Page 28 - Valley Table - Summer 2022
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                                how to throw a
 If you haven’t hosted a get together since 2019, you may be a bit out of practice. These tips from local pros will help you elevate your event without a ton of effort.
by michelle hainer
IF THERE’S ONE TRIED AND true tip to hosting a successful soirée, it’s this: “Outsource what you don’t enjoy,” says Heather Bullard, owner of Tuxedo Park Events in Tuxedo Park. If you don’t like to bake, Bullard suggests ordering dessert from a local bakery. If you want to focus on your entrée, pick up premade apps. Don’t feel like you have to do everything yourself.
That said, unless you’ve hired a caterer or an event planner, there are several tasks you’ll need to take on. We asked professional party planners for ideas on how to organize a fete
that friends and family (and even you!) will love.
Plan ahead. “The stress happens when you leave too much to do on the
day of your party,” says Bullard, who starts making lists 4–6 weeks before an event and spreads the work out over that time. It also helps to create
a theme right away, which will give your get together a clear direction.
As you begin gathering décor, set aside a designated area to stow it, suggests Michaele Lehman, innkeeper at Elmrock Inn and events manager
at Harvest Real Food Catering in Stone Ridge, so everything is easily accessible when you need it.
Pick a playlist. Once you have a theme, it should be easy to select tunes to compliment it, using Spotify or Apple Music. (Or for fancier events, go for live music and hire a duo, like a singer and guitar player.)
Stick to a seasonal menu. “A lot
of great meals begin at the farmers market,” says Shawn Hubbell, a chef and owner of Amuzae Local Harvest
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