Published On: Tue, Mar 24th, 2015

The Party in the Park Practical Checklist

When you think of screaming children running rampant through your house with fistfuls of lollies and party streamers, you may be thinking of taking the party to an external location – and what a great idea! The park party is a fabulous way to celebrate and let the kids make their mess and noise outside where it doesn’t matter. And so long as you have everything you need it will be smooth running. 

 Here’s my list of what you will need to consider:

  • Make sure you visit the park you are thinking of having your party at beforehand. Keep in mind toilets, play equipment, space, potential supervision hazards and bodies of water. Parks well fenced and gated are essential for the younger years. Smaller is better. When you do choose your park, make sure you arrive a good hour or more early so that you can find the right spot and I strongly recommend a quick scour for dog poo. (ew)
  • Make a list leading up to your party of everything you will need to remember to take on party day.
  • Don’t forget the knife. Take it in a container where you can keep it safe from little hands at the park.
  • Take a chopping board – and then you can leave cut fruit or veg on the board without the need for extra plates.
  • Decorations don’t have to be lavish, but a bit of coloured paper, balloons or streamers go a long way. When visiting the park before your party, take a look at potential hanging spaces.
  • Hot food can be transported from home in a thermal bag or large containers with the lids off so as food doesn’t go soft)
  • Sauce for hot food! No-one wants to go back home for the tomato sauce.
  • Don’t forget to take the lolly bags and party favours. Just like any other party, they are a great way to say thank you to your guests. To save yourself some time, pop in the bag a small thank you note from your child.
  • Pre-plan party games, races or competitions, and any equipment required. Parks with fixed equipment are a great option as this is ready made entertainment.
  • Don’t forget to take the first aid kit for those bumps and bruises and throw an ice pack in with your cold drinks.
  • The cake of course. Keep in mind the moving of the cake from point A to point B. Nothing beats the cake on an adults lap in the car to counter-balance on those bends. Candles and matches also of vital importance!
  • Drinks! An eski with individual bottled drinks labelled with the child’s name mean when kids put their drink down to go play, they are able to easily find it on their return. Extra cups always handy.
  • If the park has a bubbler or tap, it means you won’t need to bring water.
  • Make sure you have on hand two of your best friends, they are great go-to-girls to help take the pressure off.
  • Lots of plastic bags for rubbish and wrapping up dirty plates etc.
  • Consider disposable tablecloths and don’t forget napkins, plastic bowls, plates and paper towels along with wipes for sticky fingers.
  • Get everything ready the night before packed in large ‘green’ bags or washing baskets, whatever you have that will make for less trips to and from the car.
  • Know how many heads you need to count and do so throughout your party. Talk to the kids about where they can and can’t go at the beginning of the party and ask them to come and see an adult if they need to go to the toilet so someone can go with them.
  • Always assume it will rain and have a back-up plan.

By Danielle Mantakoul
and Emma Eastman
Copyright 2015
www.mummyweekly.com.au

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