The time has come. Your kids have come to you and asked to throw their first sleepover for all their friends. They grow up so fast, don’t they?
But no time to reminisce; you’ve got a sleepover to plan. Back when you were a kid, chances are a sleepover involved a couple Disney movies (until parents went to bed and horror films would replace them) along with plenty of sweets and popcorn.
If you want to impress currently, why not kick it up a notch and have the kids talking about your sleepover for weeks to come. Here are a few ideas to get your imagination going…
- Backyard camping
This one is extremely weather dependent, but it does put an awesome and unique spin on the much-loved format of sleeping bags on the living room floor. On a warm summer night, why not set up tents in the back garden and have a BBQ with burgers, sausages, and roasted marshmallows? You can also start a campfire with firewood, which you can get from a company such as Firewood Farm, and prepare the wood to be used while camping with kids. Though you may have to keep kids’ safety in mind with the campfire, overall, the whole experience could be memorable for everyone.
You can also make backyard camping more fun by playing games and enjoying a few family activities. A few outdoor games like a good old kick about or badminton wouldn’t go amiss and don’t forget to tell ghost stories later. If you’re concerned about privacy, you could think about getting someone like Black Pool Fencing out to install a fence around your garden to keep you all safe and shielded not just during your camping experience, but for the years to come.
- Obstacle course
This one takes a fair amount of preparation (and, again, it relies on the weather playing along) but we guarantee it’ll light up a few faces, and hopefully burn off plenty of energy! If you have a back garden big enough – or have a park close by – create an obstacle course out of anything you have at your disposal. This could be slides, trampolines, cardboard boxes to wriggle through, hula hoops, and have ‘stations’ with signs written on them. For example, ‘Do 10-star jumps’. Fancy throwing in a twist? The second-time round they have to do it backwards!
- Make a day of it
Whoever said a sleepover had to happen at home? Hosting a sleepover somewhere other than the living room will win you some parenting points. If you live in the North, did you know that Blackpool Tower – located in everyone’s favourite seaside town – offers sleepover packages? There are countless things to do in Blackpool so you can make a full day of it – perfect for someone’s birthday or a big celebration.
- Mini show
Rain or shine, this idea will go down a treat. Turn up the volume, create a mini stage and dance floor, and let them rock out to their heart’s content. Put them in the spotlight by getting a karaoke machine to let them belt out their favourites for all their friends. When the sun goes down, and they’re all tired, show them a film. Put on a good scary movie and let them stew in it. You could find plenty of good horror movies to keep everyone awake from websites like Hell Horror (hellhorror.com) and others like it. Don’t forget to serve up burgers, hot dogs, and plenty of goodies to keep their energy up.
- Treasure hunt
A firm favourite among both kids and adults, treasure hunts will have groups immersed for hours. Depending on their age and just how much fun they want to have, you can have them divide into teams to find individual items or plan it more like orienteering in your local park. The first team or person to find all the items wins. Simple!
- Talent show
Everyone has their own unique talent, so give them the opportunity to let it shine. Set up a miniature stage and have one of the grownups act as an announcer to introduce each talent as they come on stage. Our Blackpool shows are filled with lots of singing, juggling, comedy acts, magic tricks, modelling or dancing – make sure you give each kid time to practice beforehand and give them a chance to really show off.
- Board game night
Take the kids back to basics and let them experience the fun you had with some classic board games. While Scrabble and Monopoly might require a little more concentration and patience, there are plenty to choose from that will provide endless entertainment. Twister – great for entertaining the parents; Snakes and Ladders – bonus points if you get a life-size version; and Cluedo are just a few of the amazing options out there.