The two major events in Ever, Jane are the balls and dinner parties. In each case, players must acquire the requisite accoutrements before attending. Balls need gowns, formal attire and carriages. Dinner parties require formal clothing and while, unlike the balls, characters may walk to the party, most will want to acquire a better form of travel.
The juiciest gossip snippets can be found at balls and dinner parties. They also present opportunities to vastly improve one's personality in whatever direction one is aspiring. The dutiful man can capture points by dancing with every wallflower. The happy hostess can earn points by providing outstanding meals to her guests. 
April 2015: The Dinner parties have yet to be implemented, although players can, of course, hold their own. There are balls and dancing lessons, either with your friends or with AI dancers. To dance, click on the large round sphere in the Parlour.