Splash-tastic End of Summer Party Hot
Labor Day is a great opportunity to encourage your residents to mingle and have a bit of late summer fun. Before it starts getting too cool in the fall, aim for a water play party that accommodates all ages of participants.
Here are a few wet and fun activities that will make your next water play event one to remember.
The concept of water shadows is simple. Kids and adults line up agaist the side of a building, fence, or wall and pose up against it.
Using a watering hose (sprayfeature works best) lightly spray across all participants to create dry negative-space “shadows” around the outlines of their bodies. Kids especially love to do this more than once, so it’s best to choose an area that dries fast like a concrete wall or side of a building in full sun. You can also have them lie down on the sidewalk as well.
Drunk waiter is a game great for both adults and children, and is best played in a soft-grass covered area away from sidewalks, buildings, light poles, benches, trash cans, and parked cars. The idea is similar to the traditional frat-party game of spinning in circles with one’s head on a bat and then attempting to move in a straight line to a fixed point – like towards the rest of your team.
In this game, the participants spin in circles while looking up at the sky holding a small stick. Then after 10 seconds of spinning, the added challenge to this game is that once the player is completely dizzy they are also handed a tray of plastic cups filled with water (“drinks”) to be served. Not only is it nearly impossible to stay upright and walking straight, but the spectacular falls are sure to get everyone drenched.
Keep buckets of water handy for easy and fast refilling of the cups on the waiter’s tray, and establish competitive and inclusive teams that score points based on how many full cups of water they can deliver in a set amount of time.
Keep a stopwatch and notebook handy for recording scores and timings.
Large and small balloons filled with water are not just for fights, there are many other games that you can play with they as well – and not all of them have to get you drenched.
Target practice - One idea to accommodate parents or kids that may be wary at first of getting too wet is to set up a water balloon target practice on a large sidewalk. Draw targets on the sidewalk in chalk and give each child three to five balloons for testing their aim.
You can make the targets big or small (depending on age and ability) and you can also assign point values based on difficulty. The kid with the best score wins a prize!
Water balloon piñatas – instead of candy and confetti these piñatas are filled with close to a gallon of water. Hang some water balloons from nearly trees and structures, give kids some bats or sticks and let them swing away.
**Tip** This activity, like all activities with swinging bats, is best supervised by at least two adults. One to watch the child who is taking a turn swinging, and one to keep other children out of the swing of the bat (i.e. out of the “danger zone”).
For more games and ideas check out this link for more water balloons activities.
An option is to avoid small water balloons is to replace them with premade sponge bombs. Instructions on how to make these sponges and use them can be found here.
The great part of using sponges instead of small balloons it that they’re much easier to put together (no hours of time-consuming water-balloon filling), more earth-friendly, and reusable year after year.
While the water will dry and this type of party is pretty quick to clean up, one thing that is a headache is cleaning up littered broken balloon pieces after a water-balloon fight – what a nightmare!
**Tip** After the fun is over, one great way to make quick work of the project is to award raffle tickets to children for each balloon piece they pick up. Have kids put their names on the tickets for each balloon piece they hand in. Cleaning up 10 broken balloon pieces means 10 raffle tickets – and a better chance of winning a fun prize.
Hold a drawing for a few large colorful water guns (easy to pick up on clearance at the end of the summer season) or give away a colorful beach towel or other fun back to school items. This will encourage all the younger residents to help clean up after themselves and the event. Your maintenance team will thank you!
No matter what activities you choose be sure to snap lots of pictures and have a fun and safe water themed event!