9 Tips for a Less Stressful Party
Have you noticed that for some people hosting a party or gathering of friends and family seems effortless?
For others, it can be daunting and intimidating. The approach of spring and summer means graduation parties, Derby parties, Memorial Day and 4th of July cookouts, and wedding season. With some advance planning and our seasoned party-planning tips, your next event can be less stressful and much more enjoyable.
• Start early. Even experienced hosts and hostesses don’t wait until the last minute.
• Decide on a theme and budget first. Those two decisions will drive decisions about food, decorations, and entertainment. Will your party be a sit-down dinner or buffet style? What serving pieces, glassware, and silverware will you need?
• Plan the menu and make a shopping list. Actually, make two. Make one list of non-perishable items that can be purchased weeks in advance and a second list of fresh items that should be purchased the week of the event.
• Decide on a guest list. Will you send out written invitations or be more casual with emails and calls? How many people will you invite? Remember that only about 70-80% of those invited will actually respond. Will you need to rent or borrow additional chairs or tables?
• Prepare and prep as much food in advance as possible. Some items can be made ahead and frozen. Sauces and marinades can be made ahead of time. Washing and chopping fresh fruits and veggies can be done days in advance.
• Plan and purchase beverages. Nothing is more embarrassing than running out of wine, beer, or spirits. For your convenience, we have prepared a helpful chart that shows how many servings you can expect from a bottle of wine, how many bottles of wine to purchase for your dinner party, and how much wine, beer, or spirits to buy for a three-hour gathering. This is also one purchase that can be made far in advance.
• Don’t wait until the day of the party to clean the house or arrange patio and deck furniture for an outdoor gathering. Clean during the week and do a quick touch up the day of the event.
• Buy plenty of ice. If you are serving soft drinks or mixed drinks, a good rule of thumb is one pound of ice per guest.
• Give yourself at least a half hour to relax before guests arrive. Have a glass of wine and turn on music or the game.
Don’t be tied to the kitchen while everyone else is enjoying the party. With some advance planning and these helpful tips, you can focus on your guests and enjoy the party!
Louisville Party Center is a party planner’s dream destination for all your paper products, decorations, wine, beer, and spirits. Our expert staff can also help you select the best wines for your menu and make suggestions for unique cocktails that are sure to impress your guests.
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