Planning a Family or Company Christmas Party?
With the holidays quickly approaching, you may be toying with the idea of hosting a holiday party. Bless your heart. December is a busy time, y’all, and it’s no small feat to put together an event in the middle of decorating, shopping, and baking. Especially one that will delight your guests without turning your hair as white as Christmas snow.
Since we’re pretty knowledgeable in the area of event planning, we wanted to help you out so we’re going to share our favorite party planning hacks so you can hopefully get this thing set up, and still have some time for everything else.
Plan Your Party Space Wisely
We don’t all have the luxury of living in a mansion designed for entertaining. Most of our homes are designed for a family of four. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a party there. But it might mean some temporary modifications to your space are in order:
- Kitchens are for prep, not people. Most kitchens are not that big. You don’t want people in there – it’s a recipe for disaster! That’s why we recommend you resist the urge to use your kitchen counters as buffet space. Set up your dining room table like a buffet line instead, designating a clear starting and ending point. Your guests will gravitate to the starting point, move around the table comfortably to choose their food with relative ease, and no one will be in anyone else’s way.
- Offer plenty of seating. Please don’t make people sit on the floor or scout out a spot on the stairs for eating. Think of your house as an event venue and create a separate area with banquet tables and chairs. Don’t have extra tables or space? No problem! Rent a tent for your yard. Rent tables, chairs, and linens. And while you’re at it, rent plates, glasses and silverware. Voila – guests can now relax, enjoy the awesome food, and have great conversation.
- Consider clearing out your living room. You’ve already made things better by giving people a designated place to eat. Keep the momentum going by creating an open room for people to mingle in. Movie furniture to the sides of the room, or remove small pieces like cocktail and coffee tables so your guests can maneuver more easily. Your guests will appreciate not bumping into furniture or being in anyone else’s way.
Choose Great Food
We’ve all attended the holiday potluck. You know the drill – everyone brings a dish, which eases your burden in terms of cooking. But can you really stand another spinach artichoke dip, crockpot full of barbecue meatballs, and supermarket tray of dried out carrots and broccoli? Please do everyone a favor and consider a caterer. It’s may not be as expensive as you think. It lets your guests off the hook. It kicks your party up a notch. Best of all, it gives you some variety in your food and takes one less thing off your party planning plate.
Add some layers to your party with music and dancing. You know the tent we suggested earlier? If you choose one that’s the right size, you can incorporate a dance floor quite easily, giving guests something fun to do in between eating and socializing.
You don’t have to shell out for a DJ to get some great background music for your party. Lots of the music streaming services have pre-planned lists ready for the listening, but you might want to review the music selection ahead of time just to be careful. Another idea, there are a lot of talented high school students out there with serious band skills. Offer them some extra spending cash in exchange for their time and your music needs are simply solved!
Collect for Charity
Most holiday parties seem to incorporate some sort of gift exchange but we’d like to recommend ditching the white elephant thing – it’s always sort of awkward and none of us really needs re-gift anyway (come on – you know you’ve done it). Consider asking guests to bring a small gift (set a modest spending limit) to donate to a children’s charity instead.
Now that we’ve revealed some of our favorite party planning tips, give us a call. J & J Tent and Party Rentals has everything you could possibly need to make your holiday event run more smoothly and give you plenty of time to enjoy the rest of the season!