Fun in the Sun with Backyard Party Ideas
Whether you want a Hawaiian luau party or beach theme party, a backyard party is a great way to get together with the gang without breaking everyone's budget if you plan the party as a group effort. Some people are not concerned about the cost and just love to throw a fun party where they do not have to worry about someone spilling drinks on the carpet and everyone can enjoy the beauty of Mother Nature. Themed parties like a luau party add to the fun and yet can be inexpensive at the same time.
A Hawaiian Luau Party
Planning any type of themed party requires the same steps once you decide on the theme. A luau party is no different. The first step is to decide on the date and time and make a guest list for your luau party. At this point, you also have to decide whether the food for the luau party is a group effort or yours alone. If you make the food for the luau party a group effort, you need to include the words, bring a dish or bring your own beverage on the invitation.
After you selected the luau party date and time, you need to select the look of the invitations for the luau party. Choose a background for the invitations that reflects the islands. People identify Tiki gods with a luau party just as they do exotic flowers from the islands. You can use hibiscus, birds of paradise or orchids to announce the approaching luau party and scent the invitations with a small dab of oil from the exotic flowers on the envelope or petals inside it. Of course, a picture of a sunny beach, dancing hula girl or Hawaiian shirt also gives the recipient immediate notification that their invited to a luau party even before they read the words. Let your guests know how to dress for the luau party to put their minds at ease and avoid a lot of unnecessary phone calls.
the luau party rule of thumb is the simpler the better
Once you have the invitations sent, it is time to select the decorations, food and entertainment for the luau party. Of course, if you made the luau party a group effort, you normally take charge of the meat, a few hors d'oeurves and a salad. Much of the time, however, most people throwing the luau party supply all the food and drink. You need to keep the Hawaiian theme alive when you do this.
You can make the food as elegant or simple as you like, but don't forget two necessary items for any luau party, a delicious freshly cut pineapple and fruit tray and some type of ham or Hawaiian cooked pork. Since Hawaii is a melting pot for many different cultures, you have a wide selection from which too choose. Finger foods and simple menus are often best and the luau party rule of thumb is the simpler the better.
Decorating for a luau party can be campy or elegant. For those that love the campy look, hunt for inflatable palm trees, grass skirts, plastic tiki gods and above all silk flower or plastic leis to place around each guests neck. Hanging lanterns or large posters of hula girls can round out the décor. Some companies have decorating kits preassembled for just this occasion. This is especially helpful for the busy host or hostess. Elegant luau party decoration can include lanterns and torches placed around the area for lighting, a Polynesia grass shack for the bar and silk flower or real flower leis.
A Beach Theme Party
You plan a beach theme party much like a luau party. Of course, you might choose a different design for the invitations when you plan a beach theme party. Seashells, the ocean, a palm tree or simply a beach are appropriate backgrounds for the beach theme party. You can use some of the same backgrounds on the invitation for a beach theme party as used for a luau party. If you want a casual party, do not forget to let your guests know that shoes are optional at your beach theme party.
Decorating for the beach theme party is also similar. However, instead of tiki gods, lots of shells and sand will add to the festivities. If you lay a large canvas and cover it with sand, you can create your own beach right in the back yard. A Polynesia grass shack for the bar, used for a luau party, is also perfect for a beach theme party.
The food for a beach theme party should be simple and easy to eat. Most of the time, finger food is the best choice, however, if you have a more formal atmosphere for your beach theme party, you will also make the menu more formal. Formal foods for a beach theme party could be steamed clams, grilled fish, lobster or shrimp. Some of these formal foods also work well for the menu of a more informal beach theme party.