Resident Events is a resource for property management professionals to find, share, and rate community events and apartment party ideas with each other! Need some community event ideas? Just take a look around!
Gathering together for food is among the most pleasurable times for children, teenagers, and adults alike. Because of this, planning a monthly potluck event can be an engaging experience for your community members: it also helps your community members get better acquainted with each other.
Planning the event
When planning a potluck event for a large number of guests – it’s essential to plan wisely and well in advance. Decide your theme, venue, and timing for the event.
Suitable locations for a potluck event on your property could be a community center, BBQ area, or community park.
Notifying residents about the event
Informing members about the event, at least two weeks in advance, will ensure better participation. Emails and Facebook event invitations can be sent your community members or you can notify them through handouts dropped at your resident’s homes.
***TIP*** SignUpGenius is a handy website for organizing group events. It provides an RSVP sign up format. Moreover, it can help in collecting information regarding numbers of people attending, guest names, and what people will bring along all in the same place.
Assigning duties and tasks
Once you’ve decided the time, date and place, the next step is to gather volunteers to make the dishes according to the decided theme. It will be necessary to let the volunteers know about the approximate number of people who would be attending the event, so that food preparation, utensils, plates, cups, etc. can be collected accordingly.
Residents that are not as confident about their cooking skills can be tasked with managing additional things such as utensils, dishes, beverages, décor, and cleanup.
Image source: Pixabay
Managing the event
It’s important to understand that events like these are only successful when residents are enthusiastic and have a good team spirit. Therefore, as part of managing the event, it’s important to make the event interesting for all ages. Events can be made even more fun and interesting through the use of themes, organizing music, and other activities such as a complementary movie to go with the theme.
To manage a successful potluck event Perfect Potluck is another wonderful resource. It will let you select a meal coordinator, enter the venue of event, assign volunteers for all the dishes, and also notify members about which services they can still sign up to complete.
***BONUS*** To make the event even more exciting, participants can also be asked to dress up in costume according to the potluck theme.
Image source: Pixabay
Creative themes to get the party started
As this event can be repeated as a recurring monthly get-together, themes may be selected by the organizers in line with important holidays or seasons each month.
Some popular theme ideas are:
No matter what the theme selected, the general idea of the event is for the participants to have fun and enjoy themselves. Therefore, it’s important to go with the mood of the people participating. It’s also important to communicate with your residents and let residents communicate with each other. This will keep the event is well-synchronized.
***TIP*** Help participants connect with each other, by creating a Facebook Event each month where they can discuss décor, give ideas, and notify each other of their contributions. You can also create a community group on Facebook in which residents can discuss the upcoming potluck events.
With spring blossoming onto the scene, who wouldn’t love to get their sneakers geared up for the season! Some people may find such cleaning tasks mundane or boring. Others keep procrastinating because they have a lot of work on their plate. This is why planning a shoe cleaning event will actually let the members have fun with the cleaning while providing a great rehabilitation session for their sneakers.
Things you will need
***TIP*** Making different work stations for various cleaning steps will organize space, accommodate more people, and keep residents interested in the activity.
***BONUS*** A “How-To” card board can be pinned to each cleaning station explaining how to use all of the supplies. This will make it easier for first time cleaners to do the job without asking around or feeling uncomfortable.
Being exposed to dirt and grime, outsoles are usually the grubbiest part of the sneakers. Further, winter rains and snow can make shoes and boots look dull and dirty. Washing up your dirty shoes will make them look as good as new - ready to wear again, or prep for winter storage.
Step 1 - Clear away excess dirt using a soft-bristled brush (shoe brush or old toothbrush) to clean the outsole.
Step 2 – Be sure to take out the laces before applying detergent to the shoe. (The laces should be washed separately by hand or in a delicate machine wash).
Step 3 - Spray the detergent on the affected areas and clean using the soft brush or sponge, in circular movements.
Step 4 – Once clean, spray water thoroughly to wash away the soap and wipe dry the shoes using towels or polish cloths.
***TIP*** Make sure to provide cold water - as hot water can fade away shoe color.
Insole deodorizing station
While insoles may not be dirty, they’re sure to have some smell from long hours of wearing and sweat.
This cleaning station provides tea-bags, lemon peels or baking soda filled in empty match-boxes, which can be kept in the shoes to absorb odor and freshen the shoe up from inside out. These can be left inside the shoes while they’re left to dry.
