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Invitations For A Party

Aug 17, 2007
We are having a retirement party and inviting everyone over for drink and appetizers. Afterwards, we plan to go to a local restaurant but expect the guests to pay for themselves - what would be a clever way of wording this? A popular term is "Dutch Treat" which means everyone pays their own way. When you use the word "invite" it denotes that you will be treating...so avoid that when it comes to the dinner.

So you could invite them for a "cocktail reception" to celebrate the retirement and then add "we would love it if you joined us for a Dutch Treat dinner at, etc".

Ask for them to let you know if they will be 1. attending the reception, 2. attending the dinner. 3. cannot attend.

Also, if you do not hear back be sure to follow up and be sure they received their invitation. Sometimes, those things get lost in the delivery or shuffle of mail stacks.

How do you ask that people pay for their dinner when the party is held at a restaraunt? That would be a "no host" dinner. You could offer appetizers, soft drinks, wine or beer and then have guests pay for their main dinner. Throw in cake or dessert as the host.

Depending upon the amount of people and how close these people are to you could just call them.

So you would say,

"We are organizing a party for John at La Casita Restaurant, Wednesday, October 14 at 6 p.m.
6-7 Cocktail hour (Appetizers served)
7-9 No Host Dinner
9-1 Celebratory Dessert
Call to let us know:

Will come for Cocktails ________
Will come for Dinner ________
Will come for Dessert _______

Something like that...If you are not providing anything like appetizers and dessert I would not call it an invitation. The word Invitation denotes that the host is treating to something.

That sort of gathering would only need a postcard saying,"We are gathering for a Dutch Treat dinner to celebrate John's birthday." Date, Time, etc. and phone number to call to RSVP Yes or No.

You are better off spending less money on invitations and decorations, etc. and treat folks to coffee and dessert (for those who do not want to have dinner)

How do I say on the invitations that I don't want the guests to bring gifts. I would like them to each bring a scratch ticket. Just say, "How Lucky Can I Get???" As a birthday gift and wish I would love to have you bring me a scratch-off ticket. I'll split my winnings with you!"

That is a lot of fun and it is a good way to minimize the guests anxiety about "not" bringing a gift. That is always a little uncomfortable for some.

I'm planning an outdoor party and I need to know how soon the invitations should be mailed and how many days before the party should I ask for the RSVP? You should send the invitations out 6-8 weeks before the party...and definitely 8 weeks if it is a holiday weekend! People make plans early, and they want to finalize their calendars. If you're arranging for a caterer, you should get the RSVPs around 10 days prior so you have time to call the stragglers. Most likely, you'll caterer will want a preliminary number about a week out and you can modify it about 2-3 days before.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert commentator at http://www.CustomDesignPostcards.com/. Visit us when you need to make custom designed holiday, gift, and invitation cards, as well as business cards and brochures. We are the only design utility that lets you download the print-ready images!
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