Are you planning a corporate retreat? If you are, you’re probably thinking of formally opening the event with an evening reception centered around champagne, speeches, and small talk. There’s technically nothing wrong with this since it’s the traditional way of doing receptions and has been around for a long time, but you have to realize that it’s not your only option. There are many other ways to spice up evening receptions and make them more fun and memorable, such as the following:

Switch up the menu

Instead of sticking to the tried-and- tested menu, experiment with unique food and drinks. If most of your audience are millennials, for example, consider serving trendy food like galaxy ice cream, rainbow bagels, and spaghetti donuts. For a more professional vibe, research about local wines, delicacies, and craft beer and make them a part of your menu.

Use the power of hashtags

Hashtags have become a part of people’s daily lives, so there’s no reason not to include them in your corporate retreat. Create a hashtag for your event, make sure all the attendees know about it, and encourage them to post their event photos on social media using the hashtag. You can then use a projector to display the uploaded photos and turn them into instant entertainment — while generating social media buzz for your brand.

Another way to use hashtags: host contests during your evening reception then encourage attendees to vote on the winner using hashtags. For example, you can hire bartenders to create artisan cocktails or chefs to come up with new desserts especially for your event. You can then have the attendees decide on the winner by encouraging them to vote for their favorite online.

Bring out the child in your guests

Who says evening receptions have to be formal all the time? To ensure your reception stands out from the crowd, you can incorporate some elements that allow attendees to unleash their inner child. This can be something as subtle as a candy and chocolate buffet or an ice cream bar. If you have the budget, go all out and hire a ball pit and/or a bounce house for your event and have people giggling and smiling all night.

Take it outside

If you’re 100 percent sure that you’ll have good weather, why not have your evening reception outdoors? You can set up campfires and have the attendees grill hotdogs on sticks and make s’mores (or hire wait-staff to serve these goodies). For a more memorable evening, hand out sparklers to guests, and treat them to an awesome fireworks display.

Give these ideas a try and see how they can jazz up your evening reception! If you need more tips, contact us here at Oakwood Resort. As one of the best northern Indiana conference venues, we won’t only provide you with banquet space and conference space but can also give you excellent ideas on spicing up evening receptions. Get in touch with us today to know how we can help you!