Things to Know

8 Tips for Throwing a Successful Holiday Party at Home

Throwing a holiday gathering can be stressful, but you don’t have to be a professional event planner to host a great holiday event for your friends or family. Following a few simple strategies can help make your holiday celebration a memorable one for all the right reasons.

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1. Consider a Theme - This can be anything from a tacky sweater Christmas party to an Alice in Wonderland themed Halloween party. The best themes are ones that can carry over from the decorations to the food and attire.

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2. Choose the Right Food - The usual array of finger foods, chips and dip, and veggie platters will not provide a memorable experience for anyone. Try to provide at least one memorable dish that will impress your guests and leave them wanting to come back for your next holiday party. Bonus points if you can come up with an exciting entree in addition to an outstanding dessert.

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3. Plan in Advance - The sooner you start planning your party, the more time you will have to spend perfecting the decorations, planning the menu and drafting the guest list. Your friends and family are more likely to be able to come if you invite them early on, so this strategy will have the unintended (but very welcome) side effect of boosting your attendance.

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4. Don't Skimp on the Decorations - Great decorations can help to transform your home to coincide with a theme, time of year or holiday. Lots of festive garlands and mood lighting can help to improve the atmosphere without breaking the budget.

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5. Games and Activities - Make sure that there is something for your guests to do when they are finished eating. Silly games can be a great way to break the ice and get a conversation going, but consider your audience when planning the games. Small children will enjoy an entirely different set of party games than the older attendees.

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6. Prizes to Boost Participation - Prizes can add a whole new level of competition to any party game. They do not have to be anything expensive or elaborate – any prizes will be exciting and memorable. Bonus points if the prizes are in keeping with the theme of your party.

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7. Select the Music - A quiet party is a dull party, so make sure you have holiday themed music to go with your holiday themed party. Again, consider your audience when choosing the music. The right music can help to make it a fun and memorable evening for everyone.

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8. Don't Make Your Guest Play Musical Chairs - This one might seem obvious, but make sure there is plenty of seating available in the areas that people are likely to congregate. Nobody wants to stand for the duration of the party.

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Here’s to a happy holiday party!

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