1st Birthday Party For Under $150?

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Old 02-19-2013, 04:58 PM
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Baby 1st birthday party for under $150?

I need a little advice...
My husbands family is HUGE (guest list of 65 people) & we are trying to host a party for our DD's first birthday on a strict budget- $150 absolute max.
I've thought of was a brunch-type party, since breakfasty type foods are somewhat cheaper. The only problem with that is it would run right over the baby's nap time.
I can't think of any ideas to host a party of this size on a budget--
I'd like to not ask for help from family- since we are already hosting it at my in-laws house and they already do so much for us.
Any thoughts on a luncheon-type menu for a strict budget?
I've looked into premade deli platters- and they are out of budget.
Any suggestions would be so welcome! Thanks so much!!

Last edited by Jennifer.zackey; 02-19-2013 at 05:00 PM. Reason: Typos
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  #2  
Old 02-19-2013, 05:01 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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We did a taco bar last month. It's something most people like, it's easy to prep and would be doable for your budget.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:14 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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sloppy joes always seem to be a hit.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:15 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jennifer.zackey View Post
I need a little advice...
My husbands family is HUGE (guest list of 65 people) & we are trying to host a party for our DD's first birthday on a strict budget- $150 absolute max.
I've thought of was a brunch-type party, since breakfasty type foods are somewhat cheaper. The only problem with that is it would run right over the baby's nap time.
I can't think of any ideas to host a party of this size on a budget--
I'd like to not ask for help from family- since we are already hosting it at my in-laws house and they already do so much for us.
Any thoughts on a luncheon-type menu for a strict budget?
I've looked into premade deli platters- and they are out of budget.
Any suggestions would be so welcome! Thanks so much!!
Do you have to do a lunch? Sounds to me like you are giving the guests a party, not the baby. $150 isn't much for 65 people. If I were you ( which I'm not of course, but you did ask) I would do a small dessert party. I would do a nice cake, some ice cream, some fancy cookies, punch or juice or koolaid ( very cheap) and let that be your party. The baby won't care. The family shouldn't care and really all they want to see is the kid with frosting on it's face....
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:04 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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personaly My hubbies family will plan a party to start at say 1pm mabe at about 4pm the food might be ready. so at my party's i do hoggies i cut all the bread and do trays of lettuce tomatoes ect.. a tray of meats chicken turkey ham (land o frost has coupons right now). Sometimes i also do fruit trays (depending on fruit prices) or potatoe/macaroni salad then i do a bowl of mayo mustard anything you might want. i set it buffet style so as people show up they don't have to wait in long lines to get food. They love it and here in arizona in late april/ may noone wants a hot meal. If you do want a hot meal just warm the meats and bread turned from cold to hot and it's great for dinner or lunch on a cheap budget.

I've looked into premade deli platters- and they are out of budget<---- make your own for 1/4 the price


Also another tip you don't have that many trays then make your own get some clean cardboard boxes cut out rounds wrap alummin foil around them top bottom and sides ta da nice silver trays that can be tossed in the trash after. easy clean up

Last edited by ingramdeb; 02-19-2013 at 06:11 PM.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:24 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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We did a chili bar once, which was a hit. Get cheap ground turkey at walmart or Aldi's, beans/tomatoes/spices are cheap, have some cheese, green onions, sour cream, corn bread and/or rice. We made tons on a budget. Make your own cake or cupcakes. Or you can get them for a reasonable price at Sam's. We have also done a spaghetti lunch with bread and salad.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:48 AM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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I second the sandwhich idea. We did that for several birthday parties when my kids were young and it was a big hit each time. Get deli meat and several different cheeses. We got french bread and cut them to different sizes (for different size appetites). Put out platters of lettuce and tomatoes and onions. Condiments can be gotten with coupons/sales if not in your stockpile. I always put out chips and assorted salads but just get what your budget allows.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:18 AM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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I third the sandwich idea if you want to do a full meal birthday party. You can stick to your budget easily by buying the cold cuts from the deli and making the platters yourself. Go to Aldi or Priceright or BJ's or something and get the bread and stuff.

