Are you about to embark on a long-distance move? This life change means new opportunities for you, but it also means you’ll say goodbye to friends, neighbors, coworkers, and acquaintances who’ve been an important part of your life for years.
Thanks to social media, you know you can easily stay in touch with these individuals. Still, you’ll miss interacting with them in person. Let these people know how much their association has meant to you by throwing a going-away party. Use the tips below to ensure your farewell bash is both memorable and upbeat.
1. Host the Party at Least One Month Before Your Move
The closer you get to your moving date, the busier you’ll become. So don’t put extra stress into that stretch of time by throwing a party the week before you leave. Instead, have your party well in advance if circumstances allow. (This may not be an option if your move comes up suddenly.)
Make a guest list that includes everyone you have a meaningful relationship with-you can invite your favorite grocery store clerk or bank teller along with your neighbors and coworkers. Send out invitations as soon as you set a date. Then you have plenty of time to arrange one-on-one get-togethers for anyone who can’t come to the party.
2. Choose a Location That Isn’t Your House or Apartment
In the midst of a move, your home may become a little more cluttered than normal. You may have moving boxes in main living areas and piles of paperwork you need to sort through-not exactly the best setting for a party.
But you won’t have to tidy up for guests if you have the party some place other than your primary residence. If weather allows, reserve some picnic tables at a local park. Or if you prefer an indoor setting, arrange to use a party room at your library, community center, or apartment complex. Post-party cleanup is also easier; just toss used paper or plastic products and wipe down the tables.
3. Gather Memories and Advice From Guests
Your main purpose for hosting a farewell party is to create more memories with people you love. But after you move, you’ll want to remember the other good times you shared together. To make that possible, ask your guests to write down their favorite experiences with you in a guest book or journal. The book then becomes a valuable memento you can use to reminisce after you move.
Encourage guests to also include advice to you in their notes. The advice could cover everything from moving tips to general life recommendations.
4. Serve Your Favorite Comfort Foods
Despite your efforts to keep the party mood upbeat, you and your guests may still feel a tad melancholy. You are, after all, saying goodbye. You can offset a little of that sad atmosphere by serving foods known for making people happy.
If you can’t immediately think of easy-to-make comfort foods, serve these tried-and-true dishes:
- Biscuits or rolls
- French fries
- Macaroni and cheese
- Any form of dessert
As the list above proves, many comfort foods derive their comfort from carbs and fat. If you prefer healthier options, offer your guests seasonal fruits and veggies.
5. Play Fun, Interactive Games
You should set aside plenty of time for mingling at your party, but don’t forget about entertainment. Break out your favorite group board games one last time before you put them in a box for the move.
Remember to choose games that appeal to your guests’ preferences. Some people prefer to show off their knowledge in trivia showdowns, while others love to display hidden acting talents in charades or amazing art skills in Pictionary.
6. Create a Party Playlist With Your Music Memories
The songs you’ve loved most while living in this city may be closely associated with personal experiences from that time period. For example, perhaps you and your best friend always sang along to a certain catchy pop hit while driving around town.
Take any music memories from your current home, and compile those songs into a single playlist. Use that mix as a background for your farewell party. The playlist may spark some “remember when…” conversations for you and your guests. Plus, your brain will build new memories around those songs. When you hear that music in your new house, you’ll recall the fun you had at your going-away bash.
7. Choose a Unique Hashtag for the Event
Chances are your guests will use their smartphones to take pictures of your farewell party and share them on social media. You can ensure you have access to all these photos if you ask guests to use a party-specific hashtag, such as #MelMovestoNYC2015. Later, both you and your guests can log onto social media and look through the photos to remember the event.
A going-away party commemorates a big event in your life and allows you to celebrate the relationships you’ve built before you make a long distance move. Use the tips above and your farewell bash is sure to be a hit.
And for more moving tips, check out the rest of our blog.