Other Possible Dances: The Snowball
Here's a way you can get a lot of people on the dance floor to start the night, and transition readily from the formal dances to the general fun. Let's say you've got a father/daughter dance and a separate mother/son song. After the first dance, the father of the bride would dance with his daughter, and then maybe a minute or two into the groom's dance with his mother, the DJ will announce, "snowball" over the microphone. At this point the two separate and go among the guests and each brings one more person to the floor. Now you have four people dancing. Soon after the DJ will announce, "snowball" again, so the two couples will separate and each bring one more person out to dance with them. So you can see how this is going. By the end of the song, you may have most of the people in the room on the dance floor. You've built it up quickly, the way snow builds as it rolls down a hill, thus the name. Now it's up to the DJ to keep as many people there as possible, which is often easier than getting them to start dancing in the first place. It's also another way to alleviate the aforementioned issue of feeling too much in the spotlight for too long a time.
The Anniversary Dance
The Anniversary dance has all the married couples coming out to the floor to begin with, and pairs are then dismissed according to the amount of time each has been in wedded bliss, starting with the newest duo (that's you!). The last husband and wife dancing are declared the winners. This is a great dance to include if you have guests (often grandparents of the bride or groom) who have been married for an extraordinarily long time. If this is not the case, couples in their fifties or sixties usually don't enjoy being singled out in this way nearly as much. An excellent way to conclude this is to ask the winning couple to give their advice to the newlyweds on how to make a marriage last. At that point you're receiving wisdom from the best source possible, and sometimes it's funny, as well. This can be an elegant alternative to the bouquet toss if you don't have a lot of single women at your event. You simply present the bouquet to the victors as their award.
The Money Dance
A few couples like to hold what's known as the dollar dance, or money dance. In this event, wedding guests may dance with the bride or groom for a dollar amount of their choosing. They do this either by giving money to the best man and maid of honor, who manage the lines, and tell people when to go, or by pinning the money directly to the clothing of the bride and groom. Some variations have the new husband and wife carrying something to hold the loot, such as special purse, etc. The upside to this dance is that you can walk away with a grip of cash. The potential negatives are that you shut down the dance floor for anyone not participating for the duration of the dance, which sometimes lasts for several songs; and, some relatives, in some families may think it's in poor taste to ask guests for money who have already come bearing lots of presents. It's up to you to gauge what your family and friends' response will be. If you do decide to go with it, the DJ should be shameless in his or her request for people to come and support the two of you as you start your new life together. After all, it takes a lot to get going in today's world. A little monetary support can be extremely helpful. Also, if you're using assistants to take money, etc., they should know to make sure no one dances too long. They should pay their money, dance a little, and move out of the way for the next donor. This will keep the dance from taking too long and unduly slowing down the party.