Finishing glow station
While washing up with soap can drastically improve the overall look, it may not clear away the scratches or marks sometimes left on the mid soles (which are usually made from plastic or rubber). These parts of the shoes can be given an added luster by brushing them up with peanut butter or tooth paste!
***BONUS*** White nail polish can also be provided for owners of white, or partially white, sneakers. It covers up scratches really well and gives them a “brand new” look.
Believe it or not, car polishing wax can be used as a neutral shoe polish on shoes of any color. It will provide a waterproof coating on the shoes, and one tub of wax is enough to polish more than a hundred pairs of sneakers.
The drying station should be placed in a well-ventilated area, in the presence of indirect sunlight. Exposure to direct sunlight may fade away shoe colors. The drying process can take a few hours so you can encourage residents to leave their shoes on-site, or take them back to their homes.
If you do have residents leave their shoes, make sure to keep them in view of management and use masking tape to add the owner’s name to the sole of the shoe. If residents have similar shoes this will avoid anyone accidentally taking someone else’s shoes back home.
All in all, this event can be an engaging and fun way to come together as a community, as well as getting the tedious task of shoe cleaning done in an enjoyable gathering.
Hosting events in your community it good clean fun. It also helps increase resident retention. With events, residents begin to see you not just as a landlord or apartment manager, but as a community builder as well.
Boost Occupancy and Raise Retention Rates
A talent show event can help improve occupancy rates and retention by:
What better way to encourage some good clean fun – allowing residents to let their hair down a bit, then with a community talent show.
How to run a talent show
There’s no reason to reinvent the wheel – wikiHow has detailed instructions and tips for running a successful talent show.
Share it to social
If social media is used right it can bring new prospective tenants into your community. By showing the fun and playful side of your community you promote it as a safe space.
Record videos of the event
Video is quickly outpacing static images as the highest converting marketing asset you can put out there to your residents. It offers a humanness that’s not found in other edited and manipulated visual images.
You may even start a new trending fad like highschool senior Mike Senatore did with his viral bottle-flipping video performed at his local high school talent show in 2016. A funny video going viral would be great for business!
At the conclusion of your talent show (and every event) be sure to ask participants for feedback. These testimonials can be used to craft content for your marketing materials, website, and social pages.
***TIP*** Use a post-event email to ask for feedback from attendees. You’ll certainly have to ask for feedback: not many residents will offer it feely, even if they had a fantastic time.
Be sure craft a simple form that hits the main questions and is not too lengthy. Platforms like SurveyMonkey work well for this. Once the form is completed, send a link to the form in a post-event follow-up email.
Additionally, you can also choose to provide a link to the online comment form via SMS, group messaging, social pages, newsletters, bill comment sections, and distributed fliers.
***TIP*** It’s important to send the email and testimonial request while attendee spirits and excitement are still high. If you wait too long, your resident’s memories will fade and the event may not seem as fun as they first remembered.
Community talent show ROI
Emphasizing your community’s fun events can be an especially powerful marketing tool if you’re located in a not-so-great area with higher than average crime rates or insufficient infrastructures.
Creating an oasis of safety and fun in your community will go a long way towards bringing in, and retaining, occupants. Use a community talent show to help you reach 100% occupancy at all times.
When it comes to resident retention and signing new leases, nothing works better than subtle reminders to residents already living in your community.
The goal of many community events should be to get your current residents talking. For both property managers and renters, people have to come first. It’s important to keep this in mind as you plan your events. To keep things light, and provide a quick and easy opportunity to connect with residents, plan a Mardi Gras Morning Gate Connect event.
For those communities not living in Louisiana, there may be some misconceptions about Mardi Gras celebrations stemming from often skewed and biased coverage in the media. Thankfully, it’s not as rowdy or X-rated an event as some journalists may make it seem.
Contrary to popular belief outside the region, Mardi Gras is actually a family friendly event with floats, parades, and other G-rated activities during the carnival celebrations.
To capture some of this community spirit, pass out beads to all residents – adults and children alike – as they head out of your community one morning. Make sure you purchase enough beads ahead of time so that you can budget to each car accordingly.
Image source: Pixabay
***BONUS*** Hand out slices of king cake and offer a prize to the resident who finds the baby!
You can also keep a few of the traditionally coveted (and hard to win) coconuts handy – perhaps reserved for only the most deserving residents who are willing to mug for the camera. Because it’s more crucial than ever to market your properties digitally, ensure that you’re giving your current residents lots of opportunities to do some of your marketing for you: posting pictures of your residents and events will work wonders for implementing this tactic.
