My family drinks the Shark Week juice. Hmmm, I guess that would technically be chum. But regardless, we love Shark Week. Love it. I have to thank KPop, B’s Godmother and my best friend, for the obsession. Remember that movie BIG with Tom Hanks? Yea, KPop is the living-breathing modern version. She is a rockstar at her job and I swear it’s because that woman has the soul of an 11 year old boy! Her connection to Shark Week is what got our family excited about it, but B has taken things to a whole new level. It’s to the point where he wants watch shark shows, wear shark-related clothing, and yes, even eat shark food. I’ve had to get really creative with the menu to get my boy to eat! So although he’s been on a bit of a bug/reptile kick of late, he always comes back to his first love: sharks.
It’s barely spring but B knows once it’s warm out we’re heading to the beach, and to him the beach means sharks! Although Mother Nature has been somewhat cruel with the her warm-weather teasing (this morning started off cold & windy), I’m already thinking of ideas for Shark Week. Last summer we hosted a Shark Week playdate. Yes, a playdate all about sharks for lots of little kids. They loved it! Because of the Summer Olympics, Shark Week has been pushed back into August, which means more time to creatively plan.
Doesn’t that look like a lot of fun? I have Discovery to thank for the jawesome Shark Week party pack I won after submitting a photo of B at Sharky’s Cantina in Martha’s Vineyard. The party pack helped pull everything together! But it’s easy to plan your own Shark Week party playdate. Here are some other great ideas:
If you want do a little more than notify everyone via email, jazz it up with MeebleMail. You could also send out a digital invite. Personally, I’m a fan of pingg but there are so many these days that any water-themed version would be just fine. You could also send an adorable note after the party. These handmade I Love You More cards from @SweetDee on Etsy are too cute for words!
I love Tex-Mex so Chips & Chum was an easy one for me. Simply put out a bowl of your favorite salsa and pop in a couple of blue corn chips to represent shark fins. Our playdate last year was on a hot day so the chumsicles were a big hit. These can be store bought or made with love and lots of chunky, red fruit. I also served dinner and opted for an easy meal that most kids enjoy: Mac & Cheese. To tie it into my beach-theme I used varying sizes of shells to mix things up a little. The folks at Pepperidge Farm came up with the brilliant idea to make Goldfish Bread. Look at how cute they are as individual pizzas. These are the perfect size for little kids and they’re fun, too! And if the chumsicles aren’t enough, beach-themed cupcakes like ours or even with blue shark fins will be the hit of the party!
GAMES & ACTIVITIES
I’m a huge fan of bubbles. On land or under the sea, bubbles are always fun! Also, very important: baby pools. I think they are a must-have for any summer shindig. Whether you fill it up with babies or beer, they’re super cute and incredibly useful. My boys love hide & seek so we renamed it Finding Nemo. The hiders were clown fish and the seeker was a shark! Sidewalk chalk is another fun item to have for warm-weathered parties. The kids can draw on the driveway and when it gets too hot they can dip back in the baby pool.
Have the kids show up in their bathing suits, ready to get wet. Make sure to show everyone where the sunscreen is and take into consideration sunscreen that kids with nut allergies can also use. They all need to slather it on – even on a cloudy day! Put out your beach towels (even the ugly ones!) because someone will likely forget to bring one or it will be soaked from the sprinklers. If you plan ahead you could even pick up a one of these great shark cover-ups from @thetrendytot on Etsy. My boys would love to wrap up in this when it’s time to eat. And find a good splash-free zone to play some tunes. Good music always sets the tone and MTV put together a great Shark Week themed playlist!
SHARK WEEK PLAYLIST
Weird Fishes/Arpegg by Radiohead, Barracuda by Heart, Fish Heads by Barnes and Barnes, Shark Attack by Split Enz, Teeth by Lady Gaga, With Teeth by Nine Inch Nails, Swim (To Reach the End) by Surfer Blood, Sharks by Morphine, Season of the Shark by Yo La Tengo, Hammerhead Shark by David Lee Roth, The Ocean by Led Zeppelin, King Of the Beach by Waaves, Another One Bites the Dust by Queen, Honorary and Obvious Pick: Theme From Jaws by John Williams
And in case your child is anything like mine, they’ll want to play with sharks long after the party is over. Discovery Kids has a great new Shark iPad app available on iTunes. Hmmm… Does anyone know about a waterproof iPad cover?
Are you a Shark Week fan? Do you like to celebrate it with your family? What other Discovery programming do you enjoy?