Weddings Without Dancing: 25 Alternative Activities

May 22, 2022
Destination Wedding Photographer | Weddings Without Dancing | I Hate Wedding Dancing

No dancing at your wedding? No problem. You’re not alone if dancing isn’t your thing! This is your guide to weddings without dancing: 25 fun alternative activities

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Weddings WITHOUT Dancing: They certainly exist, and you are not the only ones who hate dancing.

There are many USA wedding traditions that seem standard at weddings: Wearing a white dress, having bridesmaids if you’re a bride and groomsmen if you’re a groom, having a cake and bouquet, and dancing the night away.

You’re not alone if you have problems with these traditions, and people break away from these norms all the time! Eloping is popular, brides wear non-white dresses all the time, mixed-gender wedding parties are more common, and donuts are popular as wedding cake alternatives. But there’s still one huge problem: What if you hate dancing, and want a wedding without dancing?

Dancing tends to take up 3 or more hours of time at any given wedding. While I’m a wedding photographer who loves capturing the energy, moves, and fun, I can’t dance. And I see many people who can’t or won’t dance. And why should they miss out on several hours’ worth of fun?!

Luckily, there are tons of alternative wedding receptions without dancing. Maybe you’re having an alcohol-free wedding celebration in your backyard. Maybe you’re unable to dance. Or maybe you own an “I hate dancing” t-shirt. Even if you are planning on having dancing at your wedding, these wedding dancing alternatives will make the celebration even more fun for everyone. From magicians to backyard games, here are 25 fun ways to have awesome wedding receptions without dancing.

Hire a magician to go around entertaining guests
Get a local poet to type out custom poems on a typewriter for your guests, based on their own lives or your wedding!
Utilize make-your-own food areas, such as make-your-own-sundaes, smores stations, taco stations, fondue fountains, and more
Rent huge backyard games like giant Jenga, adult-size Connect 4, foosball, corn hole, and more
Get a caricature artist (or 2, since they take a while!)
Rent some casino tables and a few dealers and watch the chips fly
Hire a cigar roller, pan maker, or wire sculpture artist
If your wedding date falls on the night of a big event (Oscars, sports game, Olympics, etc.), have a big watch party with bets on the winners!
Do a quiz to see how well everyone knows you—and have little prizes for the winners
Have a live wedding painter come and see the art develop in front of your eyes
Get a few Nerf guns, laser guns, or rubber swords and have a fun time sparring other guests
Play the shoe game
Karaoke, anyone?
Be like a kid again and have bumper cars, go-karts, archery, a bouncy house, or other field games for guests
Spar, jump rope, and hula hoop with glow-in-the-dark sticks
Bring in board games so that guests can learn some fun new small-group challenges—or rent out pinball machines or a carnival setup with prizes!
If you don’t want to rent a photobooth, drape sparkly fabric and set up a Polaroid station with bizarre costumes
Create a relaxation nook with hammocks, chairs, rugs, sofas, and more
Make a giant wheel game a la The Price is Right and have dares/prizes!
Urban bookworm? Instead of a standard cocktail hour, use the next-door local bookstore as a roaming space, and let each guest get a free book (you’ll open a book tab with the owner before the wedding)
Hire a cotton candy artist to make delicious AND cool-looking treats
Create a vintage phone audio guestbook. You’ll rent an old rotary phone that allows you to leave a recording right into the phone. Be prepared for funny and poignant words from friends and family
A family bonfire or pig roast is fun, unique, and quite the edible spectacle
Get your family to jam out. Have a small band of family/friends, gather around a crackling fire with blankets, print out some lyrics, and jam
With the help of a local animal rescue, have pets come in for petting and/or photos. Alpacas, kittens, puppies, goats…everyone will want a photo!

So there you have it: Ideas for an awesome celebration for those who want weddings without dancing (or simply other activities besides dancing. After all, there’s nothing in the world that everyone likes to do, so why should non-dancers be criticized?

Your reason for hating dancing doesn’t need to be explained. Personally, I enjoy watching guests dance and pride myself in capturing awesome dancing shots (especially at Indian weddings, where the dancing is off the wall!), but you will NEVER find me dancing unless I lost a bet. Maybe you don’t like to dance. Maybe you can’t. Maybe it’s the loud music. Maybe it’s just too expected and traditional. Whatever it is, you can not dance at your wedding and still have a blast.

No, you don’t have to dance at your wedding. And no, you don’t have to dance at anyone else’s wedding. Plan some fun wedding activities so that people of all ages can enjoy! I hope this list gives you some fodder for thought.

Have fun your way with unique wedding activities for everyone—and you’ll have created amazing memories while giving everyone an incredibly unique experience. You can skip that first dance and parent dances and play poker instead~

Kathryn Cooper Weddings: Fun Wedding Activities | Do I Have to Dance At My Wedding | Wedding Activities if You Can’t Dance

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I love this… Definitely bookmarking this for my wedding!!

i love these ideas! this would be literally so cool!

Love the art element and creating art pieces for you on your special day!

love the ideas. especially the pizza making seems perfect to me 🙂

Love these ideas– perfect advice for anybody who doesn’t feel aligned with the idea of a fancy dance party!

Oh my goodness, what a well thought out and comprehensive list for couples who want to do something a lil different from dancing during their wedding!

This is a really useful and well thought out collection of things to do if the couples aren’t dancers. Thought the backyard games and casino tables would be great!


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