By Katie Hawkins-Gaar
(CNN) — Russell Bailyn and Jay Gatsby have several things in common: They are both wealthy, live in Long Island, and know how to throw a great 1920s party.
Of course, the similarities end there. Bailyn is a wealth manager working in Manhattan, who rented out a 1900s mansion for his 30th birthday last year. Gatsby is a fictional character — the protagonist of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby,” known for his lavish and extravagant weekend-long parties.
Director Baz Luhrmann’s much-anticipated adaptation of “Gatsby” hits theaters on May 10. The movie, much like the classic book, is expected to paint a glamorous portrait of the ’20s. It’s a decade that many have attempted to recreate today through themed parties.
Bailyn, who lives and grew up in Great Neck, New York, (the town where Fitzgerald lived and is rumored to have been the basis for the novel’s “West Egg”) said he’s enjoyed hosting memorable birthday parties since he turned 16.
“I figured ‘going Gatsby’ would be the perfect idea for the big 3-oh,” he said.
To be fair, lavish “Gatsby” affairs may not be what Fitzgerald had in mind — his book critiques the nouveau riche of the 1920s — but they’re undeniably fun. And that’s what really matters when it comes to parties, right?
We asked Bailyn and others who shared their 1920s party stories on CNN iReport for their top tips for hosting a successful soiree. We can’t help but think that Gatsby himself would try to score an invite.
If you’ve hosted a 1920s party or are planning to, let us know. Share your story on CNN iReport.
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