It’s that time of year again. Summer is coming to an end and it’s time to head back to school. While your kids may be bummed to say goodbye to warm weather and extra free time, there’s still time to soak up the sun and get a little more summer fun out of your swimming pool. Throwing an epic back-to-school pool party is the perfect way to wish farewell to summer and usher in the new school year with a splash. Back-to-school parties are also a great opportunity for kids to make new friends and reconnect with old ones before the school year kicks off. Try these ideas to pull off a great back-to-school swimming party that people will be talking about all school year long!

Send Out Unforgettable Invitations

It isn’t a party without friends! That’s why sending out invitations is the most important step in planning a back-to-school pool party. Getting creative and designing unique invitations can help make your invites stand out and set the mood for the upcoming event. Try these fun, inexpensive ideas:  

  • Write the invitation on a beach ball, floaty, or pool noodle that attendees can then bring with them to the party!
  • Glue sand or shells on paper invitations to add texture.
  • Send a message in a bottle.

Summer schedules can fill up quickly around back-to-school times as families try to squeeze in last-minute vacations, back-to-school shopping trips, and family outings. Be sure to send out your invitations as early as possible to make sure the majority of guests can attend!

Get Creative with Decorations

Now that you have invitations sent out, it’s time to think about decorations. Depending on the theme you’re going for, there’s lots of creative ideas that can help add some style and flare to your pool party.

If you’re going for a tropical theme try:

  • Hanging up tiki lights
  • Wearing leis, hula skirts, and floral Hawaiian shirts
  • Creating a balloon arch and attaching tropical flowers or palm tree branches
  • Using pineapples and coconuts as centerpieces

If you’re going for a beach theme try:

  • Having a kiddie pool full of sand with pails and scoops
  • Using sand, shells, and starfish to make centerpieces
  • Creating garlands with beach balls or flip flops
  • Having a photo booth with props like beach balls, floaties, and surf boards

If you’re going for a pirate theme try:

  • Wearing eye patches, bandanas, and fake skull tattoos
  • Hanging up nets or fabric to look like a ship
  • Decorating a diving board to look like a wooden plank
  • Hiding “treasure” (aka: diving rings) at the bottom of the pool for guests to find

These are just a few theme and decoration ideas that can take your pool party to the next level. The possibilities are endless! With a little creativity, decorations don’t have to be expensive either. For party-throwers on a budget, try visiting your local discount, hobby, or thrift store, or just use some of the everyday objects you already have around the house.

Plan Fun Activities Outside of the Pool

There are plenty of fun swimming pool games that guests can enjoy while they’re splashing around in the water. However, pool parties don’t have to be all about swimming. Guests may need a break from the water or may just want to enjoy some time on dry land. That’s why it’s important to plan some games and activities to do outside of the pool. A few fun land activities may include:

  • A water balloon or water gun fight
  • Lawn games like croquet or bean bag toss
  • A hula dancing competition
  • A scavenger hunt
  • Drawing with sidewalk chalk
  • Playing “Go Fish”
  • Hula-hooping

Make Safety a Priority

Whenever you’re spending time by the water, safety should be a number one priority. Prior to the party, you should note important information about guests, such as swimming ability level, allergies, and other relevant health conditions. It’s also important to:

  • Make sure there’s plenty of adults available to supervise.
  • Be sure guests are aware of safety rules and emergency procedures before they get in the water.
  • Have a first aid kit handy.
  • Have plenty of life jackets and flotation devices.

When spending time outdoors, heat stroke, bugs, and inclement weather are also concerns. You should

  • Stay hydrated and have plenty of drinking water available for you and guests.
  • Apply lots of sunscreen
  • Use bug spray
  • Pay attention to all weather updates and warnings

While saying goodbye to summer may be sad, having one last swimming hurrah can help make the transition into fall easier, and make your son or daughter the most popular one in class. If you’re getting ready to plan an epic splash bash, be sure to check out our Pinterest boards for plenty of pool party ideas and inspiration! Happy party planning!