Anywhere from Dixieland to Penguin Café Orchestra, via Django Reinhardt and something Latin, what musicians/tracks/albums can you suggest for a 4-hour playlist to make a happy, potentially boppable score to a cocktail party? Would be nice to divide it into intro, main and outro parts - but all suggestions are welcome for a fun, refined, vocal-less (or at least mainly so), non-pop soundtrack to a charming, light-hearted evening. (Bonus points if sourceable via Rdio.) Thanks!
Myboy’s twin passions are Minecraft and The Amazing World of Gumball. We are throwing him a GumCraft/MineBall 9th birthday party and would love suggestions on decorations, food/treats, beverages, music, party favors, and activities. Either Minecraft or Gumball suggestions would be great, but suggestions that meld the two themes together would simply rock the house. [more inside]
A group of us will be in town the first weekend in December. Going out in unfamiliar cities is tricky. Where do all the cool queer kids party the first weekend of the month? And by kids I mean 25-45 year olds, 90s hip hop / top 40 /songs with lyrics you probably know loving types, possibly but not necessarily hipsters who hate lining up and don’t love paying cover. Looking for a fun, unpretentious bar to drink and dance, with an approachable crowd. [more inside]
My friends are throwing a party and they want all the food to have a pun associated with it. Can you help me think of some clever names for easy party foods?? [more inside]
I would like to host a holiday/Christmas party this year, but I have never done it before and I would like some advice on how to do it in such a way that (1) people will attend, (2) people will have a good time, and (3) it is fun for me as a host. Lots of specific questions and info ahead. [more inside]
My daughter is having a slumber party for her birthday. I'm used to (and comfortable with) normal birthday parties: planning lots of fun activities, yummy things to eat and keeping order with bouncing children for a few hours, but I'm worried about having a half dozen 7 & 8 year olds sleeping here. Those of you have done it -- what's your advice? Anything that would help this go well? [more inside]
I'm putting together a Halloween marathon party this weekend, with a few horror movies (about evenly split between good and cheesy selections), and lots of video interludes in between that speak to a sense of pre-2000 horror/VHS/halloween nostalgia. I need your help on the interludes. I'm finding it hard to pick the exact vibe I'm looking for, but for examples: [more inside]
My husband-to-be and I plan to have a small civil wedding with immediate family in California (where we live), and would like to throw a casual party with drinks and dancing at a bar in Manhattan or Brooklyn so we can celebrate with our friends. [more inside]
I just became the person to put together a 125 person holiday party (I have the caterer, location and liquor confirmed as of today) for our top-level donors. How do I execute on the phrase "looking forward towards the future" which is the somewhat vague theme that I was given from my boss to make the decorations, theme, etc, come together in one beautiful swoop? We're hiring a designer to do decorations but I am supposed to come up with what I want first to give this person direction. Our budget is reasonable but not extravagant. [more inside]
I don't know the guest of honor. Should I buy a gift for a 50th birthday party? [more inside]
I got a sweet plastic cauldron for a pre-Halloween party we're having and I'd like to serve punch out of it, but it's not watertight and I don't know that the plastic is safe for serving drinks. What's the best/easiest/cheapest/surest way to make this cauldron a punch bowl? [more inside]
I'm having a birthday party for myself Saturday, and I've put off planning far later than I normally do. Help me out, hivemind! Looking for recipes for: 1) A great savory quickbread that doesn't have onions or garlic (or anything related to those, due to allergies of a couple attendees); 2) A dessert made with apples and/or pears that can either be prepared in advance or prepared up to the point of baking in advance, and then just needs to be put in the oven; 3) Tasty cocktails involving apple cider. Thanks!
Over the weekend we went to a party at my friend Ryan's apartment (not his real name) where he lives with his boyfriend Kevin (also not a real name), then we all went out to a bar. They've been dating for probably a year. My friends Anne and Steven, who are dating, came too -- they don't really know Ryan and Kevin but they came for the party. I ended up leaving fairly early and Anne and Steven were still there, as was my friend Amanda (none of these names are the actual names of participants). I found out yesterday from Steven that Kevin "jokingly" groped Anne which is obviously profoundly not okay. I have a few questions about how to proceed from here. Don't know if this matters but I am a woman so it would be great if suggestions about specific steps I should take could please bear that in mind. [more inside]
My longtime friend of more than 20 years is having a formal cocktail party to celebrate his recent engagement to his partner. The invite says no gifts, but I definitely plan to bring a gift. This friend is very special to me. Given this is an LGBT couple (not sure that really matters here, isn't a cocktail party a cocktail party whether it's a gay or straight couple?) I would appreciate your gift ideas. Thank you!
