Summer is almost upon us and what better time to throw a party? Whether it’s a birthday party or simply a ‘welcome summer’ party, kids are sure to have fun. Summer opens up plenty of opportunities outdoors, so there’s no need to stick to indoor activities. Maybe that’s why mud and water-themed parties are so popular!
You might think that great parties are expensive. What you really need is planning and creativity. With a bit of thought, you can have a magical evening that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. From food to decor to goodie bags, some DIY and creative ideas go a long way.
Read on for some good tips on throwing the ultimate summer party for your kids.
Always Plan Around a Theme
The key to a great party is theming. Having a theme in mind will make it so much easier to plan the food, decor, cake, and everything else. Setting a theme will give you a color palette to work with as well. For instance, a water/beach party can have blues, greens, and white colors for the decor. A tropical party means busting out the bright and bold colors instead.
Once you know your theme, start thinking about how to coordinate the rest of the party.
Of course, food is important at any party. With kids, you need age-appropriate foods. Toddlers can make a mess of anything, so try to avoid items like tacos. But for older kids, it’s perfect. Also, keep in mind allergies (nut, dairy, soy, etc.) and diet preferences (vegetarian, no red meat, vegan) for all the attendees.
As with everything else, you want the food to reflect the party theme. Whether you go for pirates or mermaids, the food should match. Go for finger food that’s easy to eat and make ahead. Fruit juice, salads, ice cream, pizza are good party food. You can customize most foods to your party theme quite easily.
Another great way to accessorize is with the plates, glasses, and cutlery. Don’t just go for the plain ones you find at the grocery store. Try colorful cutlery that matches your theme or decorative plates with designs on them.
Decor can be anything from balloons to the tablecloth. You can get balloons in practically every shape and size there is. Planning a beach themed party? It’s easy to get seashell or dolphin shaped balloons. You can also use ribbons, lanterns, and paper items (hats, garlands, etc.) to decorate according to your chosen theme.
Now, this is where your creativity will shine. Props can take your party from ho-hum to fantastic! Thinking pirates? Get some eye-patches, paper vests, and pirate hats. More of a superhero person? All superhero parties could use some masks or capes for all the kids. The ideas are limitless to what you can do.
If you’re short on time, you can pick up a ‘party in a box’ which usually comes with all the items you would need. Of course, if you have the time, a quick internet search will bring up all sorts of printables for your theme. From fun activity ideas to props, there’s nothing you can’t make with some paper and glue!
Now we come to the part that everyone looks forward to – the goodie bag! For a simple bag, a few snacks and small toys or stickers are always a good idea. But you can get creative here as well. Tie the items of the goodie bag into the party theme.
For instance, you can get books or stickers with fruits for a tropical party. Throw in some tattoos for a pirate party. Coloring books are a great idea as well. If you prefer something small, then crayons or other art supplies appeal to both kids and parents.
Another good idea is to plan an art or craft project. Get supplies for everyone and encourage them to make something. Then pop their creation into the goodie bag along with candy or cake. Combine fun activity with the goodie bag at once! Even without the activity, you send some supplies home with the partygoers. Cookie cutters with a simple recipe or seeds for them to plant at home come to mind.
If you’re having the party at a venue (ice cream store, skating rinks or bowling alleys), a gift certificate or coupon can be appropriate. Some places will even throw in a coupon or discount with your party package.
All this planning takes time and energy. Things you may not always have. If you’re not up to throwing the ultimate summer party, don’t worry. If your idea of fun is to spend some time with family, then that’s what you need to do. Relax and enjoy your kids in the comfort of your home!