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Tips for Planning a Successful Bachelor/Bachelorette Party

 

How To Plan a Memorable But Clean Bachelor-Bachelorette Party

The bachelor/bachelorette party is the groom or bride-to-be’s last hurrah before saying, “I do” and promising themselves to a life of greater responsibility. Typically, these parties are planned by the best man or bridesmaid. They’ll want to gather their closest friends, and maybe a select few family members together to celebrate and let loose. If we are traditionally speaking, the majority of bachelor and bachelorette parties are celebrated with an abundance of alcohol and, of course, strip clubs. BUT, that doesn’t mean the classic bachelor party is for everyone. Maybe your bride or groom isn’t comfortable being around strippers before making a commitment with the love of their life or maybe are simply agreeing upon restrictions between the soon-to-be-married couple where strip clubs are a no-go… whatever the reason may be, there are plenty of less scandalous options to celebrate a bachelor/bachelorette party that doesn’t involve nude dancers.

 

Adventurous & Clean Bachelor/Bachelorette Party Ideas

 

If you’re the best man or maid of honor, the bachelor/bachelorette party is most likely your task to conquer! Planning a bachelor/bachelorette party is a fun task, but it can also be a tricky one. Nowadays, some are not just an evening out. Bachelor/bachelorette parties can be a whole weekend long, they can be out of state, and really, anything goes these days. Although intensity of the party has changed, the planning process has not.

When is the ideal time to begin planning this shindig? We like to suggest the earlier the better. Having a sufficient amount of planning time will make the process easier and less stressful for you, and gives the guests plenty of notice to set aside the time and money. Keep in mind, the more eccentric and elaborate you plan to make the party, the more time you should give yourself to organize. The cost, date, location and activity will serve as the basics of your planning efforts.

As a popular bachelor/bachelorette party destination, Hollywood Casino Perryville is here to help guide you through planning the party. Use these tips and details to make the process as smooth as possible.

Choosing a Date

The night before the wedding is not the ideal time for the bachelor or bachelorette bash! Let’s be honest, the last thing the groom will want to deal with on the day of his wedding is a hangover. The same can be said for the bride, the last thing she will want to deal with is a hungover groom; talk about added stress! Not to mention, the bride is already going to be a nervous wreck as it is, so she will also want to be well rested and feeling her best. So when exactly should the party take place? The main event should be scheduled up to a month before the wedding. If you plan to invite out-of-towners, it may be a good idea to plan the bachelor or bachelorette party around a holiday weekend when guests might have more time to travel.

The Guest List

When it’s time to start planning the bride or groom’s big party, the first thing you should do is ask him or her for a list of guests they would want at the party, along with their contact information. The people the bride or groom chooses to invite should be their closest friends and loved ones.

Who might make this list?

  • Wedding Party – This may include the groomsmen, best man and any of age ushers. These are the main guys of the party. For the bride, this will include the bridesmaids and the maid of honor.
  • Main Group of Friends – Guys the groom typically hangs around, but who did not make the wedding party. This is also the same case for the bride’s main group of friends who didn’t make the wedding party cut.
  • Old Friends – Guys or girls the bride or groom was close friends with in school and college, but doesn’t necessarily see that often.
  • Work Colleagues – If the bride or groom is close with any of their coworkers, ones that they would go for drinks with after work, they may want to invite them.
  • Family Members – Depending on the bride or groom’s thoughts about inviting family members, they might be interested in extending an invite to siblings, cousins…or if they are feeling brave, maybe the future in-laws!

It’s best to keep the guest list to a minimum so that the bride or groom has the opportunity to spend quality time with all their buddies. Not to mention, a shorter guest list also makes planning less of a hassle! Once you have the guest list and details of the party sorted (time, location, date, etc.), send out an Evite invitation at least a month in advance to notify all guests and give them plenty of time to make plans.

Budget

The costs of the bachelor or bachelorette party can often be a make or break for some. You will want to talk to all invitees about the budget and find out what they are comfortable spending. This will help to narrow down what is feasible and what’s not. Of course, if there are specific plans the bride or groom has in mind, the guests may have to work together to see how it can be affordable for everyone. Keep in mind, the bride and groom should NOT pay for anything! That’s the general rule, anyways. Often times, there may be exceptions.

