Many people and businesses have a need to throw a party, gala or some form of festive event. Others simply enjoy entertaining. Nowadays it is difficult to do in a gloomy economy. Even though you may be fiscally challenged, you can still throw a lavish event with a lean budget. Here are several simple tips to help you plan a fab event without breaking the bank:
1. Selecting a Venue: Instead of choosing the traditional venue that may cost you big bucks (such as a hotel, restaurant or ballroom) search for non traditional venues such as a museum, park, or city recreational facility that you can rent. A college within your town may also have space that you can rent at a reasonable rate. You can also check your local newspaper want ads for commercial space. Due to the economy, there are many commercial realtors that may be renting space in various buildings by the day to cover the mortgage. These venues may save money and offer you more flexibility.
2. Hiring a Caterer: Instead of hiring a catering company, contact a friend or relative that has a desire to become a chef or caterer. Allow them to cater your event in exchange for a reference. All you may need to purchase is the food. This is a great way for your event to have the look of professional chef and for your friend/relative to gain some exposure and experience.
3. Food: Instead of serving a three to four course meal, serve appetizers and finger foods that can be eaten throughout the event. Serve less expensive foods like chicken, wraps, and mini sandwiches instead of seafood and beef which can be pricey. Stores such as Costco and Sam's Club sell prepackaged frozen hors d'oeuvres at a very inexpensive rate. Once they are heated and placed on a nice serving tray your guests will think they were freshly prepared.
4. Hiring Staff: All grand events have staff but you do not need to pay a fortune for a professional serving company. Post an add on craigslist or a flyer at a local college for servers. Once you make a decision on who will work for you at your event, ask them to wear something simple like black slacks and a white top and provide them detailed instructions for the event. Set a small fee to be paid at the end of the night. Adding staff will allow you time to mingle with your guests and give a glamorous appearance.
5. Bartender: Can't afford a bartender? Create a signature cocktail, premake them prior to your guests arrivals and arrange them neatly around the room. Not only will this save you dollars from purchasing tons of alcohol for various mixed drinks but they also make for a beautiful arrangement. In addition to your signature cocktail you can also serve beer and wine as well.
6. Music: Many local high schools or colleges have ensembles that will play for a small fee or for practice. If you can't find the local college ensemble, you may also download some good tunes to your ipod and let it play all night.
These tips will allow you to have the party and atmosphere that you want. They may also save you tons of dollars while making your guests think you spent a fortune.