Etiquette

Telling people what is served

This was in Miss Manners today. I know it's been discussed on here that the food being served shouldn't be put on a wedding invitation. Is a quinceanera just different?

DEAR MISS MANNERS: We are getting ready to celebrate my daughter’s quinceanera, and have decided not to serve alcohol for many reasons. My mother was mortified when she learned this, and keeps pressuring me to provide alcohol.

She does not drink; however, she insists that the only reason guests attend such celebrations is to drink, and that guests will be disappointed.

Although I have put my foot down on the issue, I want to know if it’s rude not to offer alcohol at such events. Should I let guests know in advance so they can make the choice themselves, and not be disappointed when they arrive? Should it be printed in the invitations?

I say that if guests truly care about my daughter, they will attend regardless, and if they only want to attend for free alcohol, then we are probably better off without them. Of course, nonalcoholic drinks and food will be served.

GENTLE READER: How pitiful that your mother thinks that the only reason your family would celebrate your daughter is free liquor.

If it is possible, hold this event during the day and call it a brunch or a tea. Alcohol will be less expected. Or if it is a less formal occasion, word the invitation with what is being offered, rather than what is not: “Dinner will be served, along with soda and juice.” For those bold enough to object to this situation, Miss Manners suggests that you politely remind them of the reason for the celebration -- and that the guest of honor is not yet of drinking age.

http://www.uexpress.com/miss-manners/2017/12/9/dropping-engagement-ring-hints


Re: Telling people what is served

  • WTF is wrong with having an AF event - Anyone ever heard of the term "Mocktails"...  GM really needs to look up "Enabler" if the only reason her family shows up is for free alcohol js...
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  • We just had Chiquitas 7th birthday parties.   Friends were tonight and family was a week ago.

    Neither event was AF but the kids cocktail was aa chocolate milk.  
    MairePoppycharlotte989875
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
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    banana468 said:
    We just had Chiquitas 7th birthday parties.   Friends were tonight and family was a week ago.

    Neither event was AF but the kids cocktail was aa chocolate milk.  
    I bet they  only come for the free alcohol right?






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • lyndausvi said:
    banana468 said:
    We just had Chiquitas 7th birthday parties.   Friends were tonight and family was a week ago.

    Neither event was AF but the kids cocktail was aa chocolate milk.  
    I bet they  only come for the free alcohol right?
    I bet the parents found the experience far more enjoyable!  It's why I had it! 
    charlotte989875
  • lyndausvi said:
    MesmrEwe said:
    WTF is wrong with having an AF event - Anyone ever heard of the term "Mocktails"...  GM really needs to look up "Enabler" if the only reason her family shows up is for free alcohol js...
    There is nothing wrong with an AF event.  That said, in my family it's would be looked down upon big time.    We serve alcohol at ALL events, regardless of the age of the guest of honor or time of day.    There is some hundred+ years  of history to back up my claim.  You are not going to change my families minds easily.

     Now, I don't think people would skip an AF event, but they most likely will pre-game or not stay very long.   Since it's never happened I really don't know.  

      I don't think it's because of the "free alcohol" factor either.  Every single one of us serves alcohol at our own parties.  Just like we always have food.   It's just how we have hosted events for generations.


    That all said, I surprised Miss Manners thinks it's okay to put on a invitation there is a lack of alcohol.      
    OMG this is my family too. My parents recently went to a 1 year old's birthday party (non-family) and my dad asked where the beer was. Mom said they looked at him like he had three heads. It's just part of what our family thinks about when hosting any kind of event (literally, any kind of event).

    I don't think people would leave or straight up not come, but if anything happening at any kind of event is out of the norm for that group it's probably worth at least spreading info via word of mouth.
    lyndausvicharlotte989875short+sassyMairePoppy
  • I especially agree with @lyndausvi and @southernbelle0915.

    While having an AF event is not rude in and of itself, it's also a little a bit of a "know your crowd" thing.  If the majority of guests (based on tradition and family history) is going to be expecting alcohol to be served, then I think the LW should reconsider.  If they still choose AF, I'd get the word out through the family grapevine.

    Or include a note on the invite, like MM suggested.  No, it isn't proper.  But it's a victimless crime that gives info some guests will want to know.

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  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut
    Moderator Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
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    We serve alcoholic beverages at every gathering. The age of the guest of honor is irrelevant. When we were kids, our Dads and Grandfather actually sent us to fetch beers for them, on the way back, we often took a swig. It was our reward as long as we didn't mention it to Grandmother :) 
                
    short+sassyeileenroblyndausviahoywedding
  • Many friends drink and many friend don't. Often what we'll do at parties is BYOB and provide non-alcoholic drinks {usually at the enjoyment of what non-drinkers like}

    Given the situation, I would do "Mocktails" since the guest of honour is underage BUT maybe find a place that allows outside drinks to be brought in
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  • Many friends drink and many friend don't. Often what we'll do at parties is BYOB and provide non-alcoholic drinks {usually at the enjoyment of what non-drinkers like}

    Given the situation, I would do "Mocktails" since the guest of honour is underage BUT maybe find a place that allows outside drinks to be brought in
    It’s not appropriate to have your guests bringing their own alcohol to a big formal celebration like a quinceanara. 
    Totally agree.

