Last summer I hosted a pool party for my kids – it was my first one, and I was surprised at how easy it was. I just had to make sure to check off a few items – mostly the ones you’d think of for a party on land. Here are the simple things I did that worked really well:
Who to invite. I asked my kids who they wanted to come to their party, and we quickly made up a list. I contacted the parents of those kids to confirm addresses, so I could send out invitations. During that call I checked to confirm that each of the kids could swim, and mentioned to the parents that they were free to stay and visit at the party. I got some cute invitations, and sent them out to each of the kids. I figured they’d really like receiving their invite in the mail. Also, I decided against letting my kids pass out the invitations at school – I some of them would get lost along the way. I found a number of resources about pool parties with some great ideas:
What to eat. The party was for my kids, so I asked them what they wanted for the meal. They checked with their friends, and it was funny to see how serious my kids were about polling for choices. The answer – not surprisingly – was pizza. Maybe that’s why Chucky Cheese is so popular. I called a great pizza place and set up a delivery. You’d have thought the kids had won the lottery when the pizza showed up. I’ve never had such an easy time getting my kids out of the pool. We had drinks available, and the kids had the meal that was perfect for them. We had some Frisbees and a few toys in the back yard, so the kids had something to play with until it was time to get back into the pool.
Entertainment. If the kids are in the pool, and they’re having fun, I just kick back and stay out of their way. That’s the beauty of the pool – it is the entertainment. I had picked out a number of pool games just in case they slowed down on their fun, but I only used one or two. Once when they were slowing down, I walked over with a pint water bottle filled with water, which had a white cap on it. I made them all face away, then threw the bottle in the water and yelled “go.” It was hilarious to watch the mad scramble to find that almost invisible bottle in the water. They kept bringing it back to me and then lining back up for me to throw it again. Maybe I should have had a “room cleaning” contest.
Safety. I had to address the safety issue, but the thought of me trying to herd a bunch of rambunctious kids didn’t appeal to me. I hired the teenager down the block who works as a lifeguard every summer. It worked perfectly. The kids minded him, and I think just the presence of that whistle around his neck made it clear that he was in charge – he never even had to blow it.
The parents. I set up a number of tables in the shade, for the parents to congregate and visit while they could still keep an eye on the kids. I played hostess and made sure everyone was introduced to each other. My husband grilled some chicken so they had something to eat if they wanted.
It was so easy to plan a pool party that would be perfect for my kids. Their smiles and laughter as they waved goodbye to their friends told me exactly how it all worked out for them.
Kaitlin Gardner started AnApplePerDay.com to further her passion for a family friendly, green living lifestyle. She is married to her best friend and lives in Pennsylvania. In her spare time, she loves to go hiking, biking and enjoy nature. She just started her first book about living an eco-friendly, healthy, natural lifestyle.