A small party, not quite full scale. Generally a shindig consists of 5-20 people hanging out at the host's house, but they may be held at other locations such as a beach. Shindigs almost always involve alcoholic beverages, usually beer. Often, marijuana is smoked as well.
A shindig usually does not escalate into a large full scale party because it is meant to be a low key night, avoiding any complications such as cleaning up vomit, unwanted guests, picking up trash the rude guests leave lying wherever they drop it, putting everything back in its proper place, eliciting attention fom neighbors and local law enforcement, etc.
My mom was out for the day, so I called some of my friends and we had a little shindig.
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