If you have a time gap between your ceremony and reception, you most likely have one of two scenarios going on:
1) You're getting married at a church, and your time block choices are Noon, 2:00p, or 7:00p in the evening.
2) You've decided not to see each other before the ceremony, and need some time after the ceremony to take pictures (more on this in another post).
If Scenario #1 is yours, you're forced to work around church policy and therefore only have a few choices...especially when you wanted to have a more evening reception- but not late evening.
* Try to keep the time gap no longer than 2 hours. If you can choose the 2:00 time slot, do so because this would start your reception around 4:00p. Any longer than 2 hours and you're sure to lose a handful of guests.
* You must create a structured activity for your guests. Sure, letting your guests stroll around downtown for 2 hours sounds great, but in reality your guests will be uncomfortable and confused, especially if they are from out of town. Research local amenities and tours, such as the Boise Trolley, or plan for a pre-cocktail hour at a nearby restaurant.
* Even better: plan for your cocktail hour to begin at 3:00p, and plan for the wedding party to arrive at 4:00p. This gives you and family 2 hours for pictures, only stalls your guests for one hour and lessens the chances of a dwindling guest list.
If Scenario #2 is your plan:
* My first recommendation is to not allow a gap at all. As mentioned before- your guests are accustomed to attending the ceremony and then reception immediately after. Plan for a cocktail hour if you need to distract your guests while you take pictures.
* Take as many pictures as possible before the ceremony, ensuring only 1 hour is needed after the ceremony.
Making your guests wait any longer will create restlessness. Make sure there is plenty of food with their drinks so you don't arrive to a crowd of tipsy guests.
What other ideas did you implement to entertain your guests?