I chair the board of a non-profit agency. Our board is comprised of 24 people, and we have 10 senior staff members (plus another 100+ FTEs). My wife and I hosting the board and senior staff, plus spouses, at our home on Saturday, March 1 at 6:30. The party theme is puzzles and games. We'll be about 50 people, from mid-30s to mid-70s. Everyone knows everyone else pretty well.
I had planned to prepare all of the food, but ran into time concerns and worries about finding staff to help serve and clean up. We now have a caterer. The plan is for 8 finger hors d'oeuvres (1 per person), plus a big cheese tray and lots of finger foods for dessert. (I'm doing the cheese and dessert. I'm also taking care of wine.) Cost for the caterer will be about $25 per person, including rentals and staffing.
I don't want a sit-down dinner. My worry is that people will realize, along about 7:30, that what they've had (paced, so that there'll be more food coming from time to time) is what there is, and start figuring out what restaurant they should go to for dinner. One thought is to dump the hors d'oeuvres, leave the cheese tray and use the $25 per for a pasta and salad dinner that can be served at about 7:30. We have enough sitting areas to catch most everyone, on couches, chairs, etc. My worry, with this plan, is that people will eahc and leave at 8 or so.
Thoughts (and telling me not to worry so much is not helpful)?