Kids love being outside, which makes these five outdoor party ideas a natural favorite. It's a great way to minimize mess and let kids spend time interacting with their world, and it's a lot cheaper and more personal than booking a party at a noisy, cramped facility.
There's plenty to see, do and learn outside, and outdoorsy kiddos will adore these five outdoor party ideas that are powered by nature.
OUTDOOR PARTY IDEAS POWERED BY NATURE
One thing most people agree on is that kids today do not spend enough time outdoors. These outdoor party ideas will help keep kids outside and entertained all at the same time!
Spring Fling Garden Tea Party
Every little girl loves a good tea party. A garden tea party is even better! These spring fling garden tea party activities will keep any little princess happy.
- Milk Carton Bird Feeders: Save up your milk and juice cartons, as they can easily and cheaply be upcycled into cute bird feeders that make the perfect take-home tea party craft. Pre-cut the cartons for younger kids to avoid safety hazards, and provide accents like acrylic paint and scrapbooking paper for decorating their finished projects.
- Nature Jars: Clear plastic jars from applesauce and other foods can be turned into cool nature jars. They're a good way for kids to arrange and show off favorite sticks, rocks and leaves they find on their outdoor escapades. Encourage kids to seek out unique picks to fill their jars, making sure they're in a safe, supervised area with no poisonous plants.
The menu for a garden tea party is so easy to make happen! Here are some simple ideas that kids will love:
- mini sandwiches
- carrot and celery sticks
- fruit cut into spears
- tea can be either decaffeinated sweet tea or juice served in teacups
Get Diggin' Summer Bash
Boys and girls alike will enjoy a Get Diggin' Summer Bash. Kids love to get their hands dirty and dig. This outdoor party idea is going to keep kids actively involved and they will be tired at the end! Here are some fun activities to do at your diggin' summer bash:
- Panning for Rocks: An extra baby pool or large plastic container plus some sand, fish tank gravel, cool rocks, water, and strainers can be a setup for “gold” or polished rock panning. They can scoop through the slurry, shaking and sorting to pull out unique rocks they can wash off and keep.
- Seedling Transplants: Parents will need to start a little early on this one, but a tray of simple, hardy seedlings can be transplanted into small clay pots kids decorate and take home. Gardening can have legitimate mental health benefits for kids, making this an especially great pick.
The menu for a summer bash is great for kids and adults alike. Here are some easy but filling ideas:
- Hot dogs
- Finger food fruits and veggies
- Lots of water
Falling Into Good Times
Fall is my favorite time of year and it is the best time of year for an outdoor party. A “falling into good times” party will embrace the beauty of the natural fall surroundings into a great party theme.
Some fun activities for a fall themed party are:
- Scavenger Hunt: From colorful leaves to rounded pebbles, dry branches and pine cones, there's lots to find in fall. Give them a supervised scavenger hunt, and then encourage them to make a nature collage with their findings.
- Gourd Painting: Autumnal gourds are extremely inexpensive at local nurseries, and they make great canvases for kids. Let them express their creativity on a mini pumpkin or gourd for a cute take-home craft.
Fall brings to mind comfort foods and those make delicious party fare. Here are some food ideas for your fall party:
- Warm Mac & Cheese
- Homemade Pizza
- Apple Cider
A Snowy Soiree
Winter does not mean you can't have a fun outdoor party. The key is to let parents know if the kids will be spending time outdoors so they can dress appropriately.
Here are some fun activities that can be done during the colder months to ensure an entertaining time.
- Pine Cone Bird Feeders: If you live near conifers, you already know winter is prime pine cone season. Pine cone bird feeders are cute, cheap and easy – just tie a yarn loop to the small top end of the cone, spread a thin layer of store-brand peanut butter on it, and roll it in birdseed. They make a cool take-home craft, but consider recycled paper bags for storage to minimize the mess.
- S'mores: They're not just for summer anymore! An adult can roast marshmallows on the grill for kids, or build a small campfire for a quickie treat that will also keep them warm.
There are so many great options for food during the winter. Here are some kid-friendly ideas:
- Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
- Frito Chili Pies
- Hot Cocoa
A Party on the Trail
The fifth outdoor party idea is to have a party on the trail. I love to take my kids hiking and this is a way to incorporate exploring into a party. Here are some trail activities that would be fun with a small group of kids:
- Explore Locally: Head down to a local lake or park with pavilions for a mini hike, scavenger hunt, and picnic. Look for local nature centers that are group and kid-friendly to let them get a closer glimpse of your area's native flora and fauna – admission is often cheap or free, and guides are passionate about sharing their knowledge with guests.
- Make a Trail Guide: Use images and names to put together a trail identification guide for kids, and print out a copy for each child. Include commonly spotted small animals, birds, and plants indigenous to your area, and leave room for kids to take notes on what they see.
The menu for a trail party needs to be more portable. Here are some fun food ideas:
- Trail Mix
- Homemade Granola Bars
- Sandwich Wraps
- Plenty of Water or sports drinks
There's no reason to stay indoors to party when the alternative has so much to offer our kids. Outdoor play is intensely beneficial to children. It fosters a love of and appreciation for the outdoors, and on the parenting end of things, party cleanup is a cinch. No matter the season, nature-centric activities are an inexpensive way to make outdoor parties great while also making learning fun.