The recession has most certainly prompted many to cut back but that doesn't mean you have to completely write off your annual holiday party. Here are some tips straight from the pros themselves that can help you throw a fabulous yet frugal get-together.

· Plan the party early in the season or right after the holiday; more of your guests will be able to come!

· If you plan on a packed house, make sure you plan a menu that's easy to eat while standing. That means finger foods and nothing that has to be picked.

· Consider placing a card listing the ingredients next to each dish so guests no exactly what they'll be eating. Be considerate of any dietary restrictions or food allergies guests may have and always serve one vegetarian dish.

· Save on booze by serving just beer and wine plus one or two signature cocktails. You can even encourage guests to bring their favorite bottle of wine to share so you aren't solely stuck with the tab.

· Always have a wide array of non-alcoholic beverages for those who don't or would prefer not to drink. Think spiced apple cider, hot cocoa, tea and coffee.

· Save on decorations by skipping the fresh floral centerpieces and using items you already have around the house or purchasing décor that can be used again.

· Here's another idea: use holiday decorations you already have such as ornaments, candles and garland. Place ornaments in a vase and wrap garland up the staircase to give your party a festive feel.

· When friends offer to bring something, take them up on it! Have them bring drinks or an appetizer or perhaps just enlist their help.

· For busy hosts who don't have the time to cook and prepare an entire meal, one reputable caterer known for the Utah holiday catering suggests ordering food from your favorite caterer or restaurant and serving it yourself. You'll save without having to worry about the stress of food prep.

· Make sure you put RSVP info on the invitation; when it comes to the food, it's important to have an approximate guest count to ensure you have enough (but not too much) food.