Outdoor Sweet 16 Birthday Party Essentials and Ideas
Turning sixteen is a huge milestone for any teen and the Sweet 16 party concept that has become a right of passage for American girls over the years now extends to the boys as well, although the sweet does tend to be replaced with super, or even swag, for the males. There are not too many sixteen year old boys who want to be called sweet!
Whatever you choose to call a Sweet 16 party though most kids want theirs to be a night they will remember and so will all their guests which usually involves quite a bit of planing on their parents' side!
One popular choice for a Sweet 16 party is to throw it outside rather than trying to fit dozens of kids into the house or renting a formal party space. But in order for a Sweet 16 party to be a real success it needs more than a few tables and chairs set outside, it really does need a theme. Here are just a few ideas:
Sweet 16 Luau
You don't need to live in Hawaii to throw a great Sweet 16 Luau and you don't even really need a pool! To get everyone in the luau mood the invitations should state that dress is tropical and in order to be authentic guests should be presented with leis when they arrive. To further set the mood lots of party stores sell disposable tiki torches that can be scattered around too.
In terms of menu choices seafood is of course a huge part of any luau but as teens tend to be picky eaters opting for simple dishes like fish sandwiches and rice dishes, together with lots of fruit, should be just fine. After (or before) the food is served a limbo competition is a great way to break the ice and get all of the guests into a party mood.
Baseball Sweet 16
Baseball is America's favorite summer pastime and boys (and girls) who love the sport would probably also love a day out at the ballpark to celebrate their Sweet 16.
All of the major league ballparks offer party packages but so do many of the minor league teams and they can be far less expensive and still just as much fun. The smaller crowds also usually mean that the birthday boy or girl can get some great personalized attention from the clubs themselves, something that will make the occasion especially memorable.
Formal Outdoor Sweet 16
Some teens - especially girls - love the idea of a formal ball style Sweet 16 and actually an outdoor tent based affair can be every bit as sophisticated as an indoor affair staged in a real ballroom. Tent rental companies offer services that are actually more affordable than you might imagine and the fact that the staff usually do most of the set up can be a big help.
Buffet style dining usually works best for this kind of party as a formal sit down dinner would take far longer to set up. Buffet dining is great for teens anyway who do not always want the structure a sit down dinner adds to a party timetable and would rather things were a little more casual.
One trend that is very popular at weddings right now but also lends itself perfectly to a Sweet 16 party is a candy bar. That is a station along the buffet line filled with jars and containers of candy - the more colorful the better - with scoops and spoons so that guests can create their own favor bags.