So you had big St. Patrick’s Day party plans at a friend’s house, but at the last minute, said friend calls and says “guess what? I won a vacation to the Caribbean! I’m outta here!” After getting over your initial jealousy (seriously??? you entered like 500 times, she entered ONCE!), you think, “well great, there goes our plans!” The rest of your friends and family are totally bummed too. Your sister, who thinks you’re a total genius at party planning, says “why not just have it at your house!” You’re caught by surprise and somehow agree that this sounds like a brilliant idea.
Then reality hits. Suddenly, you realize you have to cook, clean and decorate for twenty friends plus all their kids, not to mention come up with ways to keep everyone entertained! You’re in luck, because I happen to be pretty darn good at planning parties on the fly! Mind you, as a strange sort of extroverted introvert (that’s totally a thing, I just learned it this week!), I don’t actually like hosting them, but I do LOVE the planning part! We even have most of the tools you’ll need right here on OurFamilyWorld, so you don’t have to go far! Ready? Let’s start planning that last-minute St. Patrick’s Day party!
Last-minute St. Patrick’s Day Party Planning
Every good party needs three things to be totally successful: food, entertainment and a few decorations to set the mood. Let’s start with the food, shall we? This post contains a few affiliate links, particularly in the decor section. WE earn a commission if you make a purchase!
St. Patrick’s Day party food
My last-minute party planners, you are SO in luck, because we pulled together five awesome St. Patrick’s Day meal ideas for large families. Just double the recipes and you have enough food for your party! Another idea: go the appetizer-only route. This is a great way to cut down on the amount of time you spend in the kitchen (not to mention the cost of food). Trust me, guests can fill up just as easily on appetizers as they can on a big meal. Check out our favorite holiday appetizers. While the post was written for Christmas, it works for any party. If you have kids at the party (or even if you don’t!), whip up these oh-so-cute St. Patrick’s Day cupcakes!
Entertainment for your St. Patrick’s Day party
Finding entertainment for your St. Patrick’s Day party is as easy as making a great playlist of songs on your iPod and positioning furniture to allow for both dancing and conversation. I say don’t stop there, though! Check out our St. Patrick’s Day party games for adults and let the good time roll! They’re all alcohol-free, by the way, so you’ll actually remember the party the next day!
Speaking of, when you’re planning your party and deciding whether to serve alcohol, think about this: do you want all your guests to go home when the party ends? St. Patrick’s Day has a reputation of being a drinking holiday. As a 1/2 Irish girl, that stereotyping annoys me. If you want to serve alcohol, please make sure you have designated drivers on hand to deliver people home safely or be ready to open your couch to those who don’t have a sober way home. Honestly, that’s the most important thing you’ll do as you plan a last-minute St. Patrick’s Day party.
So what about the kids? If you’re planning a family party and inviting the mini mes along, you’ll need something for them to do too. Kids don’t want to sit around and listen to adults talk all night. BORING! I recommend grabbing a bunch of fun Irish-themed movies for them to watch in another room. You’ll also need some games for them to play, because movies only occupy kids for so long. For the little ones, plan a few of our favorite St. Pat’s Day party games for kids. If you have teenagers, we have great teen party games for them as well over at My Teen Guide! Bonus points if you can get the teens to orchestrate the games for the little ones. Give them a pot of gold (or, you know, a few bucks) to get them on board for babysitting duty.
St. Pat’s Party Decor
Here’s a secret: you don’t have to go nuts with green decor to have a festive St. Patrick’s Day party atmosphere. If you’re going with the truly last-minute (as in no time to order online route), you can whip up your own decorations pretty quickly. Even if you do order, these are really nice extras. One of my favorite crafts from My Teen Guide is this super simple yet elegant St. Patrick’s Day Irish bunting banner.
Another great idea: enlist the kids to help you whip up decor with these 11 easy St. Pat’s Day crafts for kids. You can also use these craft ideas to keep kids busy during the party. Prefer to go the store-bought route? Start at your local Dollar Tree. They have an insane selection of decor for every holiday. It’s always my first stop. Another stellar idea: go with St. Patrick’s Day home decor that you can reuse year after year. That way, you’re not just tossing it after the party.
If you do have time to order, Birthday in a Box is one of my favorite online shops for ordering party supplies. Check out a few of my favorite decorations for St. Pat’s Day.
St. Patrick’s Day Clover Party Standard Tableware Kit Serves 8: Grab a few sets of these to give your party an instant St. Pat’s day look without going overboard on the green. Throw a green or gold table cloth over the table and a few streamers, and you’re set!
St. Patrick’s Day Balloon Bouquet :Balloons also make a big statement for very little investment. They ship flat (obviously), so you’ll either have to invest in a small helium tank or head to your local grocery store, dollar store or florist to get them blown up.
Gold Foil Favor Boxes: If you’re planning on giving out prizes or sending guests home with party favors, these gold foil boxes are perfect for stuffing full of small treats or candy. Forget the pot of gold coins, bring on the gold bricks!
With these tips and a little imagination, you can plan a last minute St. Patrick’s Day party that totally impresses without losing your mind. As for that friend in the Caribbean, who’s jealous now? Well, me. I’m still jealous. But hey, at least you’ll have an amazing party to console yourself with!