12 Super Bowl Party Do's and Don'ts

We'll show you 12 ways to avoid a fumble and score major points with football fans at your Super Bowl party.

Plus: 38 tasty Super Bowl party food ideas »

DO: Vary Your Drink Options

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Beer may be synonymous with football (we blame the beer ads that play during every commercial break), but it isn't everyone's first choice. Make Orange-Ginger Margaritas or Passion Fruit Mojitos by the pitcher and be sure to have a few bottles of red wine on hand.

DON'T: Forget to Prepare for Spills

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Cheering can get rowdy, so booze and food are bound to fumble onto the couch or carpet at some point. Create a preemptive strike against stains by removing rugs to expose hardwood floors, which are easier to clean. In case of a stain, try one of these cleaning solutions.

DO: Stock Up on Classic Sports Snacks

Peanuts, pretzels, and chips are practically mandatory on game day. Upgrade the basics with these Spiced Nuts and Crispy Rosemary Potato Chip recipes.

DON'T: Skimp on Hearty Foods

Sports fans need substance, especially if they're knocking back some celebratory drinks. These crowd-pleasing recipes for Sweet-and-Sour Meatballs, Glazed Country Ribs, and Zesty Vegetable Lasagna will keep them satisfied.

DO: Serve a Variety of Salsa

One person's "Mild" is another's "Holy Crap That's Hot!" Counter our hot Orange-Chipotle Salsa with a milder option along with guacamole to satisfy all taste buds.

DON'T: Ignore Healthy Fare

Offset the comfort foods with a veggie platter. You'll be surprised how many hands reach for carrot and celery sticks, especially when this Cucumber Crudités Dip is served alongside.

DO: Dine with Paper Plates and Napkins

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Cut down on cleanup by using disposable plates and napkins like these sturdy square pigskin plates by First and Ten and coordinating napkins.

DON'T: Hand Out Plastic Silverware

There's nothing more annoying than snapping a fork in two while trying to pierce food with a crappy utensil. Stick to the real deal.

DO: Plan Ahead of Time

Guests can tell when you've thrown together a party at the last minute. The Super Bowl only comes once a year. Why cut corners? Stay ahead of the game by chilling drinks beforehand and marking appetizers clearly.

DON'T: Hate the Game

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A little research goes a long way. Learn the basics of football - how to score a touchdown, what the main positions are - so you won't want to change the channel before you start snoozing.

DO: Understated Football Décor

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This is prime time to show your team spirit so don your favorite player's jersey and break out a foam finger for a good laugh.

DON'T: Go Overboard with Decorations

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There's a fine line between festive and tacky. Steer clear of football-shaped cakes, streamers in the team colors, and turning the table into a miniature football field.

Get more party ideas from CountryLiving.com:

70 Kitchen Decorating Ideas »

Become a Better Bartender »

Fabulous Cocktail Recipes for Any Party »

10 Easy Party-Planning Ideas »

Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.