Idea No.


50th Surprise Luau - Craft & Pinata



January 2005


Andrea in Bedford, NH, USA


50th Fiftieth Party

Concept: For my uncle’s 50th Birthday, we threw him a surprise Luau beach party, just with our family.

Invitations: We had 10 guests, ages 10 to 55, 8 adults and 2 kids.  We designed a colorful, tropical, french-fold invitation then had them printed up at Kinkos.  Inside the invitation we told our guests to wear their best Hawaiian attire.  As a gift, when my uncle arrived we gave him a Hawaiian shirt, and one of those Jamaican straw hats.  We had 25 cent leis for everyone else. Time: We held the party from 1-5pm on a Sunday afternoon in September, so we had plenty of daylight.

Location/Decoration: We held the party at the beach state park.  Since beach season is pretty much over by mid-September, we had the place to ourselves.  They had a big pavillion we could go in, in case of rain.  It was pretty windy, but it wasn’t cold.  To decorate we just taped streamers to the posts and let the wind unfurl them.  They blew around the entire party and it looked pretty cool.  We didn’t put up any balloons because they would have just blown away.

Entertainment: We played luau background music for the party and we had a hula hoop contest.   We also had a pinata, which everyone enjoyed.  We also did a small craft- we made coasters.  We had recently ripped up a slate floor from our porch.  I took a few slate pieces and hot glued felt to the bottom before the party.  At the party everyone painted the slate (washable or acrylic paint will do) and glued on shells, beach glass, and rocks using wood glue (since we had no access to electricity for a hot glue gun).  I used clear spray paint to shalak the projects so the paint would not rub off.  This was a project everybody liked and has a use for.  As the party started to wind down, we all took a walk on the beach.

Food: We served appetizers and an early dinner.  We grilled  kabobs with chicken, shrimp, pineapple, papaya, bananas, onions and zucchini.  It sounds like an odd mix, but it was great!  Everybody loved the food.  We also had a few appetizers- chips & dip, veggies & cheese  And we made a pineapple, strawberry, and banana jell-o mold (Hula Ula Ula Salad) as well as pasta salad.

Cake + ice cream: We got a rectangular cake (half chocolate and half white to make everyone happy) with a tropical volcano scene on it.  We also had my uncle’s favorite ice cream-mint chocolate chip.

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