This Birthday-party-checklist will assist you in having as much fun as your guests. Invite 20% more people than you can fit for a large cocktail party because only 70 to 80% of invitees typically attend. Make, buy, or borrow any appropriate decorations or music for the theme. Prepare the recipes (choose only those that can be prepared in advance, perhaps frozen, with just warming and assembling required on party day). Make a list of how far ahead each item can be made, and create a shopping list. As needed, place an order with your local delicatessen or bakery. Consider hiring a high school student or a professional to assist with pre- or post-party cleaning, passing out drinks or appetizers, and replenishing supplies.