What makes an Event special? Here are 5 of the best types of entertainment ideas to make your event a memorable one. If your event has a theme, apply these ideas to make your guests experience that theme from the start of the event. Even if your event does not have a theme, you can use these ideas to make your guests sense that they are welcomed too. In this post, we’ll focus on what happens at the event venue. Once you have decided on the event experience, you may then extrapolate the ideas to areas beyond the event venue (for example, to social media).
Let’s take the event “experience” and break it down into 5 categories. These 5 categories correspond to the 5 senses: hearing, smell, taste, touch, and sight. There are some entertainment ideas in each category.
1. Sense of Hearing
It’s wonderful when guests can have a “sense” of the event before they are actually in the venue itself. This can be achieved by playing suitable music through the loudspeakers, or by having an emcee with a suitable voice make announcements from time to time. The guests will hear these as they approach the venue. These entertainment ideas can be put to work even before the guests arrive at the entrance.
For closed door events, the first thing that guests hear upon entering the venue can make an impression on them. Greeters or Performers with suitable voices can give the guests a sense of the event right from the start at the doorway. What they say to the guests can either entertain or inform them, or both. A well-written script will help the greeters to make people’s day.
Listen to the sound of racing cars in the video below. The video shows F1 racing cars zooming by during the F1 Singapore Grand Prix; the sound of the car engines is part of what makes the event exciting. Turn up the volume of your speakers:
2. Sense of Smell
If you are organising a culinary event, this one’s easy. Make sure the smell of cooking goes beyond the venue boundary! However, ensure that there is good ventilation at the venue. It won’t be pleasant when people’s sense of smell is overwhelmed by too much of a good thing.
For other types of events, it might be a good idea to use suitable scents. A delightful scent from a jar of potpourri at every dining table might work for some events. But this will be a challenge for outdoor events. Don’t site the event downwind of a potentially smelly source! For example, a seaside event is pleasant when the breeze carries the smell of the sea as the surf rolls in; it becomes unpleasant when the breeze carries the smell of rotting fish.
Some entertainment ideas for engaging your guests are scratch-and-sniff stickers and bracelets. These could presented as door gifts to guests as they arrive to the venue. Another idea is for a car or motorcycle exhibition – the smell of burning rubber, as stunt drivers and stunt riders perform stunts with their vehicles, adds to the excitement. Check out this article on how this museum used scents during exhibtions.
3. Sense of Sight
This is the category that most event organisers will focus on. The visual aspect of the event seems to be where much resources is spent, in order to get “the look” right. Where to begin? Firstly, it’s good to consider the theme, the context, and the tone of the event. Get professional advice when planning the decor, colour scheme, visual media, lighting, usage of space, and so on. It’s probably reasonable to suggest that the bigger the event budget, the better it is to take care of the smallest of details. To be prudent, focus the resources on where the guests will look most of the time. For example, a costume party will need much of the budget spent on costumes. Even if the stage doesn’t have a backdrop, much attention would still be on the costumes.
Some entertainment ideas to catch the attention of your guests are shows and performances by performers such as Jugglers, Dancers, and Acrobats. Other ways of catching attention are to use pyrotechnics and carefully designed lighting displays.
4. Sense of Touch
There is one thing that many guests will appreciate at any event venue – chairs to sit on. Plastic stools will probably work well for an outdoor carnival. Plush chairs are probably required for posh events. Yes, this category has to do with the physical materials that are used at the event. At some events, programme sheets might be distributed to guests. The type of paper used for those programme sheets will make a difference to guests at special events, as the guests will be holding the sheets as the event progresses.
At some events, the guests might not need or want to touch anything with their hands. And if they do have to touch something with their hands, would it be helpful to have a hand sanitiser that they can clean their hands with? The guests could possibly feel well taken care of, should bottles of hand sanitiser be provided.
The floor of the venue could be carpeted, so that the guests experience a different sensation to walking on a tiled floor.
Entertainment ideas are sensory games for children’s parties; and the mystery box at parties for teenagers or adults. At product launch events, the guests are usually invited to try out the new products on display; giving the guests a physical souvenir will help to enhance their experience.
5. Sense of Taste
This category involves food and drinks. Some events are all about the food and drinks. For example, culinary events or wine-tasting parties. At other events, the food and drinks are there merely fill the guests’ stomachs. No matter what the objective or theme of your event is, pay attention to hygiene and food safety. What you want is for everyone to have a good time at the event, and not fall ill from consuming the food or drinks served at the event.
Beyond this minimum consideration of food safety, is the consideration for what goes into the menu. Perhaps some guests might attend an event just because of the food that is offered. Generally speaking, people can more easily interact over food and drinks, so if that’s what your event seeks to achieve, it probably helps to provide “good food” and “free-flowing drinks”.
Check out this assortment of entertainment ideas for party games using the sense of taste.