Idea No.

12807

Luau Party 10yr - Hula & Chopstick Race

Award

Date

January 2006

From

angela in gaithersburg, md usa

Special Mention

Tropical Hawaiian Luau

My daughter wanted a LUAU PARTY for her 10th birthday.  The most difficult part of this party was that her birthday is in the middle of January in Maryland so we had to have the whole thing inside. 

We decided it would be fun to have a nighttime party; invitations were sent out indicating that the party would take place from 6pm to 9pm on a Friday night with dinner included.  Invitations for a Luau party are pretty hard to come by around Christmas time so I found some Tiki plates and we just cut off the edges (so it would be a flat disk) and wrote the information on the back. 

We had a lot of fun decorating for the party.  Basically we got everything from Oriental Trading Co.  We got two 8' metallic palm trees that were suspended from the ceiling, a dozen hibiscus-patterned lanterns, an "Aloha" sign, and tissue paper palm trees and hula girls for the table.  I found a CD of traditional Hawaiian music at Best Buy.  I used our summer tablecloth which has tropical stripes on it and at dinner we had four pillar candles in a dish with candlescape stones and rocks as well as 12 tealights in votive holders all around.  When the first guest arrived she helped put the finishing touches on dinner. 

The first thing we did once most everyone had arrived and gotten on the raffia skirts, leis and bracelets (10 people total) was face painting.  I had a difficult time finding good face paint, but finally found 12 or so little pots of all different colors including purple and fuscia at A.C. Moore for an incredible $3.69! Then we learned how to hula.  I had gone to our local library and checked out two videos about hula.  The first one is called Be a Hula Girl and is the better one.  The second I found is called Hula for Children.  The Be a Hula Girl goes through the hand motions with the traditional song "Pearly Shells" with an adult and then with kids.  The kids in the video were a little too young for the girls, but the intruction was the best.  The girls had fun learning the way to do a real Hula instead of simply shaking your hips (there's a little of that too in the video). 

Next we did a chopstick race.  There was a bowl of foam beads at one end of the living room and two bowls at the other; the object was to pick up a bead with the chopsticks and without dropping it get it into the bowl at the other end.  If the bead was dropped you could pick it up and continue the race.  This proved exceedingly difficult for the kids and in hindsight I should have let everyone practice with chopsticks beforehand.  In the end the kids used a spoon. 

Next came dinner: we had pigs in blankets, chicken nuggets, Funyons, popcorn, Cheetos, potato chips, party meatballs in the chili sauce/grape jelly mixture (recipe is on the back of the Heinz Chili Sauce jar), lemon and cherry Jell-O jigglers, spinach dip with bread and crackers and tortilla chips with mild salsa.  In addition I made a fruit platter consisting of fresh pineapple cubes, fresh strawberries, mandarin orange segments, mini marshmallows and red grapes.  There were parasol picks, flamingo picks and palm tree picks sticking out of about 1/3 of the fruits and it looked really cute.  There was also a little bowl of fresh coconut that I had chopped up so the kids could try some if they wanted to. 

Drink options were root beer floats, virgin pina coladas (the frozen Bacardi mix) and watermelon-kiwi Kool-Aid.  We had bought those cute plastic coconut cups from Oriental Trading Co. (OTC) along with the straws with hibiscus flowers on them.  The plates were again those Tiki plates (the same as the invitations). 

Dinner was buffet style and all the kids had fun with the food.  There's something so refreshing about eating fresh strawberries and pineapple in the middle of winter! After dinner we made tissue paper hibiscus flowers.  I did some research on the internet and found that using 4 to 6 8" circles, folding in fourths, cutting a pattern along the edge, poking a hole in the middle and wrapping a piece of pipe cleaner around the base made the prettiest most "hibiscus-like" flower.  The kids made their own edges using various craft scissors.  I had purchased some of those french hair clips so that the kids could wrap the end of the stem through the hole and make flower hair clips.  Some kept the stems really long and made flower bracelets.  They were instructed to make one flower for Robin and then as many as they wanted to for themselves. 

Once they finished several for themselves, we started the second craft project.  We made "winter leis" ie. (ie. Fleece scarves).  I had found a pattern in tropical colors.  I had cut out the fleece in rectangles of 20"x60".  Then I measured and taped-off a 5" border all around the inside.  This allowed the finished scarf to be a generous 10"x50" (with that 5" fringe all around).  We put each girl's name on a piece of masking tape and put it on the scarves (they all tend to look alike).  This is what we did while my husband went out on the deck to build a fire in our large charcoal grill.  He used hardwood logs (for ones in fireplaces, don't use the weather-treated wood because of the chemicals).  When the fire was going fairly well, he called everyone out to the deck for an "Outdoor Ceremony" with their flower they had made for my daughter.  (Fortunately it had been almost 50 degrees that day -- so it wasn't frigid.)  The kids all stood around the pit in a circle and took their flower for my daughter, made a wish and threw it into the fire.  After each wish my husband threw on some "Rainbow crystals" that turned the flames all different colors.  Then we watched as the fire died down from the flowers and went inside. 

Next we had cake.  I had made the cake using the Wilton Wonder Mold (the doll cake).  I made the pound cake version of the Duncan Hines cake mix (on the side panel) and then crumb-coated the dress (a thin layer of frosting covering the whole base but not a thick coating).  Then I frosted the cake using the Wilton "grass tip" (#233).  I piped on a green grass skirt all around the dress part.  Next I tinted some of the buttercream brown (by adding sifted unsweetened cocoa powder and a little water) and piped on a shell halter bra.  Next I tinted small amounts of frosting violet, pink and yellow and piped on a lei and a ring of flowers around the doll's waist and around the bottom of the skirt (the colors were in an alternating pattern).  We took a couple of group pictures of everyone with their scarves. 

Next we opened presents then went to the basement where I had set up some blacklights.  We did the limbo (Drew's Famous Party Dances) and other dancing until the parents arrived.  Even though this was a three-hour party we didn't get to do all the things we had planned.  My daughter had received the Twister Moves with the track by Jesse McCartney for Christmas and we had hoped to have people play that as well as a hula hoop contest and bean bag toss.  In addition, I had bought lightsticks (the ones you snap and shake -- Wal-Mart has a good deal on them in the camping section) and it was my plan to have them dance with them in the dark with just the blacklights and party music.  I had purchased a Waikiki CD (Drew's Famous) as well as a Radio Disney Jams CD, but we just ran out of time. 

Before the girls went home we handed out goodie bags: I found kiwi green cello bags and filled them with lipstick pens, a matching pair of flip-flop notepads, a mini highlighter, a light-up goldfish keychain, small hibiscus beach ball, a ring pop and a pair of chopsticks (hibiscus pattern).  All of these were tied up with orange and yellow curling ribbon.  It was a fun party and all the girls laughed themselves silly.  Limbo was really popular and freeze dancing at the end was a hit.  Parents came and some of them said they wished they had had parties like this when they were young.  I hope others try it, the scarves may not have been necessary but they sure turned out well and they are super cozy and warm.  Good luck!!

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