We're having an Sunday afternoon (1-4pm) cheesecake reception for 2 dozen people, and also want to provide fruit, veggies, cheese, and crackers. How much non-cheesecake food should we provide for a group this size, if most of them are also eating cheesecake? What about beverages? [more inside]
I'm the lady at my office who sends out the "Everyone please wish a Happy Birthday to X!" emails. I try to include a cute animated gif in all of them. I'm running out of birthday-themed gifs a few weeks into this game. Wanna help me compile celebration and birthday gifs? [more inside]
An acquaintance has asked me to serve as the (paid) stylist for her child's birthday party. I'm not a professional party stylist, just a maniac with a glue gun and far too many ideas. What's a fair price for my labor? Party location: NYC. [more inside]
I'm invited to an engagement party. From preliminary research, it appears it's up to me whether or not to give a present... But I need some help figuring this out. Old friend, just meeting her fiance, casual engagement party, will not be invited to wedding. [more inside]
Is it a faux-pas to not provide dinner for a party held during dinnertime? Also, need more suggestions for a first-time party host! [more inside]
Having a party on Sunday. Menu is mostly settled, salads, appetizers, vegetarian chili, a rice dish, etc. I also have three pounds of 'choice dry-aged top sirloin' and am wondering if there's any prepare-ahead dish I could make and serve at the party. No grilling, no last minute prep but want lots of flavor and easy to serve. Like Ropa Vieja? Your suggestions and recipes, please!
Every year we throw a Summer Solstice party that includes a buffet dinner for about 75 neighbors and friends. I cook everything because it's easier to do that than to organize a pot luck, which isn't part of my culture. Most years, I enjoy preparing this feast. This year, I am completely uninterested and fantasizing about ordering 25 pizzas and a keg. Hope me, please! [more inside]
Looking for a couple of nice, loungey spaces for a gathering of about 6 pretty relaxed women (mid-20's) in DC on a Thursday evening. The bride is pretty low-key, but loves 90's dance music. Ideally, we would: 1) relax at a pool during the afternoon 2) Have a relaxed dinner 3) Drinks at a lounge or low-key club Looking for suggestions for #1 and #3! Thank you!
My step-daughter's 16th birthday is right around the corner. Like, 8 days away. We always ask her what she wants to do on her birthdays and usually she comes up with something like renting out a place to play laser tag or going to the water park or whatever and we are more than happy to give that to her and she invites friends and there is food and drink and merriment and Huzzah! This year, it could go bad. I need some help! [more inside]
I need help brainstorming finger foods that pair well with Scotch whiskys! More details inside. [more inside]
I just moved to a new city (where I know few people) and I'm now deciding where to live. One of my criteria is to choose a location that is great for hosting frequent dinner parties for my friends, since in my last city I did this and got a lot of enjoyment from it. I know location is important, since when I get invited to parties, certain factors about the location sometimes discourage me from attending. But then again I have my own biases/quirks, so I am posing the following question to you: Purely in terms of location (assume "everything else equal", i.e. same host, guests, apartment unit/building, etc.), which of the below listed reasons are most likely to discourage you from attending a dinner party? Or which are minor/non-issues? [more inside]
I teach MBAs entrepreneurship, but also do research on video games. I was thinking of creating an entirely optional night session (maybe with drinks) that would focus on playing games that would be fun and maybe include teachable moments for 15-30 students. I was thinking of starting with Space Team, and then doing an improv game around crazy business pitches, but I am looking for other ideas. The games need to be easy to play with large groups (or small teams off a large group), be high energy, not be inappropriate for grad students, and have some sort of vague businesses point (improvisation, teamwork, leadership, dealing with ambiguity, etc.). Any ideas?
