10 Child Party Planning Tips
Demystify the process of planning the perfect child’s party with this list of 10 essential party planning tips.
Cake, streamers, invitations, a guest list—there are just so many things to consider when planning a child’s party. Yet rest assured, planning doesn’t have to be an overwhelming experience. Just follow these 10 tips and your child’s party is sure to a runaway success:
1. Consider the age of the child
As you begin to plan a party, be sure to keep your child’s age in mind. If the party is for a young child, keep things simple. Invite only a handful of guests to keep your child from getting overwhelmed, and hold off on the party games until he or she is older. Also, be sure to prepare food that is age appropriate. A group of toddlers will be much happier eating nuggets than say shrimp cocktail.
2. Ask for your child’s input
It sounds obvious enough, and yet it’s easy to get so wrapped up in planning that you forget to ask for your child’s input. What you think your child wants and what your child actually wants may be two entirely different things.
3. Timing is everything
Before you fill out the invitations, be sure that you are selecting the best time for the party. If lunch or dinner is not a part of the party plans, be sure to select a time that suggests this. You’ll end up with a lot of hungry guests if you plan a 1:00 party, and then only serve cake. For a younger child, it is also a good idea to schedule the party for a time when they are not likely to be tired or cranky. Planning a party at nap time can often prove disastrous.
4. Plan for the unexpected
Even a well-planned party can run into a few problems along the way. To help things run smoothly, try to anticipate some of the more likely problems. For example, you never know when a guest might bring along an uninvited sibling, so making up a few extra goodie bags just in case.
5. Choose food and drinks that won’t stain
You want to remember your child’s party by the photos that you took, not by a stain on the sofa, so exercise a little caution when planning the menu. Try to avoid foods that have a high stain potential. Red punch and pizza are tasty treats, but are far from the easiest things to clean from furniture, carpet or even clothes.
6. Be careful not to exclude people
If your child wants to invite classmates to the party, be careful not to invite all but one or two students. If you can, mail invitations so that others won’t feel left out.
7. Make your house easy to find
If you are inviting guests who haven’t been to your house before, be sure to include a print-out with driving instructions in each invitation. Then take things a step further, and affix balloons or a banner to your mailbox to make your house easily identifiable.
8. Take space constraints into account
Whether you are planning to have the party at home or at another location, make sure the space is large enough for the party you’ve planned. Cramming too many kids into one space is a recipe for disaster. If you’re worried that space will be an issue, consider limiting the number of guests, or find a new location.
9. Develop a time line
To make sure you’ve allocated enough time for your child’s party, sketch out a time line of how you think the party will run. Be sure to include time for cake, presents, playing, games and another other activities that you have planned.
10. Make clean-up a breeze
A well-planned party should always include a plan for clean-up. To make things easy on yourself, be sure you have plenty of trash bags and paper towels on hand. This will allow you to address spills and messes as they occur.
Spend a little time at the planning stage, and your child’s party is sure to be a success!