Invited to a Shrimp Boil and Told to Bring the Shrimp

Disneybuckeye

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 24, 2010
Invited to SILs and BILs Shrimp Boil dinner in two weeks. Our three adult kids were also invited. We were then told to bring 8 pounds of shrimp.

The dinner is at the lake where we all have houses. Based on last year I would say there will be 25-30 people and about 10 are under the age of 18. I am assuming someone else (maybe the hosts) are also providing some shrimp, but I am sure we are the only guest family brining 8 pounds. Twelve of the attendees are actual family. The rest are all friends who also have homes on the lake.

Everyone brings their own beverages. I also fully expected to bring a food contribution and I am sure the other attendees will also. Last year we brought a charcuterie board (basically everything on it was devoured prior to dinner) and I made cookies and brownies (which were also devoured as the other desserts were store bought nothing special). Between the two it was not cheap, and took a lot of time to make and assemble, but my daughter and I did it together and had fun doing it. It was also what I wanted to bring so I was happy to do it and the cost was my choice.

Not thrilled bringing the shrimp and IMHO 8 pounds is a big ask. I cannot fathom hosting a decent sized dinner party and having someone else basically bring the main dish. While we can afford it, I feel like they are dictating to me how much money I have to spend to attend this party. Kind of like a price of admission.

I will also not be attending the dinner as it conflicts with the Ohio State football game that I want to watch. I may end up over there later in the evening, but it would be well after dinner was over. I told DH this as soon as we received the invite.

And the final kicker, they are having tshirts made for all the adult attendees that they are purchasing. They did this last year also. My tshirt ended up in my rag basket as I will never wear a tshirt with "Smith" family Shrimp Boil 2020 that is a size too big. I truly do not need another shirt with the year 2021 on it and I know they are doing them again.

Just venting, but I feel kind of used in this whole process.
 

ronandannette

I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!
Joined
May 4, 2006
Just tell them you won’t make it in time for dinner because of a scheduling conflict but you hope to be able to pop in for a visit to see everyone later in the evening and offer to bring a dessert at that time. Tell them not to go to the trouble of making shirts for you. Don’t spend another minute stewing about the injustice of it all. :flower3: If your adult kids are going they should contact the hosts and figure out what they’re bringing independently.
 

BrianL

Doom Buggy Driver
Joined
Jul 24, 2013
It's pretty tacky to ask like that. Usually for a party like that the host is going to provide the main dish and guests will bring sides and such. They shouldn't be asked to, though if the guest asks "What can I bring?" then a little direction is oaky. I wouldn't be too happy about it either.
 
  • Travel60

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 8, 2012
    Maybe they are not looking at it as "hosting" but only as providing a space for the annual shrimp boil. If that is the case, everyone should be consulted before a date is set.

    There's always the word no. "Sorry we can't come this year, the Ohio game is on". That way, they have no shrimp, no charcuterie board and no dessert. If DH goes, he can deal with the shrimp.

    As for the shirts....I'm with you there. I don't wear shirts with writing on them (except for the university I follow and then only on game day.) When handed to you just say "another shirt, bless your heart". Then set it down somewhere and forget it.
     

    Disneybuckeye

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 24, 2010
    8 lbs of shrimp, huh? Cutsie matching t-shirts?
    Are you sure you don't have other plans that weekend?
    The 80's girl in me says gag me with a spoon. Luckily I do have other plans.

    Just tell them you won’t make it in time for dinner because of a scheduling conflict but you hope to be able to pop in for a visit to see everyone later in the evening and offer to bring a dessert at that time. Tell them not to go to the trouble of making shirts for you. Don’t spend another minute stewing about the injustice of it all. :flower3: If your adult kids are going they should contact the hosts and figure out what they’re bringing independently.
    DH wants to attend as to do the kids. It was a group text to DH and the kids to bring the shrimp. If we told them to help pay for the shrimp they would as they brought 4 pounds between the three of them last year independent of what we brought. Maybe that is why she figured $80 worth of shrimp was ok as we probably did spend more than $80 last year. The difference with me was I got to bring what I wanted and spend what I wanted.

    I am done stewing now that I was able to vent it all here. I have way more important things to worry about.
     

    Southernmiss

    I am hazed everyday
    Joined
    Aug 27, 2011
    Dunno. I figure about 8 pounds is the portion size for 5 adult people. The cost of everything has gone up this year. Are they experiencing some sort of financial downturn?

    Now t shirts to mark the occasion, that's ridiculous. Hosts should save the money on t shirts and buy the shrimp...
     
  • CdnCarrie

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 17, 2009
    What the heck is a shrimp boil?

    You're choosing to watch some college football game over spending time with family? Can you just ask them to have the game on? But again college football here is not really a thing so I have no idea grown adults watched it unless they were parents of the players.
     

    Pea-n-Me

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 18, 2004
    This reminds me of a situation with a young woman I worked with. New boyfriend said he was planning to make her breakfast one morning at his place. (How nice, right! :lovestruc ) She asked what she could bring, and he proceeded to name off every breakfast item on the menu - eggs, bacon, toast, juice, and even butter!:rotfl2:She figured when she got there, she’d have to cook it, too! Needless to say, that relationship went south soon afterward, but she was recently happily married - to someone else, lol.
     

    lorimay

    Strolling along...
    Joined
    Dec 11, 2008
    This happens a lot to us when we go to my sisters for a family party. Our side of the family is asked to bring the parts of the main meal, while my BIL's family brings a bag of chips, a pack of cookies, a frozen box of pigs in the blanket (that they throw on the counter for my sister to make while the party is started.)
    After 30+ years it becomes very frustrating.
     

    mjkacmom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 20, 2006
    On a positive note, your cost will be the same as last year, but your effort will be zero. It sounds like this is a family affair and they’re just organizing it. I’d spend the $80 so my family could have a good time (when my 5 kids are home our Chipotle takeout order is $80, sushi night is way more). My extended family rarely gets together, that actually sounds like fun to me (making a charcuterie board is something I do not enjoy, fortunately my daughters and husband do).
     

    crazymomof4

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 12, 2003
    OP- IMO if a person is in the position of "host" it's in poor taste to ask a guest to bring the main protein or entree. When a guest offers, I usually say, bring a dessert or a salad. If I know they don't have time in the kitchen, then I have them bring rolls or beverages. (I supply the alcoholic beverages, unless they offer to bring their fave beer or wine).

    Now if there is no actual "host" but the person just sees themselves as "organizer", then it would be considerate for this person to ask each guest/family to contribute in a way that is as close to evenly spreading the costs as possible.
    ETA:
    According to this Shrimp Boil recipe, https://by-pink.com/shrimp-boil-foil-pack/
    1lb of shrimp is for 4 people. So the OP is being asked to supply enough shrimp for 32 guests.
     
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