Throwing a good theme party, especially with the theme of "America," is a tall order. What does it mean to be an American? It depends on whether you're thinking about the Revolutionary War, the Wild West, Wall Street or Hollywood. America means many things to its diverse population, and to others around the world. Hosting a good American theme party means you must incorporate the essence of America---and including the "American dream" in your plans will give your party just the spirit it needs.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Pictures of American heroes
- Red, white and blue decorations, fabric and tissue paper
- Balloons and cutouts
- Hot dogs
- Side-dish recipes
- Iced tea
- Door prizes
- CD or record player
Send invitations to your friends, including a picture of a famous American personality or character. State on the invitation that your friend has to come as someone related (by theme) to the person on his or her invitation. For example, if Michael Jordan was on the picture, your friend could dress as another basketball player, sports commentator or Bugs Bunny in "Space Jam." Tell your friends to bring the pictures to the party, but not to show them to anyone.
Purchase decorations such as red, white and blue streamers; American flags or Statue of Liberty and Liberty Bell balloons or cardboard cutouts. Buying plenty of tissue paper and card stock in the appropriate colours to make your own is another option. Consult "Martha Stewart Living" for tasteful and low-key decorating ideas.
Stock up on red, white and blue fabric to use as napkins and tablecloths for a classy tone. Wash the fabric and cut it with fabric scissors in appropriately sized pieces.
Prepare a few typical American side dishes, like coleslaw, potato salad and macaroni salad. Throw hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill to serve your guests once they arrive. Don't forget the fresh lemonade and iced tea. Serve guests informally as they arrive, or direct them to the food table.
Take the pictures from your guests when they arrive, and pin them to bandannas. Give everyone a bandanna to wear, but make sure the picture does not relate to your guest's costume. The guests will have to guess who the picture on their hat is by asking other guests yes-or-no questions. Once guests figure out the character on their hats, they must figure out which other guest they belong with (such as Bugs Bunny to Michael Jordan). The first guest to uncover both identities wins a prize.
Visit with as many guests as you can, making your way around the room, participating in the name-guessing game, and passing on the friendly spirit of America by introducing guests to each other.
Choose country music if your guests like square-dancing, stick with jazz standards for some old Hollywood glamour or play the soundtrack to "American Idol" if they like pop tunes. Keep the music all-American and fun. Seek out an "American Bandstand" or Casey Kasem "Top 40" record or CD for some throwback fun. Encourage guests to dance.
During the Party
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