$70 for a block party? (Vent) - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 26 Old 05-08-2009, 10:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
sunflower.mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Boston suburbs
Posts: 689
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
So we live on an active fun street, with a lot of young families moving in to replace the "first generation" families who moved in during the 60s when the street was developed. Many of these families are well to do and have knocked down the original homes and built $1M+ homes (or bought same from builders) Anyhow - a few of us have updated and live in the original split level houses. And there are still some of the original owners. Anyhow - my vent is, some of the older ladies got together and thought we should have a block party. Great idea! But they asked this AAA personality guy to plan it, and he has come up with a party that is $20 a head for adults, $15 a head for kids, so $70 for our family:
It will be fun - BBQ from a great place, bounce house, popcorn and snow cone machines for the kids - but COME ON! It's even BYOB - I figured we'd at least get some beers for our $70! At first dh and I were like, no way we will pay this and go, but the truth is that although the planner is just an aquaintance, some of the families on our street are close friends and we'd sort of hate to miss it.
The funny thing is - our street is not even so fancy. Just your regular street. I know other people who have just done a block party w/grills at the end of their driveways and the kids running all over. That's how it should be, right? I know for a fact that certain people told him this was way over the top and too expensive, and he just planned away anyhow. SIGH.

Katherine mother to DS 8/03 and DD1 9/06 and DD2 6/10
sunflower.mama is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 26 Old 05-08-2009, 10:28 PM
 
newbymom05's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,589
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
That would seriously irk the frugal pants right off me. Oh well, it does sound like fun.
newbymom05 is offline  
#3 of 26 Old 05-08-2009, 10:32 PM
 
Mary-Beth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 2,205
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I wouldn't go...That's too much $$ for us.
If you go it sets the standard for future parties. Maybe someone will notice that not everyone could be included and will decide to make some changes with the budget in the future.
Mary-Beth is offline  
#4 of 26 Old 05-08-2009, 10:56 PM
 
angie7's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,838
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
WOW that is a lot but if you really want to go and can afford it, I say why not.

single mommy to identical twin girls (3/06) Non-traditional mama just : through life.
angie7 is offline  
#5 of 26 Old 05-08-2009, 11:08 PM
 
mightymoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Mass. Confusion
Posts: 10,291
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It doesn't sound unreasonable to me for what they are offering (I just know that sort of stuff does add up fast), but I agree, what they are planning sounds over the top for a block party.

I suppose you could avoid it on principle and hope that others will too and it will flop and next time around you can suggest something less expensive, but if the others on the street are all going to go anyway, then it won't be a flop and you'll just be missing out. Also, consider that if its close to your house you may want to find somewhere else to be that day if you don't go because your kids may be upset.

Mightymoo - Mom to DD (6) and DS (4)
mightymoo is offline  
#6 of 26 Old 05-08-2009, 11:38 PM
 
Think of Winter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: By the Shore
Posts: 2,339
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I agree that's a lot! I'd be steamed, especially if neighbors weren't asked how much they'd like to spend. We used to do a neighborhood "pitch-in" when I was a kid, which was basically an outdoor potluck.

But...you'll have lots of fun for that $70, have a good meal, kids will be entertained, maybe make new friends. You'll be getting a lot, and you didn't have to plan it.
Think of Winter is offline  
#7 of 26 Old 05-08-2009, 11:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
sunflower.mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Boston suburbs
Posts: 689
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mightymoo View Post
It doesn't sound unreasonable to me for what they are offering (I just know that sort of stuff does add up fast), but I agree, what they are planning sounds over the top for a block party.

I suppose you could avoid it on principle and hope that others will too and it will flop and next time around you can suggest something less expensive, but if the others on the street are all going to go anyway, then it won't be a flop and you'll just be missing out. Also, consider that if its close to your house you may want to find somewhere else to be that day if you don't go because your kids may be upset.
Exactly. While I think his plans are excessive, I am sure that's what it costs. And we will probably go, although if we do skip, we'll head out of town for the weekend (as we'd planned to in fact, although now I think we may postpone so we can go.) And I agree about the boycott - it will probably just be us skipping and thus not sending much of a message.

But this does go to show sometimes it's not so great being one of the less off on a street. Everyone is always pressuring us to sign the kids up for expensive activities, and inviting us to fancy b-day parties, while we do YMCA only and have parties in the backyard. While it's nice to live on a nice street, it gets old to feel like the only ones on a budget.

Katherine mother to DS 8/03 and DD1 9/06 and DD2 6/10
sunflower.mama is offline  
#8 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 02:08 AM
 
Carley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 2,086
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Man, I cannot imagine. First I want to say that you should not feel bad at all for not blowing your money around. You never know... those people could very well be living off of a 7 figure pile of debt. People of any economic demographic who burn their money are foolish, not well off.

I'm sure it did cost that much for them to accumulate so many things. I have NEVER heard of a neighborhood block party becomming such an ordeal, and I live in the city where ponies AND clowns are commonplace at 2 year old's birthdays. To me that sounds ridiculous. Neighborhoods are for casual family fun. Your family could go to a county fair for less than $70

If it were me, I'd let anyone who asked know that we already had planned this great roadtrip & can't reschedule. Too bad. Then take that $70 which is apparently disposable & get a cheapo hotel room with an indoor pool & watch movies in bed! Sweeet!