A Mardi Gras Morning Gate Connect event is a great way to spread some resident cheer as they head out in the morning. It will also get your residents fired up and singing your praises as they leave your community and head off to work and school nearby.
***TIP*** Use technology to your advantage by harnessing the power of social shares and automated systems to make your job easier.
When preparing for this event, make sure that you plan ahead to utilize the various platforms in the best ways. You can schedule and share posts in the days and hours leading up to your event and give hints and reminders on social media. If most of the leg work is done ahead of time you’ll be better able to focus on connecting with your residents the morning of the event.
Image source: Pixabay
Be sure you’re tweeting when you start and end any event, and always share photos from the event on Instagram and Facebook. You may even want to consider using Snapchat or Facebook live as the event is ongoing, or take a few quick videos from your phone as you hand out beads. Leverage all that you do before, during, and after the event by including it across your marketing channels.
***TIP*** To build up additional excitement, be sure to post pictures of the Mardi Gras swag on social media and share what the prizes are for the resident who finds the king’s cake baby in their slice.
Consider scheduling this event on a weekday before Mardi Gras to ensure that it will be less stress on your staff. Aim to host the event mid-week if possible to avoid the most hectic weekdays and ensure maximum resident participation.
Some events are best done on the go, and a quick and inexpensive morning Mardi Gras themed event somewhere in the weeks prior to Ash Wednesday is sure to be a hit.
I'm a big fan of silly activities during resident events. Simply getting residents moving and interacting is one of the key components to a successful event, and doing things that are completely off the wall are a great way to break the ice and get your residents to let loose! This game features Jack Black on a Korean game show, which in itself is kind of bizarre, but man that looks fun, both for the people playing, as well as everybody else!
Invite residents to an elegant bagel brunch complete with an inviting spread of bagels, cream cheese, jam, jelly, fresh fruit, tea, coffee, and juice. Sparkling beverages and small smoothie cups can also add a touch of class to your beautiful bagel brunch.
What to serve
An elegant brunch event begins with great food. Buy the best bagels and toppings you can afford and be sure to arrange everything in decorative plastic or glass containers.
***TIP*** Check out local thrift shops and yard sales for inexpensive dishes you can use for future events.
Depending where you’re located you may be able to partner with a local bakery or bagel company as a sponsor - or ask then to cater your event.
You can also purchase a variety of bagels and toppings yourself after joining a local warehouse store like COSCO or Sam’s Club. Precut the bagels in half lengthwise - and again in halves or quarters across the width - to allow for smaller sampling and more economical sharing by your residents.
Image source: Pixabay
Set out a variety of flavors and styles with the toppings to match. Consider also plugging in a toaster or two as well for residents who want their bagels crispy.
Bagel toppings and brunch items
You can easily purchase ready-made spreadable cheeses from your local grocery store. However, if you want to create your own unique blends, you can also check out Pinterest and The Kitchn for DIY schmear recipes.
Image source: Pixabay
Keep lots of plastic knives for spreading, and sturdy plates for the bagels, on hand for residents. Keep an eye on the buffet table and toss utensils before they cross contaminate the spreads.
***TIP*** At any food-inclusive event, it’s safest to label all dishes so that residents know what’s inside. This helps residents avoid foods for diet or allergy reasons.
***BONUS*** For an even more delicious brunch – consider setting up a complete smoothie bar for your residents as well!
Valentine’s Day crafts are perfect for your whole community - from children to retirement age adults. The holiday projects are also easy to tailor to everyone’s tastes. This ensures that your craft is one that all ages will enjoy.
One way to keep everyone entertained is to incorporate vintage Valentine designs, clipart, and other unique elements in your projects. Vintage valentines are known for offering clever rhymes and messages, while also adding an element of nostalgia. You can use them as stand-alone cards, or mix vintage elements with modern embellishments like glitter glue and pretty scrapbook papers.
You can easily find pre-made vintage valentines online to use as templates. You can also search Pinterest for relevant vintage valentine images and ideas.
Consider pre-printing out vintage children’s valentines designs for residents to glue to cardstock and embellish with stickers, glitter, or and personalized messages. Dover even offers book and CD-ROM with digital clip art designs that you can print out for your residents to use on their handcrafted cards!
