Event Planning 101

Parties are serious business at The Black Radish Catering Co. and we know what it takes to make yours fun and memorable.

We asked our Events Manager to come up with a checklist to help you with the process. Still feeling overwhelmed? No problem, drop her a line and she’ll be happy to help.

  1. Who/What/Where/Why?
    The first thing I ask when planning any event (big or small) is why you are doing it. Perhaps it is as simple as a milestone birthday party for a loved one, or as complex as an awards gala for your company, but once you know what you are doing you can determine where and when you would like to host the event. Having a clear vision and objective, helps keep you (the host) on task and will make it easy to communicate to any helpers or vendors that you bring on. If your planning a wedding, make sure to visit our Wedding Resource Page
  1. Set your budget
    Sit down with everyone contributing financially to the event and make sure you know how much money you have to work with. Doing this early on will save you a lot of stress, money and time later on as your budget will determine a lot of aspects of your event and give you clear numbers to provide to your vendors. Check out our post on 10 Money Saving Ideas to help get you in the right mindset.
  1. Create your guest list
    Think about all the people you would like to invite to celebrate with you and write it down. This count will help you determine what kind of venue you will need to host your guests. Look up our tips for Writing a Guest List to help you get started.
  1. Pick your venue
    Now that you know how many guests you are inviting and how much you have to spend you can decide on a venue. Maybe it’s a simple backyard affair at your home, a vineyard or a heritage hall, there are lots of great possibilities for events in The Fraser Valley and Metro Vancouver (link to our list of venues). Once you have some ideas in mind, set up a site visit to check it out in person.
  1. Determine your party theme (if you want one)
    The theme and vibe of your party will determine the food, décor and dress code (or costumes!) that will come into play at your event. This is when the fun starts and you can get creative. We suggest putting together a Pinterest board where you can easy reference any menu ideas and design elements that inspire you.
  1. Book your caterer
    Now is when you contact us, we have menus for every occasion from Family Style, Summer Barbecues, Canapes or Interactive Stations with options for every type of event and budget. Once you are one of our clients, we will provide you with a customized event plan including rentals and staffing to make your vision come to life.
  1. Invite your guests and track RSVPs
    Depending on the type of event you may call, e-mail or Canada post your guests their invitations. Make sure you include the time, date, location and any other information that will make your party goers feel at ease when they come to your event (think: directions, parking, dress code, etc.)
  1. Select your other vendors
    Time to think about the other elements you would like to bring in to your party, from florals, decorators, photographers, DJs and entertainers, we have a hand picked list of people we recommend and love working with.
  1. Details
    It’s the little things that can make your event really special, so think about the personalized touches that you would like to integrate into your event (think: favours, programs, place cards, etc.). Visit out Pinterest page for some major event inspiration.
  1. Come up with a timeline for the day of you event
    Set aside some quiet time free from interruptions and map out your itinerary for your event. Make sure to include what time all vendors are arriving, what time guests are coming and carve out time for you to get ready! If your party is outside of your home, make sure to create a packing list of everything you will need to bring with you (this will save a lot of stress later on!) See what we pack in our event kit here.

After all of this planning and organizing you can breathe easy, leave the day of execution to The Black Radish Catering Co, and enjoy your party (and a well deserved glass of wine…or two).