Good luck OP. Just because they've determined this all doesn't mean you have to participate. You don't have to go into any details, you know? Just be true to yourself. If you want to go, enjoy!

Wife to my of 10 years, SAHM to my 2 beautiful homebirthed girls Sydney (4/29/2006) Kennedy (3/21/2010) & 1 super Newfoundland
Carley is offline  
#9 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 03:04 AM
 
bender's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 518
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Our block parties are a lot lower key. Each house sort of plans it as their big party of the summer, so they'll each do their own thing and share with the various neighbors. One person does a bar, another has a band come in, the daycare place rents a bouncy house, another neighbor sets up the trampoline, I did face painting. A central place is set up for byo-bbq and potluck foods. It's pretty fun, and people just do what they can.

If you don't care for their plans, maybe help plan next year's event.
bender is offline  
#10 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 05:56 AM
 
1growingsprout's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,666
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Just a quick FYI for mr type AAA personality we looked at doing a block party type of thing both where we live now(no hoa) and at our prior home(which had a hoa) and for both places the city wanted the organizers to have some type of liability insurance for the activity. I dont know if that is figured into the cost per person.
Needless to say we never did the offical block party but opted for a large bbq in someones backyard
1growingsprout is offline  
#11 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 10:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
sunflower.mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Boston suburbs
Posts: 689
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1growingsprout View Post
Just a quick FYI for mr type AAA personality we looked at doing a block party type of thing both where we live now(no hoa) and at our prior home(which had a hoa) and for both places the city wanted the organizers to have some type of liability insurance for the activity. I dont know if that is figured into the cost per person.
Needless to say we never did the offical block party but opted for a large bbq in someones backyard
Good point. I did hear he had to get a permit, although I don't know about liability insurance!

Katherine mother to DS 8/03 and DD1 9/06 and DD2 6/10
sunflower.mama is offline  
#12 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 11:28 AM
 
Oriole's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: by the ocean, lakes and mountains
Posts: 4,199
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would try to shuffle the budget around to try and do it if at all possible. Sounds like loads of fun, and if you like the people on your block, you'll hate to miss it.

However, if there was no way to come up with the money without getting into credit, only then I would reconsider.

New endeavor coming soon...
Raising Alice in Wonderland (DSD, 17), and in love with a Superman
Oriole is offline  
#13 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 11:47 AM
 
Maddy123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 135
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It sounds like fun, and I'd probably just pay up and do it. But that is expensive to me.

We have an annual block party on our street every year, and we get a permit and close off the street.

We rsvp to the organizers (some neighbors down the street who are usually in charge every year), and everyone brings a dish. It doesn't cost us anything.

Sometimes we have activities for the kids (a bike parade, etc.), but usually we just get together and talk and the kids play.
Maddy123 is offline  
#14 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 12:43 PM
 
amyamanda's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: VT (zone 5)
Posts: 1,403
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
.

Amanda, mom to Everest (12), Alden (10-1/2), Ellery (7-1/2), & Avery (6)
amyamanda is offline  
#15 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 01:54 PM
 
Chicky2's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: North Texas
Posts: 2,855
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Well, I know parties can be very, very expensive. Most years we throw a big July 4 shebang, and we usually spend around $800-$1000 for it, and that's with other neighbors pitching in. They are priceless in the amount of fun, though. We live in the country though and do not have to have permits for anything.

I say if you can afford it, then go and you'll have a great time! Certainly something your kids will remember.

Happy Homesteading Homeschooling Homebirthing Beekeeping Dready (& a bit redneck even) Mama to 4 fab kids :  dd (23), dd (13), ds (11), dd (5)

Chicky2 is offline  
#16 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
sunflower.mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Boston suburbs
Posts: 689
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I am glad I posted this. The number saying we should just suck it up and go makes me feel better about doing so. We can swing it, I was just flabergasted when we got the invite yesterday!

Katherine mother to DS 8/03 and DD1 9/06 and DD2 6/10
sunflower.mama is offline  
#17 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 05:26 PM
 
Amys1st's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 8,322
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would go, you kids will have a blast, you like the food that is going to be there and next year get involved with the planning. Watch the jumpy house and see how much it is used or if its just a huge headache from all the kids getting hurt.

Last year, I was on the committee and I vetoed the jumpy machine right away because my kids dont like it and end of getting hurt. Another neighbor said her kids were too old anyhow so we decided to just hire my friend the balloon guy who was at the time out of his FT job. He was happy to come and make balloons and get $200 cash from all the tips when we got the message out he was unemployed. That balloon making was the best part and some of the kids still talk about it. We had people on one side of the street bring desserts and the other bring salad or sides. Bring your own meat, we had grills out and bring a cooler full of whatever. We did keg beer for a while but everyone has different tastes.

