10 Tips for a Staycation Ice Cream Social #SummerOfJoy
No travel plans this summer? Bring that festive vacation feeling home with a Staycation Ice Cream Social! My summer is filled with work commitments, so I’m looking for fun Staycation activities for my family that won’t break our budget. Visit your Giant store to find a wide variety of frozen treats from the Unilever brand including Breyers, Ben & Jerry’s, Klondike, Popsicle, Magnum and Frutarre. Here are my tips from my own experience:
Tip #1 – Keep It Simple (and enlist help!)
Remember that the purpose of your Staycation Ice Cream Social is to have fun at home! Choose easy prep options and buy supplies that fit within your normal grocery budget. If you’re dreading decorating for it – then rethink your plan and enlist help from your family members!
Tip #2 – Decorate with Color using what you already have
When I was first planning my Staycation Ice Cream Social I had some elaborate ideas about decorations. But when it came down to it I was under a time crunch and so I picked out four colors (red, blue, green and yellow) and choose serving dishes that coordinated. I used candle holders to hold silverware, napkins, toothpicks and straws. I hung a white shower curtain from our staircase banister to serve as a “backdrop”. I moved our dining room table against the wall so we could serve the ice cream buffet-style. I added a blue tablecloth to give our wood dining room table a new look. I spent the most time on wrapping my cake stand with green wrapping paper to tie-into my color scheme.
Tip #3 – Buy Basic Ice Cream Flavors
You’re going to be putting so many delicious toppings on your ice cream that you want to keep your ice cream flavors simple. I bought Breyers Natural Vanilla, Chocolate and Strawberry as my basic flavors. I splurged on Breyers Blasts! OREO Cookies & Cream because I knew my kids and husband would love it (and I included mini Oreo cookies in my toppings). But we could have totally gone with only two basic ice cream flavors and my kids would have been thrilled – it’s all about giving them a choice and allowing them to serve themselves which makes the Staycation Ice Cream Social a special treat.
Tip #4 – Pre-Scoop your Ice Cream
I had an “AHA! moment” when I started thinking about the scooping dilemma. There are never enough scoops to scoop out the ice cream fast enough before it starts to melt! So I pre-scooped all four ice cream flavors into colorful silicone baking cups that I placed on a tray. After scooping up eight scoops, I covered my tray with plastic wrap and put it into the freezer until I was ready to serve the ice cream. This saves so much time when everyone is serving themselves, and it makes mixing ice cream flavors easier! My kids had no problems picking up the baking cups with the ice cream scoop inside and dropping the ice cream scoop into their dessert cups.
Tip #5 – Raid Your Kitchen for Toppings
Most of the toppings I used were already in my pantry or refrigerator. Here’s what I served as toppings: crushed pineapple, toasted coconut, chocolate chips, peanuts, hot fudge, strawberry topping, maraschino cherries, three types of mini cookies, three types of sprinkles, whipped cream
Tip #6 – Think Mini for Toppings
I just happened to have mini cookies in my pantry – but you can also make a “mini” version of almost any type of cookies, candies or nuts. Just place them in a bag that seals and then gently hit it with a mallet (or hammer wrapped in a towel) to break it into smaller pieces.
Tip #7 – Be Picky about Toppings
You know what your family likes, so only serve toppings that you know they like. I know it’s fun to try new things, but it will help you stay on-budget if you stick to toppings that you know everyone likes!
Tip #8 – Do something CRAZY
Ok, so you don’t normally do it – but this is your chance to allow seconds on ice cream, play music while dining or even serve ice cream for dinner! Just think of anything a little different that you could to to make your Staycation Ice Cream Social more memorable.
Tip #9 – Recruit Help from your Kids
Hey – it’s a free source of help so take advantage of it! It takes time to get everything ready-to-serve so put those kids to work – I guarantee they’ll be motivated to help!
Tip #10 – Take Photos
You don’t host a Staycation Ice Cream Social every day (or even every summer) so take photos of the event! Plus those photos are like your “cheat sheet” for your next Ice Cream Social because you can see how you decorated and what toppings you served.
What are your tips for hosting an Ice Cream Social?
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