The website Vintage Holiday Crafts also has a fantastic collection of vintage Valentine elements including cherubs, hearts, roses, and Victorian designs.
Image source: Pinterest
***TIP*** To round out your vintage Valentine-making stations, consider purchasing a sample pack of patterned valentines-themed scrapbooking supplies, stickers, and tapes from your local craft store. Have lace and paper doilies on hand as well. These extra supplies will help your resident’s add a three-dimensional collage feel to their finished cards.
Image source: Hubpages
***TIP*** If you have a family-oriented resident community with lots of kids, make sure you keep the activities tailored to the abilities of the children. Ensure card craft is quick and easy for little hands: keep elements simple to put together and offer glue sticks for easy assembly.
***BONUS*** Organizing a making your own valentine craft with predominantly pink and red crafting supplies is one way to keep residents entertained, but you can also offer outside-the-box alternatives, colors, and supplies that will help your residents make truly unique card designs.
It may come as no surprise that National Chocolate Month is celebrated in February. While a chocolate tasting event may fit into your schedule perfectly all year round, it’s an especially sensuous and delicious idea for a Valentine’s Day party.
Quick decorating ideas
While you may find hearts, roses, pinks, reds, and frilly white lace a bit cliché, we associate these colors and themes with the holiday. Old habits are hard to break.
However, you can opt for untraditional colors. Break out of the mold and craft another color theme for your party decorations. If you want to stay away from the pinks you can opt for purple and silver or blue and gold for a decadent and elegant feel.
Balloons, lanterns, streamers, and pretty colored table cloths can set the mood and call attention to your beautiful chocolate buffet display.
Always keep your community demographic in mind as you plan your event. No matter which flavors you choose, you want it to resonate with residents and leave a positive impression.
***TIP*** When choosing your chocolate varieties, consider offering at least one or two allergy-friendly chocolate options for those that may be allergic to nuts or other ingredients.
There are many ways to celebrate the day, but sweets seem to be the go-to way of celebrating. Consider adding in a dessert potluck as part of your sampling party and encourage residents to bring a chocolate sweet dish of their choice to share.
For the main event, however, be sure to set out all the chocolates! Include white, milk, semi-sweet, dark, specialties, or even an import or two.
Image source: Pixabay
Image source: Pixabay
***BONUS*** You may even want to consider having raw or roasted cocoa beans (from which chocolate is crafted) available for sampling as well.
Exotic and unusual flavors - like those produced by boutique chocolatiers - can include truffles, fruit infused orange, banana, or pomegranate, mint, chili, bacon, turmeric, sea salt, curry, lime, caramel, and thousands of other unique and tantalizing flavors.
***TIP*** Break or chop the chocolate into small pieces to make sampling easier for your residents. Keep lots of napkins handy to make it easier for them to hold the slivers. Small pieces will encourage residents to really savor the unique flavors.
Also, neatly label all the plates of chocolate pieces so residents know what they are sampling and what to expect. Arrange the plates or trays by % cacao (from light to dark) with spicy specialties added to one side so residents won’t overwhelm their taste buds with the dark options right off the bat.
Image source: Pixabay
There are other ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day and chocolate - even for those residents who can’t attend the event.
One apartment community placed bags of cookies and hot chocolate on their residents’ doors with a small printable card that let them know they were loved and appreciated by the office staff. You can also place a few mini chocolate bars or Hershey’s kisses in small gift bags and hang them on door handles around your community to remind residents you care.
This event is sure to be sweet in more ways than one. It will give you great pictures and stories to share on social media, in newsletters, and with prospective residents for years to come.
The One Book One Community trend was started by Seattle readers in 1998. Its purpose is to promote the reading of a single book by a whole city or community so that they have something in common and something to discuss. Now, almost two decades later, most major cities have a one book program listed as part of their public library system.
As a resident community, you can take advantage of this trend by making it easier for residents to find, read, and discuss the chosen books. You can also choose a title of your own and then build an event around it.
To get ideas of which books might be appropriate for your community, take a look at what other communities are reading all around the U.S.
The Library of Congress also maintains listings of all past and present One Book projects across the United States. The list is organized by both location and author. To browse their list you can visit their website which also includes links to many of the individual projects.
Planning your event
To support your community One Book project there are numerous local and national resources to help you plan you event.
For larger communities and serious projects, the American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs office has a 44-page guide called One Book, One Community: Planning Your Community-Wide Read. You can download the printable PDF from their website.