ITs not the stuff but the people who make the party. I do know the other block does the high end party like you had said including all the men go golfing in the morning. Another block over did the $75 per family and my friend called the organizer because with her 5 kids it would have been $100 and said- hey my kids wont be in the jumpy machine, they wont eat the catered meal and we still have to bring boose and a dish plus feed them so what should we do??? I guess a few others did the same because the jumpy machine was not there!

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
Amys1st is offline  
#18 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 06:18 PM
 
ChetMC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Montreal, Canada
Posts: 2,547
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It sounds like a lot of money, but honestly, it's nothing for us to attend a community event and end up spending $50+ by the time the day is done....admission, face painting, bouncer castles that charge per kid, hotdogs, popcorn and coke, 50/50 tickets to support something or other, bus rides to and from, etc. It all adds up for a family of four or five. The same with the fair. By the time the day is done we're lucky if we've only spent $25 on rides and $25 on food.

Odds are, the food will be better at your party, the line at the bouncer castle will be shorter and the kids will get to stay in for longer than five minutes, and you'll be with friends instead of strangers. I wouldn't go if we couldn't afford it, but I wouldn't feel bad about attending if we could afford it, and provided it wasn't something that was causing a rift in the neighbourhood (but based on your description of the neighbourhood, it doesn't sound like the party is going to be excluding a significant percentage of the neighbours).

Julie - Mom to Elizabeth (Libby) age 6, Penelope (Penny) age 5, Elliott age 29 months, and Oscar who is 1 year old!
ChetMC is offline  
#19 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 06:31 PM
 
ollineeba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Doing better than I deserve..
Posts: 5,376
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
That sounds a lot more elaborate than what I would picture a block party to be. I'm not sure that I'd shell out $70 for our family to attend.. but that's just me.
I think if it's truly a neighborhood block party, and not just one family hosting it, then they should go with whatever the general consensus seems to be. If most people are fine with spending that amount of money, then it seems like a good plan.

We're planning a block party for this summer and it's sort of a pot luck type thing with music, activities.. beverages I'm really looking forward to it! We have some wonderful neighbors.

~e, wife to my sweet T , mama to my turtleman (12) , sunshine (9 ), and monkey (6)
ollineeba is offline  
#20 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 06:35 PM
 
ollineeba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Doing better than I deserve..
Posts: 5,376
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunflower.mama View Post
And we will probably go, although if we do skip, we'll head out of town for the weekend (as we'd planned to in fact, although now I think we may postpone so we can go.)
Hehe.. have you ever seen that Malcolm in the Middle episode where his family decided to skip their vacation at the last minute (which is the same week every year) and they realized that the neighborhood block parties had always scheduled for when they would be away?

~e, wife to my sweet T , mama to my turtleman (12) , sunshine (9 ), and monkey (6)
ollineeba is offline  
#21 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 07:07 PM
 
claddaghmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 3,823
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I wouldn't go unless it seemed socially important. That's a ridiculous amount of money for what you describe.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
claddaghmom is offline  
#22 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 07:22 PM
 
RoundAbout's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 632
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We would go.

It's a bit steep, but probably not out of line for what is included. If you can afford it you will probably ending up having a great time! Though I agree about getting involved next year to scale things down.
RoundAbout is offline  
#23 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 08:23 PM
 
KayleeZoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 5,334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The cul de sac down the street from us does the same thing several times a year- and some of the residents have complained about the $$$, but they all wind up going in the end. I know that for what it costs to rent the bouncers, buy the food, etc. the person in charge isn't making any money. We'd do it, but I wouldn't feel badly if we couldn't afford it. If we didn't go, I'd make sure we were out of the house when they did it, though, so that my kids wouldn't feel badly that they couldn't participate.

Half-marathon running Mommy to 3 spunky girls and 1 sweet boy. Spending my days and nights where my kids need me most- at home with them!!

KayleeZoo is offline  
#24 of 26 Old 05-09-2009, 11:04 PM
 
rebeccalynn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I guess that I just wanted to post that our family would probably not go to give the other side of the argument/decision. We personally choose our neighborhood b/c it is very friendly but does not have an HOA, etc. We have plenty of events and social things but it usually donated services/time and potluck. This is our family's choice though and every family is different. We have chosen to not do so many things that cost money to rather plan those things carefully and keep our yearly entertainment costs under a certain $$ amount.
rebeccalynn is offline  
#25 of 26 Old 05-10-2009, 08:34 PM
 
mran's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 192
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
WOW! It'd cost us $100 to go, and we have a family around the corner w/ 10 kids, it'd be $190 for them, if it were our neighborhood, you can bet we wouldn't be going!

We do a neighborhood wide Easter Egg hunt, each parent contributes a handful of eggs, the men hide them, and then we all hunt together. We've also had a couple of neighborhood bbq's, but we all pitch in, and it's not bad at all. To pay that much - to do that much! - is a lot!
mran is offline  
#26 of 26 Old 05-10-2009, 09:22 PM
 
lilyka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Sioux Falls, SD
Posts: 17,896
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
if you can afford it and think it would be fun and all that I would go. but I would also mae sure the powers that be know you cannot do this every year and that you would like to be in on the planning for a more low key block party next year.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

lilyka is offline  
Reply

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off