Summer is the time for BBQs and block parties. The kids are off from school and the days are long, so you have plenty of sunlight to have fun! The warm weather lets you get outdoors, soak up the vitamin D, and enjoy nature. Summer is a lot of fun because you can have adults mingling while the kids have water balloon fights in the back yard.
Organizing a summer party is easier if you can decide on a central theme. A central theme helps to choose the food, decorations, and even activities. You could have a luau complete with colorful leis, flavors of coconut and pineapples, and hula hoop contests. Try something more fancy with a Great Gatsby theme with your invitees dressed to the nines, tables decked in white, delicate finger foods, and games of croquet and bocce ball in the backyard.
Your pond can both a decoration and a source of entertainment during a summer party. Kids love water, especially in the summer to help them cool down. Your pond may not be big enough to jump in, but it can still be great fun.
Kid Friendly Activities
- Boat races in the pond – You can make really easy “boats” by connecting three wine corks with two or three rubber bands, and use toothpicks and a little bit of paper for the flag. If there’s not enough movement in the surface water, you can add string to each little boat so the kids can pull them through the water.
- Nature scavenger hunts – Scavenger hunts can be as creative as you want. You can hide things around the yard (gently in the pond) and create clues for the kids to figure out. Do you have an elusive fish in your pond? 5 points if one of the kids can snap a picture of him! Scavenger hunts are a great team building activity that teach kids to work together.
- Water guns – Water guns are an easy fail-safe for summer fun. They help beat the heat while encouraging exercise. Who needs Angry Birds on an iPad when you can engage in an aquatic battle with your BFF? The game is even more exciting if the adults join in!
- Arts and crafts – Stepping stones are a beautiful decoration to have in your garden and around your pond. You can make this into a DIY project using sea glass and pebbles (if you live near the beach you can go shell collecting first) or go to the craft store and pick up a kit. Kids will love being able to make a semi-permanent decoration for the yard. You can have them make imprints of their hands or design a turtle. There are endless options! If stepping stones are a little too complicated, you could have the kids paint small and medium sized rocks, turning them into monsters with googly eyes or a cute ladybug.
- Dreaming of the beach? Transform your pond into a mini beach – You can add a sandbox near the edge of the pond and turn your oasis into a beach paradise. Even better if it covers up any dead patches of grass! Add a large beach umbrella for shade with a hammock or beach chairs underneath. You can even add a kiddy pool for the kids and dogs! Make yourself a piña colada and you’re ready for the summer!
- Outdoor movie night – You can create an epic movie night for kids or adults using a projector, laptop, a big screen or white sheet, and outdoor speakers! Moviegoers can lounge on blankets and chairs, and watch a movie under the starlight!
- Spice up your pond – For outdoor soirees, light up your pond with LEDS! smartpond® LEDs come with a dusk-to-dawn sensor so they only come on at night. smartpond® also offers lights with colored lenses (red, yellow, blue, green) for added fun. If you don’t have the time to add some floating plants, you can use Floating Lily Pads. They look beautiful and will help protect your fish from predators!
- More lighting – String lights and paper lanterns are reusable decorations that quickly transform a yard and add a great rustic feel. Lights can wrap around trees or gently hang overhead from tree to tree!
- Mason jars – Mason jars scream summer and are an awesome eco-friendly alternative to the red solo cup. You can start saving the jars from your sauces and jams, and reuse them to serve cocktails, iced tea, and lemonade. They also sell them at the supermarket if you need them ASAP. *pro tip* Slide a cupcake liner over the top of your mason jar, seal it down with the ring top of the mason jar, and pop in a straw to keep the bugs away from the drinks!
- Coolers – Wheelbarrows, kiddie pools, and planters (you can get really creative here) can be filled with ice and used to keep food and drinks cool! No one wants a warm soda in the summer!
Many fruits, vegetables, and herbs are in season (and on sale!) during the summer, and can easily be incorporated into decorations and drinks! Try to use fresh flowers and any goodies you have in your garden to make centerpieces and other decorations!
- Flavor your water – You can make water exciting by adding lemons, apples, mint, strawberries, and even rose petals. It will look festive and taste amazing! Most kids (adults too if we’re being honest) prefer the taste of juice, soda, and sports drinks over water, but proper hydration is extremely important for summer wellness. You can even substitute frozen fruit for ice!
- Mocktails for the kids – Melon balls make great additions to sodas or fizzy water and will delight the kids. Strawberry daiquiris, pina coladas, and fruit slushies can be made using fresh fruits and still taste great!
- Adult ice cream – Scoop sorbet into champagne flutes and add some bubbly for an adult beverage that is sweet, satisfying, and sophisticated.
- Watermelon tap – You can use whole watermelons to serve your drinks with a little work. You want the watermelon to stand up on its own ideally, so figure out which end needs to be the top. Cut the top open. You want to cut as close to the top as possible, so you can fill most of the watermelon with liquid. Scoop all of the insides out, while leaving the rind intact. Put the insides and juices into a bowl. Choose a spot on the bottom to insert the “tap” which you can find online or in a store. They’re easy to use and install. You will need to drill a hole in the watermelon for the tap. You can use a hand blender to turn the watermelon chunks into juice and add fizzy water for an easy drink, or get creative with your beverages! Watermelon taps look amazing and you can just throw them out when the party’s over!
Summer is a great time to entertain guests because the weather is warm and you can utilize your outdoor spaces (and show off your pond!). Kids can run around and spray each other with water while the parents grill out! You can host parties during the day or after the sun goes down, and illuminate your yard with pretty lights. Make sure to use plenty of sunscreen, bug spray, and drink lots of water during the summer to stay safe and enjoy the outdoors!