With the holidays right around the corner, it’s time to start planning your annual celebration. Whether you’re throwing a party for your friends, family or coworkers, you can save yourself some hassle this holiday season with these event-planning tips. Everyone is short on time during the holidays so simplify your schedule this year by getting a head start on all the details. Maximize the fun and start planning the ultimate celebration today!

Lock Down the Date Early

Finding a date that works for everyone on your guest list isn’t always easy. That’s why it’s important to set the date as early as possible. Give your friends, family and coworkers an early notice, so everyone can start organizing their schedules and making any necessary travel arrangements. If you’re throwing an office Christmas party, weeknights tend to be the best choice. People are usually accustomed to spending the weekends with their families. If you have a couple of key guests on your list, make sure that you clear the date with them as soon as possible. You can also maximize your party’s turnout by avoiding the busiest weeks of the year. Try aiming for mid-December or a few days after New Years.

Save Time and Make It a Potluck

If you’re running short on time, you can give yourself a break by asking everyone to bring a dish or a beverage. You’re the host; you shouldn’t feel pressured to do everything yourself. Turning your party into a potluck will also lead to some exciting flavor combinations. Give your guests plenty of advance notice that you’d like them to bring something. Even if someone brings a couple of extra bottles of wine, an appetizer, or a dessert, that’s one less thing that you have to worry about!

Tarpy's Roadhouse

Mix Up the Guest List

You can liven things up by inviting some new faces to the party. Having a friend stop by your family holiday party can create some interesting social dynamics. You can also encourage your guests to bring a friend or a significant other. Make things clear for your guests right from the start. When you send out invitations, add a note that says, “Plus-ones are more than welcome!”

40 oz. Prime Ribeye Steak at Montrio Bistro

Get Out of the House

Hosting a party in your house is usually a stressful affair. First of all, you have to clean thoroughly before your guests arrive. And there’s always a chance that someone breaks something of value. You can take some of the responsibility off of your shoulders by hosting your party at a venue nearby. The staff will help you make all the arrangements and you won’t have to worry about cleaning up after all the festivities are over.

Select a venue that will really wow your guests! In the Monterey area, you can reserve a room at one of the many high-end restaurants nearby. Tarpy’s Roadhouse, Montrio Bistro, and Rio Grill offer elegant private dining rooms, courtyards with lush gardens, and much more. They even have event professionals that can help you manage all the details.

Tarpy's Roadhouse

Santa Fe Room at Rio Grill

So, start planning early to make the most of this special time of year and give your holiday guests a night to remember!