For many students, Greek life is one of the best parts of college. Fraternity and sorority events play a big role in that! Those sorority girls seem to have this party planning thing down, but your fraternity may need a little help if Pinterest and #crafting aren’t really your style. We’ve got you covered! These few tips and tricks will help you throw the perfect fraternity party, whatever the occasion.
First Things First
Whether you’re planning your annual formal, a fundraiser for your philanthropy, or just throwing a good old-fashioned weekend fraternity party, picking a theme is a good place to start. Consider the type of function when choosing a theme, as a black-tie-event will require a more formal atmosphere than a casual Saturday night party. Popular theme ideas include tacky Christmas sweaters, rhyming costumes (for you and a date), or an All-American theme. Whatever the occasion, don’t forget to notify all guests about the dress code so there aren’t any odd men out.
Another crucial first step is picking a date for your event. Check your calendars, talk to other fraternities and sororities, and try to avoid throwing your party on the same day as other major events. Some events, like Homecoming or Parents’ Weekend, will have unavoidable overlaps but do your best to select a date with the least conflict for your potential guests. Make an event on Facebook to invite guests. That way, others will be less likely to plan events on that same day. You can also use this page to get your guests excited about your event and make any necessary announcements!
Now that you’ve chosen a theme, it’s time to find a venue to host it all! Depending on the type of event, you may want to just set up camp in your chapter’s house. But if not, there are plenty of other choices. For formal events, hotel ballrooms or a local country clubs can be great spaces for your function. If you’re aiming for a more casual atmosphere, consider renting out a bar for the night. Take your guest list into account, as an open invitation event will call for a bigger space than a private party or a mixer with a set guest list. Also remember, if you’re going off campus you’ll need to set up transportation. Consider hiring a car service (party bus, anyone?) in your area if you don’t have any pledge “volunteers” to help you out.
Food & Drink
Depending on the event, you may want to provide food and drink for your guests. If so, decide what type is appropriate for the function. A cocktail party will only require light hors d’oeuvres or appetizers, while a black-tie-event may call for a sit down dinner. The formality of the event will determine the type of food to be served. Hiring a caterer is an easy way to check that off your list.
For drinks, having a cash or open bar is a great addition to most events and often you can book a bartender through the same company you choose to cater! If your venue does not supply it already, don’t forget to provide some sort of seating for your guests.
Choosing the entertainment for your fraternity party is one of the most important parts of planning the event and can also be the most fun. Booking a band or DJ for your function always makes for a good time and you can even find music that corresponds with your theme! If you’re planning a fundraiser for your philanthropy, hiring a speaker can really take it to the next level. You may want to hire a photographer to capture all special moments from the amazing party you’ve thrown! To check out more local college entertainment options, visit GigSalad.
Now that you’ve planned a fantastic event, send your guests home with something to remind them of what a great time they had with your chapter! Having custom cups, t-shirts, or koozies made for the event are great keepsakes for you and your guests. Giving something away also gets your fraternity’s name out there for all your future events.
Now that you’ve got the tools to plan a successful party, go forth and conquer! And if you get stuck along the way, GigSalad is always here to help.