The other thing you can do is picky food and do it at an "off" time - after lunch but before dinner type of thing - maybe a 1 -4 or 2-5 or something. You can do a huge thing of meatballs and have rolls - pigs in a blanket type thing... make dips with chips and crackers. I'm very low key.... I've done pizza parties and hamburger and hotdogs on the grill. First birthday was somewhat of a potluck. In laws made stuff and everyone else kind of volunteered to make something. I thought it was strange, but they all wanted to so I accepted. Good luck.

Also remember that even though it's the babies first birthday party, the only real pictures we all get is of them eating their "first cake". The party is really for everyone else at this point as the child has no clue and will not remember. I only invited my closest family and friends.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:38 AM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Not sure when the bday is. So idk how much stocking up time you have. I suggest doing soups & salads. There's a very good taco soup recipe out there. It calls for shredded chicken or turkey (rotisserie chicken is a good choice) corn (canned fresh or frozen) rotel, beans, taco seasoning, chicken broth. Most of those items are stockpile items. I would search cheap & easy soups. Seafood is pricey so is suggest staying with chicken. For salads price match produce at Walmart & I'm sure you have salad dressing already

As far as decorations go hobby lobby is a GREAT Place. They always have the 40% coupons on their site. That coupon is good for cards, gift wrap, & cake accessories...if you plan to make it your self. (Another money saving route)

I think the budget is doable. I did a baby shower for over 50 people under $80. It turned out great.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:20 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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you caan do a cheese tray,buy some cheese cut into blocks and place in a nice plate with green grapes and or red grapes,kids love fruit,you can add pepperonie slices if you want as well and Ritz crackers,always a hit at my parties..
If its at your house its even better,make veelveta cheese bock mix with hormel if you want in a crock pot and serve with chips.
You can make patatoe skins with cheese and sour cream, chives. Just make finger foods..
Do the party before dinner and after lunch,people probably will have eaten lunch so make a light party trays/finger foods.
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Old 02-21-2013, 01:27 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Cake

I posted a huge response and my internet timed out..ugh. I have had several parties for large groups and before i go onto food ideas I wanted to let you know 2 things..
#1 You will never feel like you have enough food and will wear yourself ragged til the very last minute if you let yourself.
#2 You will have a ton of food left over! It happens every time and I always swear never to drive myself crazy for the next party because of it.

Some food ideas: (would be helpful if you gave us a time and which stores are in your area so we can help you find deals on particular items)

Sandwiches: Im agreeing with the others on this idea. LandOFrost is $1.99 at SaveALot right now, combine the sale with $1 coupon and score a ton of different kinds of meat for cheap. Skip the bakery finger rolls.. although cute for parties they are ridiculously expensive. How about a loaf of 99 cent sliced italian bread from the bread aisle for turkey sandwiches... and a pack of sub rolls for ham, cut into halves or thirds. It will look like you made each kind of sandwich special.. when really you are going for cheap add half a slice of cheese and a slice of lettuce. Mayo and mustard can be served in bowls or visit a fast food joint and stock up on packets. Toothpicks with themed stickers on the tip finish off a low budget deal.

Use the leftover lettuce and a cheap store brand salad mix to make individual servings of salad. Add a little to individual cups, add a cherry tomato, slice of cucumber, and anything else you can get cheap or have on hand (onions, broccoli, shredded carrot). Now not only will everyone have salad... you dont have to worry about the first 10 people serving themselves the whole bowl. You also dont have to make one for each person.. not everyone will eat it. 30 cups should be plenty... unless you have extra salad then fill away.

Also use the individual cup idea for potato salad and pasta salad. if you skip the deli kinds, you can make your own for really cheap.

Baked Ziti can go really far. A box of ziti, jar of tomato sauce, and half a bag of shredded cheese will make a big foil pan worht and only costs around $3. Mix it up and maybe do a pan of American Chop Suey.. same cost except add a 1lb of ground beef. You could also keep your eyes peeled for Next Day Bakery garlic bread in the foil bag. 1/2 the price and once warmed and sliced its a cheap addition.

