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Christmas Party Planning - Help!
Old 11-17-2019, 11:10 AM
  #1

I'm planning a Christmas party for a group I lead through my church. Party planning/hosting doesn't come naturally for me, so I need help! We are all single and in our 30s, if that matters.

I threw out two dates to them and it looks like a Sunday works best. I'm thinking from 4-7 or so, since it's a Sunday.

I think we will do a white elephant, possibly an ugly Christmas sweater thing.

Activity -
I'd like to do some sort of fun activity for part of the time to give it a little structure. At first I was thinking cookie decorating. That could be very laid back. Then I thought some sort of gingerbread house decorating contest, but that seems complicated. Then I thought some holiday minute-to-win-it games.

Any other fun activity suggestions?

Food -
I'd like to avoid a meal. I could ask people to bring either a dessert or an appetizer. Is that weird if it is 4-7?

If we do do a meal, what would be super easy and festive?


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Old 11-17-2019, 11:18 AM
  #2

I like the minute to win it games.

Have people bring appetizers. Itís pre-dinner time so I wouldnít do desserts.

You could have some silly cheap gifts for game winners.

I like the ugly sweater thing. We all need more opportunities to wear them.

What about a tacky ornament exchange instead of white elephant?
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Old 11-17-2019, 12:07 PM
  #3

I think heavy appetizers and light desserts. People can either make a meal of it or not as they choose.

Minute to win it games are fun and quick as are these....

https://youtu.be/1e1xjBMYPPs

https://youtu.be/3Wgdt_ykRzc
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Party
Old 11-17-2019, 12:14 PM
  #4

Can you have the party at a different time? The hours you mention normally include dinner. Or does your crowd typically eat late?

At a different time like 2 to 4 could be just dessert.

Or you could label your invitations, "Life is short. Eat dessert first". Then you could serve desserts from 4 to 7. Maybe everyone could bring a dessert to share. You could add some simple dishes like nuts, cheese, crackers, smoked meat and rolls.... all very easy to prepare. A spiral cut smoked ham can be served at room temperature or a little cool. No need to heat. Then the guests could make a meal out of the nibbles but have or not have dessert first as they please.

I like the minute to win it game idea. Maybe plan several and allow your guests to select which ones they want to play. Choices are always appreciated.

Maybe create a back drop of some sort for photos. It could just be your entry door decorated on the inside. Or you could cover a wall with a Christmas wrapping paper.

Have some boxes or food storage containers stashed to send home leftovers with your friends if you have too much left.

Select your music ahead of time to play in the background. Music always makes the party more festive.

If you serve warm cider as a beverage your house will smell wonderful as guests arrive.

Have a designated area ready to store everyone's coat, scarves and gloves.

Whatever you decide have a great time celebrating this special time of year.
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party
Old 11-17-2019, 12:49 PM
  #5

I like your ideas!

The ugly sweater contest is always fun. You can have everyone vote. I've seen ugly sweater decorated cookies before, so you could have one as a prize.

If you do the white elephant, just make it $5. limit. Those are fun as well.

Those are the only 2 things we typically do, because eating and chatting takes up a lot of time.

I do love your minute to win it ideas! That would be a lot of fun.

For food, I don't think you can avoid a meal from 4-7. You can just provide the main part and have everyone bring a side dish or dessert to go with it. Do something that makes a lot (jambalaya, chili, taco soup,...).

Have hot chocolate and cider packets with either a Keurig or tea pot with hot water.

Have fun!


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Old 11-17-2019, 01:32 PM
  #6

What about Christmas caroling (nursing home or to the elderly people's homes from your church), then coming back for appetizers and desserts?

Last edited by JanetL; 11-17-2019 at 01:47 PM..
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Old 11-17-2019, 01:59 PM
  #7

That's Happy Hour! An app potluck + drinks!
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Old 11-17-2019, 02:10 PM
  #8

Iím in a similar boat so Iím taking all the advice your getting to heart. Iím planning the last support group Christmas leadership party this year if there is a budget that will pay for the food. We traditionally do a dinner of some sort, a white elephant gift exchange and silly games. Iím not a natural party planner but I feel that itís important to many of us to have that last party.
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Old 11-17-2019, 03:13 PM
  #9

Thanks, everyone! This is all helpful. Keep the ideas coming.
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Activity
Old 11-17-2019, 05:32 PM
  #10

Do that activity where you wrap up small items in plastic wrap? I've never done it, but my cousins rave about it.

https://awesomejelly.com/the-saran-w...sly-good-time/

Minute to win it games are fun!


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Meal
Old 11-17-2019, 05:37 PM
  #11

I understand it's "meal time" but if you tell people apps & desserts, they can plan accordingly. My group always says that's what we should do instead of stuffing ourselves!

If you feel you must do a meal...
Soup & salad?

Taco bar?

Chili?
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Old 11-17-2019, 06:00 PM
  #12

My crowd can make a meal out of appetizers. My Bunco group did it for years. Sometimes a meal is just too much work. I like someone's idea of a photo backdrop. You could Get some crazy props and have a lot of fun with that. Maybe a Polaroid camera? I saw something that turns your phone photos into Polaroids. That would be fun.
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