Disclosure: Thank you to Oriental Trading who provided materials to help us in hosting this party. All opinions expressed within are my own and have not been influenced in any way.
Pre-tween boys are a funny bunch. They still have so much “little boy” in them, but they walk with swagger and throw attitude at you whenever they can. So, finding a party theme that (1) matches their youthful interests while and (2) is perceived as cool enough to share with their friends can be a challenge.
My 8 year old is a sports fanatic, and he knew he wanted a sports party this year with his friends.
Referee Whistle Water Bottles
I have found with kids’ parties, sometimes the smallest details are the favorites. We designed a black and white striped wrap for our water bottles and then added colorful whistles from Oriental Trading to the tops. The kids LOVED their ref whistles, and I was smart enough to remind them that refs don’t blow whistles inside before handing out the water bottles.
DIY Soccer Foosball
Using a tutorial I found on Pinterest, the party guests made their own foosball tables. I bought inexpensive Kraft boxes from Hobby Lobby and cut out the goals before the party. We made a field for the bottom of the box and drilled holes for the straws. I added vinyl pentagons cut with my Silhouette CAMEO to ping pong balls to make them look like soccer balls.
At the party, the boys added washi tape to the bottoms of the clothespins. They then slid the straws into the drilled holes and wrapped thin strips of duct tape around the ends so that the straws did not pull through the sides as they played. Finally, the kids clipped on their clothespins and battled each other!
I ordered Philadelphia Phillies sundae cups online, and added the party’s “players” names to the backs of the hats using my CAMEO.
After lunch, the boys filled out their concessions order, so that we could make sundaes while they played games.
When the boys came in, we had them design a pennant for their “team”. It kept their interest and prevented them from destroying the house before the activities started (it had just snowed the day before!).
While we were passing out food, we had some fun activities on the table to keep the boys busy. They particularly loved trying to name sports teams that began with each letter of the alphabet.
Using a rolled down paper bag, we added items to the boys’ favor bags throughout the party. They were super excited by the foam fingers from Oriental Trading, as well as the foam finger lollipops. A shirt for each child to support their favorite local team was included, along with some tabletop footballs, their foosball craft, and their (washed) sundae cup.
During the party, the boys competed in all kinds of games.
Marshmallow Soccer was a big hit. The kids used straws to blow marshmallows into goals.
Tabletop Football was another big hit. I used PVC piping to make end goals, and ordered tabletop footballs with NFL teams for the boys to use.
The boys had a good time Signing a Soccer Ball when they arrived. My son is the biggest Lionel Messi fan, and we treated him to a Messi ball for all of his friends to sign. He has displayed this ball in his room proudly!
Finally, the boys played Jackpot, their favorite playground football game.
The boys had a blast at the sports party. What other sports-themed party ideas do you have to share?