Hosting a gathering takes some time and prep work. When done smartly, a gathering at home can be cost-effective and fun. Whether it’s a child’s birthday party, or an adults-only casino night, planning an unforgettable party isn’t as difficult as it sounds.  By following four simple steps, you don’t need to be a professional party planner to host a memorable event.

Invite the Right People

The guest list is always the first place to start when planning a party. The number dictates what you serve to eat, games, seating and more.  Always take into consideration the space you have selected to host the party.  It may be a little silly to use your entire backyard when you only have 10 guests or uncomfortable to hold a large group in small quarters.  Once you determine the number and appropriate location try to have invitations out to guests at least one month prior to the date to ensure they save room on their calendars.

Come Up with a Theme

Come up with an overarching angle for your party that will impact everything from the menu to what people wear when they arrive. Include the theme in your decorations and fun activities and you will have a party everyone talks about for years.  When the party ends, make sure everyone leaves with a special themed party favor. There are great ideas online and many that you can create yourself.

Serve Fun Food

When coming up with what you serve, always consider the time of day the party will be held.  If it is during a meal time, plan to serve a full lunch or dinner.  If you are hosting between meals, go for finger foods and healthy snack options. Try to include at least a few fun snacks that can be served to go along with your party theme.

Plan Engaging Activities

Don’t just expect your guests to have a good time on their own. You’re the one hosting, so you should have plenty of ideas on how to keep everyone happy and engaged. While always keeping the theme in mind, try to select 2-3 games and entertainment for the guests. Come up with plenty of options for guests that may have varying personalities. You can time the activities or allow guests to wander from one to the next on their own timeline. Having both online poker games for the digitally savvy as well as a physical casino table will give your guests options on how they would like to play.

Don’t forget to start with building a guest list and finding a location that fits your party size.  Help make the party unforgettable by sticking to a theme throughout the event. When building your menu, try to offer a variety of options to ensure everyone can enjoy the food.  Lastly, don’t forget to have a few fun activities planned for your guests and your home party will be the talk of the town!