Hosting a barn dance

abcsoupAugust 22, 2002

We are almost finished building our new home. Along with our home, we built a new barn, with a walk-in haymow. We are going to have a barn dance in a few weeks, for family and friends, and our new neighbors.

We plan to have a local restaraunt cater bbq pork, beans, potato salad, pickles, etc. and have on tap beer and champale, and also have on hand hot apple cider and pop. We have also booked the band (local friends of ours). We're thinking of just doing the inviting by word of mouth, and not invitations. Do you think this is ok?

We're decorating with hay and straw bales, strung up Christmas white lights, corn shocks, pumpkins, and fresh apples in baskets, plus cattails, and other fall foliage.

One problem we're already running into is the fact that many people who've we already casually invited, have said "Oh great, I can't wait to see your house" (meaning having an actual tour inside). To their surprise, we answered them with "Our house will be locked and we will not be showing it that night to anyone". We're doing this because I dont' want a hundred plus people traipsing through our new home, plus we want the focus to be on the barn dance, not our new house. Any suggestions for tips would be appreciated! Thanks!

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Can I come??
Sounds perfect! Friends had a party like that about 15 years ago and it was great fun. The house was off limits, not a problem.....but don't remember what they did about the "potty situation".
If anyone wants to see the house....tell them "sorry! The party's in the barn this time! I can't be 2 places at once!"
Linda C

    Bookmark   August 22, 2002 at 10:19PM
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Actually, we're just going to have 2 porta potties stationed right outside the barn...hopefully that'll take care of that end@!! ;o)

    Bookmark   August 22, 2002 at 10:47PM
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Is there a corn field near by.....for the guys?
Linda C

    Bookmark   August 22, 2002 at 11:58PM
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Yes, there is!! Lots of corn!

    Bookmark   August 23, 2002 at 9:59AM
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Sounds wonderful. I just hosted a pig roast for a charitable organization outdoors on my property last weekend and kept the house locked so I don't see it as being unusual. We had a double-wide portapottie that had a sink with running water from a tank on the back and a battery operated light so no reason to go indoors.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2002 at 11:45AM
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Just thinking about the port-a-potty makes me cringe! Get better TP to put in them than what the company will send! Ruthanna has the right idea- running water and a light and a little more space inside are needed improvements.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2002 at 8:59AM
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Sorry, but I don't think that I would have said "Our house will be locked and we will not be showing it that night to anyone". I am sure it made the person feel uncomfortable and embarrassed. After all, I think a tour would have been the normal expectation in this instance.

Perhaps a more gentle response would have been 'oh, we'll be doing a tour at a later time, this night will be for partying in the barn".

That aside, I think that your intentions are in the right place, and it is very thoughtful of you to have the party.


    Bookmark   August 25, 2002 at 8:56PM
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It sounds like fun but be sure you have a place to wash up after the potty.
Someone I know had an outside wedding, brought in a flatbed
truck with a porta potty on it locked up the house and had
someone stand guard at the door.
It cetainly was the most talked about wedding for a long time.
You'll have a great time. Go for it!


    Bookmark   September 6, 2002 at 1:18PM
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A barn holds a lot more people than most houses and it makes sense to keep this party in the barn. Maybe print invites (on the computer with colored paper) that explain that it is a barn party and if people ask about a house tour you can say that you have been doing some rearranging and will have people visit (in smaller groups) when the house is set up the way you want. You could put printed notes on the door explaining that too, if you want.

The porta potties are OK if you have someone keep an eye on them and check to see that they stay clean and have TP there. Maybe provide wetwipes for handwashing or a temporary handwash station with a hose. Straw bales are good seating and the decor sounds lovely.

The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry's cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town. - Emily Dickinson

    Bookmark   September 6, 2002 at 5:35PM
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I think it sounds wonderful.....the wet wipes in the porta potty is a grest idea. We did one of these, years ago when Dallas was a big TV hit, and it was a blast!

I agree that you should focus on this as a barn dance....or an open house but not both! Maybe you could add on the invitation that an open house is planned for later on.

Which brings me to the invitations...send them not because it's protocol but because it gives you a chance to spell out the guidelines, nicely, and by adding an RSVP you'll have a good feeling for how many to expect!

Have a great time ...and biggest tip off all, big no smoking signs!

    Bookmark   September 6, 2002 at 6:41PM
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How did it go?

    Bookmark   September 21, 2002 at 7:18PM
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The dance is next Sat. night, the 28th...I'll post details!!!

    Bookmark   September 22, 2002 at 7:08PM
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Call Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney to put on a show.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2002 at 3:10PM
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