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    Getting the Party started

    Whether you're planning an intimate soiree for 20 or a conference for 200, it's essential to know what's hot and what's not in order to make your function a memorable one. So says Bulelwa Mtsali, editor of the launch edition of annual directory Party SA, available in selected delis, supermarkets and stationers with the latest issue of Eat In magazine.
    Getting the Party started

    Party SA is a glossy guide and directory for professionals already working in the events industry, and for anyone wanting to plan any type of event or occasion, from big corporate events to weddings and children's parties. Party SA lists caterers, event managers, entertainers, venues, florists, sound and lighting technicians, bar and drinks service staff, event transport, set design, special effects, ice sculptures, and much more.

    'It's a guide book in a magazine format,' adds Mtsali. 'Terrifically useful, packed with information and full of surprises including case studies, ideas and tips on how to pull off a memorable occasion.'

    Although the 'party directory' is the main event, other features include the Five-Point Venue Checklist - important questions to ask yourself and the venue operators; Dressing up - the venue is in the bag, now for the fun part - decorating; We are family - tips for home entertaining and various religious and traditional ceremonies; and Sugar Rush - create a magical kids' party without breaking the bank.

    "The days of platters of reheated sausage rolls and cocktail sausages are thankfully over (unless, of course, you're hosting a '70s theme party)," says consulting editor Jacqui Barton, who came across the successful Party Sydney! and saw an opportunity to publish a similar magazine here.

    "Having spent over 20 years in the event industry, I am constantly asked for ideas on how to organise parties and it dawned on me that people are desperately in need of a magazine to show them how to organise their special occasions."

    From a business perspective, according to publisher Maria Tiganis of New Media, the party and events industry is growing in size and importance. "Looking at conferencing alone, South Africa currently attracts 63% of all conferences held in Africa, supporting 12 000 jobs and contributing R2.6 billion a year to the GDP. International conferences alone generate R951 million and are worth R42 million in foreign exchange*. Party SA aims at showcasing the many aspects of this dynamic industry."

    The 128-page guide is on sale nationally at selected Woolworths stores, CNA, Exclusive Books, Spar, airport bookstores, farm stalls, delis and wine shops for R34.95.

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