Submitted Date 07/26/2019

Summer is flying by fast and soon the kids will be back in school. Crazy, right? Weren't we just celebrating Memorial Day and the first day of summer?

When I was a kid I always had a back to school party with my friends. This typically meant everyone coming for a sleepover and eating lots of pizza, soda, and snacks. Staying up all night and watching movies and television. These days there are all kinds of parties you can throw for back to school.

1. Bowling Party-Call your local bowling alley and see if they offer discounts on group rates or packages that include games, shoes, and food.

2. Movie Party-Is there a new movie your kids and their friends are dying to see? Call your local theater and see if they also offer group rates or packages that include popcorn and a drink.

3. Backyard CampOut-Invite your kid's friends over to camp out in the backyard and have them bring tents and sleeping bags. Cook hot dogs and s' mores over the campfire and have soda and snacks to go with them.

4. VR Lounge Party-Are your teens into video games and virtual reality? Invite their friends and have a back to school party at a Virtual Reality Lounge.

5. Party for a Cause-Buying school supplies can be a real strain on some families. If the families you know are in a financial place to help why not throw a back to school party for a cause?

Call your local YWCA/YMCA, a foster child outreach, and other organizations that serve underprivileged children and ask them what kind of school supplies they need. Ask friends to donate new or gently used backpacks and ask each party guest to bring a specific school supply.

After the kids eat, have them help you fill the backpacks and go with you to deliver them if your charity is open.

6. Pool Party-If you own a pool, have a pool party for a last blast in the summer sun. Serve simple finger foods, snacks, and drinks. A few other things you may want to consider:

1. Hiring a lifeguard to come for a few hours.
2. If you're aren't going to hire a lifeguard, at least get trained in CPR
3. Keep cell phones around the pool in case of an emergency
4. Have back to school trivia and have a grab bag with school supplies in it for all guests.

7. Bookworm Party-Do your kids love to read and have an overabundance of books on their bookshelf? Why not have a book swap party? Ask your guests to bring five books each that they want to trade and serve "book themed" snacks. You can find ideas for creative food on Pinterest.

8. Sleepover-Invite your kid's friends and have plenty of pizza, soda, and snacks on hand. Since things are different than they were thirty years ago, you may want to set some guidelines like PG-13 or PG movies only, all electronics will be put up by a certain time, and any other rules you would like the kids to abide by. Also, if you have a night owl in the house, you may want to enlist them to check on the kids every so often.

9. Gaming Party-This would be the opposite of a sleepover for your teenage son. Invite his friends over and let them game all night. Once again, you may want to set some guidelines as far as game ratings and other rules in your household. An incognito chaperone may also be a good idea in case there are any issues.

10. Indoor Inflatable Party-Do you have an inflatable play area in your town? (Think Monkey
Joe's or something similar. Monkey Joe's is a place where you can take your kids to play in inflatable jumping areas and obstacle courses.) This would be a great place to have a back to school party and let the kids get all their energy out. If you don't have one of these in your area, you can look for something similar like a trampoline park.

11. Park Party-Gather at the park and play games, swim (if the park has a pool) and just enjoy the kids getting to play. For some extra fun, you could hire a face painter or a balloon artist for an hour or two.

12. Water Park Party-Invite everyone to come to the local water park for a back to school party. They have to pay their own admission but you'll supply food and drinks.

13. Back to School Fashion Party-Have your child's friends bring gently used school clothes that they no longer like or can wear to swap with each other. This is a great way to freshen up wardrobes in a fun way. After swapping, have a fashion show complete with flashlights, photos, and a makeshift catwalk. Don't just limit it to clothes, be open to shoes, jewelry, and accessories.

14. Ice Cream Party-Invite the kids over for dessert and let them make the biggest, badass sundaes they can imagine. Start with a gallon of chocolate and a gallon of ice cream and add in all kinds of toppings, whipped cream, and cherries. (Note: Take note of any allergies that your kid's friends have.)

15. Back to School Potluck-Is your kid a foodie who loves to try new foods? Then have a potluck party where everyone brings a dish or dessert to try. For some extra fun, let the kids try eating with chopsticks.

There are many fun and creative ways to have a back to school party. From camping to water parks and sleepovers to book swaps. Consider the options above and choose the best bash to throw your kid and their crew, making sure their summer goes out with a bang.


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