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87 Ways to Throw a Killer Party

87 Ways to Throw a Killer Party

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by Melissa Daly

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Want an excuse to get friends together? Or looking for an idea for a party your friends will never forget? This ultimate party-planning book for teens includes eighty-seven original ideas (and original takes on classic ideas) for great bashes. Inside you’ll find parties of all kinds, such as an Anti-Valentine’s Day soiree, a haunted house party,


Want an excuse to get friends together? Or looking for an idea for a party your friends will never forget? This ultimate party-planning book for teens includes eighty-seven original ideas (and original takes on classic ideas) for great bashes. Inside you’ll find parties of all kinds, such as an Anti-Valentine’s Day soiree, a haunted house party, and a season finale get-together. Also includes party-planning tips, hosting etiquette, and how to avoid typical party pitfalls. Each idea contains some historical background information, a description of what you’ll need, and guidelines of how to set it up. Fun illustrations and safety and money-saving tips included.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Lisette Baez
Who needs a personal party planner when you can pick up this great book which is sure to make your high school years memorable? Author, Melissa Daly, gives you all the tips and ideas needed to throw a great bash that will make high school history. Say goodbye to the mall, movies, and pizza night as you jazz up your social life with a Mardi Gras party, a Film Festival, or a Star-Sign Soiree, where guests can have fun with astrology. This book will provide all the details needed for a get together that is sure to be a hit. Inside you will find activities, recipes, costume ideas, music play-lists, and easy to make decorations. Each party idea is broken down into easy categories to get started: Prep, Serve, Do, and Wear. The ideas of a great party are endless and these eighty-seven will be enough to rid you and your friends of another boring weekend in high school. Be the first to have a Chocolate Tasting party, a Winter Solstice gathering, or a Meteor Shower Viewing party. So be creative, and come up with your own ideas, too, by mixing party themes or ideas. As the author states wisely, "Almost any day of the year, there's a great excuse for a party." Reviewer: Lisette Baez

Product Details

Publication date:
Sold by:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
File size:
3 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

ONE: Birthday Parties [ 14 ]

1. Star-Sign Soiree [ 14 ]

Super Surprise Party [ 16 ]

Old-School Slumber Party [ 18 ]

Classic Costume Party [ 20 ]

Birth Year Bash [ 22 ]

Piece-of-Cake Party [ 24 ]

The Big Give [ 26 ]

TWO: Halloween Parties [ 28 ]

Heroes and Villains Party [ 28 ]

Haunted Hotel Party [ 30 ]

Murder Mystery Party [ 32 ]

Pumpkin-Carving Party [ 34 ]

Blood Bash [ 36 ]

THREE: Winter Break Parties [ 38 ]

Chrismukkah Party [ 38 ]

Naughty or Nice Party [ 40 ]

Winter Solstice Party [ 42 ]

Winter Wonderland Party [ 44 ]

Global Warming Party [ 46 ]

Mardi Gras Party [ 48 ]

FOUR: New Year’s Eve Parties [ 50 ]

Black and White Ball [ 50 ]

Rock-Around-the-Clock Party [ 52 ]

Time Travel Party [ 54 ]

FIVE: Valentine’s Day Parties [ 56 ]

Candy-for-Strangers Party [ 56 ]

Nuts and Bolts Party [ 58 ]

Truth or Dare Party [ 60 ]

Anti-Valentine’s Day Party [ 62 ]

Sadie Hawkins Day Party [ 64 ]

SIX: Prom Parties [ 66 ]

Pre-Prom Cocktail and Photo Party [ 66 ]

28. After-Prom Pajama Party [ 68 ]

29. Alterna-Prom [ 70 ]

SEVEN: Graduation Parties [ 72 ]

Fortune-Telling Party [ 72 ]

Bonfire Party [ 74 ]

Grad Night Shut-In [ 76 ]

Off-to-College Goodbye Party [ 78 ]

EIGHT: Game Nights [ 80 ]

