As your child enters the teen years, she may want to start doing things independently. That doesn’t mean you cannot plan a terrific birthday party for her every year, though. Consider her interests and activities when choosing a party venue and, unless the party is absolutely a surprise, always get her input when planning the party.
If your teenager has a summer birthday, consider throwing him a pool party. If you have a swimming pool in your backyard, host the party there. You may want to ask another adult to attend the party to keep an eye on the guests while they swim or hire a lifeguard. If not, call around to area pools and see if you can rent a pool for an afternoon. Make sure the rental comes with a lifeguard to keep an eye on things and keep the teens safe.
Younger teens may enjoy a party at a local bowling alley or skating rink. If your teenager is into skateboarding, take him and several of his friends to a local skatepark for his birthday. You may also want to look into holding the party at a place that will teach teens a new skill, such as a ballroom or salsa dance party or a horseback-riding or other sport-themed party.
Your Basement or Backyard
Believe it or not, some teens may prefer to hold their birthday party at home. A home birthday party will save you money and a lot of planning as well. Give your teenager free reign to decorate the family room or basement as he wishes. Serve his favorite snacks and consider making the party a sleepover to add to the fun. If the weather is nice and you have a good front or back yard, you may consider turning his birthday party into a low-key picnic. Set up a volleyball or badminton net if space allows and a few picnic tables or picnic blankets.
Celebrate a milestone birthday, such as a Sweet 16 or 18th birthday with a formal party at a local catering company or reception hall. Have the birthday teen dress up and instruct the guests to wear nice clothing–dresses and nice pant suits for girls and suits for the boys. Whether you want to serve a full meal or simply appetizers is up to you. Hire a band or DJ and let the guests dance the night away.
Head to a Park
Set up camp in a local park for your teen’s birthday. Bring a small grill if they are not provided in a picnic area and serve hamburgers, hot dogs and veggie burgers. Take the guests for a hike along any trails the parks has or let them run around as they please. You can also take your teenager and her friends to a local amusement park for the day. Call ahead to see if the park offers any birthday packages, such as cake and ice cream, and a designated picnic area.
- teen on the party with noise-maker image by Alexey Klementiev from Fotolia.com