There are four major options for your prom menu; a sit down dinner, buffet style, family style, or hors d'oeuvres (finger foods).
Sit Down Dinner
Sit Down dinners usually involve one main course dinner, soup, salad, rolls, and dessert. Everyone gets the same dinner and it is served to your tables.
At a Buffet Style Dinner the food is set out on a banquet table and your guests come up to the banquet table, with their dish, and choose the selection of food that they want. Usually there is multiple choices of meat, vegetables, and salads. This goes fairly fast, depending on how many lines the caterer has set up. As guests finish eating they can go for photographs or relax until the music starts.
At a Family Style Dinner, the food is brought to each table in serving dishes and each person at the table can take the food that they want as the dishes are passed. If this is done right it does go fairly fast and you get more dancing time.
Hors d'oeuvres or Finger Foods
Hors d'oeuvres, or as some people call it, finger foods, usually consists of bite size food that is available for a certain period of the evening and your guests can help themselves at any time. This service saves the most time at a prom. There is no need for everyone to all sit down and eat at the same time, and it gives you more time to party, the music starts when the prom starts.
The prices of each of these major options do vary from one facility to the next. Usually the least expensive is the Buffet Style, followed by Family Style, then Hors d'oeuvres, and the highest cost is the Sit Down Dinner. This cost line up could change depending on the caterer or banquet facility.
The caterer you choose will usually have set menus from which you may choose. They will make minor changes for you if you like, but for the most part you choose from their banquet menus prepared specifically for these events. Most packages for proms include an unlimited soda bar either built into the price or as an extra.
To get a good idea of how long dinner will take at your prom, you should observe the caterer in action at an event that has the same number of people that you expect at your prom. This is a usual practice and people do it on weddings all the time. The more time that the caterer needs to serve the meal, the less time that you have to enjoy the prom.
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