Recreate Rio at Your Brazilian Themed Mardi Gras


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A fantasy festival in your own backyard

The two names synonymous with vibrant colors and extravagant décor – Rio and Mardi Gras. Both scream of beautiful scenery and grand events. And with the help of a dramatic chromatic blend, you can recreate Rio a Brazilian themed Mardi Gras.

The one thing that stands between you and a wild night of festivities is a highly decorated and colorful blend of blues, golds, purples, and greens vividly coloring every aspect of the event venue. Hosting an outdoor/backyard Brazilian themed Mardi Gras in the summer will graciously embrace the eroticism of Brazil and warmth of South America. But, that’s merely a suggestion. Any time you bring the excitement of Mardi Gras to a party, you know you’re in for a fun night.

Begin by setting the scene. Have guests enter the extravaganza by walking up under the archway of Brazilian romance. Outline the archway with alternating strings of metallic gold, purple, green and silver balloons and stringed globe lights. Line the entrance to your yard with metallic gossamer to create a grand Rio walkway.

Inside your yard, place small masquerade ball masks around your space or buffet table. Have Mardi Gras inspired tables set up for your guests to enjoy your Brazilian dinner spread. At each table setting, place a Mardi Gras sequin mask as a party favor for each of your guests. Adorn your tables with Mardi Gras confetti wildly spread about each table. Your backyard will make even artists envious as the beauty of the bold color combination come to life.

Light up your Rio themed Mardi Gras party

Light up your Rio themed Mardi Gras party

The Spread

Of course, what’s any good party without good food and good drinks? And what would Mardi Gras be without a buffet of delicious party favorites? Cocktail wieners, buffalo wings, shrimp Diablo, and buffalo chip dip will all add a little Latin spice to your party go-ers. But, to sweeten things up, decorate a candy buffet with purple and green jelly beans, gold coins, silver wrapped Hershey kisses, and green – purple – and white spiced gum drops. Intertwine strings of colorful party beads and lights around your candy dishware. Line your candy buffet with fabric bunting. And don’t forget a drink table or bar. Since Mardi Gras is all about eating and drinking, be sure to have plenty of both. Offer signature or specialty drinks – such as “party pina coladas” and “Mardi Gras martinis.” Give them fun names and use food coloring to add to the festive colors of the event.

Get the Word Out

Everyone knows that at a Mardi Gras party, the more the merrier. So, if you haven’t yet used or aren’t familiar with the Party Crashers app for any smart phone, you should learn… and quick! With the Party Crashers app, the way you party is revolutionized. Ditch the dated party days of hand writing party invitations, mailing them out, and hoping the invitations don’t get lost in the shuffle of your family and friend’s mail. With the Party Crashers app, you can simply set up a party event, add the details – like attire, music, drinks, date and time – and “send out” the invites with a scroll through your email and social networking lists. And for added fun, you can open the event up to the public, making it “crashable.” Sit back and watch just who shows up to crash the party. Friends, family, and party crashers everywhere have the ease of party locating in the simplicity of their smartphone app.

There ain't no party like an app crasher party

There ain’t no party like an app crasher party

Nothing says Mardi Gras like good food, good fun, and lots of people… so for your next backyard event, turn up the heat with a little Brazilian bash.

July Party Ideas


Take the plunge with a new theme for an annual block party, pool party or garden club event (and more!). Here are some ideas for using theme parties for your July events.

Create a Carnival Theme for a Block Party
If your neighborhood is in a phase where lots of children live there, this one’s for you!

First, identify neighbors who have canopies and picnic tables they are willing to lend to the effort. Once they are set up for the party (and, where applicable, weighted properly against the wind) you can decorate them with strings of flag pennants and bright-tone balloons.

Starting with a carnival theme means so much else will fall into place, including the food. Commandeer a few grills and think hot dogs, grilled corn and ice cream.

Pick up a few carnival activities, such as classic toss games and duck floaters, and cheap favors for prizes. We find that many older children truly enjoy running games for the younger ones, so everybody is happily engaged.

You can find all the materials for decorating and activities in Carnival Party Supplies.

Think Gardens and Showers for a Ladybug Party
Already beloved by birthday girls, the ladybug party is also being claimed by party planners as a hot new summer baby shower theme. We also like it for garden club events. The color red, polka dots…what’s not to love?

