How to throw a cracking Bonfire Night party
You’ve done Halloween and Christmas is just round the corner, so we think Bonfire Night is just the thing for some extra fun in the run up to the festive season. You can celebrate with your own bonfire or even go to a planned firework event, but if you’re partying at home, we’ve got lots of tips to help the night go with a bang!
Create a cosy atmosphere
Whether you’re planning to invite friends over to celebrate Bonfire Night, or you just want a cosy night with the kids, we’ve got lots of little tips and ideas for a great Bonfire Night party.
It’s usually a bit chilly come November so we think it’s a good idea to set out plenty of cosy throws to keep everyone warm.
Pop some fairy lights in jam jars or clear vases to set the scene and create a sparkling atmosphere!
On to the bonfire
Having a bonfire is a great idea but not always practical, especially if it’s in your garden! So, why not use a chiminea or a fire pit, instead?
They’re much safer than making your own bonfire and they’re perfect for your garden, particularly if you don’t have much outdoor space.
Friends and family can safely sit around a fire pit or chiminea eating party food, telling stories, singing songs and toasting marshmallows.
If you don’t want actual fire but still want some heat, we’ve got a great range of outdoor heating that will create a cosy atmosphere.
Bonfire Night party food
Food is the star of the show when you’re throwing a party, but we think it’s a good idea to keep it simple and stress-free. One-pot meals that can be made in a big batch and kept hot, are perfect.
Things like chilli or macaroni cheese can be cooked in a slow cooker and then served in bowls, around the bonfire.
Check out our range of slow cookers to help you get the party food going! If you’re not into one-pot meals you could always go classic with hot dogs or jacket potatoes as both are popular choices for Bonfire Night food.
Hot dogs are quick and easy; just pop plenty in the oven, get some pre-cut rolls to save time and then add slow-cooked fried onions, tomato ketchup, mustard and hot sauce if you like a bit of spice!
For fluffy jacket potatoes, scrub and then pierce the skin with a fork or knife before wrapping the potato in tin foil. Pop in the oven until they’re cooked and then place them around the edge of the fire to keep warm.
Have plenty of butter ready and grated cheese and let your guests help themselves. Baked beans are also a great favourite to go with jacket potatoes.
It’s nice to have some sweet things to nibble on after the main bonfire party food. We think toasted marshmallows are a must-have and the kids love them. Do make sure they’ve cooled a little after toasting as they can get super-hot in the middle!
Another favourite is toffee apples which are much easier to make than you think and they always go down well.
Drinks for a bonfire party
Friends and family will really appreciate a home-made drink that has been made specially for Bonfire Night. We think mulled wine is perfect and is too good to save just for Christmas!
Here's five quick and easy steps to make your own mulled wine:Step one
Take an orange and stud it with a small handful of cloves.Step two
Put the orange in a large saucepan and add red wine, one cinnamon stick, grated nutmeg, sugar and mixed spice.Step three
Add a cup of water and gently heat for 10 minutes, until all the sugar has dissolved. Be careful not to boil it – this will evaporate the alcohol, and we don’t want that!Step four
Slice another orange, add to the saucepan and stir.Step five
Sieve into a large jug, then serve and enjoy while it’s still hot!
You’ll also need a non-alcoholic drink for the kids so why not make delicious milky hot chocolate in the slow cooker! All you need to do is pop the chocolate powder and milk into the slow cooker, following the instructions on the tin and turn the cooker on low to heat the mixture for a couple of hours.
Add some chocolate chips for an extra creamy drink and serve up with a ladle straight from the slow cooker. Sprinkle the hot chocolate with mini marshmallows and grated chocolate. Top off with a squirt of cream if you’re feeling very decadent!
Keep the kids busy with Bonfire Night games
We know the kids (and adults) love fireworks but let’s face it, they don’t last all night. So, you’ll need some ideas to keep the kids busy for the rest of the evening.
We think classic party games are always popular and you can’t go wrong with pass-the-parcel, pin the tail on the donkey or musical chairs.
As well as classic games, get yourself some glow sticks and try out some of these ideas:
Glow stick treasure hunt – simply hide glow sticks around the garden or in the house. Put them under plant pots, behind chairs, in corners and let the kids have fun searching for them.
Set up a glow stick ring toss – you just need something fairly tall such as a large drinks bottle, then let the kids take turns to throw a glow stick over the bottle. If you’ve got very little ones, loop two glow sticks together so it’s a bit easier for them.
Sparkler games – writing out your name with a sparkler... we’ve all done this at one time or another! The kids love it, too but give them gloves to wear and make sure they know the safety rules. Don’t forget to take plenty of sparkly pictures!
Fizz... crack... bang! It's time for fireworks
Get a selection of fireworks depending on how much space you have and your budget.
We think it’s a good idea to take into consideration the ages of the children and if there are any cats or dogs in the family. Most pets can get nervous if there are lots of loud bangs and very small children usually prefer colourful fireworks that fizz and crackle, to the ones that can produce, sometimes, ear-splitting bangs!
Remember, you don’t have to buy fireworks if you’re not keen and sparklers are an ideal, much quieter addition to any bonfire party.
Whichever you choose, do remember to always follow the Firework Code.
Keeping pets safe on bonfire night
As we mentioned above, pets are scared of loud noises and the unpredictability of fireworks. The sights and sounds of Bonfire Night can be stressful and frightening for your pet. During this time, it’s important to make sure they’re physically safe and that any fear or adverse reactions they may have to loud noises is kept to a minimum.
Take a look at our top tips for keeping your pets safe and comfortable on Bonfire Night:
- Choose a room which your pet is used to and put their bed and a favourite blanket or toy in there.
- Close all windows and doors, then draw the curtains and blinds to block out as much noise and light as possible.
- If your pet is used to the noise of the TV or radio, turning this on can help to block out some of the firework noise.
- If your pet shows signs of fear or distress, don’t punish them.
- If you do interact with your pet, do so in a calm, quiet and reassuring way without making a big fuss.
- Don’t show anxiety or fear yourself, as your pet will pick up on this and become more anxious.
Whatever you decide to do this Bonfire Night please do it safely and always follow the Firework Code.