Tips For Throwing an Outdoor Party in the Fall

September 19, 2019 by Grand Central Party

Outdoor entertaining is something most of us do during the summer, but what about during the fall? Think about it—cooler weather (perfect for a cozy fire), fewer insects, and less conflict with your guests’ vacation plans. If you want to throw a party, we’ve got some great tips to help you plan the perfect outdoor autumn bash:

Lights. It will be getting darker earlier, so you’ll want to figure out a lighting solution before your event. Even if your party starts earlier in the day, an event where people are truly enjoying themselves will often go into the evening hours. That’s a compliment to you as the host! Be ready to party at any hour using string lights, Mason-style jar luminaries, and other lighting solutions that will light up your night. 

Fire. Sitting around a fire during autumn is one of the best things about the season. It’s also one of our favorite fall party ideas, since it hits all the high points—warmth, light, and atmosphere—all must-haves at any get-together.

Drinks. Every party can be enlivened by a signature drink, so spend some time creating fun beverages that will be unique for your event. Hot toddys are always popular, as well as anything involving apples. Scotch is also a great drink for fall weather. 

Games. Your party may be a family-friendly event, and if that’s the case, having games that kids can play will be a must-have. (Although honestly, most adults will love to jump into a game of cornhole themselves). Lawn croquet is tons of fun, and a scavenger hunt can be extremely entertaining for guests of all ages. A pumpkin-carving contest might be a good idea for your crowd, or if you don’t want to see your crew wielding knives, you can decorate pumpkins instead!

Treats. Nighttime, party, fire, friends, family, S’Mores. They all go together, right? Make sure that your party includes DIY treats like ice cream sundaes, cookies to decorate, or those awesome S’Mores to put together. Treats add an extra bit of fun, as well as connecting and bonding, which is really at the heart of any memorable party. 

Food. You know your crew, so give them what they love. Whether it’s burgers or tacos, barbecue or pizza—make it fun by providing a grill. Ask folks to bring their favorite meats or veggies to throw on—it will be a party with food to remember. Don’t forget local offerings, such as cheeses, bread, honey, and other area specialties. 

Gourds. Use gourds in all your decorating, especially the beloved pumpkin. Having big ones, little ones, and unique versions will make for a special atmosphere for your event.

Tents. The weather during the fall is beautiful, but it can get a bit chilly and wet. Be ready for anything with a tent for your event. You can set up food and dining tables indoors in case the party needs to move, and you’ll be covered no matter what happens. 

Here at Grand Central Party, we have a huge selection of tents perfect for any soiree. We also carry plates, silverware, chairs and tables, and many other items that can help elevate your get-together from a plain old party to an event that will be remembered by all attendees for many years to come. Call us, and let’s get this party started!

 

Things to Consider for Your Fall Wedding

August 22, 2019 by Grand Central Party

Fall is a lovely time of year. The color palette becomes softer, with leaves changing and the sky turning a paler blue than the bright cerulean of summer. Cool breezes are present, and there is even a tiny bit of frost some mornings; all of these things bring a freshness to everyday life, and perhaps even more so for those who are planning on celebrating a fall wedding. 

There are many wonderful things about a fall wedding, and today we are sharing a list of some inspirational ideas for you to consider: 

  • The Fall Color Palette. Major inspiration can be drawn from all the colors of the leaves that will be surrounding you. Halloween and Thanksgiving will be coming up, and all the beauties of the fall landscape are there for you to use: apples, pumpkins and gourds, and colorful leaves, giving you a varied palette of yellows, oranges, browns, and purples, with perhaps a little red or green as a final touch. 
  • The Flowers. Common fall flowers are Asiatic Lilies, Asters, Dahlias, Gladiolas, Roses, and Sunflowers. These lovelies are stunning as garlands, boutonnieres, bouquets and centerpieces. 
  • The Place Settings. Use that fall palette for your place settings, too—tiny pumpkins at each place, leaves drifting down the table, grapevine curling around candlesticks—your tables will be both memorable and beautiful.
  • The Ceremony. A fall wedding will often take place outside, since the weather is usually perfect. Saying vows under a tree that is slowly losing its leaves during the ceremony is simply breathtaking, and additional decorating may not even be necessary. 
  • The Reception. For the after-party, a tent is a great idea. Many styles have sides that can be drawn up, so that guests can enjoy the evening without worrying about being too chilly. Here at Grand Central Party we have tents of all sizes available for our clients that accommodate every wedding celebration imaginable. You can do almost anything with a tent to make it uniquely yours, and we are here to help with our expertise. 
  • The Food. With fall comes an array of foods that we all love and look forward to all year, like cider, pies, and other seasonal comfort food. 

