8 tricks to get guests mingling with people bingo

Guestpost by Sunny on Sep. 10th

Click here to download the  Minglo template.

Click here to download the Minglo template.

We loved the Offbeat Empire's idea of Minglo, and immediately knew we had the right game to start off our wedding reception game night. Based on our experience (with 55 guests), here are my tips for adapting Minglo for your wedding…

  1. Make several different game boards (we used four), and alternate them in your pile. That way, when you hand them out, people close to one another will get different boards, and will likely end up talking to different people. This also allows you to ensure that you have a box that matches every guest.
  2. Make a list of all of your guests with a unique fact or two about each one. Use the list to make sure each guest gets included.
  3. When you build your boards (I did mine by using the Offbeat Empire template and adding the specifics with Adobe Acrobat), try to ensure that the vast majority of the squares apply to only one or two people. Note: My sister suggested I include one square about each person that applied, as far as we knew, only to that person. I thought it would take too long to play. I was wrong! Even playing blackout, it went pretty quickly. Next time I'll follow that advice.
  4. Give your guests the instructions orally — they won't read instructions well at a wedding.
  5. Require signatures. Otherwise people will simply fill in the blanks with names of people they know fit. My mom cheated! I don't care about the rules, but asking for signatures really gets people mingling.
  6. Require that each name be used only once.
  7. During the instructions, ask people to write down at least one additional interesting fact after each name they get. The only downside to Minglo, is that people find out one thing and then move on. I would have liked them to chat just a bit more.
  8. Award prizes! Since most people had traveled to our Colorado wedding, we gave away Colorado cookbooks, small camping items, and a book on Rocky Mountain National Park (where the wedding was held). I scoured thrift shops and Amazon to get them cheaply.

Photo by Britt Nielsen

Overall it worked out fabulously for us. It really got people up, moving around, and talking to each other. It was the most effective strategy all weekend for making sure our families and friends were getting to know each other!

How are you encouraging your guests to mingle? Anyone else adapting Minglo for their wedding?

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About Sunny

Sunny, Tribe member and Moderator, is a writer and educator who just married her sweetie in their beloved Rocky Mountains.