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Entertaining & Etiquette 10

How to politely say "do not bring food" on invitation

rp17 | Jan 3, 201807:11 AM

I'm planning on throwing a 40th birthday party for my husband. We are inviting friends and family, and some of those family members always show up with a dish despite my usual "we'll have plenty of food." I realize some people just don't like to show up empty handed and it's a kind gesture, but I find this so frustrating because in some cases, they've showed up with a store-bought version of the same appetizer or dessert that I've made from scratch. The homemade apple pie I spent hours on then sits hidden away while I serve their apple pie from the grocery store instead because I don't want to be rude. This is the first time I'm throwing a "party," but I speak from past dinner-party and holiday experiences.

Is there a polite way I can state on the invitation to please not bring any food? Since some people will always insist on bringing something, maybe I could say something along the lines of "We'll have plenty of food, you need only bring your appetites. If you'd like, please feel free to bring your favorite beverage." At the same time, I don't want people who are okay showing up empty handed to then feel they need to bring a beverage. Thoughts?

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