Your wedding is one of the most magical days of your life and here at Grand Central Party, we are dedicated to helping you create an unforgettable and picture-perfect experience. Call us today to start planning your fall wedding. 

Things To Consider When Planning Your Corporate Event

July 25, 2019 by Grand Central Party

Maintaining a personal touch with clients and consumers in your industry is key to building relationships that last, and holding a corporate event is a great way to do just that. You will build meaningful connections, brand recognition, and loyalty through the personal interactions that occur. You’ll also be with people that you might never have gotten the chance to meet otherwise, which will often lead to future business relationships. Email and social media engagement will only go so far. 

Here are some things for you to consider when you’re planning your corporate event: 

  • Location, location, location. Location is one of the most important factors to the attendance at your event. Make sure that you book a venue that will be convenient to your target audience; a vibrant and exciting atmosphere helps, too. You want your attendees to feel comfortable, and you want them to be willing to make the commute. 
  • Shop local. Using local vendors for catering, music, stage setup, and sound is a great way to support the community and help the people in these trades to network and expand their businesses, too. It will also provide you with additional networking opportunities with others in the area. 
  • Know your purpose. Once you decide to host a corporate event, you want to determine exactly what is going to resonate with your target audience. Once you have set the direction for your event, you can contact potential guest speakers who are experts in your chosen industry. This will position your company as a trusted advisor, elevating you above the level of just another vendor. 
  • Make it fun. Offer your attendees the opportunity to have some fun. Being able to hear a famous speaker or band, getting to try new things, or exploring downtown nightlife – the people who come to your event will remember it for years to come if it’s memorable and entertaining. And they won’t forget who the planner and host was, either.
  • Financial planning. Hosting a corporate event is going to require a large budget, and a wise planner will be selective when deciding where to invest that budget. Spend the money on the things that matter, such as making sure the sound team and equipment are on point. It won’t matter that your event is aesthetically pleasing if the sound is terrible. If your event will be out of doors at any point, a wise choice might be to rent tents. This allows any possible weather concerns to become a non-issue. Don’t skimp on food and drinks, either. People always remember that. You want your event to foster trust for your enterprise, and giving people the best of what truly matters will definitely demonstrate that your business gets the job done, and gets it done right. 

Here at Grand Central Party, we’ve been serving Middle Tennessee for nearly 20 years, and we pride ourselves on being planning experts. We can help you plan your corporate event, and with our extensive selection of rentals – from tents and tableware to chairs and lighting – we’ll make sure that your event is a huge success!

Tips to Beat the Heat at Your Summer Party

June 27, 2019 by Grand Central Party

Outdoor parties are one of the best things about summer. Whether it’s a backyard barbecue, a graduation celebration, or a wedding, the beauty of summer simply can’t be matched by any other time of year. However, the heat that accompanies all that natural beauty is often severe and can make any party a miserable affair. There are lots of things we can do to combat the overly-warm temperatures of this time of year, though! 

Here are a few items that can be a big help in beating the heat at your summer party:

  • Fans and air conditioners
  • Cold drinks and treats
  • Water games, such as dunk tanks and slip-n-slides
  • Misters
  • Tents

When it comes to tent rentals, keep a few things in mind. A tent with a clear top will magnify the heat under the tent, while a white or light-colored tent will provide shade and lower temperatures up to 10 degrees. Fans can be attached to your tent to circulate air if your selection doesn’t include side panels, and you can also close the tent with side-walls and use an air conditioner. Misting systems can easily be added, as well, for an added cool benefit. 

If you want to be especially eco-friendly, consider an evaporative cooling system. These are quieter, more energy efficient than regular air conditioners and easy to install. They are ideal for open outdoor spaces, and perfectly suited for hot, dry conditions. Using this kind of unit will keep moisture in the air, and that means comfort. 

Make sure you provide lots of cold or frozen drinks and treats when it is hot outside, even if your guests are going to be inside a tent. If you are serving alcohol, make sure you have plenty of water available since alcohol is dehydrating. 

