Parties/entertaining for dummies
April 16, 2010 8:31 AM Subscribe
Parties 101: What do I need to know about hosting a successful party? Not a dinner party, not a crazy late-night drinking party, but something in-between.
posted by EmilyClimbs to human relations (22 answers total) 31 users marked this as a favorite
My main goal for the party is to build more and better friendships with folks, by socializing with them at the party and by showing through the invitation that I like them and want to be friends/better friends. The invite list is primarily casual friends and friendly acquaintances. I've never thrown a party before, and have only been invited to parties by a couple of these people.
I have some specific questions, but feel free to skip them and tell me what you think is the most important advice. And I know that a lot of this isn't universal so "here are the pros and cons of X and Y" is just as good as "you should do X."
- Invites: How far in advance? And should I do a public invite (like an evite or Facebook) or private by e-mail? On the one hand, people might choose to come if they see there'll be others they know there. On the other hand, I'm afraid that'll work in reverse and even fewer people will come.
- Numbers: Ideally I'd want to have about 8-12 folks there, I think. How many should I actually invite? How much should I push the envelope on inviting friendly acquaintances who seem nice but who it might be totally awkward if they show as part of a small crowd? I'm also kind of terrified that most people won't come so I lean towards erring on the side of inviting more people.
- Timing: What's a good time for a not-really-a-dinner party? 7? 8? I'm fine with serving substantial food but don't want it to be a sit-down food-focused thing. What are the expectations conveyed by having a party at a specific time?
- Food and drinks: Speaking of food-- anything else I should think about? How much alcohol (kinds? amounts?) should I have?
- Games: I have board games. I have a Wii with games including Rock Band. Should these be part of the party and if so, how to do it? Should I mention them in the invite?
I'm sure I'm overthinking things, but I'm socially anxious so doing something like this feels pretty scary to me, so any advice is greatly appreciated!