    And if this is like what I saw when a friend had a formal 16th birthday party a hall is booked, an extensive amount of food is served and the event rivaled some weddings I've attended.  

    In those instances, if the event was dry you'd need a better reason than the age of the guest of honor.   You can have one - but there would be major side eye. 
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  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut
    Moderator Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
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    lyndausvi said:
    We serve alcoholic beverages at every gathering. The age of the guest of honor is irrelevant. When we were kids, our Dads and Grandfather actually sent us to fetch beers for them, on the way back, we often took a swig. It was our reward as long as we didn't mention it to Grandmother :) 
    Me too!

    I learned how to pour from a keg at about 6 years old.    My older cousins who were still under 18 (which was the drinking age back then) would ask me to get them a beer.  Of course I did, b/c what did I know?     (I'm talking about the 16-17 year olds, not the 10-12 year olds.)  Ha.    

    My family is so huge that there was never enough chairs around the table.  So the joke was "move your feet, loose your seat".    So they would send us kids to get their drinks.     I actually have fond memories of those days.

    My first taste of beer was @ 6 months sitting on my grandma's lap.   Apparently I was teething and liked grandma's frosty pewter beer mug with a glass bottom.   :)

    It's clear my normal was different than a lot of people on here.    Except @banana468 , I swear we are related somehow.  
    Those pouring skills came in handy, didn't they.

    My mom,  a tea totaler,  rubbed whiskey on our gums when we were teething or colicky, dropped whiskey in our ears for earaches. We were allowed to drink the champagne toasts at weddings.  I was the oldest kid, so I got to drink my youngest cousin's champagne so he wouldn't get sick. Had to look out for the little guy. It wasn't just our family, but the family friends all had kids within a five year range - all had the same culture. No one made a big deal about booze - except when a southern friend visited  and brought 'white lightning.' The kids weren't allowed near that stuff.

    The adults liked to play poker and black jack. The parents would give us a handful of change and let us play a few rounds with the adults before we were sent off with our winnings and a deck of cards.  Now this is pretty bad, but, the men would occasionally smoke cigars and any child game enough to take a drag off a cigar was allowed. One puff would cause coughing and tearing and lots of laughter. No kid ever wanted a second drag. We all survived and still love each other and still have a blast on the rare occasions when we are together. It's sounds strange to some, I'm sure, but it was a wonderful childhood.

                
    lyndausvi
  • I'm waiting to do an ancestry.com analysis to find out that @lyndausvi have the same relatives from Ireland.


    MairePoppylyndausvicharlotte989875
  • Many friends drink and many friend don't. Often what we'll do at parties is BYOB and provide non-alcoholic drinks {usually at the enjoyment of what non-drinkers like}

    Given the situation, I would do "Mocktails" since the guest of honour is underage BUT maybe find a place that allows outside drinks to be brought in
    It’s not appropriate to have your guests bringing their own alcohol to a big formal celebration like a quinceanara. 
    Given what the party is, the venue may not want to sell alcohol in case of underage drinking. I've heard of that happening.
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  • Many friends drink and many friend don't. Often what we'll do at parties is BYOB and provide non-alcoholic drinks {usually at the enjoyment of what non-drinkers like}

    Given the situation, I would do "Mocktails" since the guest of honour is underage BUT maybe find a place that allows outside drinks to be brought in
    It’s not appropriate to have your guests bringing their own alcohol to a big formal celebration like a quinceanara. 
    Given what the party is, the venue may not want to sell alcohol in case of underage drinking. I've heard of that happening.
    It's highly doubtful that a venue for a quinceanera would not allow alcohol at all as a prevention underage drinking.   My experience is that those are in the same venues you'd use for a wedding or other social event that can be a high end restaurant or hotel ballroom.  

    If it's an outside place that allows drinks to be brought in it would be the type where the hosts bring in their purchased alcohol and hired bartenders would supply it.     Guests with outside liquor would be kicked out.


    ahoyweddingSTARMOON44
  • Many friends drink and many friend don't. Often what we'll do at parties is BYOB and provide non-alcoholic drinks {usually at the enjoyment of what non-drinkers like}

    Given the situation, I would do "Mocktails" since the guest of honour is underage BUT maybe find a place that allows outside drinks to be brought in
    It’s not appropriate to have your guests bringing their own alcohol to a big formal celebration like a quinceanara. 
    Given what the party is, the venue may not want to sell alcohol in case of underage drinking. I've heard of that happening.
    Even if the venue doesn't serve alcohol to prevent underage drinking, why would they let people BYOB?
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    STARMOON44
  • Many friends drink and many friend don't. Often what we'll do at parties is BYOB and provide non-alcoholic drinks {usually at the enjoyment of what non-drinkers like}

    Given the situation, I would do "Mocktails" since the guest of honour is underage BUT maybe find a place that allows outside drinks to be brought in
    It’s not appropriate to have your guests bringing their own alcohol to a big formal celebration like a quinceanara. 
    Given what the party is, the venue may not want to sell alcohol in case of underage drinking. I've heard of that happening.
    Then there can’t be alcohol. 
  • The adults liked to play poker and black jack. The parents would give us a handful of change and let us play a few rounds with the adults before we were sent off with our winnings and a deck of cards.  Now this is pretty bad, but, the men would occasionally smoke cigars and any child game enough to take a drag off a cigar was allowed. One puff would cause coughing and tearing and lots of laughter. No kid ever wanted a second drag. We all survived and still love each other and still have a blast on the rare occasions when we are together. It's sounds strange to some, I'm sure, but it was a wonderful childhood.

