Growing up in Kentucky I have been raised with the love for hosting. I love having friends over for dinner or special occasions and if you grow up in the south hosting should be done with a little finesse. More than a casual text invite and some beers.
A Southerners Guide to Hosting a Holiday Party
1. Keep The Bar Stocked
First thing is first, libations are very important for any event that you are hosting whether it be a Holiday dinner or a baby shower. I always keep on hand Wente Winesand have found that everyone loves their wines. And after 100 years of making wine, this family owned operation has figured out how to make the perfect tasting whites and red wines that pleases the pallet and doesn't break the bank of the host.
Take in consideration your guest likes and dislikes. It's a good idea to know who is allergic to what and try and plan a delicious holiday inspired menu around your guest needs. A true southerner puts their guest first. I also find it easier to serve the food family or buffet style, this way the (me) the hostess is not busy in the kitchen and can actually interact with the guest.
Keep the decor simple and clean, but do not skimp out on the little details such as special napkins, lighting, floral arrangements and name cards. These details, though simple, really sets the stage for the party and shows that the hostess went above and beyond having some friends over. Even if hosting a sporting event, like we do here for the Kentucky Derby, still include a theme to the decor that is simple and clean. This makes the party feel extra special!
4. Make your guest feel welcome
This goes from greeting your guest as soon as they arrive to playing fun music that sets the tone of the night. Of course a drink in hand as soon as a guest arrives doesn't hurt either. Also make sure to have small appetizers for guest to munch on. Nothing ruins a party like hungry people and not all of us eat at a set time so make sure there are lots of treats for people to indulge on while they wait for the main dish.
5. Send Invites
Yes, send actual paper with a stamp invites to functions that are more than a few friends getting together. Do not send an email invite or other social media invite. And do not expect to get all the RSVPS back. It's okay. People have the invites and if the gathering is small you can touch base with them a week at the latest to discuss their attendance.