Cover tables in white and add big bunches of red summer flowers and ladybug mylar balloons. Add polka dot tableware, Ladybug Fancy napkins and a bit of bug table confetti. You’ll see the smiles will arrive by themselves.

Consider also that July is a terrific month for a ladybug release and a spectacular part of a ladybug party if done right. For this, you’ll need to have the ladybug party in the evening and release in a garden area that’s had rain or been watered earlier in the day. (For more information on ensuring the well-being of the ladybugs during and after release, search online for “how to release ladybugs.”)


Throw a Different Kind of Beachfront Bash or Pool Party
We know everybody loves the luau, but why not go in a different direction? A nautical theme party will bring in a new color scheme and can be dressed up or down – and nobody says you can’t still enjoy a round of limbo if you like.

Imagine a gently swinging banner of semaphore flags and an anchor mylar balloon bobbing in a sea of blue latex balloons – and that’s just the entrance to your nautical theme party!

Deck tables in covers of cool white with runners of navy blue, and personalized nautical favors that match the design of the banner. Hoist rows of anchors, port holes or ship’s wheels on walls and embellish the bar with fishnet and an anchor centerpiece.

Wear and share captains’ and gobs’ hats for a humorously jaunty touch.

Try These Excuses for More Parties in July
July is National Ice Cream Month and National Picnic Month. The 28th of July is Milk Chocolate Day and American Cowboy Day. Do you know someone with a birthday in July who loves any of these things? Your theme dilemma is solved!

We have theme party supplies for all of these July celebrations. Start planning your out-of-the-ordinary summer party today.

Top Five Summer Party Ideas


School’s out!  Party on!  The best part of summer is relaxation in the warm weather, so why not create a few fun summer parties for all your friends to enjoy?  Take advantage of the warm weather and plan a few outdoor parties!  The easiest way to do so is by picking a theme and simply altering your party just enough for the theme to work outdoors rather than indoors.  Here are a few ideas:

1.) Luau Summer Pool Party:   Break out the bathing suits, Hawaiian shirts, leis, and grass skirts!  What better way to ring in summer than with a pool party?  Provide all your guests with a coconut cup filled with a tropical punch-flavored slushy drink and at least one lei to throw around their neck.   In addition to those fun luau favors, give your female guests grass skirts and flowers to put in their hair!  Scatter a few palm tree coolers around your yard to give guests a place to find more cold beverages once their slushy drink is gone.  What are your options if you don’t have a pool?  Use a sprinkler and your garden hose!

2.) Backyard Summer Barbecue:  While, yes, it seems to go hand-in-hand with the luau pool party, it’s just different enough to be a second great summer party.  Plan a menu first: pulled pork sandwiches (barbecue or not), corn (on or off the cob), and fruit would make a great, summery combination.  Decorate your tables with a classic barbecue red gingham table cover and provide fun plates, napkins, and utensils.  Then, as your guests sit at their tables to enjoy their food, serve another cool summer treat: a sherbet float in a goblet with a fun squiggle straw!  Just pour lemon-lime soda over two or three scoops of rainbow sherbet ice cream.  It’s a fun, fruity twist on a classic summer favorite, the root beer float.

3.) Fifties Drive-in Summer Picnic:  This is where the classic root beer floats and black cows (a cola poured over vanilla ice cream) from the fifties come into play!  Decorate your tables with a float candle and serve your guests both yummy ice cream beverage in classic soda shop glass that your guests can take home as a fun summer favor.  A few other great favor ideas are plush dice that your guests can hang from their rearview mirrors (especially if they have fun, old-fashioned cars that they’ve worked to restore), classic black sunglasses for the men, and diamond cat sunglasses for the women.

4.) Carnival Summer Party:  Summertime equals festivals, parades, theme parks, and carnivals!  Every teenager looks forward to a summer trip to a theme park to ride roller coasters and eat the amazing junk food that appears at every theme park across America.  Why not bring a fun, carnival-like junk food alley to your backyard?  When your guests arrive at your party, greet them at the entrance and place a sparkly wrist band on them so they can feel like it’s a private carnival rather than simply a summer carnival party.  Also, give each guest a carnival favor box that they can decorate to hold their candy as they play games.  Plan a wide variety of carnival games for every guest to participate in.  When it comes to thinking of prizes for the games, hand out candy at each game booth.  Keep a concession stand open for your guest to come find food and snacks, such as banana splits in dessert servers and popcorn in popcorn bags.