If you need more how-to information, you will find additional tips and ideas available online from the Seattle Public Library (where the reading trend first started) or your nearest public library website.
Image source: Pixabay
Discussion guides and event support
Some large and well-known publishers, like Random House and others, offer One Book support for these ambitious community reading projects.
Publishers may offer author biographies, discussion guides, teacher guides, poster images, bookmark templates, and other useful reading and event planning assets.
Image source: Pixabay
All of these additional resources can help you craft professional looking posters, cards, and other marketing materials for your community. They will also help you put together great discussion starter questions for your post-reading group event.
Local and independent authors
If you are not interested in going the bestseller route, you can also seek out local authors - especially self-published or independent authors - to find those that might be willing to give an author talk and/or give discounts on their novel for your community to use.
Contacting local libraries
Your local public library is a great place to start when it comes to planning a book reading event.
For those who choose not to purchase their own copy of the book, you will want to help arrange for book rentals so more residents can participate.
Check with your local library to inquire what titles are available for book clubs. Many public libraries offer special packages of books for participants to check out and read together. You may have to get on a wait list for the title you most want to read, so be sure to contact them early and get in the list so your event stays on schedule!
***TIP*** After gauging interest with residents, you can also contact local book retailers and publishers to inquire about quantity discounts. If enough residents are willing to purchase the book, you may be able to collect payment in advance and get them a good deal on their books by ordering en masse.
Nothing beats the camaraderie and fun of a throw down Super Bowl party. It’s great way to get residents in the competitive spirit, and enjoy good eats as well.
If you’ve ever thrown an away game tailgating party for your residents, you can adopt some aspects of that event into this party. However, for a true Super Bowl party it’s all about great seats, good eats and most importantly, the game.
You can either plan to provide food at the event, or arrange a potluck on the day of the event. Ensure you have all your bases covered (pizza, soda, wings, chips and dips, etc.) Encourage pre-game signs ups for all the basics well in advance and send our text or email reminders in the days before the event.
***TIP*** You can also use a free online signup tool like Perfect Potluck or Sign Up Genius to coordinate dishes and send automated email reminders to residents. This will take the headache out of individually reminding residents of their commitments, leaving you more time to focus on coordinating other aspects of the event.
Consider having a buffet table set up off to one side that holds all the main courses and heartier fare. Spread additional tables and snack stations around the room for convenient refueling during the game.
Image source: Pixabay
Considering your community rules this may need to be an alcohol-free event. If that is the case, consider having a range of non-alcoholic drinks in ice filled coolers placed strategically around the room, this will add to the festive atmosphere and Super Bowl party feel.
Other than food and beverages, a good view of the game and plenty of seating should be your next priority. Consider setting up extra tables and chairs with a view of the television and bringing in additional seating - like chairs and sofas - from other areas of your community.
***TIP*** For children and flexible adults, you can also spread out blankets on the floor with cushions and pillows to make additional seating in the front row that won’t block the view of the game.
Image source: Pixabay
Television or projector
When it comes to viewing the big game you want to create a larger than life experience. Consider contacting rent-to-own stores in your area to arrange a television rental for the big day.
Men’s Journal notes that it’s certainly much more cost effective to rent a TV for your big Super Bowl party than buy. However, you may need to pay for at least 1-2 weeks rental for a large screen television or projection screens. Be sure to call around and look for the best deal well in advance of the big day.
***BONUS*** To make the most of your rental investment, consider scheduling at least one other movie marathon or film event at your community in the same TV rental time period.
Dress up and contests
Encourage residents to dress up in team colors, jerseys, hats, and face paint to support their favorite team. This will create a more game-like atmosphere with cheers and jeers throughout the game.
You may also want to host a friendly competition at the event to earn winning residents gift cards and bragging rights. Have residents try to predict the winning team and final score and award prizes to the winners. You can give away things like $25 gift cards, or gift certificates to local stores and restaurants.
Make them pick a favorite
Unless the Super Bowl just happens to be featuring the hometown team, most likely it is featuring two teams from two unrelated cities. That means that the bulk of your attendees want to watch, but don't really have a "stake" in the game. So here is a tip that really works: For everyone who attends, make them pick a team to root for. What this does is create an environment where everybody is actively rooting for someone. We have tried this at Super Bowl events, and people tend to get emotionally connected to whichever team they "picked", even though it really doesn't impact them in the end. It results in a much more active and fun environment where everybody is much more invested in the game, and not just watching the commercials.