    Hmmm...pretty bad?  Or, perhaps, very wise ;).  I could see a bad experience with smoking at a young age leaving a strong subconscious aversion to it.
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  • The adults liked to play poker and black jack. The parents would give us a handful of change and let us play a few rounds with the adults before we were sent off with our winnings and a deck of cards.  Now this is pretty bad, but, the men would occasionally smoke cigars and any child game enough to take a drag off a cigar was allowed. One puff would cause coughing and tearing and lots of laughter. No kid ever wanted a second drag. We all survived and still love each other and still have a blast on the rare occasions when we are together. It's sounds strange to some, I'm sure, but it was a wonderful childhood.

    Hmmm...pretty bad?  Or, perhaps, very wise ;).  I could see a bad experience with smoking at a young age leaving a strong subconscious aversion to it.
    This exact thing happened to me. When I was 4, my dad had a cigar from some event or another and let me take a drag on it. I coughed and cried and threw up. My mom was raging pissed. My dad chuckled and said "yep, that's really what smoking is like, bet you won't do it again, will you?" And I didn't. 
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    levioosashort+sassyMairePoppy
  • lyndausvi said:
    We serve alcoholic beverages at every gathering. The age of the guest of honor is irrelevant. When we were kids, our Dads and Grandfather actually sent us to fetch beers for them, on the way back, we often took a swig. It was our reward as long as we didn't mention it to Grandmother :) 
    Me too!

    I learned how to pour from a keg at about 6 years old.    My older cousins who were still under 18 (which was the drinking age back then) would ask me to get them a beer.  Of course I did, b/c what did I know?     (I'm talking about the 16-17 year olds, not the 10-12 year olds.)  Ha.    

    My family is so huge that there was never enough chairs around the table.  So the joke was "move your feet, loose your seat".    So they would send us kids to get their drinks.     I actually have fond memories of those days.

    My first taste of beer was @ 6 months sitting on my grandma's lap.   Apparently I was teething and liked grandma's frosty pewter beer mug with a glass bottom.   :)

    It's clear my normal was different than a lot of people on here.    Except @banana468 , I swear we are related somehow.  
    This is our normal, too. And H's. He taught his niece how to get beer from the cooler at 3. So, yeah drinks at a birthday party is completely normal and people would be wondering what is going on if there is no alcohol served. It's just what we do. 

    And the bolded is the exact thing that happens at our gatherings. 
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    The adults liked to play poker and black jack. The parents would give us a handful of change and let us play a few rounds with the adults before we were sent off with our winnings and a deck of cards.  Now this is pretty bad, but, the men would occasionally smoke cigars and any child game enough to take a drag off a cigar was allowed. One puff would cause coughing and tearing and lots of laughter. No kid ever wanted a second drag. We all survived and still love each other and still have a blast on the rare occasions when we are together. It's sounds strange to some, I'm sure, but it was a wonderful childhood.

    Hmmm...pretty bad?  Or, perhaps, very wise ;).  I could see a bad experience with smoking at a young age leaving a strong subconscious aversion to it.
    This exact thing happened to me. When I was 4, my dad had a cigar from some event or another and let me take a drag on it. I coughed and cried and threw up. My mom was raging pissed. My dad chuckled and said "yep, that's really what smoking is like, bet you won't do it again, will you?" And I didn't. 
    Literally the same thing happened to me. My uncle gave me a cigar and it was the worst. I felt so sick. And I have never been tempted to smoke since. 


    image
    southernbelle0915MairePoppy
  • My parents rarely drank.  My dad would drink one beer, every once in awhile.  We didn't even keep them in the house.  He would walk down to our corner store, when he wanted one.  My mom would have one glass of wine on special occasions.

    However, as very young children, we were allowed to have "sips".  A little older, but still in elementary school, we were allowed to have a small glass of beer or wine on special occasions also.

    I actually loved the taste of beer, even as a toddler.  Anytime my dad had one, I wanted a sip.  When I was about 2 1/2, I had only ever had sips of the typical American pale beers...like Coors and Budweiser.  My dad went down to the corner store and got a dark German beer.  This is the rest of the story from him.  He came home with it and...there I immediately was, like a little puppy...wanting my sip.  He was thinking, "Haha, this might kill her taste for beer.  She isn't going to like this."  So he gave me a sip.  No recoil from the bitter taste.  No grimace.  My only reaction was, "Thanks, Daddy!"  And I went back off to play, lol.

    Fast forward 20+ years.  I still love beer!  Though...not the typical American pale ones.  Hmmmm, lol.

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