Do you have odd and end baking add ins or some clearance candy lurking around? Whip up a batch of Cake mix cookies from a box of vanilla cake mix (tons of easy recipes online). I make mine plain and scoop teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheet... then make them special. Press M&ms into some, chocolate chips into others. Roll some in colored sugar or sprinkles. Add nuts or chopped up candy bars. With 1 box of cake mix you can make an assorted cookie tray and no one will know you didnt actually bake 6+ batches of cookies.

Store brand chips... once poured into a bowl no one knows the difference. Dont forget kid friendly cheese curls.

Skip an expensive cake and make a cupcake tower. Bake and frost cupcakes. Add your own decorations (for my DS last party i cut up a Mario Bros fruit snack box to get a large Mario and a large Luigi character... taped onto skewers and stuck in for cute no cost decor. I also did Mario stickers on toothpicks.. picked up at Walmart for $1 and saved at least $15 on premade cake decor... take that iParty!)

$150 is definitely enough for a party.. just need to get creative.
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Old 02-21-2013, 01:44 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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I don't know of many houses that will accommodate 65 guests for a sit-down meal so I think finger foods would be most appropriate. My suggestion would be to plan the party for early afternoon; a little after the time the baby normally awakens from its nap (and, hopefully, after lunch).

If there are going to be a lot of children, make a big bowl of punch for them; kids love ginger ale or Sprite with sherbet floated in it. Serve tortilla and potato chips with salsa and dip, pigs in blankets with dipping sauce, cheese & crackers, a crudite platter and other types of finger foods that are easy to prepare.

Meatballs in cream of mushroom soup are super easy and not too expensive; just mix a couple of bags of frozen meatballs with a couple of cans of condensed cream of mushroom soup (don't add water) in a Crock Pot and cook on low for several hours.

Kids and many adults love Jell-O frosted grapes (2 lbs. of seedless grapes taken off their stems, rolled or shaken in dry Jell-O and allowed to sit for 1 hr.).

Good luck!
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:24 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Thank you all so very much for some wonderful, creative, and thrifty ideas!
Her birthday is the last week in March- so we are shooting for a Sunday before April begins.
My in-law's house is rather large- The property has hosted our wedding (250 guests) and both my bridal and baby showers. The baby shower was last February, and was indoors (February in Pennsylvania is realllllyyyyy cold ) It was crowded, but very do-able. I have to remember that the men of the family where not there- but I think the guest list was around 45ish people and kids-- plus I'm not expecting [i]everyone[i] to come to the party.

I am torn between making my own wraps and deli sandwiches- or the deli trays myself- along with some home made pasta salad, cheese, fruit and veggie trays- maybe some chips and soda. Lots of that stuff already in my stockpile (salad dressing, pasta, condiments, soda, junk foods, crackers, etc). Or doing either baked pasta/lasagna and a tossed salad, and garlic bread (super easy on the budget!) along with the veggie, fruit and cheese trays. Lots of coupons for Cheese these days I am not sure what kind of room there will be for a sit down meal-- so I am leaning towards the sandwiches- since there is no need for the formal sit-down.
I shop at Giant foods/Martins in PA-- or wegmans, walmart and cvs. But I think I will be getting the produce at Produce Junction in my area- since their prices are always the best- unless the ever elusive store deals come up for produce!
Maybe instead of soda or other prepackaged beverages, I can make a big bowl of punch or other flavored drinks with some stuff that I have in my stock pile? I might have to do some research on that one.

I was a pastry chef before leaving my job to go back to school and take care of my little one--so the cake and or cupcakes are not a problem. There is ALWAYS baking stuff in my house!

I started looking around for post-Valentine's day paper products and party goods that are 50-75% off now... can't go wrong with pink or red for a little girl, right? I might have missed the boat on these sales-- everyone seems to be cleared out and Easter and spring items are taking their place.

