One of the first things you should think about when planning a party is "Do I need seating (and tent coverage) for every single guest?" It seems like an easy "yes," but think about for a second. Here are a few common scenarios:
- A graduation party and even though you've invited 100 guests, people will be coming and going all day, so you really only need to seat 60 at any one time.
- A wedding reception, and yes, everyone needs to be seated and covered under the tent for the dinner.
- A bridal / baby shower where brunch is being served while gifts are being opened. So, yes, chairs and coverage for everyone.
- An "adult party" (a 50th bday party, a no-kids Oktoberfest, etc) where the goal is to have very few people seated at any time. You might want to provide seating for a few party-poopers, and provide gathering space by renting high-top cocktail tables for people to gather around.