The start of the party is what sets the tone for the rest of the event. Here are my top (simple) tips for getting your party started on the right foot:
1. offer a coat check and/or a gift depository- you'd be surprised how many people don't provide this and it leaves your guests carrying bags and coats while trying to eat, drink + visit.
2. after guests make a deposit at the coat check, have waiters greet them with drinks and hors d' oeuvres. If you're offering up a bar, have waiters at the ready with trays of red wine, white wine, and water. *Don't pre-pour beer - it's best served fresh and cold.
3. the music you start off with sets the initial tone of the party. In most cases we're fans of starting off slower and working in faster/more energetic music as the party progresses.
4. greet your guests. make sure, as the host/hostess, you work the room and thank your guests for attending. This is especially important for a wedding reception.
5. timing is key. If you're hosting an event with significant markers (like toasts, announcements, performances, etc.), make sure that you don't leave your guests waiting...and waiting...Have an emcee make some sort of announcement if there's something to come.
Maybe most importantly, end on a high note. We spend a lot of time explaining to our clients that there is an expiration time on a party. Leave your guests wanting more - and don't let them stick around to watch the breakdown. Cheers!
*Photo from blog.wineenthusiast.com