Hosting a Fab Awards Show Party

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By Ted Allen

I never need an excuse to host a party, but awards season just screams celebration.  All your favorite stars are getting together to celebrate the evening so why shouldn’t you. And they are certainly giving you endless things to talk about.The options for awards show parties range from a casual night of TV to a celebrity-inspired bash.

HOLLYWOOD GLAM:

  • Decorate your place in gold, white and black—stick to basic white plates and dress it up with the sparkle of gold accessories. Use lots of tea lights set on mirrored trays to make the room sparkle. I recently spray painted a plant gold. It’s so easy (and affordable!) to take ferns, branches or different flowers/plants and spray paint them gold to give a cool metallic hint.
  • This type of glam celebration requires small bites. Here are a few food ideas: trio of crostini (white bean puree, olive tapenade, oven-dried tomatoes), oysters served with mignonette, and blue cheese stuffed dates wrapped in prosciutto.  If you want to really go glam bash, serve deviled eggs with caviar garnish.  Only a tiny bit will give you the taste, but not cost a fortune.
  • For dessert—defy Hollywood and indulge.  Make assorted chocolate truffles and pack them in small gold boxes (any craft store will have them).  You can put the boxes on white cake stands to make a centerpiece on your table.  Also, serve my brownies in tiny little bites.
  • Rent of movie projection to show the show—they are easy to hook-up to your TV and you can project the show onto a wall.  It’s a chic way to have the TV on without having people standing around staring at a screen.
  • Serve lots of sparkling wine, like Woodbridge Sparkling or Ruffino Prosecco, in champagne flutes. Remember, everyone has a budget so don’t go crazy with real champagne, stick to a sparkling so that there’s plenty to go around.

  • Oh, and P.S. … make sure you are clear with your friends that this is more of a party —less viewing the show.  You don’t want any unhappy customers.

 

RETRO MOVIE THEATHER:

  • Capture the old movie theater feel and go a little retro for a more intimate affair.
  • Set out white or black lacquer trays with classic popcorn containers. You can order them from Amazon or other online sources, like Plum Party.  But for an unexpected twist, fill them with a more gourmet popcorn than the movie type. I have a recipe for truffle popcorn. You make a basic popcorn and grate Parmesan and drizzle with truffle butter.  But if you don’t want to make it, there are so many fabulous kinds on the market.
  • Movie Snack Pack: Put together individual homemade snack packs for everyone with movie-inspired savory and sweet treats and an empty wine glass for guests to fill up throughout the evening.
  • Get multiple bottles of the same red and white. Find something affordable and delicious like Robert Mondavi Private Selection Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot.

 

BALLOTS:

  • Ballots are universal must at your Oscar, Golden Globes or SAG party.  There are so many great printables online if you wish to use them.
  • Have everyone place their bets for winners of each category and whoever guesses the most correct winners, wins a gift package of wine.
  • You could also raise the states by setting up a betting bracket, just like the Super Bowl host of pool. People will win points for certain things (actresses who cry, winners on category). The competition will get everyone talking and engaged in the party.

 

GENERAL TIPS:

  • Create a music playlist to have music going before and after to keep people entertained; this is a good way to incorporate songs and scores from nominated movies.
  • Try not to get caught up making the night cheesy heavily incorporating the movies. Just have fun and do it in a natural way.
  • Create a comfortable viewing room. Remember people are watching TV – and mingling—for hours—but make sure you’ve set up a good room to watch.  Put out floor pillows if seating is limited. Rearrange a little to give more people a view. That’s the whole point right?
  • When to organize: As soon as the nominees are set, you could reach out to your friends.  “The nominees have been picked, now it’s time to party.”
  • Remember, don’t go it alone. You will be the star of the evening for hosting a great party, not for doing it all yourself. Delegate to friends. Let them bring wine or some of the food.

 

Ted Allen is the host of Food Network’s “Chopped” and contributes regularly to the networks show “The Best Thing I Ever Ate.”