races (i.e. potato sack, relay, etc.)
  • Yard games
  • Band (i.e. country, reggae, mariachi, etc.)
  • Magician
  • Bounce house
  • Comedian
  • Interactive food station (i.e. cookie decorating, tasting, etc.)
  • Sports game (i.e. softball, kickball, basketball, etc.)
  • Cotton candy servers
  • Jugglers
  • Dunk tank
  • Face painters
  • Stilt walkers
  • Tug of war
  • String quartet
  • Obstacle course
  • Trivia

Wedding Reception Surprises Your Guests Won’t Expect

aerialist at event hanging from ceilingWe often have couples come to us who want a truly unique wedding reception. They want a wedding reception with a completely unexpected surprise—something their guests never saw coming. While that surprise is different for every couple and wedding, we can give you ideas for a surprise your guests never saw coming (if you can keep it a secret!).

Celebrity Appearance

A surprise celebrity appearance (and performance!) is a shock that your guests won’t forget—and reinforces your wedding atmosphere. Choose a celebrity that’s a natural fit with the theme or era of your wedding and coordinate their entrance with your entertainment (or talk to an entertainment agent who can make the arrangements).

Fun food and drink servers

An ice bar, champagne server, or aerialist beverage server. Your guests expect wedding cuisine served with a beautiful presentation; they won’t expect dishes and drinks served in a completely unexpected manner.

Magic!

You want your wedding night to feel magical. Why not extend make the night magical for your guests? Hire a magician to keep your guests on their toes and add magic to the night. To tie the magician into other surprises, talk to an entertainment agent to coordinate the details. A good magician can customize their act so they can reinforce your magical wedding atmosphere.

First Dance Shocker

wedding entertainersA flash mob. A tango executed to perfection. A dance lesson your guests enjoy. A movie scene played out. Your first dance is an opportunity to impress and catch your guests off guard with an unforgettable surprise.

Art

The best moments of life should be captured; your guests expect that you hire videographers and photographers for the occasion. Surprise them by taking it up (or back) a notch. Hire a wedding artist that fits with the era of your vintage wedding or a caricature artist that can give you and your guests once-in-a-lifetime artwork.

Seasonal entertainers

Sometimes the best wedding surprise is just an unexpected addition to the entertainment line-up. Depending on the season of the wedding, holiday carolers or human statues can add to a seasonal wedding atmosphere. For a unique twist on wedding entertainment, treat your guests to dinner and a holiday show. A winter holiday show or murder mystery can make any reception a night to remember.

Fireworks

Even if fireworks didn’t inspire the romance, fireworks are a memorable experience that everyone can enjoy together. Before the fireworks are purchased, make sure you have venue permission and the necessary permits for your big show—and for a big bang of surprise.

Company Picnic Acts Perfect for Your “Main Stage”

 

Summer weather in Chicago can be a draw for a company picnic by itself. If you’re looking for more than warm sunshine and good summer vibes to increase numbers at your next picnic, consider using one of these company picnic acts.

Band

A band is always a big hit at a company picnic, but that doesn’t mean that choosing a band is a one-size-fits-all proposition. Contact an entertainment agent to select the right band that’ll draw a crowd, especially if you’re planning a themed company picnic. A band that plays classics from the era your company was formed can reinforce a vintage company picnic. A jazz band is the perfect addition to a Chicago jazz lounge. The right band and atmosphere can be the perfect combination for a memorable company picnic.

Comedian

A bad comedian is going to leave your guests wanting for better. A hilarious comedian is going to be the topic of conversation around the office water cooler for quite some time. To choose and hire the latter, contact an entertainment agent who can select a quality act that can adapt their act to your company picnic.

Hypnotist

Mesmerize your audience with a hypnotist that grabs your guests’ attention—and keeps it long after the picnic is over. Hiring a hypnotist is not a one-size-fits-all proposition; each hypnotist has their own flare, and the high-quality performers can modify their act to fit your audience.

Steel Drums

For a unique dinner music and fun stage entertainment, consider a steel drum act that makes your company picnic feel tropical (along with tropical drinks, décor, and venue). A steel drum band can be the finishing touch to a beach- or tropical-themed company picnic, making your guests feel like they are at an island getaway.

Orchestra

For a more formal affair, talk to an entertainment agent about hiring an orchestra that makes your company picnic feel like they are part of an elegant event. An entertainment agent can select the right orchestra with the right number of musicians and instruments to fit your venue and meet your guests’ expectations.

Mariachi band

A mariachi band gives a company picnic a distinct feel; coordinating your company picnic act with all the other details (i.e. menu, venue, décor, etc.) makes your event a one-of-a-kind experience guests appreciate.

Pianist

The best pianists are versatile entertainers that can meet the needs of a company picnic. Especially at an indoor picnic, a pianist can provide background music, dinner music, and mainstage entertainment. To take your piano entertainment to the next level, consider adding dueling pianos to your company picnic program.

Corporate Event Venue Checklist

aquarium event venue with tables, chairs, and centerpiecesAn event venue is the base of a fantastic event; it sets the tone for the event and makes a huge impression on your guests. That’s why we’ve put together a corporate event venue checklist that boils down the monumental task of choosing the right corporate event venue into a manageable task list.

Before you start checking off boxes, make sure you decide on a goal and target audience (break it down into demographic, interests) for your corporate event. Be specific with your purpose, as your goal is going to play into all of the decisions as you plan your event.

Location

__ Convenient for guests

__ Supports goal (i.e. in community where you want to make an impact)

__ Close to hotels for out-of-town guests

Logistics

__ Accessible from public transportation (if needed)

__ Drop-off area

__ Handicap accessible

Atmosphere

__ Venue formality

__ Facility ambience

__ Fits target audience demographic

Space

__ Sized for approximate guests list

__ Room for caterers (if needed)

__ Layout & spaces for event sessions (i.e. breakout sessions, meetings, etc.)

__ Outdoor space (if needed)

Amenities

__ Services needed for event (i.e. security, valet parking, coat check, set up and take down, etc.)

__ Parking accommodations (if needed)

__ Technology needs (i.e. screens, wi-fi, etc.)

__ Acoustics, staging & lighting (for event entertainment, if applicable)

__ Event equipment (i.e. tables, chairs, etc.)

Budget

__ Venue cost

__ Additional expenses (i.e. supply rentals, venue staffing, etc.)\

__ Minimums required/not required

Professional advice can be worth its weight in gold, especially when the success of your event is on the line.  If you are not familiar with a city, such as our national clients who host a corporate event in Chicago, contact a local event planner that knows the area and can make venue recommendations or plan your event for you.