Reasons to Celebrate in June


BBQ-Party-KitWith June comes summer and tons of reasons to celebrate with your family and friends. Obvious reasons to party include Father’s Day and Flag Day, but there’s tons of other reasons to host a shindig.

Celebrate Family History Day with a Family Reunion! Check out our Family Reunion TipZ for ideas. There’s tons of fun ways to decorate: streamers, balloons, gossamer, cooridinating tableware. Or you can pick from tons of themes to make the reunion a big, fun event.

June 23rd is Great American Backyard Campout Day. Host a backyard barbeque. Check out our BBQ TipZ for ideas. Decorate with hamburger mylar balloons, the BBQ Party Ensemble, and a chef standee. This is a perfect party for a potluck.

June 21st is Baby Boomers Recognition Day. Host a retro themed party and gather your favoirte Baby Boomers for a fantastic night of dancing, story telling and fun. This party could even become an annual tradition. Decorate with the These are the Times Kit or Retro Romance Kit to set the scene for some serious reminiscing.

Check out these other reasons to celebrate and tell us your ideas!

* Father’s Day * Shavout* 3- Cheer Coach Day * 3- Cancer Survivors Day * 5- National Family Day * 5- World Environment Day * 6- Teacher’s Day * 8- Banana Split Day *  14- Flag Day * 14- Family History Day * 15- Dollars Against Diabetes Day * 21- Baby Boomers Recognition Day * 23- National Pink Day * 23- Great American Backyard Campout Day * 23- Public Service Day * 24- Celebration of the Senses *

Food Ideas for a Summer Fun Party


Inflatable-Beach-Ball-CoolerServe easy to prepare summer fun beach food. Grill hot dogs and hamburgers or go a little bit more festive with crab legs and melted butter! Add some cole slaw, baked beans, potato salad, corn on the cob, fruit kabobs or a watermelon bowl filled with the season’s freshest fruit, and lots of munchies. Beach pails make terrific serving buckets.

For dessert, serve frozen bananas on a stick dipped in chocolate, snow cones, and a delightful summer berry “fruit pizza”.

If the party is for kids, serve their food in individual Beach Pails. Use a paint pen to write each child’s name on a bucket, and fill each pail with a juice box, wrapped hot dog, goldfish crackers, fruit kabob and a beach ball! They will never forget the best ever backyard party hosted by your family!

Fill a cooler, wheelbarrow, or metal tub with ice and load it with plenty of soda and bottles of water. As an alternative, offer your guests daiquiris and fruit smoothies – complete with mini umbrellas!

Don’t forget to stock up on lots of ice – plan on approximately 1 pound per adult guest for the party!

Have bowls sitting around with individually wrapped Life-Savers™ candy for those sudden sugar attacks!

Finish the night off with this “Pool Fun Cake” – it’s sure to float you right to the top for creativity! Bake a double layer 8 or 9 inch round cake. For extra fun, use a white cake mix and add a few drops of blue food coloring to the batter. When cool, frost the entire cake with blue tinted frosting. Add to the top a wafer cookie as a diving board, a gum ball or two for beach balls, and gummy rings as life preservers. Use a small figurine or doll floating on top of the pool in a fruit roll up raft! If you want to add a little beach to your summer scene, dabble a small amount of brown sugar in one section of the cake and add a paper umbrella or two! Don’t forget to serve this one up with a mound of refreshing ice cream!

Party Business Booms in Tough Economy


Watch the full party business storyFORT WAYNE, IN (Indiana’s NewsCenter) —

While many retailers around the country have struggled in this economic environment, one Northeast Indiana business is seeing a different trend. Read or watch the full story.

Activities for a Magical Narnia Party


Children aged 8 and older are not always interested in having an at-home birthday party. Through some rite of passage, they are typically more “destination oriented”. A laser tag facility, paintball park, bowling alley, video arcade, or sports venue may seem more appealing, but you can change all that with one memory-making birthday bash!

The activities for this party can be set up as challenges if you wish. Begin by explaining to the kids that two sons of Adam and two daughters of Eve will sit on the four thrones at the Castle of Cair Paravel. By earning points from each of the challenges that follow, they can be one of the chosen:

This party is all about good winning over evil. Allow time for the kids to engage in a spectacular climactic battle to free Narnia from the icy spell with plastic Swords and Pole Axes. Be sure that you set some firm ground rules about what is off-limits prior to giving the kids the go ahead!