The main costs to consider include lodging/travel, transportation, meals, drinks, activities. The total cost should be split evenly among the group. Once everything is booked, you should try and collect any money in advance. Avoid the hassle of having to do it during the party so everyone can relax and focus on celebrating!

Picking a Location and the Main Activity

Bachelor and bachelorette parties can take place just about anywhere these days. Whether you’re planning to take the bride or groom to their favorite bar, restaurant or even a beach or casino, the location will be key! When choosing a location, you’ll have to consider a few things. First off, you will want to get an idea of how far the guests are willing to travel. While they should be up for whatever the bride or groom wants to do, since it is his or her party, you may have some out-of-towners to work with a various work schedules. The time of year will also play a role in weather, activities, travel, etc. If you’re planning during colder months and want to escape to warmer weather, and vice versa, you will have some more in-depth planning to consider. Some popular options include:

  • Backyard BBQ – planning a bachelor party for a low-key bride or groom? A backyard BBQ could be the perfect speed for them. Find a friend or relative with an ideal spot to kick back with a few drinks, spark up the grill and get a bonfire going. To make it easy on the host, have everyone contribute something such as a side dish, drinks or anything to throw on the grill. If you’re wanting to amp it up a bit, consider hiring a DJ and setting up lawn games!
    • BBQ Side Dishes
      • Baked Beans
      • Baked Potatoes
      • Coleslaw
      • Mac and Cheese
      • Pasta Salad
      • Potato Salad
    • Camping Trip – rough it for a weekend! Pack up your tents, sleeping bags, and fishing poles (if fishermen are in tow) and head out into nature. This is a great option for those who want to unplug and distress before the big day!
      • Ladies, a glamping trip is an alternative option for you trendy nature lovers! Since you most likely won’t be trekking out to a bar, these games will provide lots of entertainment!
        • Do you know your groom? – Make up questions, the funnier the better, and have the groom give you the answers ahead of time. Make the bride answer them and see how well she THINKS she knows her groom!
        • What’s in the bag? – Fill a bag with a bunch of random objects. Gather the girls, walk around the room and have each one put her hand inside to try and guess what all the items are…this could any range of random objects.
        • Guess the wine – Have all the women bring a bottle of wine, concealed in a paper bag. Everyone will taste each of the wines, guessing the types and flavors, and voting on their favorite.
      • Casino – The casino is always a bachelor/bachelorette favorite for those that love to gamble and test their luck! Whether the bride or groom enjoy tables or slot machines, the casinos have a great selection of both. Here, at Hollywood Casino Perryville, our slot floor features some of the most popular games with over 800 slots, as well as plenty of live table games! If you’ve got more than a night to spare at the casino, some may also offer Off-Track Betting. Hollywood Casino Perryville has an Off-Track Betting facility that’s open 7 days a week. If you choose to spend a weekend around our casino, this is another great activity to add to your agenda! With so many gaming choices and the amount of drinking that takes place at casinos, it can be quite overwhelming especially if you’re a gambling newbie. Here are a few tips that will help you survive the night, however, we make no promises about the survival of your bank account!
        • Know your limits – It’s no surprise that the odds are highly in the house’s favor, but that doesn’t mean you won’t get lucky. Before heading into the casino, set a limit as to how much you’re willing spend. No matter how many drinks you have and how much you’re ahead, cut yourself off when you’ve reached that limit. Just remember, even if you are on a winning streak, you can lose it just as fast as you won it. It’s better to tap out while you’re ahead!
        • Start easy – While the slots require the least amount of effort and skill, they tend to become boring rather quickly. If you’re looking for a step up, try Roulette. It’s an easy introduction to table games as it’s more of a “test your luck” kinda game. A couple things to note with Roulette; placing a chip directly on a number is a dicey strategy with the biggest payout, and you have better odds with a smaller payout when betting on a color, even/odd numbers or other wider categories.
        • Learn the rules – When you’re ready to tackle more intimidating table games, have the dealer give you a rundown of the rules, or play with a friend who knows what they’re doing. Once you think you’ve gotten down the basics, start at a table that’s not too crowded.
        • Follow casino etiquette – There are just a few rules that will help you stay on the dealer’s good side!
          • Keep your phone on silent
          • Take it easy on the free drinks
        • Best Casino Game Odds
          • Blackjack – A majority of the people think of this as a daunting game, however, blackjack actually offers players the best odds of any other table game, with a house edge of around only 1%.
          • Craps – Craps is an ideal game for beginners. Just stick to red or black, evens or odds and you have a 50-50 chance of winning!
          • Roulette – Though there are many ways of betting on a roulette wheel, if you stick to the same rules as Craps, you have a 50-50 chance of winning.
        • Games with the Worst Odds
          • Slot Machines – They may be easy to play, but the house edge on most machines ranges from 10-17%.
          • Keno – The house advantage can be as high as 25-35%!
          • Wheel of Fortune – This game may be easy to play, but the money doesn’t come easy! It is estimated this game has a house advantage of around 25%.
        • Fishing Trip – If the groom, or even the bride, is a fisherman, get the rods ready! You could rent a house at the beach for the weekend or if you have access to a fishing haven, charter a boat! This is the perfect way to relax and spend some time with the gang. Party boats come in a variety of extremes and sizes, choose one that will accommodate your guest list and budget. Grab some beers, kick back and get ready to reel in a keeper!
          • When chartering a boat, bring these items –
            • Snacks – chips, pretzels, nuts, cold sandwiches
            • Advil and anti-nausea medicine (non drowsy)
            • Phone or IPod for Music
          • If you’re into this fishing idea but worried it may be out of the budget, there is a more affordable option! You could consider camping out in a designated area instead of renting housing and feast on your catch of the day instead of dining out at a restaurant.
        • Rent a cabin for the weekend – You could go the woodsy route, or find one on or around the water and take a boat out, lounge on some floats and rafts, go for a hike, etc. The options are endless!
        • Sports Game – this could go one of two ways…you could either watch a game with the gang or hold a friendly competition between the posse with your game of choice. If you prefer to watch a game, such as basketball, and make it more of an experience, you could rent a private box and hire a party bus to drive the group around town. Whatever sporting event you choose, try to talk to someone from the venue ahead of time to let them know you’re celebrating and see if they’ll put you up on the big screen!

