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Supper Club

It is always fun to get together with friends and share stories of times and places you have been together or even just hot topics from the daily news. Many times, you meet someone and may think of another person you might want to introduce them to but you’re not sure how to go about it. One way to create connections is to start a Supper Club. I have been participating in several Supper Clubs over the years and although each one of them was unique because of the varied participants, the results were always the same: great food, fabulous fellowships, and lasting friendships.  

When starting a Supper Club, you want to make sure the people you are inviting will have some common interests such as sports, travel, cooking, hobbies, etc. This makes it easier to start conversations when introducing new people to each other and it provides a common ground to relate to one another.  Find your niche, invite those friends, and go with it!

One thing that can be a bit of challenge is deciding on the number of people you want in your Supper Club. Although it can be nice to have numerous friends involved, it could also create challenges. I prefer to stick to no more than eight people in the group. This keeps the group small enough to spend quality time talking and getting to know each other but big enough to play card or board games, too.

Scheduling can be difficult if the group is big or if they have children that are involved with extracurricular activities. Our Supper Club has been easy to schedule for the most part because all of our children are either out of the house or old enough to take care of themselves. Therefore our calendars are fairly flexible. Typically the hosts will send out a text with possible dates for the group to consider and once a date is selected and confirmed, the hosts begin planning the menu. Make sure to send a reminder a couple of weeks before the scheduled dinner to ensure that everyone will come.

Here are a few of the people in my Supper Club. I got to know David, Erin, and John through bicycling and training for the MS150. Although they are all much better cyclists than I am, I enjoyed their company while out on the road riding our bikes and I appreciated their efforts in helping me become a better cyclist as we trained for the MS150 ride.

Through my husband’s mosque, I became good friends with Abe and Heidi. Heidi always invited me to sit with her during Friday social gatherings at the mosque and introduced me to other members of the congregation. Abe and my husband socialized often at the mosque, too, so it was easy to get together at other social events.

Coincidentally, David, John, Abe and I are in a running club and we see each other throughout the week at scheduled runs or on weekends at running events. Typically when we get together we share stories of our running workouts from the week, as well as all of our aches and pains!

Although Heidi and Erin really didn’t know each other, they discovered that they both enjoy reading fiction & romance books and now they talk about the book each is currently reading, as well as make some suggestions to each other of what to read next. Although I like reading, I am a nonfiction reader.

John is our wine expert and typically walks in with a bottle to share for the evening. Since Omar is from Lebanon, this last Supper Club gathering, he brought a bottle of red wine made in the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon for us to enjoy (which was very good by the way!). Heidi & Abe don’t drink alcoholic beverages, so they brought along a couple of bottles of sparkling red grape juice to share with Omar.

David enjoys cooking as much as Omar, so they typically share recipes they have experimented with and interesting cooking gadgets they have recently purchased. The rest us hope that these recipes end up being one of the meals for our Supper Club get together sometime.  

Recently, we started to play card games after dinner is eaten and the dishes are put away. We are all a little bit on the competitive side, so we all thought that we could have some fun playing card games. Erin has been the designated game leader, so she selects the games and gives us instructions on how they are played. We started out with “Cards Against Humanity” and the last game we played was “What does that Meme?”

I must say we had some seriously hard laughs over these games and some of us are still getting harassed on our group page about our answers!

When planning a Supper Club, you might want to discuss with the group whether the “club” would want to get together at a restaurant or rotate hosting the club at their home. Our club opted for the latter.

Although it is nice to have the club meet up at a restaurant because no one has to slave in the kitchen, it can be really hard to carry a conversation in a loud atmosphere.  

Potluck dinner is another format we’ve had in the past for our Supper Club. This format allows the hosts more time to socialize with less time spent in the kitchen. To keep this format fun and exciting, we try a different “themed” potluck dinner each time.

Because our group has some members from other countries, it’s interesting to see members of our club sample food they’ve never had before, such as my husband’s Lebanese Cuisine. He was so excited about cooking all the traditional Lebanese dishes for the group to enjoy.

Abe is from Palestine and offered up several of his homeland dishes of pan-fried fish (that was to die for!), as well as some spicy side dishes.

When it became John’s turn to host, he prepared some delicious smoked meats using his electric smoker. It was such a beautiful day, so we sat outside on the porch to enjoy our beverage of choice and the wonderful meal John had prepared for us. John is our wine connoisseur so he typically pairs his meals with a good bottle of wine for the those who enjoy wine among us to enjoy!  

David and Erin had us create our own personal pizza which, I must admit, was great fun! This was a little bit of different spin on what we had done so far, but I enjoyed the option of creating my own pizza with various toppings. Erin made us cake balls, which I had never had before and they were yummy, too!

This weekend was our turn to host the Club. Instead of cooking for the group, which my husband typically would do, we decided to splurge on our friends with a catered meal we recently purchased at a charity fundraising event. Our friend Dustin Nichols, owner of Coastal Catering, cooked up the most delicious meal and freed up Omar to enjoy more time socializing with our friends.

One misconception about having a Supper Club is that you must be a good cook. This is actually not so important. You can make burgers and hot dogs or order pizza. Although many like to share their own unique dishes and show-off their skills, the main purpose is social interaction, building lasting friendships and memorable fellowships.

Personally, I like to organize things, so putting together a Supper Club was right up my alley. I understand that not everyone is always going to like everything that is being served, but I hope that they enjoy everyone’s company and leave the evening enriched by friendships and conversations. Fun is the main ingredient for your Supper Club to be successful and enjoyable. Live, love & laugh together!

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