Not that Sydneysiders need an excuse, but the famous Autumn Carnival gives everyone the perfect chance to catch racing fever and celebrate with a party!
Whether you want to hold your own 'day at the races' at home, or plan a corporate event that will be the talk of the town, here are nine party ideas to kick off the action.
1. Fashions on the Field
No matter how big or small your bash is, hosting your own Fashions on the Field is sure to make a splash with your guests. For a corporate event, hire a catwalk and models for a professional fashion show, or enlist your employees to battle it out in a best-dressed competition. When you're holding a backyard do, invite family members and friends to come in their favourite race day hats, and give out prizes for the most elaborate.
2. Take a bet
Everyone loves to have a bet on the races, but take it one step further with a Casino-themed event. Combine your racing sweepstakes with card dealing tables and gaming chips, so guests can gamble for fun. You can award prizes to whoever holds the most chips at the end of the night. This theme lends itself well to cocktail-style parties, with finger food catering in Sydney.
3. Go elegant
Racing is known as the sport of kings, so why not go all out and host a sophisticated black-tie event? A formal party with floor length dresses, tuxedos and champagne cocktails is just perfect for a corporate marquee event.
4. Movie star magic
You can treat all your guests like movie stars by adding a touch of Hollywood glamour to your party. Roll out the red carpet at the entrance to your venue and hire actors to play the role of eager paparazzi as guests arrive to watch the races on a big screen.
5. Backyard games
A casual backyard bash is always fun, but you can up the ante with games for the young and young at heart. Depending on the crowd, take advantage of racing fever and play ‘pin the tail on the horse’ and horse shoe quoits. Add to the sporting vibe with a hotdog cart and plenty of beer on ice.
6. The roaring 20's
The roaring 20s was a golden age for sports, and horse racing was no exception. Throw a 20s costume party and invite your guests to pull out the feather boas, don their flapper dresses and find their cloche hats. Decorate your venue in black and white, with low lighting and a speak-easy style bar.
7. Disco fever
If you’re heading to Randwick for race day, why not hold an after-party? Disco is a fun choice that will get everyone dancing. Hire a DJ or compile a list of your guest's favourite songs to keep the dance floor hopping. Throw in some glittering decorations, disco lights and party food, and they'll never want to leave.
8. Photo fun
As social media is all the rage, make taking party snaps an event for your guests. You can hire props and backdrops to create a racing theme, provide a dress up box for funny photos, or get creative and hang giant photo frames from trees in the backyard.
9. Outdoor movie night
Watching movies in the great outdoors is a favourite Aussie pastime and you can combine it with your love for racing. Hire a projector and screen, rent your favourite horsey movies such as Phar Lap and Seabiscuit, and give all your guests a snack pack to nibble on.
No matter how you choose to celebrate the Autumn Carnival, adding some spice to your event with our party ideas is sure to set everyone's hearts racing!