HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >


Would you attend a mid-week dinner or wine/cheese party?

Why or why not?

Background story: I love entertaining and would prefer to do it with my DH. He started a job working nights and is only off mid-week... making Wednesday the 'perfect' night for us to entertain.

While I realize that's atypical for most, I'm wondering if it would be off-putting to receive an invite for a mid-week party that would normally resemble a weekend party.

I suppose guests could always decline if it didn't suit their fancy... but am curious what the general consensus is on the topic.

My other potential issue is how to deal with guests overstay their welcome - but, I suppose that could be an issue any day of the week! :)


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I would, but I'm retired. To answer your last question, cut off the liquor!

    1. It would depend on how late it started, ie: I get up before dawn. If it's going to start at 9pm, then um, no, I couldn't / wouldn't go.

      But yes, indeed! Do do the party and it'll give all of your guests a reason to celebrate mid-week! God bless DH - I was a wreck working nights.

      1. Wine and cheese isnt exactally a beer pong and byob chip and salsa grab the sleeping bags we have a bunch staying over party... I would think a nice invitation that is an understated "we like you to join us for wine and tasting games from 6-9 on Wed March 14."

        1. I worked at an art gallery for a time and we often had Thursday night openings. These went over very well.
          IMO people can be over committed on weekend nights or they simply want to spend that time with their family.
          My only observation with a mid-week party is to have it start early and end early (5-7ish). Think "Happy Hour" after work. Cocktails and finger food usually do the trick.

          3 Replies
          1. re: pedalfaster

            To me (and to others in my circle of friends), Thursday night is different than Sun-Wed night. I am more likely to be open to going to something on a Thurs night, because if I'm up too late, I only have to make it through Friday and then it's the weekend.

            Sun-Wed nights, I avoid going out if possible.

            1. re: Sooeygun

              I would say that is probably the most common approach, and reflected in how busy restaurants are in the evening on the nights of the week.

              1. re: Sooeygun

                And I prefer Tuesday or Wednesday. Earlier in the week helps me mentally in terms of breaking up the work week. If I wake up on Monday morning dreading the week ahead and then think, "Ooh!! Wine and cheese Wednesday night!" the week just is easier to face. Plus I am more likely to have marathon meetings on Friday than any other day.

            2. Absolutely. My colleagues organize casual get-togethers at each other's homes midweek because weekends are family time for those with kids.

              And since we all work in the morning (and the parents have to get back to free their babysitters), no one overstays :)

              1. Yes, but not something planned to go too late. Mrs. Potato and I get up at 0530 during the week and try to turn in before 10pm. To quote Jimmy Buffett, "These days I'm up about the time I used to go to bed".

                1. As many others have stated as long it was on the earlier side I would love it.

                  Of course folks with kids w/ homework or sports combined with it being a work night might find it hard to get the logistics right so I would also say to also give advance warning.

                  In terms of people overing staying their welcome? Those type will do it no matter what day of the week it is. Put the booze away and put on a pot of coffee.

                  1. Absolutely, and in fact, I prefer it to a weekend event in most cases. In my office, we tended to plan our office dinners and after work happy hours for Thursdays, because people were more likely to come than on a weekend, or even a Friday. On a weeknight, I would just try to get a feel for my guests' work schedule, and plan around that. And I would be careful to keep things running on time and not keep people too late, as many do get up very early (like me).

                    1. Nope. But I get up at 4:30 to go to work. It's ridiculous. I have the bedtime of a grade schooler.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Hobbert

                        I get up at 4, but I would still prefer to go out on a weeknight. Yeah, it means I'll have one night of not enough sleep, but it is better than making a special trip into town on a weekend, when I usually have other plans.

                        1. re: MelMM

                          Oh yeah, I'm more the exception than the rule. Plenty of my coworkers go out and have no problem with that.

                      2. Absolutely. It sounds like I work later hours than most people here (10 - 7 is typical), but I'm happy going to someone's house for a casual dinner from say 7 - 9.

