restaurant entertainment ideas
by Laura-Andreea Voicu

How do you entertain a guest in a restaurant? By thinking of dining as a cohesive experience relying on several factors, entertainment being one of them. Be it through events, parties, games, or themed evenings, you will woo your customers will the restaurant entertainment ideas below.

What Makes a Restaurant Inviting?

As a restaurant owner, you’ve probably wondered “How can I make my restaurant busy?” more than once. It’s all about good food, ambiance, atmosphere, and design. Although quality food matters most, don’t overlook decorations and entertainment to put together an irresistible ambiance.

Cater to your target audience to make your restaurant inviting to them. For example, if you own a family-friendly restaurant, consider creating a kids’ corner where children can play while parents enjoy a nice conversation over dinner.

Entertainment is vital to keeping customers in their seats more, thus increasing the average check. Now, let’s look at restaurant entertainment ideas for every customer and every mood.

Family Restaurant Entertainment Ideas

Magic

Everyone loves magic. Not to mention most young parents out there grew up on Harry Potter and probably instilled that love into their children as well.

Whatever spin you want to put on a magic-dedicated evening, whether it is hiring a magician to perform tricks or inviting parents and their kids to dress up as their favorite Harry Potter character, it will be a magical night that your guests won’t forget soon.

And there are plenty of other restaurant theme nights ideas you can explore, like the ones we discuss here.

Arts and crafts

Arts and crafts is another type of activity both parents and children can enjoy. It’s also a great bonding experience for them to collaborate on a project. Supply the snacks and beverages while teaching families to draw, paint, stitch or create things out of recycled materials.

Classes

Cooking classes are a no-brainer for a restaurant. If your chef is willing to share their secrets with the public, invite families to learn how to cook together.

But that doesn’t mean you should limit yourself to that. Dance classes might also attract a crowd, especially if you throw in a freebie like a free drink with the purchasing of a ticket.

Restaurant Activities for Adults

Murder mystery

It doesn’t have to be Halloween for people to enjoy an old-fashioned murder mystery. Divide the participants into several groups, designate a role for each, and let them act out the story.

Food and drinks will be pouring as people get into the mystery and have fun together. Who knows, maybe they’ll even forge new friendships.

Would you rather

Another classic party game, Would You Rather helps people get to know each other in a fun setting. The bolder the questions, the better.

The best part about this game is you don’t have to do much to organize it. Just settle on some basic rules, ensure everyone is having a good time, and supply the food and drinks.

Alcohol tasting

Alcohol tastings are your chance to shine as a restaurant. From beer to wine or liquor, it’s an opportunity to show off your drinks menu and even partner up with local distilleries.

You can also organize a cocktail tasting party where your bartender prepares the cocktails in front of everyone, showing off their skills. Alcohol tasting and a show!

Restaurant Activities for Toddlers

Kids’ corner

Moving on to entertainment ideas for restaurants that are kid-friendly, investing in a kids’ corner will prove extremely beneficial for your business. It will give kids something to do and parents a much-deserved break.

While you could simply fill the corner with different toys and activities, parents would feel much safer and kids much more entertained if they had someone playing with them. If you can afford it, hire a student who is good with kids to dress up as a princess or as a superhero and play with the kids.

Tablet games

A much more affordable option, in the long run, tablets with free access to Wi-Fi and a ton of games will make most children happy. You can create an area with some stools and table-mounted tablets where kids can play while their parents enjoy dinner and a conversation.

Make sure you clean and disinfect the tablets after each kid, so parents don’t worry about them touching someone else’s germs and getting ill.

If you own a kid-friendly restaurant, you should consider developing a special menu for the kids. For one, the portions should be smaller and cost less. Secondly, kids love it when their food is colorful and shaped like animals or cartoon characters.

So, if your goal is to attract families with children, organize tastings of different kid-friendly meals and maybe include the most popular options into your permanent menu.

Restaurant Activities for Students

Role-playing games

Role-playing tabletop games like Dungeons & Dragons, Gloomhaven, or Warhammer are growing in popularity, and so are bars where people can get together with their friends and play these games.

Organize a game night for students (and anyone else who might want to participate) and provide all the necessary materials for the game. The rest is up to their imagination.

Photobooth

A photo booth is one of the best investments you could make in terms of restaurant attraction ideas. It provides countless fun moments and memories to your customers. Buy some props and encourage clients to take photos for free.

People also love posting photo booth pictures on social media. Take advantage of that by asking them to tag you in the posts to get more exposure. You can even reward customers who do that with a gift card or a discount.

Arcade games

Bring back that 90s nostalgia with a couple of old-school arcade games like Pac-Man or Space Invaders. I guarantee customers will be lining up to play them and compete with their friends. Plus, in between games, they will be ordering plenty of food and drinks.

Dinner Entertainment Ideas

Concerts

Are you looking for food entertainment ideas to complement your restaurant’s ambiance? What better way to subtly entertain your customers than to have someone play music in the background?

While for some it will just be background music, others will enjoy watching the show, especially if you get some famous local artists.

Poetry slams

Encourage people to let out their inner poet and participate in a poetry slam at your restaurant. Everyone who participates can get a discount on their tab, and whoever the public chooses as the winner can get a coupon code for an online order placed on your website.

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Secret menu

Are you out of restaurant ideas for dinner? Invite customers who like to experiment to a unique food tasting featuring a mystery menu. They’ll get a delicious surprise, and you’ll get to establish your restaurant as a unique choice in the neighborhood.

Conclusion

Complement your food with these creative restaurant entertainment ideas and you’ll reap the benefits soon enough. Regulars will know they can always count on you for a fun night out, they will tell their friends and family about you, and you will establish yourself as one of the hottest restaurants in town.

photo of GloriaFood blog writer Laura-Andreea Voicu
Laura-Andreea Voicu

Laura-Andreea Voicu is an experienced content writer with a knack for marketing and SEO. She delivers business-optimized content to help restaurants boost sales and grow their brand.