The winter solstice happens on or around December 21 each year and is a great occasion for having a party in addition to Christmas or instead of a Christmas celebration. Winter solstice parties are also neat ways of having a non-religious oriented holiday in the winter.
Planning is essential for any party and this winter festival will be no different. Your planning depends on how simple or complicated you want your party.
Keep it Simple
My suggestion is to keep your party simple for many reasons. First and foremost is the weather. If inclement weather such as snow happens on your party date, you will have to decide if you want to postpone the party or cancel it altogether. If your party was a simple and casual affair, then any postponements or cancellations will be less taxing.
Another good reason for simplicity is that other circumstances may prevent your guests from arriving if they cancel at the last minute. If the kids are sick, or the family is too busy, or if other things happen then canceling is no big deal.
Go easy on the food, decorations, and activities. The holidays are very stressful for everyone in America, even if you don’t celebrate Christmas. Keep in mind that schoolchildren will be out of school soon for winter vacation and they will have their own concerns and hypersensitivity to the upcoming two weeks off as well. Keeping the gathering simple is just easier for everyone including your guests.
The winter solstice is a fixed date on the calendar each year but you can always have some wiggle room. If the solstice happens on an inconvenient weeknight then making your party date the previous or following Friday night or Saturday night is absolutely appropriate.
The date of the winter solstice in 2009 is the normal date of December 21. The actual time of the sun’s lowest point on the southern hemisphere is 5:47 P.M. Coordinate Universal Time, or 12:47 P.M. Eastern Standard Time. The winter solstice falls on a Monday this year, so I suggest having your party on the weekend before.
Traditional winter solstice celebrations happen at night, so the timing would have to happen sometime after sunset to be more traditional. Feel free to start your party in the afternoon on a Saturday or Sunday and end right at sunset if you want to have some kind of fire lighting or burning.
Make sure you have fun and you have fun things going on for everyone involved. No one wants to attend a boring party. Keep it simple and keep it timed just right and you should have no problem hosting a winter solstice party.