Audience members cheer during the CNN GOP National Security debate in Washington, November 22, 2011. Reuters

GOP candidates will go head-to-head Thursday evening in the first primary debate, and while the debate itself will start at 9 p.m., there are a ton of Washington, D.C. parties where you can do some debate prep of your own before the Republican candidates take the stage. Check out our D.C. guide to parties and bars where you and your politically engaged friends can find drink specials, games and food deals.

Host: The DC Young Republicans, the DC Log Cabin Republicans, the League of Republican Women of DC, and the DC Republican Party

Where: Johnny Pistolas, 2333 18th Street NW (Adams Morgan)

When: 5 p.m. EST

Drink Specials: $3 Tecates, $4 Pacificos and $5 Margaritas

Johnny Pistolas is holding one of the biggest watch parties in the DC area as four political savvy groups come together to host the gathering. Twelve TVs will stream the debate as tacos and blood orange and jalapeno margaritas are passed around.

Host: Network for Progress Summer Progress Party Rooftop Mixer, GOP Debate/Stewart Finale

Where: Cambria Suites (rooftop patio) 899 O Street NW

When: 6:30 p.m.

Cost: $5 online, $10 at the door

Drink Specials: $4 Domestics, $6 wine happy hour specials and free appetizers until 8 p.m.

Hosted by the Network for Progress and several other organizations, the party will feature a networking event before the debate for any and all D.C. politics junkies. After the debate, stay around for a viewing of Jon Stewart's last episode of the Daily Show at 11 p.m.

Host: #StandWithRand Debate Watch Party

Where: 201 Bar Capitol Hill- 201 Massachusetts Ave. NE

When: 7 p.m. EST

Cost: Free. Register here.

Calling all Sen. Rand Paul supporters, this party wants to connect all of those in Paul's corner. The D.C. watch party is just one of dozens of #StandWithRand events being organized across the country. There will be opportunities at the event to sign up to volunteer for or donate to his campaign.

Host: Justice House Of Prayer DC party

Where: 645 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, Suite 300

When: 9 p.m. EST

Cost: Free

The party welcomes people of faith who are interested in politics and public policy. Discussion is welcome during the viewing of the live debate.

Host: PredictIt Debate Party

Where: Union Pub, 201 Massachusetts Avenue Northeast

When: 5:30 p.m. EST

Cost: Free. Register here.

PredictIt's party will feature drinking games, debate night bingo and happy hour specials. As the candidates duke it out, you can play games, take pictures in the photobooth and win prizes. Oh, and watch the debate.