Idea No.

16181

Swimming Party 7yr - Beach Boy Music

Award

Date

July 2007

From

Christie in San Bernardino, CA USA

Honorable Mention

Pool Party

For my son's seventh birthday, he wanted a swimming party.  We invited 20 children and 15 came. 

The invitations were homemade from scrapbook supplies and said, Splish Splash we're having a birthday bash!"  It gave the date time and directions as well as telling the kids to bring a bathing suit and towel. 

We also had plenty of extra towels in case kids forgot their own (about 3 kids did). The party was from 4-6 PM and first we got the kids in the pool since that was what the kids were excited about.  I had a baby wading pool set up on the side for the two little babies that were coming with siblings.  But it turned out that a lot of the kids liked the wading pool.  Since my son was turning 7 the kids around his age have very different swimming skills.  Some can swim well others can swim a little and some can't swim much.  A few were hesitant about getting their faces in the water. 

I had stations set up for the kids so they could participate in the other activities or they could just swim whatever they wanted.  One station was the sidewalk chalk station.  I asked for the best beach scene or underwater scene they could make.  I had the squirt gun station where there were several squirt guns on a table (with a bucket of water to refill the guns) and a target hanging on the fence. 

I had the dance station where I had a CD player set up with a Beach Boys CD playing.  I had a few cheap hula skirts and leis available so the kids could dance if they wanted to. 

I had three pool games that I was ready to break out if the party seemed to lag.  I used two of them. 

The three were: 1) The nose-ball race.  I had little balls (the kind you put in a ball pit) but you could use anything small that floats.  I had the kids walk across the shallow end of the pool pusing their balls with their noses. 

2) Pin the scale on the fish-pool style.  I got one plastic dollar store tablecloth.  I cut a big fish out of it.  I had a couple of good swimmers place the large fish on the bottom of the pool and weigh it down with a few well-placed large rocks.  Then took 8 quarters and gave them to the first kid in line (the birthday boy of course).  I had him throw the quarters into the water to see how many landed on the fish.  We counted how many made it on the fish then the kids could dive in and collect the quarters.  Once the kids got back out and the water calmed down the next kid got a turn.  We went through all the kids this way.  Even the poor swimmers loved this game because all they had to do was stand on the side and throw the money into the pool.

3) Cold feet.  I filled a bucket with ice and had the kids one at a time try to get as many ice cubes out of the bucket as possible in 20 seconds.  The catch is that each player could only use his feet.  (This game I saved and played with kids after the party whose parents were late picking them up). 

For decorations I kept it simple with blue and yellow streamers (my son picked out the colors and I thought they were beachy).  For favors I gave each kid a seashell collection by purchasing several packets of seashells from the craft store and putting them together in little baskets.  Each kid also got a lei. 

For food I had plenty of soda and juice boxes in an ice chest.  I also made ocean punch which the kids loved.  I took a packet of blue kool aid and mixed it with white cranberry juice.  I added some lemon-lime soda and put scoops of vanilla ice cream on top to look like foam (keep the scoops smallish because everyone wants a little ice cream).  I had some sweedish fish on the side and the kids could put a candy fish in their drink as a garnish if they wanted to.  I served hot dogs (always a swimming favorite) with watermellon and chips. 

The cake was an island cake.  I baked two rectangular cakes and put them side by side to make almost a square.  I frosted them blue for water.  I then baked a cake in a round bowl to make the island.  I put it in the middle of the "water" (the two rectangular cakes) and frosted it with beige (a mix of chocolate and vanilla makes a good color).  I put a plastic palm tree on the island and some sweedish fish in the water.  I added some dollar store tropical decorations and viola it was an island cake.  It was a great party and the kids talked about it for weeks to come."

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