At your next party, make the fun last, not the waste


When hosting a party, the excitement is often about the guest list, invitations and the menu, but what about the amount of trash that comes out of gathering with family and friends? In the spirit of Earth Day, we teamed up with Tatiana Grant, president of Infused PR and Events, to share innovative and eco-friendly party planning ideas, so you can increase the fun, while decreasing your waste.

Below are a few tips Grant suggests for keeping waste to a minimum at parties:

• Reduce — Think about future dinners when preparing your party menu. Serve items that will freeze well. If you have leftovers, this will reduce food waste and give you a head start on dinner the following week. Also, companies like eVite allow you to send free virtual invitations instead of sending paper versions, which are harmful to the environment. If you do need to print something, only use recycled paper.

• Reuse — If you entertain frequently, invest in the real stuff – china, flatware, glassware and napkins. Accumulate them slowly by shopping at thrift stores and the sales at your favorite stores. Select a solid color and stick to that color to build a collection you can use year-round. For example, red is great for everything from Christmas to Valentine’s Day to the Fourth of July.

• Recycle — Create sorting stations with proper receptacles — trash, recycling and compost — to make sorting waste easy. Then ensure sorting station signage is bright and noticeable so guests know where things go. Use colored chalk on chalkboards, have your kids draw colorful pictures of the recycling symbol, paint signs on recycled wood, or take photographs of your children holding letters that read RECYCLE. Enlarge the photos, place them in frames and hang them above the recycling bin station.

“You don’t have to sacrifice style and individuality when introducing eco-friendly elements that promote the three R’s into your plans,” said Grant. “From 200 wedding guests to intimate backyard barbecues, you can make small changes that will make a big difference in reducing your waste. Going green is crucial to all facets of our lives, including event planning. These tips not only aid in supporting the environment but also save money, which is essential to every event budget.”

For more helpful tips, including a how-to guide on planning and executing a waste-conscious event, head to


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