Idea No.


Summer Splash 8yr - Beach Bucket Centerpieces



October 2001


Paula in Ajax, Ontario

Special Mention

Pool Party

For my daughter's 8th birthday she wants a pool and summer splash party.  Since I'm not one to say no to any party idea I decided to work with it…the challenge? Her birthday is in January.  We are renting an hour at our local pool- exclusive use- which is nice because we are having about 15 kids.  With a smaller number of guests you could take advantage of public swim time for less money.  Anyway for an extra $30 we reserved a room at the community center where the pool is.  That is where we will eat open presents and play some games. 

I have a plain white plastic tablecloth.  Each child will eat from a paper plate that is placed inside a Frisbee. (Take home)I purchased some brightly colored plastic stem glasses at a local party store at the end of summer on sale. I am decorating each plastic cup with a craft permanent marker with the kids names on them.  They will double as place card at the table.  The kids will drink fruit punch mixed with ginger ale in their special stemmed glasses complete with mini umbrellas, and the little plastic swords that go in drinks- of course with a cherry and slice of orange or lemon. When they enter the party room after their swim they will be given a brightly colored plastic lei (3 or 4 for a dollar at our local party store).

The tables will be adorned with big plastic buckets ( clean and brand new from Wal-Mart- again- end of summer sale).  The buckets will be full of popcorn, chips and other small snacks that the kids will be able to scoop onto their plates with sand shoves -also brand new and clean. They will eat hot dogs- made at home on the BBQ and brought over the cake - or actually ice cream will keep in tune to the summer theme as a castle

I will call it a sand castle cake It is so easy.  Open one brick of ice cream- lay in flat on a covered cookie sheet or board.  With another brick of ice cream cut it in half long ways and stand each half of the ice cream up on either side of the first brick of ice cream.  Those serve as the towers.  On top of those two parts are a scoop of ice cream with a sugar cone sticking out- looks like upside down ice cream cone.  The top of the middle part of the "castle" between the two towers is lined around the edges with Hershey's kisses unwrapped.  The door at the front of the castle is 4 or 6 squares of a caramel bar- other windows too can be made with sections of chocolate bars, smarties etc hard to explain but takes 5 minutes and looks amazing The kids will also eat fresh fruit cubed and placed in a watermelon hollowed out to look like a basket. 

Other decorations will be posters of tropical places and brightly colored helium balloons.  After the presents are opened I expect there will be some time before parents arrive.  We will play quieter games such as "can you guess what's missing" with a theme of summer a big tray of sunblock, sunglasses, pail, shovel, water wings etc will be shown to the kids for a minute.  Then one item will be secretly removed- they'll have to guess which one hangman with a summer theme as well- we will have an easel and the kids will be sitting on their chairs- so that will work well. Prizes for the games are Gumi hamburgers and hotdogs (summer type foods),Beach Boys and other summer type music will be playing. 

The invitations will be either deflated beach balls with all pertinent info or just homemade card stock cards with waves- announcing a winter summer splash party... the take home treats are an assortment of bubbles, summer fruit candies small pool buddy toys- (water toys for the pool- similar to a beanie baby but for water) on sale end of season at Wal-Mart for 50 cents...etc. as well as their colorful plastic stemmed cup Frisbee and lei.  I'm hoping the party will be a bright spot in the middle of what is usually a freezing cold snow bound winter.. the key to this party is advance planning- when all the back to school stuff comes out bigger party stores and department stores such as Wal-Mart clear out bubbles, pool toys, anything summery really for at least 50 per cent off- most of the buckets and bubble sets I got were more like 75 per cent off.   Happy partying- I hope someone can use some of these ideas.

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