Parlor Game Night [ 80 ]

Ultimate Scavenger Hunt [ 82 ]

Trivial Pursuit Party: "Us" Edition [ 84 ]

Ice-Breaker Party [ 86 ]

NINE: Summer Break Parties [ 88 ]

Outdoor Movie Night [ 88 ]

Sleepaway Camp Party [ 90 ]

South Beach Pool Party [ 92 ]

Meteor Shower Viewing Party [ 94 ]

Fourth of July Party [ 96 ]

Desert Island Party [ 98 ]

Blackout Party [ 100 ]

TEN: Food Parties [ 102 ]

Classic Dinner Party [ 102 ]

46. The Perfect Picnic [ 104 ]

47. Top Chef Cook-Off [ 106 ]

48. Fondue Party [ 108 ]

49. Stone Soup Soiree [ 110 ]

50. Tasting Party [ 112 ]

ELEVEN: Past Era Parties [ 114 ]

Ice Age Party [ 114 ]

Ancient Greece Toga Party [ 116 ]

Old Hollywood Party [ 118 ]

’60s Woodstock Party [ 120 ]

’80s Teen Movie Party [ 122 ]

TWELVE: Crew Bonding Parties [ 124 ]

Clothing Swap [ 124 ]

57. Just-the-Girls Spa Night [ 126 ]

58. Extreme Room Makeover [ 128 ]

59. Mystery Tour [ 130 ]

60. Poker Night [ 132 ]

61. Obscure Holiday Party [ 134 ]

THIRTEEN: Sports and Team Parties [ 136 ]

Initiation Party [ 136 ]

Pre-Game Carbo Loading [ 138 ]

Ultimate Tailgate Party [ 140 ]

Powder Puff Party [ 142 ]

Move-It-or-Lose-It Party [ 144 ]

FOURTEEN: TV & Movie Parties [ 146 ]

Super Bowl Party [ 146 ]

68. Oscar Night Soiree [ 148 ]

69. Season Premiere/Finale Party [ 150 ]

70. Karaoke Party [ 152 ]

71. Rocky Horror Picture Show Party [ 154 ]

72. Film Festival [ 156 ]

73. Character Soundtrack Party [ 158 ]

74. Clip Show Party [ 160 ]

FIFTEEN: Artsy Parties [ 162 ]

Graffiti Party [ 162 ]

Ultimate Cast Party [ 164 ]

Scrapbooking Party [ 166 ]

Open Mic Night [ 168 ]

Fashion Statement Party [ 170 ]

SIXTEEN: Parties Around the World [ 172 ]

Thailand: Full Moon Party [ 172 ]

81. Scandinavia: Midsummer Party [ 174 ]

82. Brazil: Carnaval Drumming and Dance Party [ 176 ]

83. Mexico: Cinco De Mayo Fiesta [ 178 ]

84. Ireland: St. Patty’s Day Party [ 180 ]

85. China: Chinese New Year Bash [ 182 ]

86. Spain: La Tomatina Party [ 184 ]

87. India: Diwali Fest [ 186 ]



37. Ice-Breaker Party

When you’re starting off with a new group—like the crew at your new summer job or camp, or your college or boarding school freshman hall—people tend to be on their best (read: boring) behavior until something breaks the ice. So be the hero and invite everyone over for some games designed to bring people out of their shells. Or just play them to get even closer (literally, in some cases!) to your current friends.


There are three basic ways to make people feel more comfortable together: learn about one another, break the touch barrier, and/or act like idiots together. Here are some great games to get your started.

Revealing Games

I Never. Sit in a circle. One person says "Never have I ever..." and completes the sentence with something they’ve never done, like "been abroad" or "gone skinny-dipping." Anyone who has done that thing has to do an agreed-upon action, like eat something spicy or put fifty cents toward a pizza for the group.