                        1. I'd certainly consider attending, especailly if I know that it would end at a "decent" hour.
                          Giving a time frame for the party is a very helpful tip. This way the guests know it's not an all-night thing, and you should have fewer issues with stragglers.

                          1. Definitely. We used to have a regular Wednesday night wine and snacks potluck. The group was all 20-30 something professionals/grad student with no kids, if that makes any difference. No problems with overstaying, we all had to be at work around 8am the next day.

                            Now I go out most Wednesdays for dinner and trivia. I end up staying out a little bit past my usual 10pm bed time, but I'm ok with that once a week. It's nice to have something social/fun in the middle of the week.

                            1. I think it will depend largely on the age of your friends & their stage in life. Before we had kids, we would have been pretty open to this, although we would not have stayed late. I've never been a night owl when holding a regular job with normal hours.

                              Now, it would mostly be a no.

                              The reason is I'm just too darn tired working full time with small kids. (My husband also works regular hours at a full time job but he's more of a night owl by nature so he would be much less opposed to a weeknight function.)

                              That said, for an occasional get together with true friends, we would still try.

                              For just a casual invite from acquaintances, we would decline.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: browndogs2

                                and older kids have sports and clubs and other after-school activities.

                                A casual get-together that winds up early *if* the kids didn't have a game, yes.

                                Otherwise, not so much, especially if I have an early meeting.

                              2. Maybe not a last minute invitation but if my dh and I were provided say three nights notice, sure. I'd adjust my eating/drinking if I was working the next day.

                                As for overstaying my welcome, what works for me is this:
                                Okay my dears time to call it a night! Coffee would be served about an hour before I made that last call.

                                My daughter was just mentioning to me recently that Thursday is the new Friday...

                                1. Any night is a good night for those that it is good for.

                                  1. It would depend a lot on how busy I was, how stressed I was, and what else was going on in my crazy-stupid hectic life. But if you caught me in a less-stressed state, I think it would be a lovely way to break up the working week :)

                                    1. I would be up for it because I don't have kids. However, where I live Wednesday nights are traditionally "church night" so a lot of friends are taking their kids to programs, etc. at the church. During certain sports seasons Thursday nights are volleyball or basketball games. So I guess it depends on your crowd. I actually prefer weeknight to a weekend party because I tend to go out and do things that get me good and sweaty and dirty on the weekend and then have to hustle home and shower and put on adult clothes.

                                      1. We only host mid-week parties and call them "happy hour bbqs". People wander over after work around 530 ish and stay until 9ish. It works for us because most of our guests live in the suburbs so they don't stay too late.

                                        1. Sure, so long as the context were appropriate. We went to a lovely midweek dinner party last summer, consisting of the host couple, ourselves, and one other couple. It probably helped that both of the husbands in the other couples, plus I all work together so we all have similar morning start times. And the other guest couple and we are empty nesters,so no school age children to complicate our schedules. To me, the main challenge of a midweek dinner party would be as the hostess, trying to pull it together since both i and my husband work.

                                          1. I think by the responses you're getting so far the clearest answer is "it depends".

                                            Some people have to wake up early on weekdays, others have family demands - and depending on the type of host you are, others may suspect that a dinner party at your place will be a crazy affair. Normally I really enjoy a midweek dinner event with friends - but one friend of mine I know is incapable of throwing a party that won't be a late-night, heavy drinking affair. They're great when I don't have to wake up for work - but on "school nights" a bit tricky.

                                            Ultimately, go forward, reach out to friends and see which ones are happy about the idea and who isn't. I'm sure you'll find a good crowd happy for that kind of invite.

                                            1. Always put an end time on events; it lets people know the real window, and they are more likely to show up in reasonable proximity to the start time, and you have the pretext for inviting them to leave when you wish.

                                              1. Personally, I can't wait to get home after work. I'm tired, my brain is usually fried and I am "talked out;" I'm not great company. I love the comfort of my own home after work. I have been invited out after work and always decline. But that's just me.

