How to Host a Greener Birthday Party for Your Teen

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When you’re throwing a birthday party for your teen, it can be tough to know how to do it exactly right. But regardless of your teen’s age or how perfect you want the party to be, there are always ways to make a birthday party more eco-friendly. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

Buy Fresh Instead of Packaged

There are hundreds of details to organize in preparation for any kind of party. Fortunately, food is one of the fun ones. And there’s a simple way you can make your party snacks more eco-friendly! Whether it’s a fruit tray or an assortment of veggies, try to buy fresh instead of opting for packaged. If your teen wants watermelon at their party, buy a whole watermelon and spend a few extra minutes cutting it up in your own kitchen. Make a cake from scratch instead of buying a pre-packaged one or using a pre-packaged mix. Head to your local butcher to purchase burgers and hot dogs, if that’s your vibe. The biggest eco-friendly reason to do this is that you’re cutting down on the amount of waste you produce. Buying fresh and local can often help cut down on plastic and other non-biodegradable materials that only end up in the landfill

Make it a Backyard Party

When you host a birthday party in your house, you’re inevitably going to use more energy than you would if it was just your family inside. During the hot summer months, your air conditioning has to work much harder to keep more bodies cool when everyone’s inside. And unfortunately, buildings including houses consume almost 40% of the primary energy in the United States already. To cut down on AC strain and energy usage, consider making your teen’s birthday party an outdoor affair. When you’re hosting parties during the summer, a backyard is a perfect venue. And if you have a grill set up or a fire pit, making s’mores can be a perfect way to end the night. Say goodbye to high energy usage because you had a bunch of teenagers in your house for a few hours.

Keep the Gifts All Natural

Beyond skipping the wrapping paper, make sure your gifts for your teen are all-natural and ethically produced. If a modern lab can screen ingredients to 0.1% and lower, the ingredients list on a new skincare product should be extremely accurate. In addition, try to invest in gifts that will be useful for your teen for years to come. If they love writing and reading, consider a journal made of recycled paper. Or if your teen is particularly passionate about an environmental cause, ask guests to bring gifts in the form of proof that they donated to your teen’s cause. Not only is this gift incredibly thoughtful, but it’s utilizing the resources we have to do good elsewhere in the global community. And if you absolutely have to wrap a present, consider using old wrapping paper or a reusable bag. Little changes can make a big difference!

Planning a birthday party for a teenager can feel overwhelming at times. But when eco-friendliness is an important value in your family, it only takes a few simple changes to make sure you’re minimizing your impact on the environment and making ethical choices.

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