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Send Your Teens on a Wild Goose Chase

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Lucy Riles: Teenagers can be hard to impress, and many moms find themselves at a loss for ideas when it comes to throwing their next birthday party ... one they might actually enjoy!

Here are a few ideas for your moody, hormonal, growing bundle-of-joy teen that will keep them so entertained they will forget to be bored with life for a day.

Teens with their bikes and skateboards

Biker/Skater Scavenger Hunt: Invite all of your teen's friends to bring their bike or skateboard. Split the kids up, sending them in different locations, racing to the final prize ... think "Amazing Race"! Using cool skateboard stickers, write your clues with chalk on the cement, leaving clues at popular places the kids like to ride. Obviously you don't want the distance to be too far because they will be traveling by bike or board. When everyone arrives at the final destination, the prize will be awaiting them (this also acts as the take-home party favors) -- individual bags of "sick" skateboard stickers to dress their ride!

Sports Scavenger Hunt: Let the games begin! Split the kids up into groups of 5 to "Play for the Prize." After the teams are formed, have them choose names: Rowdy Rockets, Crazy Crusaders, Fast and Furious. Start on your local courts with a little basketball -- first team to make it to 21 receives 20 points. Then it's onto volleyball, playing to 11 and receiving 10 points. Next is baseball -- first team to make it to 3 runs will win and receive 15 points. The team with the best record gets first at-bats. After they've worked up a sweat, the final sport will be relay-race swimming where each team member has a chance to compete ... think Phelps in 2008! Each time a team loses, they get docked 10 points and go into the "penalty box" for 60 seconds while the winning team hoses them down with water guns. You will need judges, so ask your spouse and a few friends -- they should also act as drivers if teams need a ride to the next activity.

"Lux" Sweet-Sixteen Scavenger Hunt:
High-enders ... this one is for you! Start the party at your daughter's favorite restaurant. While she and her friends are having lunch, a pink limo will arrive to pick them up. Inside the limo, have a "sweet"-tooth candy bar station stocked with cupcakes and your daughter's (or son's) favorite type of treats. In the limo, there will be a new cell phone with the next clue in a text message on the phone. This will take her to her favorite store, where the clerk hands her a new purse, the next clue is in the purse ... and so it goes, each clue gathering another gift for your daughter ... having the final clue take her to where her new car is parked! This can just as easily be converted to your son's sweet sixteen. Instead of a pink limo and purse, make it a black Hummer limo and really nice wallet. For party favors, give each girl a Tiffany key chain with their initials on it -- BUT don't give your daughter a key chain yet ... hers will be attached to the car key for her new car at the end of the scavenger hunt!

Scavenger Hunt Location Ideas:
school parking lot, library, church, Starbucks, popular intersection, park, pool, local diner, fire station, or even in your own backyard.

First Clue Invites: Only include the first clue, day, time and place to meet. Make sure to include an RSVP, as you will want to know how many kids will be attending. For example: "When the little and big hand meet at 12, you are invited to join Sarah at the diner where Western Ave. meets Davis Drive on the 4th day in the month of May. Enjoy a bite to eat and look for something PINK!"

What type of scavenger hunt would you throw for your teen?


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