After moving into a new neighborhood, or after a new family moves into your neighborhood, hosting a neighborhood block party can be a great way for everyone to get to know each other, or get reacquainted with one another. There is nothing like food, music, and good company to bring people together, especially when it is in a public area, such as your neighborhood street.
Hosting a block party can feel like a big undertaking, but with a bit of organization and these five tips, you can pull it off without a hitch.
- City Rules
The first thing to do when hosting a block party is to make sure you adhere to city guidelines, as you do not want to get fined for doing something that is prohibited. Every city is different, and might have different rules. For instance, just like home builders in Utah had to adhere to codes and specific rules, your block party will need to comply with city rules. Ask if you are able to block off access to your street, or if you can grill in the front yard.
The best way to bring people to a block party is to host it in the middle of the neighborhood. If it is hosted at one end of the street, many people may not attend, as it feels too far away, or uncomfortable to attend. Additionally, having it in the center is a great way to attract the attention of neighbors who were not sure if they wanted to come.
- Food and Refreshments
The key to a good block party is good food and plenty of cold refreshments. Send out a food and beverage sheet via email (or going the old-fashioned route and going door to door), and have people sign up to bring certain dishes. Or, let people know that it is a potluck meal, and to bring anything they think would feed a crowd. Just make sure that someone brings utensils, plates, napkins, cups, and ice.
One aspect of a block party not to overlook is safety. Many neighborhoods that do monthly or yearly block parties send out a waiver to protect homeowners and future relationships with neighbors. The point of this is to protect everyone in case an accident happens, such as a bounce house injury, or a barbecue incident.
Apart from a waiver, it is a wise idea to remove anything that could be a potential hazard, such hoses or loose pavement. And, if there are any dogs that might attack if frightened, it is a wise idea to keep them from running loose.
Encourage kids to bring their scooters, bikes, or skateboards. Not only will it give them something to keep them from getting board, it will also help them get to know one another. Or, arrange for a pick-up game of wiffle ball, kickball, or frisbee, including both kids and adults.
These five tips can help you have a fun block party that will allow everyone to get to know each other.
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