Friday, December 4, 2009

Tips for Responsible Hosting

Planning a party? Entertaining is both an art and a responsibility. Your duties as host extend to
being aware of the alcohol consumption of your guests, particularly if this is a workplace sponsored activity. If you do, you will be making sure that everyone has a great time, from the beginning right through to a happy ending. Planning ahead is important so that all you have to clean up afterwards is dirty dishes and lots of crumbs!

  • Serving alcohol involves responsibility. For example, did you know that you can be held legally responsible for injuries or damages that are caused by someone to whom you have served alcohol? Our tips for responsible hosting can help you plan a successful party that’s hassle-free and protects the well-being of you and your guests.

  • Don’t overindulge at your own party so that you can react quickly to situations that may require you to make responsible decisions. If this is a workplace-related actvity, have at least two or three people in charge who will be able to monitor the responsible serving of alcoholic beverages. Make safe transportation plans a priority ahead of time.

  • Determine who is a designated driver before the party starts. Then you can serve them accordingly.

  • Consider having a party where no alcohol is served - particularly if children will be home. Consider the messages your actions will be sending them. Let children know that it is possible to have a good time without relying on alcohol.

  • Plan some activities other than drinking: a carol sing, party games, or charades. How about acting out seasonal songs? At work you could hold a contest for the tastiest non-alcoholic punch. Hold tastings at lunch during the weeks before Christmas!

  • Being a good host means providing beverages for everyone, not just for those who want alcoholic ones. Have attractive alternatives for the non-drinker. “Mocktails,” fruit juices, flavoured waters, and soft drinks are quick and easy. There are now a wide variety of new flavour sensations on the market. As well, many people enjoy chilled spring water. If you are serving punch, provide a choice: one with alcohol and one without. Be sure to label them.

  • If you are serving any mixed drinks consider having someone responsible acting as bartender or provide measures beside the bottles. Don’t ask underage individuals to take this responsibility. Avoid pouring or encouraging doubles or pushing refills. Accept “no thanks” the first time it is spoken.

  • Make sure that you serve food as this helps to slow down the absorption of alcohol. High-protein snacks such as meat, nuts or cheese are good choices. Consider serving a small meal instead of snack food. Avoid highly salty, very sweet or greasy foods as these only make your guests more thirsty.

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