Planning a picnic, tailgate, gathering, or any type of event that involves 400+ people? Well, not to worry, we have a few tried-and-true tips for making sure your guests have a great time and your event goes off without a hitch.
- First off, call a caterer, this is WAAY too big for you to do alone!
- Simplify your food offerings. While everything sounds good, the more choices you offer, the more complicated things will get, and the more items you’ll most likely end up running out of. If offering multiple “main” dishes, make sure each can serve about 60% of your guests (ex. 250 servings per dish for an event for 400 people)
- Don’t come up short, plan for lots of disposable plates, silverware, cups, and napkins. Many people will take multiple plates, go up for seconds, or just get messy. Don’t leave them high and dry (or covered in food).
- When dealing with a large group of people be sure you have adequate staff for all unseen events that will come up.
- General Portion Sizes: 6-8 oz of protein per person | 12-16oz of beverages per person
- Don’t have too make choices at the bar. A good rule of thumb: 3 choices for beer, 2 choices for white wine, and 1 red wine.
- When serving dairy-based dishes (such as coleslaw or any type of mixed salad) use smaller platters that can be replenished in a quicker manner to ensure your guests are getting the freshest food.
- While setting up your buffet lines, it’s good to plan for about 75-100 people per side (double sided buffets are a great time and space saver!)
- If your guests are coming at the same time, be sure to have foods that are already put together ready (nothing involving condiments–people can take forever putting mustard on their Hot Dogs!–or build-your-own)
- Signage is important to make sure the flow of guests is smooth. Do they know where to go to get drinks? Is it clear that these crackers are supposed to be paired with this cheese? Is this platter Vegan-friendly?
- Be strategic in your placement of trashcans, more is always better!
- If you would like an eco-friendly event, set up recycling “centers” at the trash cans for different types of waste (paper, cans/bottles, food, etc). Be sure to clearly mark the different bins, or even have a staff member stationed there to help your guests.
If you have any other questions for you large event, we’re happy to help!