Ranking End-of-Season Party Options
I skipped the party planning the next year, but then started again when people’s financial circumstances changed. I found out that you can actually plan a much nicer, more intimate party with less money. After planning 15 or so (and attending 20+) icebreakers and end-of-season parties, I’ve learned what works and what doesn’t—and for what type of group. The options are ranked here:
4. Pay to play: If the team has money in its account or parents willing to spend, you might still consider a recreational venue such as a bowling alley, rec center, bounce house or even ice rink. This is especially good if you have a large group, a lot of siblings and very rowdy/noisy players. You can usually rent some sort of room for cake and presentations.
3. Dinner out: If you want to squeeze in a party before or after a practice—and you can keep the group down to a manageable level—a restaurant can work well. Try to reserve a banquet room or even a side room at a buffet restaurant. Despite the time, cost and space constraints of restaurants, they may be your best option when spring breaks, vacations and other sports seasons come right on the heels of the hockey season.
2. House party: My favorite option—except with teams composed of rowdy/noisy/potentially destructive players, or boy teams with 26 little sisters, or girl teams with 12 hockey-playing brothers. With the perfect house—big but not too big for togetherness, nice but not too nice in case something spills—and the perfect group, you can have a legendary end-of-season party. Host a themed buffet or order the Qdoba taco bar, and make sure to stop the party long enough for the coach to present trophies.
1. In the park: OK, this is really my favorite option. Reserve a park shelter, order some large sub sandwiches from a deli, grab bags of chips and pack up the Frisbees and softball gear. Bring along grandma, grandpa, brothers, sisters, dogs. Show your team colors with tablecloths (taped down to the tables), plates and cups from a dollar store. Hang jerseys for decoration. Outside is perfect when you’re concerned about where all those people will go, what the siblings will do and who might break or spill what. A couple tips: Be sure the park you reserve has year-round bathrooms, and don’t ask those people who are always late (you know who you are) to bring the drinks.
This is the one time of year that you can stop thinking “It’s all about the kids” and plan something that parents will really enjoy. In fact, many coaches will tell the players to thank their parents at the end-of-season party. And if you’re not at a bowling alley, you might actually be able to hear them…
Editor's Note: Thank you to Kelly Anton, managing editor of Grow the Game, for this story.
Fatal error: Call to undefined function wp_related_posts() in /nfs/c03/h06/mnt/57119/domains/phoenixcoyotescare.com/html/wp-content/themes/PhoenixCoyotesCare/single.php on line 32