When some people see the words “bachelorette party ideas” on a magazine cover, their minds immediately go to “strippers.” As fun as it can be to dance with half-naked men or do body shots off of a Channing Tatum clone, not everyone likes that kind of party. Plus, strippers can be expensive. The best bachelorette parties I've been to were the ones where the bride's friends got together to make something special and specific to her. This is what my bachelorette party was like and, while it was just a get-together at a friend's house, it's something I'll remember for the rest of my life. If you want to show your friend a good time but aren't sure how, here are a few cheap and “stripper-free” bachelorette party ideas.
1. A Junior High Slumber Party
This is one of my favorite bachelorette party ideas. Have everyone bring over sleeping bags and camp out in the living room in your pajamas. Do each other's nails and makeup and watch “girly” movies. There's nothing like drooling over Andrew McCarthy in Pretty in Pink while feasting on pizza to remind you of your “tween” years.
2. “Arrest” the Bride
Conspire with the bride's boss/family/whoever she'll be with and have some of your other friends come over and claim to be from the FBI/mental hospital/police/whatever agency you want. Handcuff her and take her to an “undisclosed location” of your choice. For even more fun, make up an agency; being taken by the fashion police for the crime of wearing mismatched underwear or not having enough pairs of shoes is fun in and of itself!
3. Kid Night
Rent a bouncy castle, get some finger paint and Play-doh and watch TV shows from when you were kids. If you still have them, break out the stuffed animals and Barbie dolls. Fraggle Rock is even better the second time around.
4. Spa Day
Go to the city with the girls to get facials, mani/pedis and massages. Some spas will offer discounts if you go as a group. If the masseur's a hot guy, that's a nice bonus.
5. Chick Flick/Ice Cream/Board Game Night
I know I've suggested this for other occasions, but I can't think of anything this wouldn't be appropriate for. Snacks, Yahtzee, movies-it's all up to you. Just be sure to stop drooling over Channing Tatum before the guys get back.
6. Mall Crawl
Some of my college friends and I would make a night out of simply wandering around the mall. We would sample some of the specialty foods, sniff around Bath and Body Works and pick out things for each other to try on. We would always top off the night with a trip to Barnes and Noble, where we'd park ourselves in our favorite section and pass books back and forth. I really miss that. If you live near a downtown district, you could walk around and duck into some of the specialty shops there. A trip to the paint-your-own-pottery store can make some great souvenirs.
7. Go out for Dessert and Drinks
I used to work at the Macaroni Grill, an Italian restaurant that has some of the best desserts I've ever seen. We had customers who would come in after eating somewhere else just so they could have dessert. Find a place you don't normally go to that has great desserts and indulge yourself. You can each get a different dessert and pass around samples or get one to share with the group. Trust me; there's no way you'll be able to polish off a Chocolate Thunder or Cinnabon by yourself!
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to celebrate your friend's pending nuptials in a low-key, girls-only way. Whatever you do, take plenty of crazy photos! How would you give a friend a send-off? Do you have any other ideas? Discuss!