Big parties call for big clean ups. Make sure you have plenty of garbage cans placed strategically around your event area. Keep plenty of napkins and hand wipes available as well.
January is National Blood Donation month. It’s a time for donating life-giving blood and giving back to your community to ensure a safe blood supply for those in need. It also makes it a great time to organize a blood donation event for your residents living in your community.
January is special, but you can still organize such an event other times of the year as well. It is possible for blood drives to be organized at any time, and in a way that works best for your community.
Blood drives can be set up on site at a location of your choosing, or you can encourage residents to go to a local center to give. You may also be eligible for a blood drive mobile collection center that can come and park and set up within your community.
For this event to work best it’s important to gauge interest from your community ahead of time and work on getting appointments set up. Usually donors can sign up for certain donation time slots and then show up at their appointed time to give. This ensures that everyone leaves enough time to answer the health questionnaires and is given the attention they each need throughout the donation process.
Image source: Pixabay
It’s best to reach out to and consult with your local Red Cross or other local blood donation center to coordinate the details of your event.
The Red Cross offers recruitment strategies and tips on their website that can help your designated blood drive coordinator pull together the numbers needed to host a large scale event. There is also a toolkit of resources that can help you advertise the event, set appointments for donors, and keep things running smoothly on the big day.
Reach out to members of your community to gather stories of those who have received life-saving blood donations at some point in their life. Your residents will connect with others who are similar to them and lived through tragic accidents or life-threatening situations.
Share these stories on social media and in newsletters to drum up more support for the event and greater participation.
Image source: Pixabay
Similarly it’s also helpful to share donor stories from those who have given blood in the past so that others know what to expect. Sharing donor stories can remove some of the fears that people make have about giving blood and make them more likely to sign up and participate.
Unfortunately, it’s unethical and dangerous for communities and organizations to offer financial incentives or other prizes for donating. Offering incentives for giving blood may entice potential donors to lie in their health interview or questionnaire.
***TIP*** For safety reasons, it’s important to encourage residents to give just for the sake of giving. If you’re insistent in giving some type of gift or incentive to participants, be sure to check with your blood drive coordinator to ensure it’s allowed.
You can always offer after-donation snacks and drinks for your resident participants, or gift large quantities of food items to the center on behalf of residents as well. In this way you can ensure you’re your residents feel okay to work and drive after donating.
Organizing a blood drive is a great way to bond and connect members of your community to their participation in a single crucial and life-saving event. It will also ensure that you are part of an important social community activity that saves millions of lives every year.
The success of adult-themed coloring books in recent years means that many have heard about the benefits, or already tried the trend for themselves. There is nothing quite as fun and relaxing as diving into coloring an elaborate picture to perfection. It can ease stress and also brighten your mood.
An adult coloring event is a great weeknight event. It can be especially needed mid-week to get adults over the work-week hump and let off stress at this fun community-building event.
Any adult coloring night is going to need coloring utensils and coloring sheets.
You will likely need to pre-print pages unless your book comes with perforated pages that can be removed from the binding. Consider acquiring a variety of images including tribal designs, mandalas, still life pictures, or even buildings and architectural designs. Ensure you have something for everyone so that all residents are happy!
Image source: Pixabay
***TIP*** If you have a copier on site, you can let the adults pick which pages to copy out of a single book and use those for coloring. This will save you from paper wastage and ensure that everyone is getting their favorite (and unique) picture to color!
Day of the event
Aim to leave at least an hour and a half for everyone to arrive and get settled and still have time to color all (or at least most) of an intricate sheet.
Consider putting on some stress busting sounds like soft blues, jazz, classical music, or other meditative music to help establish a creative mood and relaxing atmosphere at this event.
Crayons simply won’t work on such finely detailed designs and pattered pages! Instead, collect a variety of quality colored pencils (Prismacolor is a great brand) or have fine tip markers available as well.
You can also set up a few watercolor pencils, brushes and cups. These can be used to color in areas of the page with fine lines (just as you would with a colored pencil) or also smoothed with water to paint and cover larger areas of the page.
Image source: Pixabay
It may be fun to make this a recurring monthly event. Participant can chip in to buy some of the newest adult coloring books of everyone’s interest. Even with a dollar or two per participant the group could easily afford a fresh book to add to the collection every month.