Even More Clean Bachelor & Bachelorette Party Alternatives

  • Live Like A Cowboy – Visit a guest ranch, go horseback riding and work the land for a while.
  • Escape Room – If you love puzzle games, try and escape the room with your group.
  • Celebrate On A Boat – Party on a yacht excursion or take a group cruise! Commiserate on the open sea.
  • Fast & Furious Off-roading – Rent Dune Buggies, Dirt Bikes, ATVs or other fun vehicles.
  • War Games – Laser tag and paintball tournaments, have a blast shooting each other.
  • Outdoor Adventures – Go camping or hiking and soak up mother nature at her finest.
  • Surf Excursion – Learn to surf and enjoy a new tropical location.
  • Snowboarding or Skiing Trip – Skip the heat and enjoy the slopes.
  • Spa Day – Book a day full of relaxation and rejuvenation!
  • Become A Racecar Driver – Adult speedway excursions allow you to drive exotic cars at top speeds.
  • Travel The World – Plan a trip to visit a new country and explore foreign cultures together.

Book Hotel & Travel

Planning an out-of-town celebration? If so, you will want to start planning and booking travel arrangements for all the attendees about 4 to 6 weeks out. Depending on the location of the party, you’ll probably be choosing between all-inclusive resorts, hotels, or renting a house. If you’re renting a house, sites such as AirBnB and Homeaway have become popular go-to options to help find the perfect spot. Assigning one point person to collect money ahead of time from the guests and to book the hotel reservations and any car rentals will ensure a smooth process.

  • Tips to Save Money on Destination Bachelor/Bachelorette Parties
    • Travel in the off-season – This is a great way to save on both international and domestic airfare. Traveling to a beach destination? It will most likely be more expensive from the end of November to January and less expensive in the travel shoulder season.
    • Notify bars, restaurants and hotels in advance about your group – If there are certain locations you have in mind, call them ahead of time to ask about group deals. Some may give you a break just because you are about to get married!
    • Utilize sites such as Airbnb or Innclusive – Odds are you are either going to try and uncomfortably jam all the guests into one hotel room, OR you’re going to end up overpaying for hotel rooms. By renting a house or apartment, you will be able to accommodate everyone for a better price, with more space to entertain.
    • Check for Deals – All-inclusive deals, such as Groupon specials, can be a great option for groups. You will be able to avoid the hassle of booking the details, and just book everything at once for one flat rate.
    • Prepare your own Food – Dining out for every meal can add up. If you end up renting a space for the bachelor/bachelorette party, you can save even more money by buying your groceries and preparing your own food!
    • Start the festivities at home – Let’s be honest, alcohol is most likely going to be a big party of the bachelor or bachelorette party. It can be a pricey component too! To save some money at the bars, buy your own liquor and mixers and have some drinks before at the house before you head out to the bars. If you end up drinking before you go out and you’re not in walking distance to your destination, call an uber!

