Host a snow party!
by Dr. Carla Gull
Many families find it harder to get outside in the winter due to cold temperatures and lengthy layered clothing rituals. However, getting outside in the winter gives us fresh air, seasonal differences, exercise, and fun! My children like getting together with friends outside. We recently hosted a Snow Party as an incentive to get outside. It was a blast!
Here are tips and ideas to host your own Snow Party:
- Check the weather. I like warmer days above 25 degrees that are sunny with little wind.
- Notify families of outdoor plans. Participants will want layers, boots, gloves, hats, etc. I also have backup for any who might have forgotten gear.
- It can be fun to host a party at home; however, there are also warming shelters at Bonneyville Mill and Ox Bow Park as well. There are good sledding hills nearby and open spaces for snow fun!
- Plan for a mix of activities. A sledding hill, forts and snowball fights, games like capture the flag, a scavenger hunt, snow sculptures, and winter art options provide good variety. Try loose parts to create a winter obstacle course. Involve the kids in planning.
- Consider safety. Establish boundaries, point out (and/or minimize) safety hazards, clear sledding areas, avoid hitting faces with snowballs, and provide adequate supervision. Adults can be hummingbirds on the side of the action, just swooping in when needed.
- Think of warm refreshments, such as hot chocolate or warm cider. Or go with the theme and make snow cones or snow ice cream.
- Consider having a bonfire as part of the festivities. Warm up while toasting a marshmallow or cooking a pudgy pie.
- Plan ahead for gear if going inside. It’s easy to misplace socks, gloves, and other items. Provide bags for each child’s gear to get it back home.
It doesn’t need to be big or fancy, yet provides time together outside while strengthening friendships. Have a great winter party and let us know how it goes!
Dr. Carla Gull blogs at InsideOutsideMichiana.com.
She is often seen with her four tag-along explorers in the greater Michiana area.