Water games, such as dunk tanks and water balloon fights, are fun ways to get the best of a hot situation, while adding to happy memories. If your party will include families with children, these kinds of activities are sure to be a huge hit. The photographs that will be taken will be great for social media, too! 

Summer is prime tent rental season, so call us here at Grand Central Party and schedule the perfect tent for your event!

Making A Wedding Planning Checklist

May 30, 2019 by Grand Central Party

The average length of an engagement in the U.S. is 16 months. With this timeframe in mind, we are going to share a comprehensive wedding checklist with you today that we think will be very helpful. The Grand Central Party team wants your day to be absolutely perfect!

16 – 9 months out:

  • Start a wedding binder.
  • Gather inspiration from Pinterest and from magazines that offer ideas for weddings, lifestyle, gardening, design, food, and lifestyles.
  • Establish your budget. Know ahead of time what you have to spend, and don’t forget to include possible family contributions.
  • Pick your wedding party members.
  • Start the guest list. Build a database that you can pull from throughout the process for gifts, RSVPs, contacts, and other relevant information.
  • Hire your wedding planner now, if you are going to use one.
  • Reserve your venues.
  • Book the person who will be officiating.
  • Start researching florists, caterers, photographers, and musicians/DJs.

8 months out:

  • Hire your photographer and/or videographer.
  • Book all entertainment.
  • Hire, and meet with, the caterer.
  • Get your dress. Make sure you allow for several fittings.
  • Reserve hotel rooms for any guests from out of town.
  • Register for gifts.

7 months out:

  • Get invitations, and hire a calligrapher if you won’t have the time or the skill to address them yourself.
  • Start planning your honeymoon. Get passports together, and schedule appointments with doctors for any necessary inoculations.
  • Purchase bridesmaids dresses.
  • Meet with the person officiating. Ensure that you have all necessary documents.
  • Book all necessities for an outdoor event, such as portable toilets, chairs, and lighting.
  • Send your “Save The Date” cards.
  • Book the florist.
  • Transportation. Now’s the time to reserve your limos or towncars.
  • Create your wedding day timeline.

4-5 months out:

  • Reserve your rehearsal dinner venue.
  • Revisit the invitations to ensure they are on schedule.
  • Select your cake and put it on order. Make sure you taste it!
  • Send your guest list to the person who is hosting your wedding shower.
  • Start your wedding dress fittings, and purchase your shoes. You should take the shoes to the fittings to make sure they work together, and so the tailor will know just how long your gown needs to be.
  • Schedule your hair and makeup persons.
  • Choose music. Be clear on when it will be played, and make a note of anything you absolutely do not like.

3 months out:

  • Finalize flowers and menu.
  • Order your wedding favors and welcome baskets.
  • Create a toast list.
  • Finalize the readings for the ceremony.
  • The order of the ceremony and reception should be finalized at this time.
  • If you haven’t already, now’s the time to purchase your rings, giving you time for resizing and engraving.
  • Provide your vendors with an event schedule.

2 months out:

  • Touch base with all of your vendors to ensure that any questions they may have will be answered.
  • Meet with your photographer and walk through the schedule discussing specific shots.
  • Touch base with the band or DJ to review the playlist.
  • Mail your invitations 6 to 8 weeks before the ceremony.
  • Have your bachelorette party! This usually is the job of the maid of honor, but if it hasn’t been mentioned yet, ask.

1 month out:

  • Enter the RSVPs into your database. Now aren’t you glad you created one?
  • Get that marriage license.
  • Mail rehearsal-dinner invitations.
  • Have one last dress fitting.
  • Stock the bar, now that you know who’s coming.
  • Confirm your hair and makeup appointments.
  • Complete your assigned seating plan.
  • Purchase gifts for your bridesmaids.
  • Write your vows, if you are not using the standards.

The week of:

  • Reconfirm vendor arrival times.
  • Delegate small tasks, such as who will help carry your things, who will oversee gifts and money, who can be point-person for the vendors.
  • Provide the bridal party with a timeline.
  • Pick up your dress.
  • Check in with the photographer.
  • It’s manicure and pedicure time.
  • Send the finalized guest list to the caterer and venues.
  • Assemble and distribute the welcome baskets – people are arriving!
  • Break in those shoes.
  • Pack for your honeymoon.

You did it! This list is lengthy, but you can of course remove items when they don’t pertain to your wedding celebrations. Here at Grand Central Party, we want your day to be perfect! Call us for your rental needs.