By this point in February, most of the country has spent the better part of the past few months bundling up, shoveling ridiculous amounts of snow and scraping ice off of our windshields each morning before work. Oh…and hibernating too.

Speaking personally, the deep freeze of the winter months sends me into hibernation mode and I tend to see less of the people I care about most. If you’re like me and are looking for a fun way to reconnect with friends and family, and happen to be a fan of movies and the celeb filled Academy Awards, then throwing your own Oscar viewing party at home might be just what the doctor ordered! Here are some sure fire tips to help you pull off an Oscar party worthy of any A (or B) Lister.

  1.  Make it an Event! – The most obvious but very important first step is to build some “buzz” around your Oscar party within your close circle of friends. Set the right tone by creating and sending award show inspired eVites via eVite. Hat tip to the good folks over at Business Insider on the great find!
  2. Take a queue from Justin Timberlake, Suit & Ties Only – If you want to kick the awesomeness level of your party up a notch. Require that your soiree attendees come dressed up, like they were really at the Oscars!
  3. Roll out the Red Carpet - One of the signature parts of Oscar night are the red carpet arrivals and interviews that happen right before the actual ceremony begins. You can buy a 15 foot red carpet runner for $7 at Party City. Right before your guests arrive, roll that red carpet out! Designate someone in your family as the paparazzi and take some photos of your decked out guests. Post to Facebook immediately! If you really want to be creative, you can even film them on your iPhone and edit a fun video together after the fact.
  4. Bubbles – As your guests enter your home, usher them to your dining room where you would have already dressed it up for a cocktail hour (or half hour). You should have some light hor dourves on tap and make sure to have something bubbly for your guests to drink. Either sparkling cider, champagne or soda. Since the Oscars are the most upscale of all the award shows, bust out that nice China you keep in the kitchen cabinet for most of the year. Or head over to your local party store and purchase some fancy looking plastic champagne glasses, chargers and plates. Most important part: enjoy good conversation
  5. The big screen – A bit before the show begins, lead your guests to the room with your biggest screen. This should be where you all watch the Academy Awards. For a few bucks, you can spruce your space up by making it festive with some award show related decorations. Party supply stores like Party City have a slew of cheap decorations you can purchase to add some pizzazz to your shindig. Simple touches like hanging decorations and scene setters like this $5 red curtain hollywood decor panel can go a long way to creating the festive ambiance and mimicking the actual award show. Want to go the extra mile? Rent or buy a popcorn machine! 
  6. It’s all fun and games – What’s a party without some games? provides some downloadable/printable ballots that you can hand out before your party begins which are an absolute must have for any Oscar party. You can even up the stakes by giving away a prize to the winner who guesses the most categories correctly. Here are a few other cool game ideas
      • Oscar Bingo
      • Film Trivia
      • Six Degrees of Separation (i.e. How are Ben Affleck and Steve Urkel connected? Well, Affleck was in Armageddon with Bruce Willis who did Die Hard with the Father from Family Matters, which was the show headlined by Steve Urkel! lol)
      • Guess Who I Am
      • Oscar Party Pool

7. Celebs get gifts – Word on the street is that Oscar presenters get amazingly expensive gift bags just for showing up and reading a few words off the teleprompter. While you won’t have the budget for that, be sure to leave each guest with a small gift bag to take home as a token of your appreciation. You can get Hollywood themed party bags at any party store and you can get as creative as you’d like with your gifts: Chocolates, candy, cards, $5 gift cards or anything from the bargain bins at Target!

And there you have it! With a little bit of pre-planning and very little cost, you can have an Academy Awards party at home to make any A Lister jealous. The official Oscar’s website offers an “Oscar Party Kit” complete with non-alcoholic and alcoholic drink recipes, game ideas and even appetizer recipes. Either way, CB Believes that you should have a little fun everyday, but especially Sunday, February 24th when the world comes together to watch the Oscars.