Five Ways To Keep Guests Entertained at a Reception While Waiting for the Bride and Groom

While planning their wedding, savvy couples will take some time to consider ways to provide entertainment for their guests during cocktail hour. The time between a guest’s arrival to the wedding reception and the bride and groom’s grand entrance is at risk of feeling like nothing more than an awkward waiting game. However, with a little bit of forward planning, a couple can turn that ‘just waiting for the real fun to start’ feeling into a fun, engaging time for guests to mix, mingle, and start the celebration.

Here are five ways to keep your guests entertained while waiting for bride and groom make their grand entrance:


This is a great time to bust out a photo booth! While many couples choose to have the photo booth running after dinner, that can actually create a bit of a competition for guests attention, drawing them away from the dance floor. When a photo booth is running from the beginning of the reception, guests have a chance to start having fun right away.


Another way to captivate your guests is to offer live entertainment. Whether it’s a solo musician, a string quartet or a bartender who juggles glasses, a live performer has a way of drawing the crowd’s attention and creating a fun, celebratory vibe.

Special Notes Entertainment, Pop Rox Band, image by JOPHOTO

Depending on the atmosphere you are creating for your wedding, there are plenty of different types of games you can make available to kick off your reception with a lot of fun. Outdoor weddings can have large lawn games like horseshoes, corn hole, or croquet, while indoor weddings can have a board game area or a small game on each table.


The best wedding receptions are the ones where both families, as well as the friends of the couple, get to know each other a bit and have an incredible time together. A great way to get guests acquainted early on is to prepare a few icebreakers. An easy way to do this is to create a ‘trivia’ questionnaire where guests need to mingle with family members to find the right answers. You can also ask your DJ for some suggestions and ways that they can get people mingling – they will definitely have a few ideas!


Last, but certainly not least, there’s nothing like great food to get a party started. Tray passed appetizers will keep people moving throughout the room, while a unique ‘food bar’ will draw guests in. Popcorn bars and candy bars are a lot of fun, while a gourmet cheese bar or a make-your-own martini bar can add a touch of class for an elegant or formal wedding reception. 12380186_10206563129851235_1560755730_n

Photo Credits:


Farrah’s Photography


Breathtaking Arrangements From a Professional Florist!

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Foothills Bridal Connection is excited to be partnered with Lisa Foster Floral Design to create wedding inspiration and design! With over 20 years of floral experience, Lisa is knowledgable in a wide variety of flowers, wild and domestic.

Lisa is a professional who is willing to work with any bride on any budget. That means a bride can have the bouquet of her dreams. By visiting Lisa Foster’s website you will find numerous testimonies of brides who had little to no idea what they wanted. She created custom flower arrangements for the entire wedding based off of what the bride favored, sometimes only knowing what colors the couple liked. 301747_2860420592656_1602933786_n

Those brides who know exactly what they want will be happy to find Lisa Foster Floral Design is there to meet each brides individual desires. Brides may also rent cast iron candelabras, crystal trees, and many other decorations. Having more than flowers alone provides an unexpected yet beautiful detail while still going with the flow of the overall theme.

Lisa Foster Floral Design: (865) 951- 0660, 6622 Kingston Pike. Knoxville, TN

Foothills Bridal Connection: (865) 724-1218,143 Cherokee Heights Drive. Maryville, TN

Looking for a Wedding Photographer?

11296_691304747617346_3059875365250185512_nHey Brides! There is exciting news at the Foothills Bridal Connection!! The Foothills Bridal Connection is now proudly partnering with Faith Photography! Faith Photography is a wonderful duo of Kelly Smith-Brewer and Alisha Massengill; that’s right, not one but TWO photographers!! Kelly and Alisha have devoted their life to photography. As Alisha beautifully stated: “Photography, to me, goes way beyond a photograph … it is the visual product, from behind my lens, of your special moment and experience.”

Kelly’s and Alisha‘s styles are very complimentary, giving two different views of your special day. Kelly sees the wide open space, big romantic picture while Alisha sees the details and more intimate style of your day. Together they make a wonderful team building relationships with their brides and grooms that last long beyond your wedding day.


Faith Photography offers several different personal photography packages that fit every Bride’s needs. Each package includes BOTH photographers. Kelly and Alisha become personally invested in their couples, and even see themselves as friends.

To find out more about Faith Photography, come by the Foothills Bridal Connection, located at 143 Cherokee Heights Drive Maryville, TN 37801, or call 865-724-1218. Store hours are Monday through Friday from 12:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m., and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Walk ins are welcome, or feel free to schedule an appointment with one of our planning specialists to assist with all your planning needs. We will even meet with you after store hours to make sure you have everything you need for the big day!


Not just wedding favors, but great Christmas gifts, too!