                                                2 Replies
                                                  1. re: ttoommyy

                                                    Me too. I prefer computer/TV to dress up/socialize, but sometimes it's fun to go out too. I would say wine & cheese over dinner, that way people can leave at their convenience and not worry about finished courses, or being rude by dining and dashing.

                                                  2. I'd be down with it, but I wouldn't drink much and would leave at a reasonable hour... 10pm at the latest. I'd be into it especially lately since my SO travels during the week and it'd be nice to have people to eat dinner with other than my dog.

                                                    Maybe don't call it a party and just invite a few people over for dinner instead.

                                                    1. do you have any idea of what time the next morning your guests will need to be at work?
                                                      do you have any idea about whether or not any of your guests need to do work at home during the weeknights?
                                                      do any of your guests work at jobs that have deadlines that must be met during the week?
                                                      do you have any guests with small children that would require a sitter (sometimes more problematic during the week)?
                                                      what is the traffic/commuting situation in your town? in my town, rarely can someone make it home from work by 5pm. the roads are basically stop and go from 4:30 to 6:30

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: westsidegal

                                                        what is the purpose of your questions? can't the guest choose to decline if all of your suppositions are a problem?

                                                      2. I attend mid-week functions frequently. It is helpful to know the end time of the event.

                                                        1. I would go.

                                                          You could schedule it early enough in the evening so that people could leave early enough to get sleep for the next day.

                                                          I think you would have less problem with lingering guests mid-week but I don't know your guests.

                                                          1. I have no children, so no added stress of finding a sitter or going to a school event. I love mid-week gatherings and actually hope to host some myself in the near future.

                                                            I don't think you need to know everyone's circumstances (time to be at work, evening demands, etc.). Plan your event, make your invitations, and see who is able to attend.

                                                            1. I would definitely go mid-week, assuming the start and end time worked with my schedule (ie, not too early in the evening or too late).

                                                              1. I'm a freelancer, so it really depends on how busy I am and what I'll be doing the next day. NO, if I'll be working at a conference. Yes, if I'm working at home and don't have a huge rush.

                                                                1. Do all of the people you are planning on inviting work "regular" hours? Do they have long drives to get home and then to where you are? I frequently get frustrated by weeknight invitations because I don't get out until 6PM. With traffic, I'm usually not back home until 7PM. And, those are my early nights. I'm not out of work until 8PM on my late nights. If it were a party that I could show up to when I can get there, I'd be much more likely to attend. One with a set start time would probably be out for me.

                                                                  But, most people do seem to have better work schedules than I do.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: merkay

                                                                    I am up at 4:30AM, and normally leave work by 5, but I am in bed by 9...and there is no wine of any kind within the 3 hour window before going to bed because ever since I entered my 40s I find wine within that window invariably makes me get up in the middle of the night and not able to get back to good sleep (a single cocktail doesn't have this effect as markedly; beer is not great, either), and I know lots of people this also applies to.

                                                                  2. 1) If I didn't have an 11 month old, I would totally go.

                                                                    2) I think specifying an ending time helps with the overstayed welcomes a little bit.

                                                                    1. I don't see why they wouldn't come. Presumably your friends know your situation.

                                                                      I concur with the suggestions to specify a time from and to, and taper the wine off near time to close out. If your friends know up front you aren't planning an evening that has no end, I can't imagine they wouldn't love to attend. I know I would. :)

                                                                      1. yes, i would be there because the folks who would be there would be ones not concerned with babies, work, blah blah blah. would be very fun imho. that's not saying that babies and work are not important, but it's all about one's perception, yes?
                                                                        it saddens me that such mid week get-togethers are suddenly a problem.

                                                                        1. if you are my friend i would attend your mid-week function unless there was a dire need for me to be asleep at an eariler time or i lived across the the state. i don't understand everyone carrying on about this and that and what not. you decide to invite friends over mid-week evening. you invite your friends, they accept or not. you have a lovely mid-week evening in the end with your friends who attend your function.