A coloring night is a great way to get some stress relief and build a sense of community by sharing in the childlike joy of coloring together!
You may have already effectively brought your residents up to speed on the gym equipment at your New Year’s Resolution Gym Training event. You may have also brought in a personal trainer to show them proper use and techniques. Now that many have made resolutions, this is the best time to help residents to reach their fitness goals with some friendly competition.
The benefits of weight loss communities
Weight loss challenges may be inspired by television shows with a flair for the dramatic, but there are other reasons to work out and aim high together.
Research shows that groups who meet, exercise, and track their progress together, make bigger gains and lose more weight than going it alone.
Image source: Pixabay
The American Psychological Association noted that people participating in weight loss groups, like Weight Watchers and others, lost an average of three to five times more weight than those who didn’t participate in community-based programs.
There is strength in numbers, and working out together can get you to your goals faster.
To encourage this type of community spirit, consider arranging a fun competition to build up group support and motivate your residents to meet or exceed their fitness goals this year.
The first thing you’ll want to do is decide how long of a competition you want to have, and how often you want participants to check in. Make sure you allow residents enough time to reach meet their fitness goals.
You can choose any amount of time from one month to a whole year (for those with larger weight loss or fitness goals). However, the sweet spot seems to be somewhere between 6 and 12 weeks. This is enough time for participants to see progress, without resorting to drastic measures or losing interest.
Also, decide if you want it to be individual or team-based: either way makes for an entertaining competition.
Teams can make the challenge more motivating as team members push each other to reach their goals, and keep their teammates in check throughout the event.
Choose a challenge coordinator
Choose one staff member to be your designated wellness challenge coordinator.
This person will do everything from registering participants and their starting weights (and/or other measurements) as well as collecting data at the weigh-ins each week.
***TIP*** It’s important to choose a staff member that you know will be both honest and discreet – residents will be more likely to participate if they know they’re not going to be judged for their fitness level and weight.
Running the event
One of the key points of this event is to ensure that participants are weighing in on the same equipment. This means they can’t weight themselves at home on their own scales.
Image source: Pixabay
If your gym already has a scale, great! If not, you’ll have to arrange the use of a scale that will help keep it fair.
Make sure everyone knows that they need to weigh or measure in once a week in the office. This is so that you can verify their progress and keep the contest official.
***TIP*** If you decide to purchase a digital scale to make check-ins easier, remember to get one that weighs into larger digits. This way you can weigh all participants (going up to the 300+ pound range for larger residents with larger goals.)
Keeping tabs on everyone is as easy as creating a word document or spreadsheet to track participants progress from week to week. This will be your challenge coordinator’s job.
***TIP*** To make check ins easier, consider making a set time that residents need to check in each week, perhaps a Monday or Friday between set hours so you know when to expect them!
Image source: Pixabay
There are a few different ways to offer incentives and also keep residents motivated.
Consider offering a small prize other week to help keep interest in the program high. This can be given to the resident who has made the most exceptional progress or given the most effort in that period.
You can also create a reward pool where all participants put in a set amount like $10-25. The promise of a large payout will keep residents motivated and committed to earning that jackpot.
For many, the New Year brings excitement and enthusiasm for big life changes and healthier habits. Many start reflecting on the year that’s passed and make plans and promises for the months ahead. These resolutions can include educational, professional, or health related goals.
January is the best time to capitalize on this enthusiasm by hosting a New Years’ Resolution Gym Training for your residents.
Many communities have a gym on-site, but not all residents use it. Some may feel intimidated by the machines and weights. Even with posted equipment usage and safety diagrams, not all residents may understand how to properly use the equipment.
Use this beginning of the year enthusiasm for training residents. Organize an event to help residents understand how to get the most out of their workout from your community’s gym.
Most apartment communities will not have as many machines or the same expensive equipment of other commercial gyms. However, remind residents that it is possible to get a full workout on the existing fitness center equipment - and prepare to show them how to do it!
Consider teaming up with a local gym trainer to offer a training class to residents. This can be done in exchange for advertising on your social media page, in your newsletter, or other perks. You can also find out if there are trainers living in your community that are available to teach a course or class in your facilities.
Additionally, you can hire a local trainer to take a look at your existing equipment and craft ideal workout plans at a beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels. These workout plans can include a guide to getting a full body workout on the machines and targeted exercises for main muscle groups.