Hey Brides! Having trouble looking for the perfect wedding favor or maybe even a Christmas gift? Choosing a gift can be a difficult process, but who doesn’t love a candle!? Using a candle as your favor or Christmas gift is a great option!IMG_4668-2

The Foothills Bridal Connection is glad to have Andrea’s Country Candles in the shop! Andrea Yeager, owner, makes all of her candles  100% homemade and natural! Her candles come in all shapes, sizes, and scents! They also come with the option of a wooden wick! These candles will make great wedding favors for any season! With Christmas just around the corner, candles are also always a great alternative.


Andrea has just released her new fall collection! Some of Andrea’s new fall scents are Blueberry cobbler, Sunday brunch, vanilla bean, campfire, Creme brûlée, salted Carmel, blueberry pumpkin patch, candy apple, gingerbread, Carmel apples, pumpkin spice, apple spice and baked apple pie.

Andrea’s jars range in shapes and sizes. Some of the options are 16 oz. mason jar, 8 oz. tumbler, 8 oz. tureen, 4 oz. mini mason jar, 4 oz. favor tin, and melts. The 4 oz. favor tins are very popular for wedding favors! They even come with lids for easy carry home from the reception!

To find out more about Andrea’s Country Candles, come by the Foothills Bridal Connection , 143 Cherokee Heights Drive Maryville, TN 37801, or call 865-724-1218. Store hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10:00 a.m.- 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from 10:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.


Bridal Bouquets and More!!


Foothills Bridal Connection is proud to bring to you one of the best florists in East Tennessee! Melissa Timm, owner/designer of Melissa Timm Designs, has partnered with Foothills Bridal to bring unique and beautiful designs for weddings and special events. These beautiful arrangements are sure to make for magazine-worthy photos that will be the center of many conversations throughout the wedding.

10383648_10152665367834528_291981374766801589_nWhen brides select Melissa Timm Designs as their florist, they find that they have a wide variety of flower colors and types to chose from. The bride may custom order her bouquet, table arrangements, and the bridesmaid’s and groomsmen’s flowers all at an affordable cost. Traditionally, about 10% of the total wedding budget should be dedicated to flower arrangements. Most flowers are available year round; however, be cautious of hydrangeas in July and August heat.

Melissa Timm Designs also offers vintage decorations and props that will add a little something extra to her already extraordinary arrangements. She custom designs for holiday events which is sure to make for a great photo opportunity.  The best time to schedule an initial appointment with the florist is after the venue is booked. The best way to know what flowers are seasonal or outdoor/indoor appropriate is to ask an expert.


Melissa Timm Designs: 8078 Kingston Pike-Suite 119 B-Knoxville,TN 37919 (865) 399-4916

Foothills Bridal Connection: 143 Cherokee Heights Dr. Maryville, TN 37803

Reception Entertainment and Favor Ideas, All-In-One

sidebarHey Brides! Remember attending your first bridal show and being flabbergasted by how much fun you were having at the photo booth? How about renting one for your reception? A photo booth is a great favor idea that all of the guests will be able to cherish because it captures the personalities of them with their friends. So, where do brides find the perfect photo booth company, and what are some things to consider when comparing booths?

Here are some important features to look for in a company that offers photo booth rentals:

  • Is the booth handicapped accessible?
  • How many people can fit in the booth at one time?
  • Will I get a copy of each photo strip? Will each participating guest also receive a copy?
  • Do you offer a scrapbook?
  • Do you include delivery, setup, and cleanup?
  • Do you supply props, or do I need to bring my own?
  • What is included in the rental package? How many hours of coverage is included?
  • Do you offer unlimited photos?
  • Is there an attendant operating the booth all night?

Memories in a Flash Photo Booth Rentals is proudly supported at the Foothills Bridal Connection. The owner, Betsy Allison, does everything she can to make sure her brides and20131214_065816174x259 the guests are 100% satisfied! Here are Betsy’s answers to the questions above. She is just a phone call away! Betsy makes sure that each participating guest and the married couple receive a copy of each photo. Each picture can be taken in black and white or color. Every guest will have the option to select their own style through props and placement. The bride and groom will also receive a CD copy of all the photos taken that day to archive the happy memories. Betsy also brings a large selection of props, from boas, oversized sunglasses, and accessories to hand-written signs, comical quotes, and fake mustaches! The booth will hold up to ten people, and is handicap-accessible! You can even add a scrapbook to your package for a small additional investment!

Memories in a Flash is currently running a special of $100.00 off of the premium package. Call today to receive this amazing deal! To find out more about Memories in a Flash, come by the Foothills Bridal Connection, located at 143 Cherokee Heights Drive Maryville, TN 37801, or call 865-724-1218. Store hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Walk ins are welcome, or feel free to schedule an appointment with one of our planning specialists to assist with all your planning needs.

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More than just your average videographer!


