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Aug 10, 2006 02:08 PM

Pointers for organizing a chowdown?

Esteemed chowhounds: Forgive, but I swear I saw a very thorough how-to post on this board in the past month about organizing chowdowns/offboard gatherings. If I were more saavy about using the new technology, I would have bookmarked it, but alas, I did not. Sadly, I haven't been able to find it via a search. Does anyone else know what became of that post? If so, would you kindly please provide a link for me? If you have any other advice on this topic, please do share those with me. (P.S. I hope this is the right board for this...)

Thank you!


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    1. re: The Chowhound Team

      Hmm, that's more of a debate than a how-to. TDQ, what I have done in the past is select a restaurant, the date can either be predetermined by you or you can allow interested parties to vote, then post on the board with general information and my email and ASK THAT INTERESTED PARTIES REPLY TO YOU OFF-BOARD!!! I have done ones where we just all pay cash at the restaurant but I am currently doing a rather expensive one with a set menu where I am asking all parties to prepay the restaurant upfront (cannot get stuck with no-shows and the deposit). Other advice: when some aren't drinking, have the alcohol billed separately and bring small bills. Other than that, wing it! You will have a blast!

    2. The only thing I'd like to add is that I find it easier to go ahead and select everything in advance: the place, the day, the time. I think this makes it easier for everyone. When you announce it, you can ask for PMs "if you are interested in this or future Chow meals." This makes organizing Chow meals a snap.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Steve

        Steve, chaddict and Chowhound Team: thanks for the pointers! Even though that's not the thread I was remembering (did I imagine it?), it was still helpful.

        Now that I've organized my first chowdown, I would also add that you might try to bring a helium balloon or wear a brightly colored shirt and let people know what to look for so they can spot the group more easily.


        1. re: The Dairy Queen

          I usually tell people "we're the ones with food stains on our shirts." Good to hear you got past your first one. How did you organize it? Is there a post on Chowhound so we can read about it?

          1. re: Steve

            I like that food stains idea!

            Here's the thread announcing the chowdown (which I announced before I posted my "how should I organize it post here on site talk"--I had the cart before the horse. Once I announced the chowdown, I freaked out a bit and decided I should seek out some guidance about "how" to.)


            And here's the report:



      2. Sounds like you went from "How to?" to "Did it" in less than two weeks.

        1 Reply
        1. re: yayadave

          Yes, the whole thing took about a week. :) To be fair, I've been to a chowdown before, but I'm afraid I wasn't that attuned to the logistical details, which is why I thought I'd better search on/post on site talk for pointers.