Jan 29, 2018

How to Host a Party for the Big Game on a Budget

how to host a party

The Big Game is right around the corner and we're here to help you plan a killer party while staying within your budget. Check out the tips below and make sure to follow Hughes on Facebook to let us know if you used any of this advice.

Only provide the basics: 

A "semi-potluck" is a great way to stay within your budget and still have enough variety for everyone to enjoy themselves at your party! Let your guests know that you'll be providing the "main meal." Whether it be delicious homemade pizzas, an inexpensive take-out option like a Hot N Ready from Little Caesars or a big pot of chili made the night before, just make sure that your main dish is substantial. A week or two beforehand, pass around a potluck sheet or start a group text to see what everyone can bring as "side snacks". Use this list of over 100 recipes from Delish.com for inspiration. 

Look for deals: 

The big game is a great time to hit up your favorite grocery store or restaurants looking for deals. Also remember that there are amazingly priced items that will add to your party right under your nose. Like to stick to classic finger foods? Check out this link for over 30 affordable deviled egg recipes! If 100% homemade isn't your thing, look for restaurants that have special offers on takeout orders during the big game or coupons that are only valid on February 4, 2018. Like this one for $10 off your $40 purchase at BJ's

Opt for more affordable ingredients: 

Yes, boneless skinless chicken breasts might be what this nacho recipe calls for, but opting for bone-in thighs could save you some serious cash. This small adjustment might not be something you think of while shopping but check out this post on the price of chicken from cheapest to most expensive and your mind will be set on the less expensive options. Unfortunately for your budget, one of the most expensive items on the list is chicken wings (sad face). For this party, consider ditching the traditional wings and make this recipe instead! 
Looking for one of the most affordable, versatile, perfect party snack? Try POPCORN! This classic sweet or savory treat is low cost and so easy to dress up. Click here for more than a dozen ways to "doctor up" a basic bag and serve in a variety of bowls around the party so people are always snacking. 

Store brand vs. name brand: 

Look, no one is going to notice the difference. There are even a few generic items that people prefer over the name brand counterpart (hello, tater tots). Store brand items can also be a life saver when purchasing disposable utensils, plates or cups. Speaking of cups, don't forget to have a sharpie (here's a 2 pack for less than $5 for Amazon Prime users) near the drink station to encourage your guests to keep track of their beverages. This will help reduce waste and clean up. 

DIY games: 

Sure the football game will be on, but there might be people at your party who are just there for the social bits and of course, the food. Print out some downloaded game sheets to keep guests entertained if football isn't their thing. Super Bowl Commercial Bingo is a great option. These games should be free, fun and lighthearted. 

At the end of the day, the most important part of a big game party is, well, the football game. Even if you have nothing but a bag of chips, it's the tradition of the big game that people hold most dear. Make sure the game is at the forefront of your planning by checking the start time and verifying your television channels. A lot of people might be streaming the game in 2018 so make sure your Wi-Fi connection is strong. Remember to check that the subscription service you're using is active and minimize any mistakes by testing out the streaming quality a day or two beforehand.