Guest Post: Birthday Bash in the Big Apple

19 Jan

This is a guest post by one of my best friends, Maddie, who hosted an awesome 30th birthday party last month.

I love parties, and I wish I was the type of girl who throws big parties every weekend.  But it can be tricky (and expensive) to throw a party in New York City!  My husband Mike and I both turned 30 last month and we wanted to do something big, but we also needed to keep it affordable.


Here’s how we did it:

Step 1: Find a Venue

I logged onto New York Magazine’s website to check out all of the vendors that allow private parties in NYC.  As vendor after vendor got back to me, I became more and more disheartened.  Costs ranged from a flat fee of over $2,000 to charging guests $100 at the door.  Unfortunately, that wasn’t in our price range.

Our second thought was just to show up at the door of a bar, and then 40 of our friends would just happen to stop by, too!  That’s what our friend Brian did at Gallery Bar.  The best part about that bar is their super cute photo booth! But I knew that things would get crowded fast, and my grandmother and entire family wanted to come to our party so I needed a Plan C.

The extended fam. (Editor's Note: One of my favorite families in the world!)

So, I went back to New York Magazine’s vendor list and finally found Antarctica Bar. It was perfect for so many reasons:

  • It’s free
  • It’s huge
  • It’s near the train in the hip Tribeca neighborhood
  • There’s a pool table
  • They let you play your iPod if you want
  • If your friends like to drink, they have huge drinks that are super cheap!

Step Two: Make It Cute

Now that we had our venue, we needed to spice things up. I wanted a few inexpensive favors, so I browsed through the vendors at Etsy. I was looking for something fun and unique, so I was excited to find these super cute mustaches from CupcakeSocial’s Etsy page.

Doesn't Hannah look cute? (Editor's Note: No, not really.)

Step Three: Make It Delicious

I got these delicious cakes and cupcakes from Magnolia Bakery (immortalized in SNL’s Lazy Sunday video).


I also filled some jars with pretty pastel candies, and filled these popcorn bags with fresh popcorn:

Since people were mostly drinking, it was easy to provide a few snacks for people without spending too much money.

Step Four: Remember It

We wanted to capture the events of the evening with a fun Polaroid camera.  Did you know that Polaroid doesn’t make those ancient cameras that we used to use anymore? But now there is a great Fuji Instant camera. We bought a few of them and let guests take photos throughout the night.

Thanks, Hannah, for coming to our party! Now that I’ve thrown a big NYC party, I’m excited for more parties to come.

Editor's Note: I do not like my hair in this photo, but Maddie looks good so I'll allow it.


3 Responses to “Guest Post: Birthday Bash in the Big Apple”

  1. Trish January 22, 2010 at 9:16 pm #

    So funny! I just recommended Antarctica to a friend who wants to have a get together this weekend!

    Happy 30th, Maddie:)


  1. Birthday Party « On Beyond Z: Teaching Reading and Writing in Middle School - January 19, 2010

    […] Thanks so much to Hannah, the author of Everybody’s Invited for letting me guest blog on her awesome website!  You can check it out here. […]

  2. Second Blogiversary! « Everybody’s Invited! - November 30, 2010

    […] was fortunate to be able to feature lots of great advice from others this year: check out Maddie’s tips on how to throw an affordable party in NYC; Ask the Expert interviews on “creating a party playlist” with DJ Jojo and […]

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