I cannot thank everyone enough for taking the time to help me with suggestions!
I hope it goes well! Any other ideas are more than welcome too! I've been known to change my mind-- and often! :P
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:30 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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A pastry chef!! Coolness! Hope you'll post pics of the cake!
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:46 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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sounds like you will be feeding most adults, always cheaper when the kids are older and it is just kids invited.
Feeding adults, cheese trays as mentioned and lunch meats , rolls, drinks, get paper plates if not using in laws plates, you could get cheaply at dollar store.
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:53 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Don't forget to budget for decorations. Can't wait for my next party to try something I found on pinterest. Instead of streamers on the ceiling, they cut plastic tablecloths into large strips and used those alternating colors... Taped flat at the edges of the room and gathered to meet at the middle. Looked like a circus tent.. But pink and red would be adorable. Big wow factor for $2. I could even see some clear tablecloths draped with balloons trapped up there. I could go on and on... I will be a party planner in my next life.
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Old 02-21-2013, 03:00 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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how about a hotdog bar kids and adults both love,can have cheese,chili etc
ebay had tons of decorations or oriental traders i think they also have a coupon codes.also $ stores have tons of decorations,can do rice krispie treats bowls of flavored popcorn, make punch ( cheaper than pops) can make homemade games etc tons of fun cheap stuff to do try google for ideas
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Old 02-21-2013, 04:02 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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I know you're planning for the 1st, but for future reference, shop major holiday clearance year round...this happened to me for my DS's birthday last year...luckily it was Captain America theme and I stocked up on a few things after 4th of July. HTH
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Old 02-24-2013, 02:01 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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platters vs. build your own personaly i prefer the build your own its a waste to put all the sammies together and have people trying to tear them apart due to they dont like the swiss on the turkey left overs can mostly be frozen for hubbies lunches next week meats work great frozen cheese i would cook it in something like vegies and cheese after frozen also idk if you have a frys/kroger around you load the capri sun coupon to your card and stock up love these for the kids not to much waste also don't forget the bottles of water my family would rather those than the soda.
Thank you someone for the sprite in the pnch bowl idea w/sherbert my sons 8 year b-day is april 30th wonder if blue food coloring in sprite would work to make it blue.
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Old 03-23-2013, 03:45 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Sooo the party is tomorrow and I tallied up my spending and I have gone over budget by $28. But I did buy some extra decorations at the dollar tree and my husband insisted on getting some wine and beer for the adults.
Over all I think I did a great job with a tiny budget with a little help from my mom and mil and a very generous donation from my BFF.

I used valentines day candy on clearance and coupons, chips/pretzles and soda- all xtra thrifty with coupons. Lunch meat and cheese from Sam's club. Flour tortilla wraps couponed. Condiments and pasta for pasta salad all from my stockpile. 7 dozen Cupcakes where donated from the bakery my BFF works at! I would have made them myself- but I couldn't pass up the help- especially FREE help! Love love love her for doing this for us! And all paper supplies and decorations where leftover valentines stuff on clearance and completed with some dollar tree supplies.

I made 3 kinda of wraps (honey mustard/ham and cheddar, turkey/bacon and ranch, and an Italian one with salami/provolone and spicy mustard), pasta salad, fruit kabobs, chocolate covered pretzel rods and a veggie tray.
My mom made a spinach dip in a bread bowl & my mother-in-law made a buffalo chicken dip and cheese and crackers.
I feel so lucky to have them in my life and so lucky to have found out how to coupon the "right" way to really help stretch our budget!

My fridge is STOCKED and I cannot wait to celebrate tomorrow stress free with my humongous family! Good thing birthday parties are only once a year!
Happy birthday, baby girl!
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Old 03-23-2013, 04:09 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Happy birthday to your little girl! Have a wonderful party!!!
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Old 03-23-2013, 04:09 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Aweeee!!! You did great!! $28 that's okay! I'm sure your baby's face will be priceless!!! And it will be worth it! I always get suckered into buying things for my lil girl. It's easy to justify things for her. Even if I'm like "that's a lil pricey, but oh well" then when I see her face im like pricey? No. Priceless? Yes!
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Old 03-24-2013, 05:10 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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I hope your family had a great time! Job well done
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Old 03-24-2013, 06:27 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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how did the party go? what part of PA are you in? I am in Allentown. You sound like you did great.
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Old 03-24-2013, 07:43 PM

RE: 1st birthday party for under $150?

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Allentown?! I'm in Bethlehem! Hi, neighbor!!
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