How to Entertain Guests

Looking after guests can be a complicated issue - sometimes even an art. What do you say? How do you act? What should you do? Awkward silences and tense conversations can often ruin a special occasion.

However, there is one secret to keeping your guests happy - keep them entertained. Entertained guests are happy, content and lighten up the atmosphere. Still, everybody is entertained in different ways, and putting entertainment and guests into one special event can be difficult and stressful at times. If you're tired from the politics of making a special event enjoyable, then stress no more. Whether it's a birthday party, an office party, a house-warming party or any other event, this is the ultimate guide to the effortless and easy entertainment of your guests.


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    Use the largest space available to throw your party. Use the largest room, if you're having the party at your house. This may not be the most entertaining space, but the most important thing is the size of the venue. Large and airily spacious rooms make the place seem large and are much better than crammed tight spots. You can bring party items into the room, like a means of playing music, a table for the food and places for people to sit, play games, and dance! Opening the curtains and the windows (if the weather permits) is another way of setting the right atmosphere.
    • If you're hosting an event indoors, make sure the venue is clean. Put some hours aside to get to work and make sure your venue is sparkling. Sweep; dust; vacuum; scrub; a clean environment makes an event that much more pleasant.
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    • If you would rather not use the inside of your home - and if you have a large enough garden - you could host a garden party or a barbecue.
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    Provide drinks and food. Be sure to ask your guests if they have any dietary restrictions or allergies when issuing invitations to the event, and adjust or add to your menu accordingly. Provide food and drink that everybody would like - you don't want to fork out for a long menu and then have one or two people just picking at it. It's best to choose the basic foods and then tweak them according to your guests' tastes and dietary restrictions. Make sure the food is of good quality and is attractively presented, as great meals are one of the easiest ways to please your guests.
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    Play music. Music will add to the atmosphere and get people in the right mood. Choose music that everyone will like - not extreme genres of musical taste. Hire a disk jockey, or if you keep music on your computer, bring it into your entertaining room so people can choose what they want to hear (Vista, for example, has a great party feature in Media Player). If you know your guests' musical tastes, then select some albums or tracks that you know a lot of them will like. If there's going to be dancing, make sure that there are some great tunes for dancing available. Try to create a playlist that suits your desired atmosphere.
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    Provide party games, and if you don't have your own, buy or borrow fun games like Twister, video games, or even dance mats like the ones in the arcade. Just remember to keep things simple - the simpler the party game is, the easier it is for people to get enthusiastic and competitive. Games that require groups of people and are fun, easy and energetic are the perfect type - try to provide games that tap into the competitive spirit.
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    Introduce your friends to each other, if you are entertaining groups of friends from different areas of your life. If you are inviting friends from work as well as friends you know from school or college, for example, then understand that you should make them all feel as comfortable as possible. If the crowd is large, then you could supply name tags, but if it is a small group, then introduce each of them to each of the others. If guests aren't introduced to each other, a lot of them will restrict themselves to groups and the event will not be as pleasant [1]. Mingle, introduce those who you think will get on with each other, and ensure that anybody who looks lonely is chatting to someone soon.
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    Talk to everyone. Thank your guests when they arrive and take their coats if applicable. Listen to what they have to say - try to use little indicators like "I see;" and "That's interesting;" to indicate that you are paying attention and that your mind isn't wandering, which will seem rude. Pay a few minutes of personal attention to each and every guest; if there are too many people, then talk to groups so they'll feel included and happy. Prepare to mingle, talk, listen and party!


  • Stay calm, even if disaster strikes. If there are setbacks or something bad happens, smooth it over with a smile, a laugh and a cool collected manner. Your mood affects those of your guests; if you're happy and relaxed, chances are they will be too.
  • Attend to your guests. It's rude to invite people and then ignore them, so make sure that everyone seems happy and relaxed. It's your duty as the host/hostess to make sure everyone's needs are catered for. If someone needs to go to the bathroom, show them the way. If someone looks lonely, introduce them to some nice people.
  • Giving small gifts like party bags to your guests will make the event fun, pleasant and altogether more memorable.
  • Theme your event. It could be fancy dress like "Vicars and Tarts", Sixties, Surf 'n' Turf, t-shirts and shorts, superheroes, celebrities, a themed colour for costumes or have a particular piece of clothing, like a hat - make it as silly or as strange as you like. Themes help bring an event together and get people into the mood.
    • Be sure to indicate the theme on your invitations - if nothing is specified, you can expect people to arrive in smart-casual attire (a smart shirt or blouse) and comfortable trousers.
  • Enjoy a get together with friends, by organising a 'chip in' party, where each friend brings either food, drinks or a dessert.


  • Consider the weather if your event is being held outside. You can buy or borrow patio heaters for colder months and a gazebo in case it rains.
  • Inform your neighbours of when your event will take place (they may even join your party). Warn them if there will be loud music or if it will be outside in your garden, and about the extra parking spaces that may be needed.
    • If you are hosting a barbecue, be sure to inform them of the smoke so they can close any windows that will be in the vicinity (it might be a good idea to avoid this situation by placing the barbecue further down your garden away from the houses).

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Categories: Parties