Action Tips: Make Your Party Paperless

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Make your next school dance or birthday party a green event with these easy tips.

Invites

There's no need to waste paper and print out excessive invitations.

  • In lieu of paper invites, save trees by making a Facebook event for your shindig.
  • If you decide to go the traditional route, try plantable paper – it’s made of wildflower seeds and will grow when planted.

Decorations

Recycling is a common theme when living a greener lifestyle — put it to action with your party decorations. Things you probably already have in your cupboard can be used in invigorating ways. Ideas:

  • Turn a cutting board into a cheese tray and fill your salad bowl with fresh lemons and limes for a vibrant centerpiece.
  • Look for retro party decorations at thrift stores.
  • Ask your fellow peers to bring in decorations their parents have stockpiled over the years. You'll save money, help the environment and parents can get rid of all those boxes of decorations they'll probably never use again!

Cups and Stuff

Plates, utensils, cups and the like are a necessity, we know, but they don't have to be plastic!

  • When serving your party food and drinks, go for the real thing. If you don't have enough, rent them from a party-rental supplier.
  • If you decide to go disposable, use biodegradable cups and plates made from corn "plastic" or bamboo — they're as sturdy as paper and plastic, but they compost in just over a month.
  • Try to serve food that doesn't require plates, such as finger foods, or serve cookies instead of cake.
  • Instead of bottled water, serve tap water in a pitcher, or buy one large container of water rather than numerous smaller bottles of water.

Memories

Don't give stuff for the sake of it. The goal is to reduce, reuse and try to consume as little of our resources as possible.

  • Party Favors: Give something that can be reused, like an engraved pen.
  • Pics: You and your friends could take photos with a digital camera or cell phones.

Don't forget to provide a container for recyclables and others for trash!