Help me schedule a kids' party
May 28, 2009 8:37 AM   Subscribe

Help a socially clueless person plan an end-of-kindergarten party.

Despite the fact that I am an extreme introvert, I decided to plan an end-of-year party for my son's kindergarten class, to be held at our subdivision's swimming pool. Last week I sent out an e-mail to the other parents, suggesting the idea of the party, and offering a choice of two dates - June 6 or June 13. Out of seventeen, three people replied that they would come on either date, two that they were already booked both dates, two that they could come on the 6th but not the 13th, and two that could come on the 13th but not the 6th. The two who couldn't come on the 13th mentioned in the e-mail that it was the day of their daughter's dance recital. I chose the 13th (mostly because, other things appearing equal, one of the ones who could come on the 13th but not the 6th is my son's best friend), and sent out an email last night with the date and time to everyone, saying that paper invitations would follow.

As of now, I have received no acceptances, and seven regrets. Six of those seven regrets have said, we're sorry, but it's our daughter's dance recital day. Apparently all the girls take dance classes at the same place - who knew? I'm worried that the moms of the dancers think I picked the date specifically to exclude them. I really do want to have as many kids come as possible. I haven't sent out paper invitations yet. Should I -

Leave the date as is, everyone has conflicts sometimes and not everyone can make it to every party?

Choose a new date - this would likely be the 14th, as I now have other plans for the 6th?

Send out another polling email, offering a choice of the 13th or the 14th?

I feel like a complete dope for not foreseeing this, because the rest of the moms, who actually talk to each other, probably knew that all the girls were in the same dance class.
posted by Daily Alice to Human Relations (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I would send out notice that you are moving the date to the 14th because you didn't realize so many of the classmates were in the dance recital, then send out paper invitations with the 14th as the date. I don't think it's a big deal, and this is far enough in advance for people to appropriately plan their schedules around.

P.S. I don't know if you're a baker, but I know for a fact that kids love pool cakes.

Good luck with the party! I'm sure it will be lots of fun.
posted by sickinthehead at 8:42 AM on May 28, 2009

Yes, move the date if you feel like it. It's not a big deal.

I will suggest with confidence that the dance moms probably think nothing of it. Maybe they're disappointed that they can't make it but I doubt they feel slighted. I have a kid in Kindergarten and a kid in the second grade. These things just happen. We're all running around with too much stuff to do and if we can't make a party because of scheduling conflicts it's not a big deal. I don't think they would take it personally and to be honest some parents may be relieved because it's one less thing.

I would not send another polling email. Pick a date and stick with it and send out paper invitations.

Don't worry if too people show up. Your kid is probably five or six and will be happy if only a few kids show up to play.

I love the idea of a pool cake. sickinthehead's link isn't working for me. My local grocery stores make swimming pool cakes. They even make pool party cupcakes. Also, if your budget allows, make beach bucket goody bags for the kids. Fill them with inexpensive beach or pool toys (like inflatable beach balls, cheap sunglasses, water pistols) and candy.
posted by Fairchild at 9:40 AM on May 28, 2009

That should say, "Don't worry if too many people don't show up or can't make it".

I'll add that some people are kind of flaky about RSVPing. When it comes to kids there might be last minute cancellations or people that show up that you didn't expect to come.

As a mom of young kids I have learned it's best not to get your feelings hurt or take anything too personally when inviting classmates to a party. You'll have a good time if even some of them show. Good luck and have a great time.
posted by Fairchild at 9:45 AM on May 28, 2009

Go with the afternoon of the 14th. It's a Sunday so some people may go to church in the morning. Pick a time about 2pm or so. You'll get a few more people and it'll be enough to have a little party.

If they're swimming, get a few pool toys ready. Noodles, diving rings, cheap googles, floaties, little doughnuts. Maybe some water guns and buckets/shovels to do some pouring. Get some little activity for those who aren't / can't swim - bubbles, some big paints or markers, maybe a book or two.

Make sure you have some snacks (goldfish, pretzels, fruit, baby carrots) and maybe some cake -- if there's a freezer, ice cream cake (DQ) is always always gobbled up.

Choose someone to watch the pool at ALL TIMES. Do you have a teenage babysitter or neighborhood life guard who you can pay something ($30?) to just watch the pool at all times? Enforce a no-running rule. No hitting in the pool.

Good luck -- you'll have a blast. And by doing this now, your kid will likely get invited to other parties soon too. And showing her that hosting is a good thing once in a while -- even if you're nervous.

Don't feel bad if only 3-5 kids show up. In a way it'll be easier to manage and you'll still have fun.

Have fun!
posted by barnone at 10:34 AM on May 28, 2009

Thanks all. Pending HOA approval the party will be switched to the 14th. Barnone, the pool is fully staffed with lifeguards and when you arrange a pool party they have you pay for an extra one, so we're covered safety/rules-wise.
posted by Daily Alice at 12:59 PM on May 28, 2009

I'm glad you made a decision, Daily Alice. Don't feel like a dope for not knowing about the girls' dance class. I have boys as well and haven't a clue what the girls are doing. Party on!
posted by Fairchild at 1:06 PM on May 28, 2009

« Older Please help me find some linguistics posters!   |   How to make some money on the side... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.