Posted by Dan O'Malley in Home Design

The last box is unpacked, your mail is coming to the right place, and your new neighbors are moving into their new homes, too. It’s time to celebrate your new neighborhood with a block party!

Block parties are excellent ways to meet your neighbors in a casual, convenient environment. Here are our 7 tips for hosting a fun and easy block party.

  1. Meet Your New Neighbors First—Then Plan Together
  2. Choose the Best Location for All Invited
  3. Put Together an Easy, Fun Menu
  4. Start With Cocktail Hour
  5. Organize Kids’ Activities
  6. Exchange Information
  7. End With a Toast and Plan Your Next Block Event!
Neighborhood Block Party

Meet Your New Neighbors First—Then Plan Together

It will make sending invitations and getting help easier if you make introductions to your new neighbors before the party if you can. This also helps make sure you can find a date that works for everyone.

A block party’s success hinges on community, so invite your neighbors to be part of the process!

Have a specific contribution in mind when you meet your neighbors. After inviting them to the event, offer one specific way for them to help out:

  • Bringing cups, plates, and plasticware
  • Bringing their favorite bottle of wine
  • Bringing extra chairs

Chances are they’ll be more than happy to pitch in! This makes for a fun event where each person plays an important role.

Choose the Best Location for All Invited

If you’ll have a larger group, look into reserving your community’s clubhouse if you have one and it’s open and available.

Community Clubhouse Gathering Area

A second option could be asking your city and HOA if you’re able to close off your street for traffic and using that for everyone to gather.

A backyard barbecue is perfect for a more intimate group, if you’re settled in enough to feel comfortable hosting in this space. No one’s expecting perfection, but you’ll want to ensure that you have enough room to accommodate everyone.

Backyard Entertaining Space

Put Together an Easy, Fun Menu

Make it easier on yourself to mingle and get to focus on your neighbors, rather than the food or setup of the event.

Simple finger foods like a cheeseboard, chips, and a veggie platter, as well as chilled beverages and maybe a custom cake for later in the evening should cover your bases.

Block Party Cocktail Hour

Speaking of keeping things simple, don’t go overboard with decorations. Tasteful décor kept to a minimum will be just right for this type of event, especially if it’s an outdoor party.

Start With Cocktail Hour

Ice-breakers can sometimes feel awkward for some, so by starting with a cocktail hour you allow people to trickle in and get to know each other casually before dinner!

Make sure to have non-alcoholic options as well, and a fun and energetic playlist in the background is always a huge help for people to converse more naturally.

Pouring Drink

Organize Kids’ Activities

If your neighborhood is full of young families, be sure to put together a few activities for kids to enjoy and make new friends:

  • Games
  • Movie night
  • Crafts
  • Pool party
Kids Watching Outdoor Movie

For larger organized games, make sure kids are still within eye-shot for parents, and kid-friendly snacks and beverages will help parents out a lot (and make for easier cleanup later).

Exchange Information

Make sure to include an easy way for everyone to exchange info before they leave for the evening, like a table with pens and information cards on the way out (maybe add a cute party favor too, like a mini candle or a small housewarming plant).

If you want to plan a bit more before the event, reach out to collect everyone’s information beforehand and have custom cards printed for each to take (with everyone’s permission, of course).

End With a Toast and Plan Your Next Event!

Celebrate new friendships, new beginnings, and your new community with a special toast at the end of the party. By exchanging info and commemorating the lovely gathering, you’ll be planning your next neighborhood get-together in no time.

Neighbors Toasting


Dan O'Malley
Dan O'Malley


Dan O’Malley is the Vice President of Product Development for M/I Homes.With over 30 years of expertise in residential architecture and design, Dan has been overseeing the product needs of the company's 16 divisions located throughout the Midwest, Southeast, Nashville and Texas for the past 12 years. Before joining M/I Homes, he was a partner in the Chicago office of BSB Design, a national residential architectural firm, for 14 years. Dan is an expert in all aspects of single-family and multifamily design and has received several awards for his successful projects. He is also a popular speaker at various industry events, including the International Builder’s Show, Midwest Builder’s Show, and Multi-Housing World.

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