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Written By: Helen Torpy on March 31, 2012 3 Comments

Ideas for fun parties

Thanks to the parents, students and teachers at Adelaide Scotch College for these great ideas for
alcohol free parties:

“Sometimes it is a welcome sight and other times a cause for concern. The party invitation
for 15 -18 year olds can be a fraught minefield for parents. But it doesn’t
have to be and I have been heartened by a number of parents who have offered feedback
and ideas about how to make the teenage party a great success without having to
deal with the whole “should there be alcohol” question.

I was chatting to a few of the senior students the other day about what makes a great alcohol free
celebration for teenagers and their insights are worth sharing with you. The
resounding message was that an alcohol free event can be a great night and it
just seems to be that some people may be scared to put it out there as an
option! To avoid the “imagined let down” of the night, here are the student hot
tips for a successful and fun party sans alcohol!

1. The ruling principle is to have loads of entertainment to keep people occupied and not thinking they
need to be seen to have a drink to be cool!

2. Contrary to popular myth, a party can have less then 40 people. But a successful party needs to
have a critical mass of different friendship groups to keep people talking
during the night and able to move between different groups.

3. Look for a balance between creating your own fun and providing entertainment.

4. A swimming pool is always useful BUT if you haven’t got that do not despair there are many ways to
keep the guest entertained. Use novelty ideas such as:

• Mechanical Bull

• Movie Marathon theme night – Girly movies, Horror themes, Harry Potter, Action

• A special performer eg contortionist

5. Have a dress code to set the tone for the evening – elegance and class are aspirational ideas! The image
you portray about the nature of the event deters unwanted guests.

6. As for the food, loads of nibbles, a great BBQ, pizzas (in the oven) and platters of interesting
fruits/cheese will see you right. You might also try:

• Slushi machine

• Chocolate Fountains

• Fairy floss

• Spiders

• Mocktail upon arrival!

• A Boost Juice bar

7. Location: Home doesn’t have to be the answer there are plenty of alternatives.

• A good old-fashioned picnic in the park!

• Get back to your childhood party – dress ups at the Zoo!

• Paint Ball is a perennial.

• A sit down dinner – students are happy to pay part of the cost for a subsidised meal in a special
dining room at a hotel or restaurant.

8. Importantly, involve others in the planning for the function to get them excited. This includes your
child’s friends and other parents.

9. Don’t feel like you need to compete or have to be cool – your kids love you for being you without the
alcohol on offer. When you see the invite, have the confidence to ring the host
and talk about the event. If they say alcohol is present then make the decision
for your child. A NO is often a great relief for your child – even though they
won’t tell you that!

10. A party is for something special and doesn’t have to be a party for a party’s sake – that’s
what is called a gathering! Keep the idea of a party special for you and your

An invite shouldn’t fill you with dread about the looming conversation, it just may be that the host
have thought it through and are creating a great opportunity for a wonderful
celebration! No family should feel they are an isolated voice in the
conversation – after all, even TV hopeful millionaires are always offered the
option to “phone a friend”. I urge you to not hold back on the conversation
with other parents.”

click on link below for more party ideas:


Do you have
some other ideas /themes for alcohol free parties?

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comment or send us an email:





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