Hey Brides! Are you considering having a videographer at your wedding? Videographers are something that are a must for your special day! There is something spectacular about the ability to relive the events just as they happened, over and over again. So, why invest in this service? First of all, wedding videos have grown by leaps and bounds, in terms of equipment and editing. Now, you can view your wedding as if it were a Hollywood movie, with music to enhance the emotions of the moment and special features to add a personal touch while telling your story.

Have you ever asked for advice on hiring a videographer? Have couples told you that they never watch their wedding video? One reason people do not watch their wedding video, is it was not professionally done or the real story was not captured. As Don Samples puts it, pictures are worth a thousand words, but videos speak volumes. While pictures and canvases can offer a constant remembrance on the wall or in a photo album, you are more likely to fully enjoy reception events such as dancing, a comical dance, or heartfelt toast, where the video will allow the viewer to hear the actual moments. Imagine hearing the father of the bride as he sees his daughter in her dress for the first time and having a permanent recording to hear those touching words.


Midnight Magic Studios is more than just videography. It is cinematography offered for a great value with personalized options. Owner, Don Samples, really helps bring the magical moments to life. Midnight Magic Studios is a proudly featured vendor at the Foothills Bridal Connection. Midnight Magic takes the time to personalize each video and make it specific to each Bride’s story! They offer many different packages that are perfect for any Bride’s budget. Videographers are not always considered in a Bride’s wedding planning for fear of affordability or value, but Don makes sure that Brides get a very special keepsake!

mms-92To find out more about Midnight Magic Studios, come by the Foothills Bridal Connection located at 143 Cherokee Heights Drive Maryville, TN 37801, or call 865-724-1218. Store hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Walk ins are welcome, or feel free to schedule an appointment with one of our planning specialists to assist with all your planning needs.



Great Bridesmaid Gift Ideas at the Foothills Bridal Connection


Are you looking for personalized wedding party gifts? The Foothills Bridal Connection has partnered with Team Bride Monogramming to provide unique and personalized gift items. Team Bride offers a wide variety of bridesmaid gifts as well as gifts for the bride. With personalized monogramming, a variety of patterns and colors to chose from at a good price, Team Bride is the way to go.

10517444_1539589072923591_1543335299478543989_o[1]Perfect for pre-wedding preparation, satin robes make great gift items for brides maids, as well as the bride-to-be. Satin robes are great to wear while hair is being done and makeup is applied, and they can be easily removed without messing up hair or makeup. The robe is free flowing, which makes it easy to move in and is great for bridal party photos.


Team Bride also offers personalized bags that are great for bridesmaids. There are numerous patterns to chose from, as well as colors for monogramming. These bags are roomy and make for an easy day of helping the bride carry wedding day items in one convenient location.

Personalized Coozies are also great gifts for any bridal party member. They make for a great photo op and keep your beverage nice and cold.

If any member of the bridal party likes to travel, or you want to get the bride and groom something for the honeymoon, consider the luggage tags. They’re made of durable leather material personalized, and monogrammed with the color of your choice.

The personalized hangers make great gifts for the bride or her bridesmaids. The wire can be custom ordered to the customer’s specifications. Use these hand-made hangers for a photo op of the bride’s dress to capture an extra special detail.

10341494_1531395553742943_6459670879625180879_n[1]Another great, yet practical gift for the bride is the “Bride Survival Kit.” It contains all the essentials to ensure the wedding goes as smoothly as planned.  The kit includes: Deodorant, Tissues, Bobby Pins, Safety Pins, Tampon, Luna Bar, Pack of Mint Gum, Tylenol, Advil, Nail File, Bandages, Tic-Tacs, Gauze, Q-tips, Two Mini Toothbrushes, Cotton Balls, Lint Roller, Lotion, and a Mini Sewing Kit for those quick repairs on the dress!10534563_1531125010436664_9065151269368973625_n[1]

All of these items and more can be found at the Foothills Bridal Connection, located at 143 Cherokee Heights Dr. Maryville, TN 37801. Visit us online at, or call (865) 724-1218. Store hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday 10am-6pm, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday 10am-2pm. Walk ins are welcome, or schedule an appointment with one of our planning specialists to assist with all your planning needs.

Photography Credit: Suzanne McNeil


Foothills Bridal Connection

Welcome to the Foothills Bridal Connection! We are excited to help brides plan the wedding of their dreams.Stop by our shop in Maryville, 143 Cherokee Heights Drive, in the Wiley Boring Center. We are conveniently located behind the Bridal Gallery, a great place to begin dress shopping. We have consultants on site to assist with the planning process, from start to finish.

Cake Girlz Bakery

Rent table linens, and decor items, meet with our florists, photographers, caterers, cake decorators, and disc jockeys, purchase favors and invitations, and more!Meet with specific vendors by appointment, or walk in for a free consultation during store hours, from 10:00 am until 6:00 p.m Monday through Friday and 10:00 am until 2:00 pm on Saturday. Stop by and get a copy of our free planning guide!