10 Easy Super Bowl Party Tips

300-footballBy Michelle Lynn Buckley –

Let’s be honest. If it came down to bare essentials, you could have a successful Super Bowl party with a big screen television, a bowl of chips and a room of pals. But, wouldn’t it be nice to bump it up to the next level and be the party of the year? Here are the top 10 tips for a touchdown of a time.

1. Send Invites. Send these out early. As soon as you say “go” on the party being at your place, send out a “save the date” text, email or tweet.

2. Prepare Ahead. Everyone knows the stress of that early guest ringing the doorbell when you’re sweeping the floor and moving furniture. Don’t let that happen! Make sure to prepare ahead of time. That means clean the house, set out chairs, place serving platters out on the table or counter – do everything but bring out the food. This will greatly reduce your stress and make sure that you are ready to go before the pre-game coverage starts.

3. Add Décor. What separates a dime-a-dozen party from a memorable one? Décor! Bring in the big guns and make it festive. Skip balloons and go for linens and tissue poms in team colors. Linens are easily rented, and you can make your own poms. No need for candles or flowers. This is a football game, not a wedding! Banners are also a great addition.

4. Spice up Pools. Half of the Super Bowl fun is the accompanying pools! Make it even more exciting for guests by buying a couple of prizes, such as a bottle of whiskey or movie passes, for the big winner at the party. Put them on display so people know what they’re playing for.

5. Beverage Diversity. Most guests will be in beer mode, so have iced tubs ready to go. Make sure you have plenty of options available, including a non-alcoholic punch, lemon-lime infused water and soft drinks. To up the ante, create a signature drink with a football name to greet guests upon arrival and get them in the game mood.

6. Team Menus. Make the menu planning easy, and base it on the hometown of the teams. If you have a little extra in the budget, consider contacting your favorite local restaurant and see if they could deliver some of your favorite dishes in party form.

7. Babysitter. Your friends will think you’re an absolute genius! Hire a babysitter from a certified agency who will provide games and fun for the younger kids who haven’t quite developed a love of the game yet. Kid-proof a room in your house and let guests know that their kids are welcome, and they can sit back and enjoy the party.

8. Favors. Yes, it is enough to feed guests, but it’s that much nicer when you send them home with something. It doesn’t have to break the bank, but a football cookie for the ride home, a keychain or a beer koozie are wonderful “thank you for coming” gifts. Place in a bowl by the door, and you’re good to go!

9. Photo Booth. You’ll really impress guests and give them a memento in photo form by setting up your own photo booth. Clear an area near the front door and hang a colorful cloth, a banner or even streamers to create a backdrop. Encourage guests to mug for the camera when they arrive. Add a helmet and football for props, and watch the fun begin!

10. Dessert. Sweets are a must for any party. Consider setting up a candy display in team colors. Bake cookies and cupcakes to set out during half-time when guests will start craving sugar. Think easily accessible, handheld sweets for less stress on your part.