Tips for Hosting a Pool Party

A pool party is the perfect way to cool off during the hot summer months. Pool parties are also a great way for kids to celebrate the end of the school year or a summer birthday!

Pool party ideas and tips

As fun as they can be for kids, parents sometimes get stressed at the idea of having the responsibility of watching other people’s children. Here are some things you should know before planning a kids pool party as well as some fun ideas to make the party a blast for the kids!

Tips for Hosting a Pool Party

  • Guest List: Work with your child to build a reasonable guest list for the pool party. Keep the number manageable, depending on how many adults you plan to have to supervise. Also, make sure that all of the children know how to swim—ones that don't will need to stay in the shallow end.
  • Supplies: In addition to gathering together all the supplies you'll need for the party itself, don't forget to pack the perfect beach bag. This is especially important if you're planning to host the party at a community pool instead of at home. Don't forget these beach bag essentials: bathing suit, cover-up, towel, sandals, sunglasses, sunscreen, chapstick, hat, grown-up snacks, and a bottle of water.
  • Additional Supervision: During the party, never leave the children unattended by the pool. This is where having multiple adults is helpful. Undoubtedly, you'll need to go into the house to prepare the food or get towels. If you have some friends or other parents that can help supervise, that's idea. Another option is to hire a local lifeguard for the afternoon to watch the kids. Many local lifeguards are high school and college students who'd love to earn some extra cash!


  • Invitations: Once the guest list and logistics are worked out, send out festive pool party invitations a few weeks in advance to let the kids and their parents know the details of the party. Use phrases like “Dive right in for a fun pool party!” on the invitations to build their excitement. You might want to include a rain date if you live in an area where the weather can be a factor. Punchbowl offers a variety of pool party invitations that are ideal for the occasion.


  • Games: Plan some fun pool party games to keep the kids engaged during the party. Since the kids will already be wet, focus on water-based games that will keep the kids cool. Some great pool party games for kids include a water balloon toss, diving to retrieve colored rings, and watermelon seed spitting contests. You can also set up a slip and slide or let kids run through the sprinkler. 
  • Food: Swimming and playing in the pool will surely leave the kids hungry for snacks! Plan a menu full of appropriate pool party foods like popsicles, fresh watermelon slices, chips and guacamole, and fresh lemonade. If you want to provide more than just snacks, fire up the grill and cook burgers and hot dogs for the kids.

Tips for Hosting a Pool Party

Tips for Hosting a Pool Party

  • Decorations: Pool parties don't necessarily require decorations, however if you want to give your backyard an extra special touch there are a number of pool party decoration ideas that are easy to execute. Tiki torches along the perimeter of the yard are fun and keep bugs at bay. You can also toss a few light-up creatures in the pool to add to the festivities.
  • Music: One of the best ways to create a fun and festive pool party is to add music. Create a playlist that includes songs by the Beach Boys as well as pool party classics like "Splish Splash" by Bobby Darin, "Summer Nights" from Grease, "Heat Wave" by Martha and the Vendellas, and "Summertime" by Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince.

Laslty, make sure to have plenty of extra towels available in case kids forget theirs or if their towel gets too wet. There's always that one that ends up in the pool!

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