There's probably not much that is more fun than a summer pool party. Dogs on the grill, kids in the pool, and people drinking daiquiris and margaritas usually make it about the best way possible to have a summer blast. Bonus points if it's so hot, the pool is actually used.
But throwing a pool party is no small thing. There are fun and decorations to consider, but there is also safety to consider. If children are coming, it's a must that they be supervised by sober, responsible adults, whether they can swim or not. Not to be a total downer, but children drown every year, and it would make your pool party a lot less fun to have to rush a child (or an adult) to the hospital.
If you're planning a pool party, then most likely, you already have a pool. If you don't, then wherever you're headed probably has its own set of rules for the party, but at home, you're on your own. So here is a list of 10 Musts for Pulling Off the Perfect Pool Party:
- Know the capacity of the pool: Don't over-invite. Most people would love to come to a pool party in the summer and will thus plan to be there. If you pool says "do not exceed 30," then don't.
- Clean: Make sure the pool is vacuumed, skimmed, and treated, not just right before the party, but also in the days and weeks leading up to it. It'll look perfect for the big day and cleaning will prevent any build-up or funky green look.
- Toys: Make sure you have pool noodles. They are a must at every pool party. Beyond that, have rafts and flotation devices handy, not necessarily for safety, though. Also have some flippers and goggles.
- Food: Watermelon and popsicles are great at a pool party because you get sticky and want to dive in. But you can also theme it with luau foods or you can get creative with tropical fruit salads and grilled pizzas. The sky is really the limit!
- Safety: Have life jackets and arm floaties for kids and encourage parents to bring them along as well. Encourage all adults to keep an eye on the pool and at least one or two to refrain from drinking in order to be the designated "lifeguard." Small children shouldn't be in the pool unattended.
- Drinks: Frozen, fruity drinks are always a big hit at pool parties. Have rum and vodka on hand, but also many mocktails and virgin drinks that are still fun for those who may abstain around a pool.
- Get creative: Try a vodka watermelon or grilled fruits (peaches and pineapple are my faves). Be creative and festive with your food choices.
- Decorate: Tiki torches and giant flowers are always fun, but colored balloons and streamers do just as well. Make it festive and colorful. It's summer, after all!
- Games: If you have an expansive lawn, you may want to consider croquet and a badminton net. But make sure you also have the supplies for pool volleyball, which is always a big hit, and rings and jewels for diving games. Kids also always love Marco Polo.
- Weather: Check the weather. If lightning is in the forecast, move it inside. If you have a covered deck, put out a kiddie pool so the kids still get some water play, but not if there is an active thunderstorm. Always smart to have a rain date in mind.
What do you do for your pool party?