Please give me some ideas other than a party for DD's 16th birthday next year

Avatar for chimichanga
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-08-2000
Please give me some ideas other than a party for DD's 16th birthday next year
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Wed, 09-25-2013 - 8:13am

I still have another year but we recently attended very lavish parties for sweet 16 kiddos. We simply do not have that many friends to fill up a hotel ballroom and both DH and DD are rather introverted. So how else can I celebrate it? DD likes to travel, read, eat. When we were casually bouncing off ideas, she thought she could take 2 friends to go to H.Potter World in FL. But these kids are very unpredictable and cancel even movies at the last minute. So I am not sure if it will work out after all the expense etc.

Thank you so much,

Chimi

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Avatar for suzyk2118
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-30-1997

Are you in FL? If not, that sounds lavish enough to me!  Wow.  I guess we never did that big of a deal for ds for any birthday, not even 21 last month (the 2 of us took him out to dinner; he's an introvert too).  Can your family just do something special if her friends don't commit, and then just offer to bring one or two with you IF it's convenient, but make it something that it wouldn't matter if they were there or not?

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-14-2000

Hi Chimi - we didn't do elaborate parties for the boys' 16th and they never went to any. Maybe more of a regional thing or more of a girl thing. Since your dd is rather introverted she's probably not expecting a big bash anyway. I think planning a nice family trip since she likes to travel would be an idea. Maybe inviting a friend or two is a good idea but they'd have to be willing to absolutely commit before you put extra money down for them. Which may mean you'd have to talk to the parents to make sure everyone is on the same page. Hopefully you'll get some more ideas from moms of girls that may have some BTDT advice!

Pam
Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998

I have a dd but we didn't do a sweet-16 bash, it was just another birthday with a family dinner and her bff included. I don't recall if she wanted to go to a restaurant or have a favorite meal cooked at home. Is your dd expecting or wanting something significant for that birthday? 

Maybe take her to a really fancy or trendy restaurant where you have to make reservations months in advance, and buy her a new outfit to wear to the dinner? Are you near NYC? You could take her there for a weekend in a posh hotel, with a B'way show and some shopping.

Are 15-16yo's still into Harry Potter enough that they would want to go to HP World? If she is but her friends are not, that could be a problem.

I don't think you "have to" celebrate the 16th in a big way, even if its the custom in your area or your culture. Its what the kid is into and comfortable with, and what the family can comfortably afford.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-06-1999

So far, my daughter has only been to one sweet sixteen, it was a dinner at a Japanese resturant and then over to the birthday girl's house to do nails and watch movies. She does have one coming up in December that is quite lavish, this mom is the Master of party planning. DD will turn 16 next April,not sure what we will do, but it will be low key. we have never done overboard parties, maybe lunch in the city with a few friends and a trip to the Pandora store. Who knows.

Community Leader
Registered: 07-26-1999

Two good friends at DD's high school had birthdays days apart and had a big joint bash, but other than that, she didn't have any friends that did big things for their 16th birthday. She had about 6 of her best girlfriends over for a sleep over, yes, at 16, and they had a fabulous time with pizza, cake, outdoor night time flashlight tag, etc. For her 14th she invited about 6 girls to a movie and then they went next door to an italian restaurant and I ordered a dessert tray for them all to snack on. Or yes, if you want to do a small trip with friends that's a great idea, but I would definitely be in contact with the parents about that one since its an expensive one that you would hate for them to back out of at the last minute.

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Avatar for chimichanga
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-08-2000

Thank you all for your prompt replies. We are in central NJ and while there is no culture of sweet 16 parties, I do hear stories about other parties. I love the idea of the Broadway show and a trip to NYC to do some shopping - we hardly ever go there since it is expensive with tolls/ bus tickets etc. So I think this will be a nice treat for DD. 

I am so glad that you all did low-ley parties mostly and it validates my feelings that no-party is okLaughingLaughing.Thanks again for sharing your ideas.

Chimi

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999

I agree--I'd either take the trip to NYC or make it a family trip to Fla.  I have never really wanted to take friends on a vacation.  Some of DD's friends did have big Sweet 16 parties at a hall with a DJ and stuff, but we didn't do that--she got about 8 friends and we went to a laser tag place and then had pizza and cake there.  I never thought that the 16th birthday was any more of a big deal than other birthdays, except for the fact that they could get a driver's permit.  I was actually surprised to find out that some people did have big parties.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998

No party is definitely okay! Maybe some families do lavish bashes, but you don't have to reciprocate. For her 16th, my daughter just invited two friends to a garden party given by a membership library we belong to. After snarfing down garden party treats, the girls went up in the attic of the building to take artful pictures of themselves in their lovely dresses. One of the pics ended up on DD's senior page in her yearbook.

The only massive bash we have ever done (my kids are introverts, too) was a graduation party in our backyard. DD invited her entire class, the neighbors, and several families from her old school. It was fun, but expensive (rented a tent and tables, and had a local barbecue place cater the food) and took days to clean up. Soooo glad DS doesn't want one!

I second others' suggestion to do the NYC trip. My kids would love something like that and remember it forever.

Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998

I suspect that the MTV show My Super Sweet 16 (I think that's the name) makes it seem like all kids have these over the top parties. In reality I think its very few, but if somebody in your town or social circle does it everybody talks about it---probably because its so unusual.

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999

My older dd's birthday is in July.  For her Sweet 16, we had a party, at home, for about 25 kids.  Pizza, soda, cake, snacks, dancing on the deck, swimming in the pool, and continuous movies downstairs on the big screen.  Kids had a blast, and helped clean up before they all went home.

YDD, whose Bday is in Feb, had wanted to go dancing at a juice bar since forever.  We wouldn't let her go when she was 15, so that was her wish for her 16th birthday.  We took her and her 2 best friends out to dinner, then dropped them at the bar around 7 & picked them up at 11.  They had a BLAST. 

It all depends on what you kid would like, and your budget. 

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