This assignment is a game. You teach students about the periods of American literature, and then each student gets a part to play in the "party" as other participants guess their roles. For example, one party guest is Poe.
The assignment ends up being a bit of a mashup because one teacher started it to use specific authors and I finished it using general time periods, but both can work, and you can always choose specific names. You have a good start with 22 authors/periods to choose from. Add a few more for a whole-class interaction or cut half off so that part of the class watches the others at the party .Fun either way.
This would also work as a fun staff activity, maybe mixing in some artists, scientists, and historical figures in the party.