by Pam Molnar
Your daughter asked to have a sleepover for her birthday party, but you just don’t think you can make it until morning with a group of hyper tweens. No need to worry – have a late-over party instead.
A late-over party has all the benefits of a sleepover, but with a good night’s sleep. It is great for girls who may not be ready for a full-blown first sleepover, and it works well for parents who would like a party with less of a time commitment. Late-over parties usually run from 6:00 until 10:00, giving you plenty of time for food, activities and fun with your BFFs.
Here are some great ideas for a fun party:
Get it started. Ask all the girls to come over in pajamas. Serve up some pizza, soft drinks and snacks like nachos or popcorn. During dinner you can play “How well do you know the birthday girl?” Ask your daughter 20 questions ahead of time. Some examples are, “What softball league does Delaney play for?” or “On a scale of 1 to 10, how much does the birthday girl like One Direction?” Have a small prize for the girl who got the most answers correct or hand out a piece of candy for each correct answer.
Activity: Lip-sync Videos – Split the girls up in teams of two or four. Let them choose a song and ask them to make a video to go along with it. Supply a box of props for the girls to use with things like hats, sunglasses, feather boas, and of course, microphones. Give the girls time to work on their choreography and then let them perform for everyone. Be sure to get it all on video and then give a copy of it to the girls to take home.
Activity: Fashion Show – Provide girls with rolls of duct tape and plenty of newspaper. Break the girls up into teams of three or more. One girl will be the model and the other girls are the designers. See what outfits, hats and accessories the girls can make from the tape and newspaper. Have the girls model their creations and vote for the winner. This is a great photo opportunity!
Activity: My Friend, The Mirror – This is a fun makeover game for tween girls. Have everyone choose a partner. One girl sits in a chair with makeup (lipstick, eye shadow, and blush) in front of her. She will attempt to put on the make up using only her partner’s guidance for a mirror. Another variation of this game is to have the makeover girl keep her arms at her side. Her partner sits behind her on the chair and uses her own arms to put makeup on the model without the benefit of a mirror.
Birthday cake – or not: Tired of the same old sheet cake? Mix it up a little. Why not have birthday cookie and ice cream sandwiches, chocolate fondue or an easy trifle made with cake, whipped cream and fruit? You can’t go wrong with an ice cream sundae bar with whipped cream, candy sprinkles and crushed cookies. Or, if you are looking for another activity, let the girls decorate their own cupcakes.
Let’s Play Musical Gifts – Everyone wants their gift opened first so to avoid hurt feelings, let’s make a game of it. Have the girls sit in a circle holding their gift. Turn on some music and start passing the gifts around. When the music stops, the birthday girl opens the gift she has in her hand. Keep playing until all the gifts are opened.
Goody Bags – Avoid the candy or plastic trinkets. Personal gifts have more meaning. Make a CD of the birthday girl’s favorite songs – they’re probably the guests’ favorite songs, too. Take pictures during the party of all the girls eating and doing the activities. Print out the pictures at a local drugstore (for quick turnaround) and put them in mini photo albums that you find at the dollar store. The girls will have a great keepsake to take home from the party.
Pam Molnar is a freelance writer and mother of three teens. She enjoys party planning as much as the kids enjoy the party.