Teens aren’t too old for birthday party fun and games. Sure, they might not want to play Pin the Tail on the Donkey, but there are plenty of other activities that will appeal to both boys and girls. Think carefully before planning, however. Teens vary widely in their preferences, depending on their ages, gender and personalities. For this reason, it is important to let the birthday boy or girl lead the way in planning the activities.
Ages and Stages
Young teenagers are much different than older teens. A 13-year-old girl, for example, is probably going to enjoy different activities than an 18-year-old girl would. In addition, some years are special. A “Sweet 16” party, for example, may be a bit more lavish than parties on other years, and may involve more elaborate activities. Finally, consider the gender of the guests. An all-boy party might enjoy going to a paintball yard. An all-girl party might prefer a makeover activity. Choose games and activities that will appeal to both boys and girls, if you are planning a coed teen birthday party.
Plan your activities for at-home, in a different location, or in both places. Some activities lend themselves to outdoor fun, such as relay races, while others can be completed indoors in your living room. Some teens may prefer to go to a specific venue for their birthday party activities, such as going go-cart racing at a family fun park. Decide on your activity, then determine the best place for it.
Consider the comfort of the people around you when planning the activities. Parents of young teens might not be comfortable with an activity that allows the kids to run around unsupervised. Your neighbors might not appreciate an activity that has the teenagers doing something that involves a lot of noise. Also consider the personalities and situations of the teens themselves. If your activity is expensive, for example, there might be some guests who can’t afford it. Or, if it involves a lot of silliness, it might make some of the more introverted guests uncomfortable.
Many indoor activities are perfect for smaller birthday parties, rainy days, or for families on a smaller budget. Have a cooking party, and let the guests take over your kitchen. Ask them to whip up and decorate a birthday cake, or have a cupcake decorating contest. Charades is a game that many teenagers enjoy, and it can be played in almost any location. Video games are hugely popular with most teenagers, especially boys. Create a contest with a popular video game to see who can get the highest score, and hand out prizes. Karaoke can also be done indoors. Hold a singing contest and award a first-place ribbon to the best boy and girl singers.
Scavenger hunts are popular with most teens and can be modified to fit almost any location and occasion. Divide the teens into groups, and send them off to take digital pictures of birthday-related objects on a list. A rousing game of miniature golf can be fun and funny, especially if you award the winner with a giant, tacky plastic trophy. Or, go to a local park and play a game of football, Frisbee or basketball.
- happy teens image by Marzanna Syncerz from Fotolia.com