Ice Cream Social Ideas for All Ages

Ice Cream Social Ideas for All Ages

In the heat of summer, we all scream for ice cream. But why not turn this cool, sweet summer treat into a cool, sweet summer (or year-round) party? An ice cream social is a classic party theme and is suitable for all ages. Whether you’re celebrating a birthday or special event, or just want to invite friends over for some frozen fun, an ice cream social is hard to get wrong. The best part is that it’s so easy to plan. You can make it as simple or as elaborate as you like, but always keep it centered around the main attraction: the ice cream!

Here are 5 fun ideas to help you throw the best ice cream social, whatever the age of your guests.

Go vintage. There’s something inherently nostalgic about ice cream as it is, but even more so if you transform your space into an old-fashioned ice cream parlor! Set up colorful tables with wrought iron chairs. Have a custom sign with a name for your ice cream shop and a menu of the daily ‘specials’. Set up a buffet using vintage glassware and accessories, including old-school sundae glasses and sodas for floats. You could also play vintage tunes or even hire a jukebox to really set the scene. For a kids party you can also add fun elements like balloon ice cream decorations or an ice cream-shaped pinata.

Get creative with toppings. An ice cream bar where guests can make their own combinations is always a hit, especially if you provide a wide variety of creative toppings. Of course, the obvious ones should all be there: nuts, sprinkles, fresh berries, crushed candy bars, hot fudge, and caramel sauce. But there are lots of others too, such as shaved coconut, candied nuts, chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, crushed cookies or pretzels, crushed candy bars, sliced fruit, fresh mint, strawberry sauce, whipped cream, jelly beans, or M&Ms. You could even ask your guests to bring a topping of their choice and give a prize for the best one!

Serve different forms of ice cream. Most ice cream socials keep it simple with scoops served in cups and cones. But there are lots of other options, such as ice cream bars, floats, and sandwiches. You could even serve fried ice cream! You don’t have to stick to ice cream either. Gelato, frozen yogurt, sorbet, and sherbert are also options. Focusing on one of these or simply having a variety available will make your ice cream social stand out. You could even make it a tasting which is a fun alternative to a wine or beer tasting.

Make it boozy. For an adults party (or just for the adults at a party), it can be fun to add alcoholic options. For example, you could place popsicles into glasses of champagne, make ice cream cocktails, or serve boozy milkshakes.

Play ice cream themed games. A kid’s party should always have some fun games and activities. Get creative with twists on classic party games like ‘pin the sprinkles on the cone’ or a themed obstacle course, relay, or scavenger hunt. Blind taste tests are also fun, especially if you throw in a few unexpected (even savory!) flavors. And, of course, an ice cream eating contest is always a hit! Of course, you should also feel free to mix in other summer party game favorites to keep the little ones entertained.

Ready to get ice cream social? Start sending out those invites!