A How-To Guide For An Unforgettable Hen Party
‘O the month of May, the merry month of May’ is not just the month of dancing around a maypole and carrying garlands of flowers, it is also the start of the wedding season in the UK. May through to the end of September is the peak wedding season. Due to our famously wet and unpredictable weather, most people opt to get married in these months in the hope that the weather Gods will be kind, the sun will shine and all will be warm and well. Of course none of us can predict or control the weather, and so we roll that seasonal dice and hope for the best. However, when it comes to planning a hen party, you don’t just have to hope for the best, you can make it the best. Hen parties can also be the worst, again this is also entirely avoidable too! As a woman in her thirties, I have been to a lot of hen parties, I have also had to turn down a lot of hen parties because I simply couldn’t afford them or get the time off work. When it came to planning my own wedding, I chose not to have a hen party. However, I actually ended up with two because it turns out, people like to get together and celebrate their loved ones and special moments in their lives. They also want to make special memories of their own. What they don’t want is the pressure to spend a fortune, take loads of time off, feel pressured to drink more than they are comfortable with and the pressure to ‘perform’ to a certain expectation. Normally, a party, a trip out or a holiday is a time to step away from life’s pressures and relax. Towards the end of last years’ wedding season Hitched magazine polled its’ readers to find out what people secretly hate about hen parties. This poll really showed that it is the pressures surrounding hen parties that really gets in the way of everyone enjoying them. Follow our guide to plan the most pressure-free and fun hen party that you will all love. Here are our Hen Do’s and Hen Don’ts!
Talk To The Bride
Everybody is different, as is every bride. We can never assume what someone might want, however well we know them. What they want out of a hen party might be different from what even they thought they would want. Wedding planning is famously stressful, and the bride may want to relax with a more calm and subdued party or blow off steam in a really high octane environment.
Have an open conversation with the bride and find out:what it is they want, what their expectations are, who they would like to invite. Traditionally, the themes, destination and activities for a hen party are a secret and revealed as a big surprise. However, not everybody will be comfortable with that. If you are keeping it as a surprise, really think about their personality. Consider what their humour is, what things they enjoy doing, and also what they like to eat.
The cost of hen parties is revealed to be the biggest issue surrounding them; “when we asked the Hitched community to share their hen do bug-bears – the rising cost of these elaborate celebrations was by far the most common answer.” Avoid this bug-bear by having clear, transparent and receptive conversations with the invited guests. Everyone will have a different ideal budget, but you can assess how much to spend by asking everyone to message you privately with their preferred suggested amount. This considerate approach will prevent the stress felt by so many and when agreed upon at the beginning of the planning, it isn’t a looming anxiety hanging over their heads and taking away from the excitement.
Secondly, set up a payment plan and agree on a date to be paid. Set this date for at least the month before the event itself. This will avoid chasing late payments after the party. Create and update a spreadsheet of your costs to keep track of everything – you can always share this document with others. Again, transparency is key.
The poll also revealed that people are fatigued by the hen-party WhatsApp groups. The endless messages and notifications can be off-putting and feel stressful when many people have busy lives. There is nothing relaxing about feeling as though you have 26 unopened emails every five minutes. However, a WhatsApp group is a really useful communication tool! It is recommended that you create two WhatsApp groups. One with all the invited guests that is created by the Hen (as she will have their contact numbers) who can then leave the group and make you the admin. The second group should be just those organising the party. That way, there may be more WhatsApp groups but far less messages to revive and respond to.
As exciting and tempting as it is to get caught up in the moment, remember not to overcomplicate things for the sake of it. Sometimes the simpler, the better. One great day or activity is far more memorable and enjoyable than a long weekend of forced fun.
Lastly, think about food. Everyone remembers to think about having alcohol, but food is too often overlooked. These days, lots of people don’t like to drink, and even more don’t enjoy feeling pressured into doing shots or drinking games. Even if you are a group who do enjoy that, having comforting and good food will guarantee you a good time!
Hen Party Activities
The great news is, Dorset Adventure Park hosts hen parties that everybody loves. Why? Because Dorset Adventure Park provides all the ingredients that create a great hen party. At Dorset Adventure Park you can purchase Adult Party Packages and choose between having an amazing time just at the waterpark, racing through the mud trail or combining the two for an absolutely epic adventure. With the park opening this May half-term, book your adult party tickets now by clicking on the link here.
Your hen party can leap your way across an inflatable wibit obstacle course that will test your balance and agility as you jump, climb, and slide your way through the water. You will absolutely love and laugh your way across this aqua adventure. We recommend the mud trail obstacle assault course if you want an absolutely hilarious and unforgettable day. Battle each other across a 2km assault course with over 50 obstacles where you will laugh from beginning to end.
Make memories that last by purchasing photos of your adventures from the Snap Shack. Click the link here to the Snap Shack for further details about capturing your unforgettable day.
Most crucially of all, you can all enjoy the Snack Shack for a menu of locally produced treats to enjoy together.
A day at Dorset Adventure Park means: great fun, laughter, lasting memories, value for money, good food and great times. Everything you need for a fantastic hen-do.