Summer it means, sun, fun, friends, and of course good old neighborhood block parties. Thanks to modern technology, and a great group of ladies, the set up of our annual block party can be done in a few short emails.
A facebook group is where we kick it off. Our event is held each summer when the weather is warm and being outdoors is a blast. We post the invite for all to come as well as hand deliver invites to each house and apartments; just incase there are those that aren’t online.
Perfect potluck.com also makes our life so simple and easy. We create an event and let everyone fill in what they are going to bring. This free service also helps monitor RSVPs. Each family is responsible for their own chairs and drinks.
It is ideal to pick a timeframe that you’ll be able to capture most of your neighbors yet not interfere with major local events. Our party starts at 3pm on a Saturday and usually wraps up about 11pm as we’re just having so much fun. It works well as some eat a late lunch and head home for the evening news and other call it dinner and are there well into roasting marshmallows.
We kick thing off at our welcome table where we collect updates on address and contact info. Neighbors can grab a food tag to label their dish. We print a large scheduled of events for $5; thanks to Staples and their architect prints. Highly recommended this simple printout size makes things be so clear and communicates to everyone all the excitement you have planned.
We close off an entire street so if you too choose this route make sure you’ve gotten approval from your city or town. Our local police department also drops off barriers to help with approaching cars and our little bikes enjoying the freedom of biking on a protected street.
We always include a special guest of some kind. Sometimes it’s the ice cream truck and others it’s the local Del’s Frozen Lemonade truck. We allow purchase to be at the discretion of each family. Everyone loves some entertainment. We make sure everyone has fun. We’ve done large group games, water balloons, allow the teens to face paint the younger kids, we always fill a piñata and rent a moon bounce that we seek donations for at the welcome table.
Each year a group photo is an absolute must. Kids grow, neighbors move, and some pass away. Looking at the pictures year to year are lots of fun. Our party has expanded to include an alumni list. Some of us just love the right group and the good laughs.
Hope you have a chance to get together with your neighbors and enjoy a wonderfully warm summer night. It’s fun to look back and think this started years ago because some of us felt like we didn’t really know who lived around the corner. We’ve now expanded to include 6 streets that all connect and with whom we know can all give the neighborly wave to each morning.