It’s increasingly true that a great wedding reception can be just about whatever kind of party you imagine it to be. These days, it’s common to see these events revolving around anything from traditional drinks and dancing, to photo booths and table props, to lawn games like cornhole and bocce. All that really matters is what the couple wants, and what makes for a good party for a given crowd.
New ideas can never hurt though, and one we’re beginning to hear about a little bit more frequently is building poker into a reception. The idea of a “poker night” is a common one for anything from a weeknight out with friends to a bachelor party in Las Vegas. And there are a few reasons why it can make perfect sense for a wedding reception as well!
Not Everyone Likes to Dance
Including a game or theme at a wedding doesn’t mean that there can’t be a dance floor as well. But the simple fact is not all guests want to dance. And in fact, a piece written at Medium a few years back about the decision not to dance makes a good point — essentially that a lot of people can be made uncomfortable by the pressure to dance at a wedding. Without exploring that idea too seriously, we’ll simply say that offering an alternative is actually quite thoughtful. And a poker table in its own corner is a nice way to do so without drawing too much attention away from the dance floor.
A Lot of People Do Like Poker
Not everyone likes to play poker either — but a lot of people do. A lot of people today — particularly in the millennial generation — grew up watching the game on TV. And with the World Series of Poker still marking a major TV event each year, you may have more guests than you expect who are still pretty into it. Throw in the apps and websites that make it easy for these same people to play poker whenever they want, and it’s a reasonable bet that you have enough interested guests to keep a table active. Then again even if you don’t, people will have fun giving poker a shot and playing a few hands just for fun.
It’s Easy to Designate a Corner for the Game
One great reason to opt for a poker table over some other wedding reception themes and games is that it really doesn’t take up much space, and it’s easy to set aside. If you like, you can go all out and rent a pro-quality gaming table, which will naturally set itself apart (particularly if you’ve hired a professional dealer). Even if you don’t take these steps, something as simple as a red tablecloth can designate a poker table in its own corner.
The Attire & Drinks Play Into Poker Naturally
Maybe the best reason to consider poker for a wedding reception is that the fancy attire and drinks already play into the culture of the game so nicely. People plan poker nights all the time, and typically end up treating them fairly casually: hoodies, bottles of beer, and so on. There’s nothing wrong with that at all, but if we’re being honest, most of us love the idea of playing poker more like men and women at high-roller tables in films. Taking a seat to play some cards at a wedding reception in a nice suit or dress sipping a cocktail or a glass of wine brings that vision to life. You might even be able to expand on some of our 7 Wedding Cup Ideas for Your Wedding Reception with some specific, poker-themed cocktail glasses at the tables!
It’s One More Way to Keep Things Going
Ultimately, the point of wedding games is to keep the party going, rather than distract from it. As Huffpost put it in a piece identifying a bunch of these games, no one likes a boring wedding! And poker is one more great way to keep guests engaged. Those who wish to can take a break from mingling and dancing to play a few cards, perhaps meeting new people and sparking new conversations in the process, before circulating back into the main party. And when things start to die down elsewhere, there’s a good chance that there will still be cheers, laughs, and exclamations coming from the poker table in the corner.