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Published: Friday, 1/30/2009

How to Score With Your Big Game Day Party

(ARA) - Planning a party for the big game day shouldn't be stressful. The atmosphere is casual and the attire is simple (your favorite team jersey); so it's a party you can sit back, relax and enjoy. A little creativity and planning ahead will ensure your gathering is a success.

First and Ten -- Decor

Let's be honest, no one goes to a party for the decorations and most everyone is watching the TV, so you don't have to go all out in this area. Paper plates and napkins in team colors are enough. If you want to shake it up a bit, purchase artificial grass at a hardware store and cut it to size for coasters, place mats or even a table covering. Use miniature footballs or trophies as table centerpieces.

Field Goal -- Food and Beverages

Game day parties are for snacking, so most -- if not all -- of the food can be prepared ahead of time. A variety of salsas and tortilla chips are always a hit. Big bowls of chili are simple, hearty and filling. Use a slow cooker to make meatballs or chicken wings and keep them hot, or put out platters of sandwich fixings for people to make their own subs.

With salty and spicy snacks around make sure you don't forget the beverages. Have plenty of beer on hand and chilled before the game starts. If you run out, it's tough to find volunteers to make a beverage run in the middle of the game. Have a variety of beers to choose from and, if you're feeling really ambitious, create a signature cocktail.

Touchdown -- The Game

A recent survey by Kelton Research found that eight in 10 football fans said the quality of the TV picture is more important than the food while watching football. Sixty-one percent of fans said that a high definition television (HDTV) is required for a successful football viewing party, even more so than surround sound or alcohol.

And six in 10 of them think watching football in HD makes it easier for viewers to make better calls than the referees. So, one of the most important elements at your party will be the TV.

This year, if you want a successful game day party, start with the right HDTV, provide some snacks and beer and spice it up with a few decorations. Remember to relax and have fun because a stressed-out host during the big game is a fumble. Courtesy of ARAcontent

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