Food & Drink

There’s a good chance the party fare will consist of mostly finger foods and alcoholic beverages. If you’re renting a house for the weekend or staying at a hotel, thinking about putting people in charge of bringing certain snacks, drinks (alcoholic and non) and any other food items you think you’ll need. On the flipside, if you are planning to eat out, be sure to make restaurant reservations for your party to avoid long wait times.

  • Easy food ideas for bachelor/bachelorette party
    • BBQ Food – hamburgers, sausages, hot dogs, fish, kabobs
    • Cold Sandwiches
    • Order Pizza
    • Finger Foods – Chicken wings, cheese balls, pigs in a blanket, potato chips, pretzels, nachos, chips & dip
  • Drinks
    • Beer & Liquor
    • Coffee/Energy Drinks
    • Mixers
    • Water

Bachelor and Bachelorette Party Swag

 

Party favors are an ideal way for guests to reminisce on this special occasion. Not to mention, they can add a little oomph to the party, depending how silly you decide to go with them! Novelty gifts are the perfect way for a bachelor or bachelorette party to stand out from the regular partygoers (the bride or groom will probably even score some free drinks), especially if they are monogrammed or have some sort of relevant saying/theme to the party.

  • Party Favor Ideas
    • Beer Koozies
    • Hangover Kit
    • Hats
    • Flasks
    • Pins
    • Sashes
    • Shotglass Necklaces
    • Sunglasses
    • Temporary Tattoos
    • T-shirts

Bachelor and Bachelorette Party Survival Tips

 

Whether the bachelor or bachelorette party is a one-nighter or an elaborate planned weekend, it’s every man (or woman) for himself! It’s an occasion to create the kind of memories you will remember well through your old age, possibly even questioning some of the embarrassing moments and wondering what you were thinking at the time. There are just a few good decisions that will help you not only survive and remember the night or weekend, but that will make the next day recovery not so bad.

  • Pace Yourself – I’m sure at one point or another we all can say we’ve been a bit guilty of falling victim to peer pressure and drinking a little more than we should have. Knowing your limits and spacing out your drinks will be a critical effort in survival during the party. Plus, your liver will thank you!
  • Eat at the Right Time – Normally we would say to make sure you eat something before a night of drinking, but let’s be honest…it’s a bachelor/bachelorette party and you’ll probably have a couple heavy drinking sessions throughout the day and night. SO, eating before and during each drinking session will help prevent the alcohol from hitting you all at once, as well as drinking water in between alcoholic drinks.
  • Keep in Contact with Everyone – You’ve seen “The Hangover,” right? There’s always that one friend who strays from the group! It would be a good idea to make sure everyone has each other’s numbers in their phone and a charged battery in case someone becomes separated from the gang. If you have plans where you’ll be out and running around all day and night, be sure to bring a portable charger with you.
  • No Driving – This is probably the most important! If you can, make sure someone is in charge of arranging transportation to and from any drinking session. From renting a limo, party bus, uber, or even public transportation, there are more than enough options to ensure everyone’s safety.
  • Come Prepared – You know you’re in for a good time at a bachelor or bachelorette party, but no one wants to pay the price for it the following day. Your best bet is to come prepared with all your favorite remedies to prevent/cure a hangover. An easy way to remember to do this is to put someone (or a couple people) in charge of putting together hangover kits for the group. That way everyone in attendance is covered! Wondering what to include in a hangover kit? Some popular items may include:
    • Advil
    • Tums
    • Granola Bar / Crackers
    • Vitamin C
    • Bottle of Water
    • Energy Drink
    • Pro Tip = Pedialyte

 

When the bachelor/bachelorette party finally rolls around, there will be a lot going on. Don’t let the craziness make you lose sight of why everyone is getting together. Be sure to focus on the man or woman of the hour and make sure the bride or groom is happy and having the best time. Happy planning!

 
 

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