Today for good green news, let’s talk about holiday celebrations.  Now that the Christmas shopping is well underway and the decorating is complete, we can turn attention to planning a green Christmas party.

The first order of business is planning the theme in terms of color, linens, place-setting, etc.  This year, try to avoid using disposable plates and cutlery, or if that is not possible, try to use green brands.  There are a number of websites that offer eco-friendly party ware, and also Party City stocks some green items.

When it is time to shop for food for your party, please remember the local merchants.  This is a great time to visit the local butcher, who is an expert at filling your meat orders based on expected attendance and who is more than willing to order specialty items for your holiday parties and feasts.  Also consider purchasing fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts from local vendors.  This is an excellent opportunity to support the local economy.  When planning your party menu, remember that the more you serve, the more people will eat and drink.  Try to limit over-consumption by using smaller plates to limit portion size and by limiting the available items on the menu.  Add a special touch to your holiday fare by including dishes with less meat and more vegetables, and be more than happy to provide the recipes to visitors when they ask for them.  This is your opportunity to demonstrate how appetizing a green diet can be.

No Christmas party is complete without spirits– the alcohol kind.  This year, visit your local beer crafters and distillers for great suggestions on items to serve.  Remember that you can get good beer and wine from home in any state in the United States.  A great place to start your search is http://www.distilling.com/PDF/craft.pdf and http://www.chamberstwines.com/?aspxerrorpath=/Article.asp.  On the latter site, you can find information on natural and organic spirits.  Also, check out our earlier blog on drinking green at http://livegreenbegreen.com/2012/06/18/drink-green-eat-green.  For a special added touch, considering serving a signature drink.

Also,  here is a good site for some ideas.

For a few housekeeping matters, when inviting guests to your holiday party, use telephone and electronic messages to reduce the use of paper.  The use of electronic messaging and invitations also carries a built-in method to monitor the RSVPs.  Secondly, plan ahead to recycle when cleaning up after the party.

It's just around the corner...

It’s just around the corner… (Photo credit: ecstaticist)

Christmas celebrations present wonderful opportunities to visit with family and friends.  Party hosting can be hectic, but with a little planning and research, party preparation can be less stressful, thrifty and green.  This Christmas let’s party green, live green, be green.

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