Throw a Summer Pool Party Without the Pool

Summer is coming, and what better way to celebrate those summer holidays than with a pool party? You may think that you need a fancy, built-in pool to host your own pool party, but that's not the case.

Even if you don't have your own pool, dive in with these fresh ideas for summer.

Pool ideas

  • Get creative with the kiddie pool: Play a backyard game of baseball using three blow-up kiddie pools as the bases.
  • Use the sprinkler: Great for little kids, play a game similar to musical chairs with the sprinkler. Children dance around until the water comes on, then must freeze until they're drenched.
  • Pool kits: If you don't have a pool, consider investing in one. Inground kits from PoolProducts.com start at about $5,500 and are designed for DIY type of people.
  • Hike up the hose: Create a backyard slip-in-slide using a plastic tarp, soap suds and garden hose.

Beach Decor

For the perfect tropical oasis, use the sort of decor that you would find at the beach: shells, sand, palm trees and of course great beach music. You can further customize the decor by adding leis, tiki torches and flower garlands for a luau-style party, or by adding flamingo decorations, beach toys and a kiddie pool or sandbox filled with sand. Use an online music station from Pandora, or Rhapsody to create the perfect hands-free beach soundtrack.

Invitations

Draw on your decor to inspire fun beach party invites. If you're going tropical, think flamingos, leis, palm trees and more.

Games

Games give everyone a fun way to cool off in the water and act as icebreakers to promote mingling:

  • Treasure hunt: Scatter small items in the pool (or on the beach) for an underwater Easter hunt. Divide guests into two or more teams. The team to gather the most treasure in a given amount of time wins.
  • Beach volleyball: Set up a volleyball net for those who want to enjoy the sun without the swimming.
  • Marco Polo: A form of tag played in the pool, modify the rules of this classic game to fit your party's personality. Instead of calling "Marco Polo," have players respond to questions with their personalized answers. For example, if the category is fruit, players may yell out strawberries, apples, bananas or oranges!

Safety

Even if, you don't have a lifeguard on hand you'll want to appoint someone to watch over the pool, especially if small children are at the party or if adults are drinking. Be sure to move any sharp objects out of the way to protect guests from tripping as they move from the pool to the beach area.

Snacks

No pool party would be complete without food. You might want to fire up the grill for burgers and dogs, but keep in mind that someone would need to attend to it. Keep ice cream or popsicles in the freezer, then serve them as a treat. If it's a birthday party, make a cake in shape of a fish using a few simple cuts on a square baking sheet.


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