Planning a party doesn’t have to be overwhelming or stressful. With a few tips to keep you organized and on track, your next party can be the talk of the town for years to come!
First and foremost, make sure you have an idea of how many people will be attending. How many of those attending are children? What are the age groups? Kids 10 and under will be happy with hamburgers and hotdogs, while older kids (tweens+) will want a menu that is slightly more sophisticated. While you can’t please anyone, try to have a variety of foods and drinks that everyone will enjoy.
A mixed party of both adults and kids may mean an alcohol-free day. Many people don’t want their youngsters to be around alcohol. Too much pop and juice is not a viable solution either. So, what’s a host to do? Time for a mocktail! These are the perfect solution and can offer a tasty treat for everyone to enjoy. Kids and adults alike will enjoy sipping these fancy drinks on the patio or poolside. And, as host, you don’t have to worry about anyone getting home safely. There are a wide variety of these drinks and you can use your imagination to come up with flavors that will have them coming back for more.
Hot dogs? Hamburgers? Or something slightly more sophisticated, like filet mignon? Plan on serving at least two ‘main’ dishes and several appetizers so everyone can have something they can enjoy. For example, for the vegetarians in attendance, bruschetta may be a great idea for an appetizer, while the meat lovers will appreciate bacon-wrapped chestnuts or mini sausages.
At some point, the kids will likely want to go off and do their own thing. Board games, a scavenger hunt, or some time in the pool may be in order (with adult supervision of course). If you have space, a game of tug-of-war can be a great way for everyone to have fun together. A hot, sunny day is the perfect time for water balloons or other water games.
One thing is for sure – the music that the adults and kids enjoy will vary greatly! If you have two generations of attendees at your party, you’re going to have to choose an eclectic mix of tunes; if your own kids are going to be there, get their input on what they’d like to hear. Then create a couple of hours’ worth of great songs that everyone will enjoy.
Plan for the Unexpected
So you’re planning on everything being perfect for your party –great friends, great weather and great times. But what happens if things don’t go as expected? Perhaps they are forecasting rain for the day, or the person you really wanted to see has come down with the flu? Don’t let small things ruin your entire party. Plan some games for inside, and make sure the kids will have plenty to do without going stir-crazy. If possible, have some Nintendo or Wii games that they can play, and have some fun board games on hand. Cards are a great idea as well. Kids’ movies are another great option.
It’s the Little Things
Sometimes, parties go awry because of poor planning, or because those ‘little details’ get missed. Here is a list of little things to keep in mind to ensure your party goes off without a hitch
- Fill up your propane tank if you are going to be barbequing
- Make sure you have a generator in case the lights go out
- Do you have enough outdoor lighting around your patio, deck, pool and entrance ways?
- Do you have a sound system for music, or do you need to rent some for the day?
- Do you want people traipsing through your house, or do you want to rent a port-a-potty?
Whatever the occasion, parties, and get-togethers are a great way to connect with friends and family. Kids of all ages will remember good times with the adults in their lives and create memories to last a lifetime.