One of the greatest things about being part of an HOA is joining in the community events. Barbecues at the pool or holiday parties in the clubhouse are always a draw, but some communities go big for the benefit of everyone in the neighborhood. Block parties are an opportunity for every member of your HOA community to join in and have a good time when the weather is nice.
Of course, block parties don't just happen like in the movies. Some brave team must plan a block party, send out the invitations, and get everyone excited about the big day. Not to mention making sure there are enough food, music, and games for everyone to enjoy. The key to a really inviting block party that draws in new (and old) families is a great theme. The theme for your block party defines how much fun it sounds and gives your community something to get excited about.
Summertime Sports and Barbeque
A great many people see summer as a time of sports and smoked meat - and they'd be right. From a children's field day to broadcasting sports games on a projector screen, your community can throw one heck of a summer barbecue. Invite everyone to wear their favorite team colors or to dress brightly in their favorite summer attire.
Supply the tables with plenty of potato salad and cut fruit, then roll out the grills and get the meats going. Invite anyone who wants a turn with the tongs to strut their stuff at the grill and lay out the green fields for kids to play in. Set up field games like pickup soccer, parking lot basketball, and three-legged races so everyone can have a good time.
Everyone should go to a luau block party once in their life. We all want to see a roast pig lowered into a barbeque pit and enjoy the unbelievably hawwaiian taste of that barbecued pork when it rises again. Drinking fruit punch and wearing Hawaiian shirts is just the tip of the iceberg for the luaus themed block party. Stock up on soft artificial leis to drape over everyone's neck as they arrive and cover the tables as decoration. Play island music, hold hula dance lessons, and invite everyone to have a good time.
Outdoor Movie Showings
An outdoor movie theater is a great excuse to get everyone gathered for a community party. Use projectors pointed at inflatable screens or the blank sides of buildings. Play at least three films, possibly with two separate screens for younger and older audiences. Then stock up on popcorn, nachoes, and soda for the community. A grassy space is the perfect area to stretch out and watch a movie or you can use your parking area as a comfortable drive-in alternative.
Everyone loves a carnival and they're easier than you realize to put together. A few booths with beanbag and ring tossing games, a face-painting station, and a bake-off are all you need to get the party started. Play carnival music and perhaps bring in a vendor to make hot funnel cake on the spot. Everyone will love the fun and distraction of attending their own community carnival and many families will want to pitch in with their own costumes, games, or booth ideas.
4th of July Celebration
The 4th is a traditional time for everyone to gather for barbecue and fireworks. Break out the red-white-and-blue streamers and invite everyone to bring a flag for waving. Encourage large silly hats and noisemakers for the whole community. If you're inside city limits, string up lights on poles to make the party feel festive without fireworks. If you're outside city limits, find a safe (damp) field and give the crowd what they really want to see on our big fireworks national holiday.
Take a page from Disney World and hold a block party with a dapper 1920s-1950s theme. Invite double-breasted suits and a-line dresses with shoes polished mirror-bright. Parasols and colorful ties are a must. Everyone loves an excuse to get dressed up and a community block party is a great opportunity to strut your stuff. Not to mention enjoying a wide picnic spread of delicious foods and a dancefloor to trot out a few dapper classics from the Charleston to the Electric Slide.
Potluck and Cook-Off
If your community has more than a few home chefs (as most do) try hosting a combination potluck and cook-off for your community block party. One or more recipe contests can be held ranging from delicious fruit pies to fiery pots of chili. Those who want to compete can join the judged competitions and those who don't can simply contribute a community-sized pot to the grand picnic table. Everyone can be the judge of your cook-offs and enjoy the bounty while the music plays.
Last but certainly not least, the community Halloween party is always a hit - and often the last outdoor block party of the season. The streets already fill with families trick-or-treating. Why not end that great experience with a party in the park? Costumes and candy are the main theme ith the Monster Mash as your spotlight music track. Mix it in with some real food and you might even reduce the number of candy-induced tummy aches in the morning.
Throwing a block party for your HOA community is one of the most rewarding parts of managing a neighborhood. Your community will love the opportunity to get together, party, and share food. Each successful block party then builds community bonds and a tradition to join the next party when it rolls around. Ready to dive into improved plans for your HOA calendar? Contact us today!