Whose Story Is It? Send three people to the front of the room at a time. Each one writes down an outrageous but true fact or story about themselves. Shuffle them, pick one, and read it aloud, and the crowd then gets to ask the three people three questions each to try and determine whose story it was. (The storywriters all reply as if it was their story.) The crowd then decides whose story it was—and that person wins, even if it wasn’t really theirs.

Touchy-Feely Games

Suck and Blow. In this game made famous by the movie Clueless, pass a playing card around a circle by placing it on your lips and sucking inward to hold it in place, then pressing it against the lips of the person next to you and blowing to release it. Drop it and you’re both out—but your consolation prize is a kiss!

Kiss or Dare. In this combo of two classics, you spin a bottle in the center of the circle and whomever it lands on gets to choose what they want from you: a kiss or a dare.

Action Games

Thumper. Each player comes up with a funny hand gesture and shows everyone what it is. To start, one player does his own gesture plus another person’s of his choice, then that person does their own gesture plus someone else’s, and so on. If it’s your turn and you blank on what gesture to do next, everyone has to start again.

Clothes Swap. Two boy/girl teams jump into a pair of sleeping bags, strip out of their clothes, and put on their partner’s, racing to see which couple can swap outfits the fastest.




86. Spain: La Tomatina Party

It all started back in the 1940s when some Spanish kids got into a scuffle in the Buñol town square and hit up a nearby produce stand for "ammunition." Now, on the last Wednesday in August every year, thousands gather in the streets of Buñol for what’s become arguably the world’s best food fight, La Tomatina. Happy, half-naked tourists and locals alike are allowed—for exactly one hour—to hurl upwards of 300,000 pounds of tomatoes at one another, just for kicks. Use these tips to throw (no pun intended) your own killer food fight.


The place to have an event like this is in someone’s backyard. Don’t try to do it in a public park, and don’t even think about having it indoors; the cleanup’s not going to be pretty. Invite as many people as possible for maximum mayhem. Hit up a big wholesale or warehouse market for a mother lode of cheap tomatoes. Overripe ones will be the squishiest and kindest to your flesh when they hit you at top speed; ask to speak to the manager about a discount on the unsold produce they’ve just taken off the shelves. Before you put them out for the event, smush each one slightly to soften its blow.


To imitate the Spanish event, guys should come shirtless and girls should wear all white clothes they don’t mind ruining. Everyone dons glasses, goggles, or snorkel masks since tomatoes irritate the eyes (though they’re a natural smoothing treatment for the skin, which is a bonus).


Throw tomatoes! Start with a ceremonial tomato juice-filled balloon volley between two teams. When one team drops the balloon, the other gets to throw the first tomato and start the free-for-all.


All those red, ripe tomatoes making you hungry? After the stash of ammunition has turned to pulp, serve up a heaping platter of spaghetti and marinara to refuel everyone. If you want to stay true to Spain, make it the rice dish paella instead.

More Messy Fests

Good, clean fun? Nah. Here’s some additional inspiration for partying down and dirty.

Historical Carnival of Ivrea.
In this northern Italy town, residents pelt each other with oranges during three days before Lent.

Oozfest. Each year, fire trucks hose down dirt courts at the State
University of New York at Buffalo for what some claim is the country’s largest mud volleyball game. Holi. At this spring festival in India, people toss gulal (brightly colored powder) at one another until everyone looks like they were caught in an explosion at the Crayola factory.

Meet the Author

Melissa Daly is a former Seventeen magazine editor and has written for Self, Shape, Men’s Health, Fitness, and others. She is also the coauthor of eight books in a tween nonfiction series on health and relationships called Sunscreen. She lives in New Hampshire.

Christian Robinson likes to stay indoors on rainy days and look out the window while drinking a big cup of hot cocoa. He has illustrated this book, as well as a few others, while staying indoors on rainy days. In 2016, he won a Caldecott Honor for Last Stop on Market Street. Christian lives in San Francisco, which has more fog than rain. Visit Christian at theartoffun.com.

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87 Ways to Throw a Killer Party 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think its a good book worth the the time to buy