Save Narnia from perpetual winter! Insert a small piece of wrapped candy into each Balloon before inflating them. After the balloons are inflated, use a permanent marker to label each balloon as a minion. Tell the kids that the balloons are the dreaded denizens of the White Witch’s wintry world: Black Dwarves, Minotaurs, Giants, Harpy, Ogres, Ankle Slicers, howling werewolves, Wolves, Ghouls, and Cyclops. Encourage them to stomp the minions by popping the balloons. For a fun twist on the game, for “round two”, don’t allow them to use their feet! The prize? The candy they uncover!
Play a game of Narnia Charades. List the characters, and have the kids act out the powers or character traits that each possesses. Start with the following characters, giving the kids a mix of good and evil:
Lucy (ability to heal, received Fire Flower cordial from Father Christmas, ability to ride and control wolves), Peter (oldest, strongest, received sword from Father Christmas), Susan (ability to use ranged weapons including snowballs and bow & arrow), Edmund (very agile, especially after he redeems himself), Aslan (noble and brave lion, sacrifices life to save Edmund, resurrected), Mr. Timnus (most famous Faun, uses Pan Pipes to send creatures to sleep), White Witch (bad ruler, cast wintry spell), Mr. & Mrs. Beaver (large network of hideaways and holes across Narnia), Mr. Fox (loyal to Aslan), Satyr (goat-like), Centaurs (part human, part horse, males – swords & hooves, females – archery), Minotaurs (part bull, part human, flails, kopesh swords, most dangerous), Ankle Slicers (fast & dangerous), Wolves (most common & lowest, guards for the Witch), Cyclops (impervious, axe wielding), Harpy (malicious winged creatures), Ogres (wooden clubs), Black Dwarves (fire arrows), Gray Wolf (only Peter can overcome.)

The White Witch has declared that anyone who sees a human in Narnia must report the news to her or be turned to stone! The ultimate party game for this theme is Freeze Tag or Freeze Dancing. If they don’t stop when the music stops…they will be turned to stone and out of the game!

The Pevensie children were sent from London to live in the country with their uncle because of wartime air raids. The adventure into the heart of Narnia began with a simple game of hide-and-seek. Regardless of the ages of your party guests…some games are such classics that they never go out of style!

Challenge the kids to try to match Susan’s ability to use ranged weapons, including snowballs. If you are fortunate enough to have real snow for your party, engage the kids in an old-fashioned snowball fight. If your climate isn’t ideal for snow…just take the party indoors. Add approximately one tablespoon of uncooked white rice to an uninflated 5″ White Balloon. Then inflate the balloon so that it is the size of a generous snowball. Repeat until you have filled a large trash bag with “snowballs”. This activity is guaranteed to generate howls of laughter!

If your child is “destination oriented”, take the kids to a local archery range for target practice. Most archery ranges have introductory group programs. Like the magical bow and arrows that Father Christmas gave to Susan, each arrow is sure to hit a mark of birthday magic!

Plan for time to have each of the children pose for a picture with the guest of honor in front of our version of mighty Aslan (Lion Cutout). The pictures can then be sent to each guest with a thank you note after the party. This priceless memento will be treasured for many years to come.

Food and Cake Ideas for a Chronicles of Narnia Party


This 39″ long Sword Cake is sure to delight your party guests as much as the sword delighted Peter when it was given to him by Father Christmas!

What You’ll Need:

9 X 13″ cake pan 
1 boxed white cake mix
2 – 16 oz. containers of ready-made frosting
Silver paste or food coloring for the blade of the sword.  If silver is not available to you, use black food coloring (use very little to create silver/gray frosting.) 
Gold paste or gel food coloring for handle
Black writing gel
2″ X 6″ board, cut to about 45″ in length, covered with aluminum foil or a red plastic table cover

One small package of white Crayola Model Magictm. 

Directions:  Bake the cake according to the directions on the package.  Place the cooled cake on a cake rack in the freezer.  When the cake is frozen, remove it from the freezer, and cut the cake into three equal pieces (lengthwise).  A frozen cake is much easier to cut and frost, as the cut edges won’t crumble as much when you are frosting them.  Place the pieces end-to-end on a cake board. Trim one end of the cake to resemble a sharp point.  Tint one container of the frosting silver for the blade-end of the sword, which should include approximately two “sections” of cake.  Tint the second container gold for the handle-end of the sword.  Use the black writing gel to add decorative details, and to write a birthday message along the blade of the sword.  Using the non-toxic Model Magictm, create a lip for the handle of the sword.  The lip can be painted or decorated using acrylic paint if you wish to embellish the mighty sword.  The modeling compound could also be used to create a dimensional lion that could be placed on the handle or the lip of the sword.  

Food:

A sundae bar filled with white and wintry treats would be a hit.  Vanilla ice cream, marshmallow cream, whipped cream, mini marshmallows, white chocolate chips, white sprinkles, and edible iridescent glitter will make the kids shiver with delight!

If you are providing a meal, serve some traditional British foods to pay tribute to the heritage of the Pevensie children.  Fish and chips, shepard’s pie (ground beef, gravy, simple vegetables and mashed potatoes), a hearty beef stew, and bread pudding would all be fare that even the pickiest of eaters would enjoy.

Offer some “Minion Magic” as a beverage.  Guests will be spellbound when they witness your power to turn an ordinary beverage into a magical drink!  Placed a punch-filled Snowflake Acrylic Goblet in front of each guest and zap each cup with a little White Witch wizardry (a few Pop Rockstm candies).  Since this candy is processed with carbon dioxide, it will crackle, pop, and spit when it comes into contact with a liquid. 

Don’t feel obligated to serve a meal, as most kids will only stop long enough to eat cake and ice cream. If you aren’t serving a meal, simply serve a few healthy treats mixed with some fun munchies that will be sure to empower your guests. 

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