Throwing a green birthday party may seem an impossible task, but in fact, there are plenty of eco-friendly choices you can make. The following tips will be your guide to throwing the best green birthday party ever:
1. Buy Fresh Instead of Packaged
One of the biggest sources of waste at birthday parties is food, and this is where you can be eco-friendly. Buying fresh ingredients instead of packaged foods can be a great way to cut down on waste. For example, instead of buying frozen vegetables or meat, go to your local farmer’s market and purchase everything fresh. Such ingredients may be more time-consuming to prepare, but they are eco-friendly and more nutritious than their frozen counterparts.
2. Use Environmental Friendly Decorations
Instead of hanging streamers, banners and balloons, make the decorations from your own recyclable or reusable materials at home. Party hats and banners can be made using old cardboard, construction paper or even with a cloth. Get creative with your decorations and allow your guests to help by coloring their own party hats.
3. Avoid Using Disposables
Paper plates and plastic cutlery and cups can be very wasteful because they only allow for a single use. Such disposable items can be replaced with reusable plastic plates, cutlery, and cups. These can be repeatedly washed and saved for the next party. If plastic does not suit your needs, buy plates, cups, and cutlery made from bamboo (another environmentally friendly option).
4. Eliminate the Goody Bag Concept
For a child’s birthday party, goody bags require a lot of wasteful materials including candy wrapped in useless plastic (which will be thrown in the garbage) and cheap toys that children do not like. The goody bag itself is made of plastic and will be thrown away, once the child finishes taking in the contents of the bag. A better alternative would be to use a paper or cloth bag and filling it with useful items like notepads, chalk, pens, jigsaw puzzles, and so on. Other interesting eco-friendly party favors include a packet of plant seeds or a flower bulb wrapped in cloth.
5. Make a Separate Trash Basket for Recyclables
Any green birthday would be incomplete without a separate trash basket for recyclable items. You can go a step ahead and make separate baskets for glass, paper, plastic, and metal. Your guests will gladly help you with sorting the trash whenever they need to throw something away. Furthermore, you can make it a fun game for children by asking them to match the trash to the basket it belongs to.
6. Make Fun Games from Readily Available Material
Entertaining children and adults at a birthday party can be difficult and it can be even harder when you try to be green. That being said, there are plenty of games you can play using materials already available at the party. For instance, you can use chairs to play musical chairs and offer a small eco-friendly prize to the winner. Music can also be played for dancing games (like freeze dance or hot potato). Utilize chalk to play hopscotch or make use of board games you already have to entertain your guests. In addition, you can recycle old newspapers in your home to make a piñata (it is another great alternative to goody bags).
7. Bake the Cake at Home
When ordering a cake from a bakery, you never know how wasteful the baker will be with the scraps of your cake and other ingredients involved. Baking cake at home is the best way to ensure nothing goes to waste. Also, you can bake the cake according to your own preferences and decorate it with the birthday boy or girl in mind. Just make sure to incorporate all the scraps of the fondant and cake itself in an effective manner. For example, you can crumble the scraps of the cake and turn them into cake pops for children.
8. Send Invitations Through the Internet
Instead of printing out invitations on expensive papers and sending them out to each guest, you can send the invitation through email, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat or any other social media platform. This saves paper waste and ensures that all your guests get an invitation to the party. Evites can also be personalized, so you can make them look the way you want without having to waste too much time and money.
9. Reuse Old Wrapping Paper for Gifts
Do not splurge on new and expensive wrapping paper because it will simply go to waste. Reuse any old wrapping paper you have lying around the house to make sure your paper wastage is cut down to a minimum. You can even combine different pieces of wrapping paper to create a mosaic around the gift. After all, the present itself is the attraction, not the wrapping paper. In addition, make certain that the person opening the presents do not tear the wrapping paper apart carelessly. This would allow you to save the paper for future use.
10. Plan an Outdoor Birthday
There is nothing more fun than an outdoor birthday experience because of the multitude of eco-friendly activities you can do including eco-friendly boating, a trip to the national park or a biosphere, and so on. Such an experience would be highly educational for both children and adults.
11. Do not Forget to Celebrate in Style
While trying to make the birthday as eco-friendly as possible, it can be easy to forget how to celebrate it in style. Luckily for you, there is a ton of tips for celebrating your birthday in style. Simply incorporate these tips with our green tips for the best birthday celebration ever.
12. Ask for Environmental Friendly Gifts
Request your guests to bring eco-friendly gifts to the birthday party. Traditional gifts may be wasteful, as your kid does not need them (for example, he/she may have enough toys to consider any other toy as a gift). Some interesting ideas for eco-friendly gifts include a donation to a charity organization (ask the birthday boy/girl which charity the donation should go to), adopt a rescued pet from the local animal shelter and so on.