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A successful holiday party needs several key ingredients, including great guests, the right location, and an unforgettable menu. If you're looking forward to hosting a memorable event, it's time to get cracking and book a caterer for your holiday soiree.

Hospitality Catering provides a tantalizing selection of hors d'oeuvres, entrees, and desserts to tempt even the most discriminating of palates. Choices range from a traditional Southern-style meal complete with a deep-fried turkey, giblet gravy, cornbread stuffing, bourbon sweet potatoes, southern bean salad, and pecan pie to a Cornish game hen entree served alongside long-grain wild rice and mushrooms, broccoli in an herb butter sauce, and caramel pecan apple pie.

"If you're looking to just have your turkey cooked, we inject it with Creole seasonings and deep fry it," said chef Mark Faulkner. "Cajun food is our forte. We do deep-fried turkeys, barbecue alligators, have fish frys and crawfish boils. I was born and raised in Louisiana and learned a great deal about southern cooking from my mother, a caterer in Louisiana."

Hospitality Catering is happy to provide wait staff, bartenders, and chef assistants for small parties, family celebrations, or large banquets.

For more info, call 238-7979 or go to www.hospitalitycatering.net. ...

Are you too tired, busy, old, or overwhelmed to manage the process of relocating, packing, and unpacking your belongings? Relocation expert Dianne Howes Moving Mom works hand in hand with clients and their families to sort, donate and discard belongings stage homes for sale set up and organize new homes handle estate sales and even decorate homes for the holidays.

Howes has been serving Central Coast clients with their relocation and reorganization needs for the past five years. For more info, call 598-8375. ...

It's time for Cal Poly's annual poinsettia sale. Featuring more than 2,500 plants in 29 different varieties, the sale runs through mid-December at the Poly Plant Shop.

This year's plants are available in red, white, pink, novelty, or marbled and range in size from a few inches to 4 feet tall. The novelty Monet poinsettia is topped with cream-colored blooms dotted with red freckles. Choose from traditional, centerpiece, and tree-shaped forms. Prices range from $6 to $60.

Students involved in the university's Poinsettia Agriculture Project prepare for the annual sale by growing the plants, inspecting the blooms, and shaping the forms.

"We take care of the plants from the beginning of spring quarter," said Jose Sanchez, a Cal Poly student. "We are featuring painted poinsettias this year white or green poinsettias painted with glitters and glues customized to the individual."

Orders for custom-painted plants may be placed after Dec. 1.

Music and refreshments will be provided during the first two weekends of December. On Dec. 8 and 9, the public is invited to come out and paint their own poinsettias.

The Poly Plant Shop is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday. For more info, contact the shop at 756-1106.

New Times staff writer Karen Velie compiled this week's Strokes and Plugs. Want to be included?

Send your business news to kvelie@newtimesslo.com.

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