Neighborhood Block Party
Annual Block Party - Saturday, September 9, 2023
Deadline to Register: Monday, August 28
Why Have a Block Party?
There is no better way to get together and meet your neighbors than to have a block party. Neighborhoods are stronger and safer places to live when there is a sense of caring and community in the area. This can develop at a neighborhood block party.
Block parties vary from a simple gathering of a few folks in a front yard sharing memories and beverages to elaborate, highly organized events involving dozens of streets in a neighborhood. Whichever type suits your area, we encourage you to make this a day to renew neighborhood awareness, exchange greetings, and to celebrate the importance of neighborhood relationships.
Plan the Party
Do what works for you, but respect your neighbor's property and privacy. If you use the street for your party, do not block residents who do not want to participate. Be sure that emergency vehicles are able to enter the block party area at all times.
Your imagination is the limit when planning activities that will make your block party memorable. Make activities appropriate for the age group, safe, and fun. Some suggested activities are listed below:
- Bike decorating contest/parade
- Staged photo wall for party pictures
- Cookie decorating contest
- Talent show
- Watermelon-eating contest (no hands is fun!)
- Art contests (use sidewalk chalk for this or for 4-square and hopscotch games)
- Volleyball, Horse shoes, Scavenger hunts
- Inflatable bounce houses
- Cake walk/snow cones
- Hula hoop contest
- Outdoor movie
- Water games (shaving cream and balloons are essential)
- Pet parade
- Face painting
- Relay races (try balancing an egg on a spoon)
- Bubble battle
- Live band/music/dancing/karaoke
- Visits from the City's Fire Department, Police Department, and Public Works Department always please the kids. (Check appropriate space on the registration form to request visits)
Keep It Simple
Potluck dinners are easiest for beginners. Since many people are near their homes it is probably convenient for them to use their own facilities and utensils. Ask neighbors to bring their own lawn chairs to the picnic site. Consider an ice cream social: provide ice cream and invite neighbors to bring toppings.
Inform Your Neighbors
Get the message out to all your neighbors. It's a good idea to get the word out at least one month in advance and to distribute reminders the week of the party. This is a good opportunity to visit with your neighbors and make contact with those you haven't met.
Take block party fliers door-to-door if possible. If you wish to cover a very large area, try dividing your neighborhood into equal sections and working with neighbors to make sure everyone is informed. If your neighborhood utilizes Nextdoor, post the date and details on the site.
Make your flier or invitation catchy and informative. In addition to the date, time, and place, list all the necessary items to bring, such as food, beverages, ice, and paper goods. Suggest extras, such as lawn chairs, coolers, bug spray, sunscreen, and athletic equipment. Give a brief preview of the party agenda. List phone numbers of organizers.
Have Fun & Keep it Going
Once the block party begins, relax and enjoy the fun! Visit with neighbors to gauge their interest in future activities of this type. Some neighborhoods may wish to plan regular activities that promote neighborhood interaction. Anything that fosters a sense of community is a welcome event in any neighborhood!
Consider other events such as annual neighborhood garage sales, a spring clean up, holiday parties, and beautification projects. If your neighborhood hasn't already done so, you may wish to form a neighborhood association.
Keep the arrangements as simple as possible and the atmosphere relaxed and informal. Name tags are recommended, especially in newer neighborhoods. After all, the point is to get acquainted!
Block parties are a good place to discuss neighborhood concerns, but don't make your block party into a business meeting. It is okay to distribute a newsletter or literature and circulate a sign-in sheet.
Remember that you are not alone. The City of Owasso looks forward to receiving block party registration forms. We know that your neighborhood is a vital part of the community, and we are here to help you whenever we can.