Flavor my chocolates, please? Bonus points for uncommon. [more inside]
My son will be having a birthday sleepover in a couple weeks so we will be hosting about six twelve year-old boys. In addition to feeding them and the Minecraft LAN party, we'd like to watch a movie with them. Suggestions? [more inside]
How do I plan, decorate, and successfully pull off a "Nerdy Thirty" birthday party when I have very limited party planning and artistic abilities? [more inside]
I need alternate venue choices for my May wedding in Katy, TX. [more inside]
My partner and I are hosting a housewarming party and we've invited more people that I think we can accommodate. What's the best way to make sure the party goes smoothly and what are some things we can do to help things along? [more inside]
I'm going to a murder mystery dinner party next Saturday, yay! I'd like to bring a hostess gift for the couple putting on the event. But the hostess has several major allergies/issues, which leave me stumped as to figuring out what to bring. [more inside]
I have parties at my home frequently (dinner parties and otherwise). Depending on what we are drinking, our glasses are either regular drinking glasses (tumblers) or wine glasses. The problem is that people easily lose track of which glass is theirs, especially if they move around. What's a nice elegant way to prevent this problem? [more inside]
My roommate and good friend invited me to her bday party. But this out of town visitor I really don't like is also coming. Now I am debating if I want to go. [more inside]
My daughter is almost three. For her birthday, I'd like to invite three or four kids. We are planning two organised activities (involving balloons and street crayons), but leaving it mostly unstructured for one or two hours, and with plenty of afternoon snacks. [more inside]
Every year, my work holds a big party to which we invite all our clients - the idea is we get to meet them and get to know them as people rather than voices on the phone. Every year, I end up having an anxiety attack and going home early, partly because I am rubbish at going out, partly because it is in an environment that I find difficult to cope with. We are expected to attend. What should I do? [more inside]
More people are coming than I expected. [more inside]
I'm going to an afterparty for the BRIT Awards this evening - yay! and also - AARGH. How do I make the most of it and not be the obvious noob amongst the sparkly people? [more inside]
I have six specialty cocktails we are serving at a party in July, but don't know what to call them. The drinks will be featured as hourly specials, one at a time. [more inside]
Some friends are giving our friend a little baby shower...online. She recently moved cross country, and her friends and family are scattered around the country. I am planning to set up a group Skype so people can see her open the presents we send. I am thinking she can take us on a tour of the new house/baby's room, but is there anything...showery we can do? I could send her some decorations, maybe order for cupcakes to be delivered? Some easy little games like guess how big around she is (do pregnant moms not like that one?) We aren't expecting a real party, but seems like something more than opening presents would be nice. [more inside]
I need help figuring out how many bags of ice to buy for an upcoming party. Information I’ve found online seems to apply only to outdoor summer parties, and isn’t applicable. [more inside]
Please suggest some indoor party games that have gone over well with tween (10-11 year old) girls. [more inside]
What I would love is for someone to bring the owl to my apartment's patio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The owl will be skritched for about an hour, by 5 - 10 responsible, sober adults. Basically, this is my dream, but with an owl. [more inside]
I'm planning a 70th birthday party for my mother in the first few weeks of March and need to find a restaurant that can host it. [more inside]
Some girlfriends and I were discussing going to NYC to see Hedwig and the Angry Inch on Broadway, and the idea of holding a Hedwig viewing party was thrown out. I want to make this a reality. I need your ideas for food, drinks, props, games/other activities, etc. [more inside]
We are having a party to celebrate – and need a recommendation on a sparking wine that will be served following the main speech. We aren’t fans of champagne ourselves (find it too dry), and there will be a mix of wine lovers and more casual wine drinkers attending. There will be a wide range of other drinks served throughout the night, if that matters. [more inside]
What off the wall venues have you been to for parties? I am looking for crazy ideas so throw everything you've got but especially interested in something accommodating at least 150 people. (And if there are any Indianapolis mefites out there, please recommend some places around here)
I work in a professional field that requires the passing of a series of exams to become credentialed. These take place over several years and are considered to be very difficult, taking months of study. My workplace hosts a bi-annual party after work to celebrate those that have passed their exams. The party requires that people pay $85 towards the party per exam passed in the past 6 months and $20 if they have not passed an exam (The money is required regardless of whether you plan to attend). This can become quite costly (I once passed multiple exams and was shocked that the fee was cumulative). However, people are expected to pay. I don't really enjoy parties, and $85 is a lot of money to me and I'm wondering if there's a way for me to politely decline without causing problems at work (i.e. being the one guy out of 60 that isn't contributing). Compounding this is the fact that significant raises typically follow when someone passes an exam, so the excuse "I can't afford it" might not work so well.
Etiquette Filter: My partner teaches music lessons and the parents of two of his students have invited us to dinner in their home. In addition to the regular payment for the lessons, they are very generous and bring him a gift nearly every time they come for lessons. What gift should we bring for the host & hostess? [more inside]
Seattle filter: Looking for a bar or other location that can acommodate a probably-rotating group of 10-20 people for a going-away party next Sunday around 4ish. Ideally in Wallingford or nearby and ideally someplace that won't be too crowded. [more inside]