Soon the holidays will be upon us, a time when friends and families gather to celebrate and holiday entertaining on Long Island kicks into high gear. But it can be hard sometimes to keep both the adults and the kids happy at the same party.
To help Nassau County and Suffolk County parents balance event enjoyment between guests young and old, Your Local Kids has put together some tips for keeping kids entertained during holiday parties:
- Hire a babysitter. If your budget allows it, hiring a qualified nanny or babysitter can be a great way to keep children entertained in a separate room or area with their own activities while parents can enjoy the party, assured that their kids are safe and happy, too. Not sure where to find a sitter or nanny? Check out Your Local Kids’ Long Island Family Guide in both counties where parents can find child care providers in Nassau and Suffolk.
- Hire a professional kids’ entertainer. Again, depending on your budget and party theme, hiring a children’s entertainer, such as a magician, clown, face painter or balloon sculptor, can go a long way in keeping kids happy, occupied and entertained. To find local children’s entertainers that can travel to the party, parents can check Your Local Kids’ Long Island Party Guide for both counties. There, parents can find party entertainers and performers in Nassau and Suffolk.
- Set up a separate kids’ area. If the first two options are out of the question, then creating a designated children’s area with activities geared toward younger guests is a great way to keep children entertained while parents mingle. You could even ask an older sibling, cousin or teenage guest or two to help supervise, using a gift card as a thank you. The kids’ area could be a separate room from the main party or even a separate table and space within the main party. Make sure it’s safe, with a sturdy floor, covered outlets and no sharp objects, and has age-appropriate toys, games, activities and crafts for kids. Activities could be as simple as holiday-themed coloring books and crayons and watching holiday-themed movies or reading holiday books while sipping hot cocoa and eating s’mores, or as elaborate as holiday-themed arts-and-crafts projects or helping decorate seasonal cookies or cupcakes – all depending, of course, on the age of younger guests.
- Get kids involved. If you’re throwing a more family-oriented party, then why not create activities that get children and parents involved? For example, use holiday music to play “freeze dance” with the kids or set up a seasonal treasure hunt that allows parents and kids hunt for clues together.
- Make parents aware. Tell parents who are attending the party with their kids ahead of time what the plan is, whether it’s a party more for adults with a separate kids’ area or more family-oriented. And as parents and kids arrive at the party, make sure you set up some welcome instructions so parents and kids are aware what activities there are and where to find them in case you aren’t at the door to greet them.
These tips will surely help parents planning their holiday festivities, and they could easily be applied to other types of seasonal events and parties.