How Long Should Your Party Last?
How long do you want the party to last? Once you answer that question then you will know how much time to plan for your party. Some parties need a definite finish time, whereas others don’t. Parties that don’t need a finish time include:
1. Night time parties
3. Dance parties
Parties that do need a finish time include:
1. Parties held at a venue where there is a closing time
2. Children’s birthday parties
3. Cocktail parties
Celebrations and dance parties can go on well into the early hours of the morning. You, as the host, need to set the time limit by your actions at the party, if a finish time wasn’t indicated on the invitation. If you feel it is time to wind up the celebrations and your guests are inclined to stay, you can give them subtle hints by cleaning up and clearing away the food and drinks. However if you haven’t made a definite finish time, some guests may not notice these hints!
Events such as weddings may have a finish time dictated by the venues closing time. Wedding parties can go on for over five hours if the wedding ceremony takes place in the afternoon and the party follows. You need not put a finish time on the invitation; just leave the venue staff to move guests on when it is time to finish. If you are holding the party at your own home, most guests will want to leave once the bride and groom have left the reception.
Children’s parties absolutely need a finish time, especially the younger ones. For children under six, a party length of around two hours is sufficient. In this time you can provide them with games, entertainment, food, drink and birthday cake. They will have been entertained and worn out in this amount of time. If you go any longer the children may be came grumpy and difficult to control. Keep birthday parties for this age group short and sweet! Older children may like a party time of up to three and four hours. Ensure you have enough entertainment ideas to keep them amused for this amount of time. Sleepover parties should have a finish time before lunch the next day. The children will be tired as not much sleeping will have occurred!
Cocktail parties should last for approximately two hours and are sometimes held before events such as the theatre or a concert. Therefore it is wise to set a finish time that will enable the guests sufficient time to get to the after-cocktail event.
As the host, it is up to you to decide the finish time. Make it to suit your needs and the needs of the type of party.