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by Hannah Gonzalez

Welcoming home a loved one is an exciting and joyful experience. Why not make it even more special by throwing a welcome home party for that special somebody who has been go so long?

A welcome home party is not much different from a birthday party. You will want to the theme to reflect where ever it is that your special guest has been.

Where will your party be?

If your home is big enough, it's the perfect place for a welcome home party! It brings a warm sense of home to the guest of honor. If holding the party in your home isn't an option, you can use a friend's house or backyard, rent a party hall, or plan on a picnic or park party.

Decorating the party

Is your loved one returning from the military, a mission trip or from a semester abroad? Are they moving closer after a long time apart, coming back from college, boot camp or returning from a long hospital stay? Focusing on the theme will allow you to decorate the party with your special guest as the focal point!

Inviting your guests

Set a side a time and send out party invitations 2-3 weeks before the party if possible. If time is not on your side, a simple phone call, text or email will be fine. If you are keeping this party a surprise, make sure you tell everyone coming to keep their lips sealed!

What to serve

Let your menu feature your guest of honor's favorite foods! Serve foods inspired by their journey. Or you play up the home-coming theme and make all the good ol'e comfort food you know they have missed! Hiring a caterer will help if you are short on time, or ask your guests to bring along a dish to pass around.


No party is complete with out a cake! You can't go wrong with a  cake personalized for your special guest! Not a cake fan? Try a dessert bar with several small desserts!

Fruit dipped in chocolate, home-made cookies, brownies, cupcakes, pies, fruit salads, or anything that fits in with the theme.


A specialized drink made in honor for your guest of honor will top the party off!


Gifts are not required at a welcome home party. But if you feel the urge to splurge, by all means, buy away! Shower your guest of honor with gifts reminding them of where they have been and where they are now. Having a guest book or poster board for friends and family to write a message for the guest of honor is a great way to make the party last a lifetime.

This welcome home party is a fun way to show your loved one how much you have missed them. The warm smiles and friendly faces will make your special guest glow. Remember to keep the party short, your special someone will probably be in need of some rest!

This post is brought to you by Philadelphia Caterers.
Not in Philadelphia, PA No worries, use Wedding and Party Network's handy party planning directory to help you find a caterer near you!

A special thank you to the United States Navy for the great picture via Wikipedia