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Scoop up a sweet ice cream social


 
Nothing goes with spring’s warm weather quite as well as a scoop (or three) of ice cream. So why not serve some up and celebrate the season with your buds at the same time?  GL’s got a party plan to help you host a super-cool ice cream social. 

Spread the word
You can invite your whole crew to this one – as long as you have enough supplies, natch!  When school’s out, it’s hard to spread the word by mouth.  Your best bet is electronically – Facebook event or e-vites.  If you’ve got everyone’s address, snail mail works too.  Type up a flier with the deets of the event – bonus points if you use colored paper, cute clip-art or bright fonts.  Not sure what’s the best date?  Call up your besties first to figure out a day when they won’t be gone for camp or vacay.  That way, you know at least your closest companions will be there.

Top it off
As far as ice cream, you really only need the basics – vanilla for sure, and maybe chocolate and strawberry too.  Toppings are where the real fun comes in.  Take a cue from the creameries and give your guests lots of options.  Think traditional (sprinkles, cherries, and whipped cream), tasty (crushed Oreos, Reese’s or candy bars) and colorful ‘n’ crazy (gummi bears, cereal, Nerds candies).  You can even add some healthy options, like fresh fruit or granola, to satisfy everyone’s taste buds. 

Set it up
You wanna make sure you have ice cream scoops, spoons and enough bowls for both the guests and the toppings. Keep it clean with napkins and a cute paper tablecloth. On the day of the party, get the toppings ready in advance by placing them in individual bowls with a spoon. You could set everything up outside, but depending on the weather, you may be best off in the kitchen (no worries about wind-blown napkins or melting ice cream).  Lay out the bowls, napkins and spoons so they’re easily accessible.  Make sure there’s seating space for everyone – indoors or out.   Get the ice cream out of the freezer when everyone’s ready to eat.  Then, let your guests grab a bowl and go ice-cream crazy!

Chill out
Ice cream eating won’t take too long, so you might wanna plan for some more fun on a lazy summer afternoon.  Take advantage of the sunshine and head outdoors.  Set the stage for outdoor play by laying out a Frisbee, a soccer ball or even water balloons.  Or, go old school with bubbles and chalk for some kiddie fun.  Grab a portable radio, turn up the tunes and enjoy the sun.  Rain on your party parade?  Set a back-up date, or just enjoy some time inside with board games and movies.  Nothing can bring your sweet party down! 

Take it up a notch!
Nothing’s wrong with just having an ice cream buffet and a chill afternoon, but if you’re feeling crazy, why not take it up a notch?  There are all kindsa silly-fun games you can play with ice cream.  Prizes are optional, because these games are a treat in themselves.  Here are three of our faves:
Blindfolded eating contest – Have pairs of friends sit in chairs opposite each other, and cover their eyes with blindfolds.  One friend gets a bowl of ice cream and a spoon. . . and the other gets fed!  To make it a contest, you can see who stays the cleanest or finishes the fastest.  Get ready to laugh it up – and take picks!

Topping personality game – This works for a big group of creative peeps – it’ll save you some shopping, too!  Tell everyone to bring an ice cream topping that best represents their personality.  Let them know it’s a secret, so bring it in a bag.  When everyone’s there, place out the toppings, slips of paper, and pencils.  Have everyone take a sheet and write down who they think brought what.  Do the final reveal after (or before) everyone’s dug in and made their perfect sundae.  Winner is who guessed the most right!

Sundae relay – Split your party people into teams.  Mark a starting line and set up a table with toppings a good distance away (you may want to do this outside – you need space to run, and it could get messy!).  When you say go, the first member of each team runs to the supply spot and fills the bowl with ice cream, then runs back to their team at the starting line.  From there, one member of a team runs at a time to decorate the sundae with a topping.  You can decide the order and number, based on how big your teams are – for example, ice cream, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, cherry, for teams of four.  Winner is the first team who finishes their sundae and gets back to the starting line! 

BY MARIE HANSEN ON 5/12/2011 9:00:00 AM

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