We hosted the Mardi Gras party on February 22, 3 weeks before our St. Urho's Day party. The Mardi Gras party was a huge success; we broke the 50-attendee mark for the first time, which was gratifying, yet which also brought its own problems.
We ran out of food and Abita beer halfway through the party. I am mortified at this, but it's what happened. We had staged for our usual attendees numbering 35-40, but we had more show up, and they ate and drank much more than usual. We also had no reserves to back up our offerings. Next time, we'll stage for a larger group of 70-75. That will give enough for 50 attendees plus overage if more come.
We're bringing new ideas to the party next year, too, like making bread pudding instead of pralines. This is for practical reasons as much as it is for aesthetic variety. We can make a pan of bread pudding that will serve 25-30 in itself (we'll make two). That takes less time and effort than pralines, which are a delight but which take a deft hand and a lot of kitchen space.
This party prep bridges into the St. Urho's Day prep, which is helpful. Scheduling multiple parties and events in a tight time frame causes less stress, not more.
St. Urho's Day party prep involves...
--taking down the Mardi Gras decorations
--keeping the purple and green party items out
--using whatever leftover beer and wine are available
--then the same scheduling and planning strategies as for other events.
More to come on these strategies.