Posted: November 16, 2017 at 4:50 pm
We still have one week left to prepare ourselves for Thanksgiving, but FRIENDSgiving, if you’re us, is actually happening in TWO DAYS. We like to kick-off the unofficial holiday season by hosting a Friendsgiving Potluck Feast so all of our friends can gather before heading out of town or into a busy week of family commitments, and it’s been a smashing success for the past five years. However, it does mean that our holiday prep needs arrive very quickly. With that in mind, here are our top five tips for pulling off a fabulous Friendsgiving, straight from a (five year at least) veteran.
Divide and conquer
Yes, potluck means your guests will have to do a little bit of the work, but everyone will be happier for it. Use an electronic invitation site like Paperloss Post, Evite or Facebook to send out invitations in a way that allows everyone to post what they’ll bring. That way you can avoid a gluttony of sweet potatoes but not a mashed in the pack. (We speak from experience on this.) Plus, the host or hostess can focus their attention on the turkey or main course, and getting the venue in order. Also, this allows you to avoid stressing about dietary restrictions. A guest with a gluten allergy can simply bring a dish that’s compatible with his or her diet to ensure something’s on the buffet for them.
Make it a buffet
This may seem obvious, but in the hustle and bustle of a fun holiday party, you might find yourself making plates for people. Find a space, or set up a table where platters of food can live, and send everyone there to serve themselves. Chances are, if you have a crowd, you
Depending on how large your crew is, we recommend using as many disposable products as you can. We realize this isn’t very green, but when our crowd grew to 20+, we didn’t even have enough dishes to serve everyone. You can find pretty, festive paper plates, plastic cups, plastic wear and napkins in any party store these days, and we think it’s worth it. Plus, you won’t be needing to run the dishwasher several times throughout the evening, and that saves some energy, right?
Keep it simple
When it comes to stocking the bar, keep things simple. Offer a single option each of red and white wine, have a beer at the ready, and maybe some champagne depending on how festive you like it. Don’t stress too much about a full bar–you don’t need to be mixing drinks while trying to play hostess too. Make it as simple as possible, and set up an area where people can serve themselves wine and drinks so you can just point them in the right direction.
Prepare for the aftermath
You’re probably going to have leftovers. Lots of leftovers. Send willing guests home with them, but make sure you are capable of doing so by stocking up on those cheap, reusable disposable containers. You can buy a bunch on the cheap, so you won’t have to obsess over having them returned, and you won’t need to spend an hour playing refrigerator Tetris to store everything in your (likely) already over-crowded unit. Plus, a container of yummy leftovers makes for an awesome favor. Also, don’t forget to send everyone home with their home platters–it will help ensure you don’t get stuck washing and returning a dozen pretty pieces of Pyrex or Le Creuset.
We hope everyone has a wonderful Friendsgiving! If you have your own favorite tips for hosting large Thanksgiving gatherings, share with us in the comments!