Image source: Pixabay
***TIP*** Special considerations may include the best ways to utilize the existing gym equipment to maximize weight loss or muscle gain. Schedule a training time when residents can come to learn about the equipment in more detail. Encourage signups in advance to ensure the event is booked.
Residents can learn about the machines and also get a chance to practice proper form with the trainer. This will help residents make their workouts more efficient while also helping to prevent injuries.
**BONUS** To make the event even more fun, you can start a fitness challenge with participants, organize weekly or monthly weigh-ins, and use prizes to encourage participants to meet their personal goals.
Building community and accountability
To further support your residents you can offer links or free trials of meal-tracking software and inspire them forward in the months ahead with regular drawings for resolution-supporting gifts:
Other ideas include accountability sessions, nutrition support groups, and more.
Mathew Katz of DNAinfo writes, “If you've got a little more building camaraderie, [Trainer Joey] Swidler suggests putting up a whiteboard filled out with standard workouts, letting neighbors keep track - as well as compete against one another.”
“It gives you something tangible,” Swidler said. “If you're on top of yourself, you're going to become more fit - you're going to look, perform and feel better.”
Help residents stick to their goals long-term Make sure you talk with your residents to see what kind of extra care and help they need to reach their fitness goals. Having a fitness center in your community is only beneficial to those who use it: encourage increased participation by getting involved with supporting your resident’s efforts.
Find out what they need, and then work to make it happen for them on a regular basis – it may open the door to other health-related events you can organize for your residents in the coming year.
With more people mindful of the waste they’re putting out into the world, and interested in recycling, this holiday season is a great time to offer an eco-wrapping party for your resident community.
This event will cover everything from recycled papers to fabric bags, and handcrafted bows to name tags. It’s a great way to get rid of old catalogs and things hanging around the office while helping residents pretty up their gifts for the upcoming holiday season.
Residents can be encouraged to bring gifts for wrapping (especially if the recipient is not attending the event) as well as create elements to take home and use later.
Here are a few different gift-wrapping station ideas:
Up-cycled and recycled papers
Encourage residents to start saving their newspapers and Sunday comics now – if they get the local weekend paper. They can also save old magazines and catalogs to assemble bigger sheets of wrapping paper for larger gifts.
Old maps and calendars also make for great wrapping papers and envelopes as well!
***TIP*** Be sure to share images from the event and all these eco-wrapping tips with your residents throughout the month to encourage best practices (and keep your dumpster loads down!)
Hand-made up-cycled ribbons
Image source: Smile For No Reason
Ribbons, bows, and other decorations can be crafted from old catalogs and magazines with some strip cutting and simple assembly techniques. Once residents get the hang of it, these fancy decorative gift accessories are a cinch to make.
Shredded paper stuffing and packing materials
Image source: Wrappily
Pull the shredder out of the office and make it available for adults to shred their old catalogs and magazines. This makes colorful bag stuffing and packing material.
Simply put old pages through the shredder and then use the fallout for a free up-cycled decorative basket- and bag-filler for your resident’s gifting needs.
Fabric wrapping and fabric bags
Fabric wrapping is one of my eco-favorite wrapping materials and is perfect for interfamily giving. The fabric can be reused for wrapping year after year. It’s also great for odd shaped or otherwise hard-to-wrap items.
To demonstrate fabric wrapping:
Image source: Home and Garden Digest
***TIP*** Unless you are planning to hem fabric edges, use special zig zag scissors (known as pinking shears) to help prevent edge fraying - otherwise the edges will tend to unravel with time.
Alternatively, if you have access to a sewing machine, bags can be crafted for placing gifts in year after year. Just have residents put their gifts inside and then tie with colorful ribbon, yarn, rope, or twine.
Other “green” wrapping materials
Local fabric and nylon shopping bags make a perfect reusable gift wrap. Enlist the help of local businesses for bag donations (and free advertising) or encourage residents to purchase such pre-made bags for wrapping gifts.
Image source: Pinterest
Children and adults alike can craft playful handmade gift tags out of recycled paper, newsprint, magazines, old maps, and brown grocery bags. Even old paint swatches make excellent tags! Make gift tag templates available and craft a few samples ahead of time to show the variety of options.
***TIP*** If you’ve not done so lately, this is also a great time to reintroduce your recycling containers and make sure that all residents are aware of the containers’ locations on site. This will help them properly dispose of their gift-giving wastage after the holidays!