We haven’t visited Dinsmore in about seven years, and the transformation since Terrapin took over is amazing! The spot has a gorgeous view of the links and the mountains in the distance along with spectacular sunsets; it’s perfect for an intimate affair.
Ally’s parents are Jeff’s friends from junior high, and also two of the sweetest and most generous people you’ll ever meet. That their youngest daughter has turned sixteen just blows my mind!
At any rate, Ally wanted a dance party to celebrate her big day and there was no stopping her. A little scavenger hunt musical chairs game was all it took to loosen these kids up. They were on the dance floor, shakin’ it to Lil Wayne, Jay-Z and Young Money, singing along at stadium volume. “Hip hop, you don’t stop…”
Since Jeff and I haven’t done a Sweet Sixteen party in years, I was relieved to find that we can still “bring it” with the kids. I spent the week before brushing up on all the most current radio hits, cramming my head with Top 40. It all paid off on the dance floor!
Feeling sweet sixteen rusty got me thinking about the keys to success at a milestone birthday celebration. Here are some suggestions I came up with…
- The Icebreaker. Teenagers can be shy at the start. Come armed with an activity or game to break the ice. If you’ve got some bling and glow necklaces to throw at them, so much the better.
- Talk to the Birthday Girl. Ally was the leader at her party; she had fun and her guests followed suit. Find out what the hostess wants and get her working for the party.
- Include Activities. The sweet sixteen rite of passage can be highlighted by a few sentimental touches. A candle lighting ceremony during which 16 special people in the birthday girl’s life light candles on her cake or a special dance with dad are examples. Ally opted to ditch the sappy stuff in favor of an all out dance party, but for the right girl it can create unforgettable moments.
- Play Their Requests. These kids know exactly what they want. Just invite them to share their favorite songs (believe me, they will!) and play them. It will make them really, really happy. Ally gave us a request list before hand and she was right on the money. Just make sure you get the CLEAN versions…
It was a night to remember. Somehow, even realizing how quickly time passed with our friends’ children celebrating young adulthood, being around all that teenage energy and watching them have fun still made me feel blessed and young.