New Year Party Planning 101: 10 Steps to a Great Celebration
It’s almost time to leave 2016 behind and celebrate the arrival of 2017. If you’ve decided to host a party to mark the occasion, you may feel a little overwhelmed, but don’t be! Just follow the 10 steps of New Year Party Planning 101.
1. Get started on that guest list
Start by brainstorming. Then, once you’ve narrowed down your guest list, you’ll have some idea of how many people will be in attendance. Of course, not everyone will be able to attend, but a ballpark figure will allow you to make the next important decision.
2. Party central: home or away?
The festivities of an at-home party usually take place in one main room, so think about the largest or most appropriate room in your home. Is it sufficient to hold the estimated number of guests? If not, begin calling around to find out what’s available at local party venues.
3. Send out the invites
You can use traditional mailed invitations, e-vites, group email, social media posts, or you can call all the guests. Specify the start and end times of the party, and be sure to include any events that guests will want to plan for (such as a “best dressed” contest).
4. Equip yourself
Decide how many extra tables and chairs you’ll need to rent to supplement what you have at home. If you’re using a venue, find out what is provided; you may need to rent everything yourself, including all tables, chairs, and food/beverage serving equipment.
5. Identify the theme and choose decor
Popular themes for new year’s eve parties include James Bond with casino games, disco night, the year in review, and all-ages pajama parties. As for decor, metallic decorations look great at new year parties and they pair very well with iridescent crushed linens. Balloons are a must, both on the walls and ceiling!
6. Make the menu
Plan what you will make from scratch and what will be store-bought; be realistic — you can’t do it all! No one really expects a sit-down meal at a new year’s eve party. Vegetable trays, crackers with cheese or spreads, and chips with a variety of homemade dips are great. Hot finger foods can be kept warm with steam tables. It’s also nice to have a large stockpot of chili bubbling on the burner. Everything will look great displayed on a farm table with a pretty table skirt.
7. Decide on drinks
Great options for NYE include champagne cocktails or traditional party punch. Provide waters infused with different fruits, virgin margaritas, or “mocktails” in a beverage dispenser for those who don’t drink. If you use a venue, consider renting a/v equipment so everyone can hear when toasts are given.
8. Plan your playlists
Make a varied mix of music on your computer that all of your guests (of all ages) will enjoy. Be sure you have enough music lined up to last the duration of the party, and make the songs more upbeat as midnight approaches.
9. Keep guests busy
Mingling and eating is great fun, but you’ll also want to set up some events before the big countdown. One popular trend is to designate a selfie wall with memorable decor (such as balloons with the year printed on them) for picture-taking. Contests and board games are good options for getting everyone interacting, especially if you can award small prizes.
10. Prep for the big finish
Install a TV or a computer monitor in the party room to watch the “ball drop” on broadcast TV or streaming live online. It’s traditional for NYE celebrants to toast in the new year, so have plenty of champagne chilled in buckets to bring out when the time comes. Then, all that’s left to do is to mute the music and count down… 2017 is here! Happy new year!
We have a huge selection of products that will make your party the best on the block. We work with clients all over Central and Southern California, and our goal is to provide you an exceptional rental experience. Contact us today!