Five fun tips for hosting the perfect New Year's Eve party

Toasting Champagne photo for New Year's Eve home

Toasting Champagne photo for New Year's Eve home parties story. (iStock) (Credit: Toasting Champagne photo for New Year's Eve home parties story. (iStock))

While millions of people descend on Times Square to watch the ball drop on New Year's Eve and others navigate crowded bars, sometimes the best memories can be created in the confines of your own home.

If you're planning on hosting a New Year's Eve party this year, New York City party planner Linda Kaye, of Birthday Baker's Party Makers, gave us some key tips to making sure your party is memorable.

1. Just serve finger foods. If you're hosting, it's best to have foods that don't require forks and knives, and that people can eat standing up, Kaye said. The host or hostess should consider what foods taste OK room temperature.

2. Allow your guests to contribute. Most guests want to bring something, so let them. It will make your guests feel good about entering your home. No one really has the time these days to do all the cooking, Kaye said.

3. Stick to soft drinks, beer, and wine for most of the night. It's too much to do a stocked bar with vodka, whiskey, and scotch, Kaye said. Kaye suggested putting the drinks in a tub with ice, and sprinkling glitter over the ice to make it festive. Come midnight, break out a magnum bottle of Champagne. It will be fun to pour and take photos with.

4. Keep mini garbage bins throughout the room. You want to make sure the party looks great the entire night. By putting garbage bins around, guests can get rid of empty beer bottles and dirty napkins.

5. Find a way to make your party unusual. Guests enjoy receiving direction about what to wear. Whether it is a black and white theme, or a pseudo Halloween, find a way to make your party fun by hinting at the dress code. Or if your party starts at 9 p.m., put on some Spanish music and ring in 2013 Rio style. At the very least, have party hats and noise makers for the when the clock strikes 12, Kaye said.

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