Fall Dinner Party Menu & Recipes

The colorful autumn landscape and frosty nip in the air this time of year seem to have most people in a cheerful mood after the long hot summer.  Hosting a fun dinner affair may be just the right remedy to recharge and reconnect with your favorite people before the holiday hustle and bustle begins.

Here is one of our favorite fall dinner party menus, along with recipes inspired by the season:

Cocktail Hour
Lemon Gingertini
Apple Cider with Spiced Rum

Hors d’oeuvre
Bacon-Wrapped Scallops

Tuna Crostini

Cheesy Pumpkin Soup

Poached Pear Salad

Apricot Glazed Duck
Roasted Potatoes

Apple-Raspberry Crisp

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Fall Decorating Ideas For the Autumn Season

October and November is the most dynamic time of the fall season as autumnal hues become more spectacular each passing day. It is a month of preparation for the holidays, the impending winter, and the closing of the year.

Fall Decorating Ideas Leaf VotivesPlanning and preparation are two of Rae Lynn’s favorite topics, especially when it comes to entertaining and hospitality. As the outside temperatures dip lower, people are brought indoors together for warmth, food, and fun, which coincidentally is the perfect recipe for a house party. 

Whether you are planning a casual family get-together or to show off gourmet cooking and cocktails, simple autumn-inspired fall decorating ideas will elevate the occasion. These room-by-room themes work well together as a whole-home makeover or as stand-alone projects.

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Three Easy Halloween Party Decoration Ideas

Americans spend over $7 billion preparing for the Halloween holiday, with roughly two-thirds spent on decorative tricks and delectable treats. Halloween Owls Centerpiece What this means to aspiring hosts is that people have a lot of choices when it comes to decorating for Halloween. 

Perfect party planning is always crucial to success, but even more so when you are wanting to stand out from every other Jack on the block. So, does this mean more spending on spectacular displays of phantasmagorical fancy or bust?
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21 Strange and Wonderful Facts about College Team Mascots

Today nothing beats seeing our beloved mascots run out on the field, bringing with them boundless team spirit and the promise of a big win. University of Miami Ibis MascotThat’s true whether they’re costumed characters, animals, vegetables, fruit, a color or even imaginary.

Read on for some fun mascot tidbits...

University of Miami's Mascot
Sebastian the Ibis
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Getting In Gear For Your Tailgate Party - Tailgating Checklist

Most parties take a little organization, but a tailgate party takes planning and then some. After all, you can’t just duck back into your house if you forget the corkscrew.  That’s why it’s important to heed these words from the author A.A. Milne, who wrote one of Rae Lynn’s fave books:   

Florida Gators Tailgating Checklist
Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.  —Winnie the Pooh 

The only things you want mixed up at your tailgate party are the drinks. For everything else, we have a solution: 

Rae Lynn’s Handy-Dandy Tailgate Packing/Decorating/Setting Up Checklist!  
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Top Ten Reasons You Need to Celebrate the German Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest began with a wedding—and what a wedding it must have been. On 12 October 1810, Prince Ludwig married Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. EOktoberfest Germany Entrance Signveryone in Munich was invited to the ceremony and celebration, which included horse races. The horse racing continued the next year, and a tradition was born. 

Of course, it’s the food, drink and party atmosphere that continue today. The Lord Mayor of Munich will tap the first keg of Oktoberfest beer at high noon on 21 September and invite all visitors to quench their thirst. 

Read on for 10 reasons why Rae Lynn celebrates Oktoberfest—and for Oktoberfest party ideas that will make your festivities royal.
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Tailgate Food That Shows Your Team Spirit

Tailgating food often revolves around the predictable: burgers, brats, chips, dips and a choice of beer, beer or beer to drink. Georgia Bulldog Tailgating by Peter Zimmerman But that’s for tailgaters who want to warm the bench. If you want your tailgate party to score big and win fans, you need to step up your game.   

One way to make your football tailgate food a standout is to take your cue from the local food movement sweeping the country. What cuisine reflects your region and your team’s traditions?   
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Seven Ocean-Themed Centerpieces for a Sun- Sand- and Surf-sational Soiree

Some 123.3 million Americans--or 39 percent of the population--live in counties directly on the shoreline. Of course, that means that 60 percent of us are a county away, a state away or half a Ocean Themed Centerpiecescontinent away from the ocean.  
And face it--even if you're nearby--it's always fun to bring a little beach home. 

With the right bits and pieces, you can create your own shoreline scene and invite your friends and family for a beach party. Start with one of these ocean-themed centerpieces for your table, then build on the theme for a sun-, sand- and surf-sational soiree.
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How to Host a Winning Marathon Party

Let's make one thing clear from the start--by Marathon Party, we're not talking about a really long event that lasts for days and leaves you wondering how Gatsby did it. We're talking about a party that supports those crazy people who travel 26.2 miles without ever using a car. 

Even if you, like me, never plan to run or even walk a marathon or half-marathon, we get a lift by supporting the people who do. So if you suddenly find your home on a marathon route, there's only one thing to do:  Throw a party! 

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15 Must-Haves for Your Next Impromptu Party

Ever want to be THAT girl or guy--the one who can throw a fab little soirée at a moment's notice? Trust me, you can be. Impromptu doesn't mean no planning; it just means you're ready at a moment's notice. All you need to do is stock the cupboards, fridge and freezer, throw on a smile and look for an occasion that calls for a spontaneous party.

What occasions call for a party?
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21 Tunes for Your Patriotic Playlist

One of our fave summer holiday is coming up!
If you're like us, you've already started prepping for (or at least thinking about) celebrating our country's 237th birthday party. 

To give you plenty of possibilities for 4th of July music, we're sharing 21 songs we love to listen to while we hoist the flag, chow down on burgers and light up the nighttime sky with fireworks. 
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How To Plan A Banquet: Staffing

Whether your banquet is big or small, at some point you will need the assistance of others.  
Your primary responsibilities will be to effectively recruit, motivate, organize, delegate, train, and manage your assembled staff. Your success depends entirely upon your work force of 3 types of helpers. 
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How To Plan A Banquet: Site Selection

Given that many venues are booked years in advance, the highest priority when planning a banquet should be given to selecting and reserving a site for your event. Here we will review key criteria in choosing a facility, the types of venues available, and things to look for during an in-person inspection.
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How To Plan A Banquet: The Basics & Budget

Although there are some similarities to planning a cocktail or dinner party, organizing and hosting a banquet event presents a number of unique challenges and details.  This is the first of a series of blogs on how to plan a banquet.

And like all party planning, the first step is to establish a few basic fundamentals. For banquet planning we start with:  purpose, dress, budget, number of guests, and date & time.
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Tips On Being An Exceptional Party Host

The party host assumes responsibility as the ultimate authority and decision-maker for the evening.  Wield your power to deliver an enjoyable and memorable event for each guest. 

This is a big task, but achievable by breaking it down to four segments of capability:
  1. Attitude
  2. Tasks
  3. Etiquette
  4. Interaction
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