5.)  Pirate Summer Party: This will give your guests a bit of a twist on a classic summer beach party.  When you send out party invitations, include a note that requests your guests to attend in a pirate costume—this is a great way to have a costume party in the summertime!  Invite your guests to participate in a treasure hunt, with rewards along the way.  Then, give them pirate pouches to keep those rewards (or their pirate booty) in.  At the end, when your guests get to the treasure chest, they can arrive to find it filled with yummy ice cream treats and popsicles!  A word to the wise: wait as long as possible to hide this.  Send your guests on a wild goose chase to the front of the house, thinking you hid the treasure there. Then, when they get back to the central party area and see the chest, they’ll be shocked!

There are many other ways to ring in summer and many other fun summer party ideas to plan.  Just remember the keys of summer and your planning will go easier: fun games, warm weather, and cool frozen treats will make your friends and guests love every summer party that you host.

The Ultimate Mardi Gras Cocktail Party


Mardi Gras Party Recipes and Ideas

The ultimate Mardi Gras cocktail party requires the ultimate selection of Mardi Gras cocktails and appetizers, served in an environment totally decked out in the ultimate Mardi Gras theme. Purple, green and gold are traditional background colors for this carnival of carnivals. However, Mardi Gras cocktail recipes tempt pallets with bourbon, rum and fruit juice, while popular appetizers are made with spicy, New Orleans essence.

Festive Mardi Gras Cocktail Party Recipes

Hurricane

Classic Mardi Gras Hurricanes are made with 1 part rum (equal portions of dark and light), 2 parts fruit juice (orange, pineapple and passion preferred), a dash of grenadine syrup and a hint of fresh lime juice in a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice, squeeze fresh lime juice over the top, add the rest of the ingredients and shake thoroughly. Pour hurricane cocktail into festive Fat Tuesday tableware cocktail glasses, garnished with an orange slice and topped with a cherry to serve.

Tiger Paw

Mix equal parts Southern Comfort, pineapple juice and raspberry wine over a shaker filled with ice. Strain cocktail into a martini glass garnished with fruit and serve on personalized Mardi Gras coasters.

New Orleans Hand Grenade

Mix equal parts gin, grain alcohol, melon liquor, rum and vodka over ice. Add water and sugar to taste and stir well. Guests drinking these powerful cocktails are likely to enjoy wearing festive Mardi Gras glitter masks, and lots of Mardi Gras beads, celebrating the true spirit of Mardi Gras well into the evening.

Easy Crabmeat Spread

 Combine 6 ounces of flaky crabmeat (fresh or canned) with 8 ounces of soft cream cheese and ¼ Cup salsa. Heat mixture in microwave for 1 to 2 minutes, until warm, but not hot. Serve with an assortment of crackers.

Golden Triangles

 12 sheets frozen phyllo dough

½ cup melted butter

Cajun Pork Filling

Apricot Dipping Sauce (optional)

Lightly brush one sheet of phyllo dough with some melted butter. Place another sheet on top of first sheet and brush with butter. Cover remaining phyllo dough and set aside. Cut buttered phyllo dough into six equal, horizontal strips. Place 1 tablespoon Cajun pork filling approximately 1 inch from end of strip. Fold one corner over, diagonally, lining it up with edge of strip to create triangle. Continue folding up the strip, until phyllo dough has many layers and is a single triangle appetizer. Repeat for remaining strips. Use rest of phyllo dough to make many more appetizers. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, for approximately 10 minutes, until golden brown. Serve with Apricot Dipping Sauce if desired.

Cajun Pork Filling

Thoroughly cook 8 ounces ground pork in a medium skillet. Add 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning and cook for another minute. Stir in ½ Cup soft cream cheese, 1/3 Cup grated carrot and a few dashes hot pepper sauce to taste. Mix well.

Apricot Dipping Sauce

Combine ½ Cup apricot preserves and 1 Tablespoon hoisin sauce in a 1-Cup glass measuring cup. Stir in 1 Tablespoon thinly sliced green onion and ½ teaspoon finely grated orange peel. Microwave on high for approximately 1 minute, until bubbly and warm.

Big Top-Circus Party Ideas Have Come to Town


No one likes to clown around more than you & your friends! Ok, maybe your kids take the cake, but no matter who is into the fun, a Big Top Circus party is for you! Try these quick & easy tips to create the big top for your school carnival or in your party space:

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