With the semester ending, final exams underway, and graduation approaching, a pizza party is a great way to unwind and connect with friends (or people you’re cool with). Pizza is already a beloved and versatile dish around the world. And is there a better time to do it than National Pizza Party Day today? Since National Pizza Party Day’s observance in 1905, pizza parties across the United States (if not the world) grew very popular among people in schools, offices, homes, and outdoor venues.

If you’re thinking about hosting a pizza party, here is everything you’ll need for it to be a success.

Pizza/Food & Drinks

Lots of drinks go well with pizza like soda, juice, alcohol, and even water. IPA beer and a slice of pepperoni is a classic combo, but I’m more of a pepperoni and lemonade-kinda girl. 

What’s a pizza party without its main character? If using delivery or carryout options, check out ongoing deals from Domino’s (2 or more $6.99 each), Papa John’s $6.99 Papa Pairings, and Pizza Hut’s $7 deal lovers’ menus. But if you’re looking for something more convenient, 7-Eleven has two new pizza creations, 7-Select Frozen Pizza and Ultimate Pepperoni, for today and the future. But it’s also not a bad idea to check out some local pizzerias in your area.

On the other hand, if the plan is to make a personal pizza from scratch, more planning and money come into play. Buy enough pizza dough, sauce, cheese, and toppings for the appropriate amount of guests.

The Potluck System

Before inviting guests, figure out what food system you want to follow. For instance, would the party be a potluck where guests bring a side, drink, or dessert while you cover the pizza, or would you alone bring all the food?

Potlucks are budget-friendly, provide inclusion, and a chance to impress your friends and try out their homemade — or store-bought — dish. To make things more fun, you can set the food around a theme (i.e. color or exes’ traits).

Cutlery & Dishware

I’m not saying this is needed, but it is. Things can get messy, and it’s your job as the host to make it as small as possible. It doesn’t need to be fancy, so put the fine china away. Paper or plastic cups and plates from dollar stores, or your everyday plates and cups work just as well. And for the love of God, get napkins.

Location, Location, Location!

Picking the right place is key to how your party will run. For instance, having a pizza picnic at a park could be fun if you don’t mind an open space and people around you.

Enclosed space like in a house, dorm, or on a patio is perfect if you want it to be more of a private event with close friends.

If you’re looking for something right in the middle, bars, and pizzerias are the closest option. 

Games & Entertainment

In addition to delicious pizza, great scenery, and great company, having some fun games and entertainment can take your pizza party to the next level. Here are some games to consider:

Cards Against Humanity: A hilarious and irreverent card game that will get everyone laughing. But if your friend group can’t take dark humor, I wouldn’t recommend this card game.

Mafia: A social deduction game that can get everyone engaged and scheming.

Charades: Classic and always entertaining, charades are a great way to get everyone involved and active.

Pictionary: Test your drawing skills and guess the word before time runs out.

Song Association: Challenge your friends to think of songs based on given words — it's a great way to test music knowledge and have some fun.

Finish the Lyric: While we’re on music, play some snippets of random songs and see who can finish the lyrics — a fun and interactive game for music lovers.

With these games, your pizza party is sure to be a hit!