Invite a group for an afternoon or evening back in the magical world of the Wizard of Oz. This event is perfect during the halloween season when so many people are eager to wear costumes. Each guest should be encouraged to dress up as a character from the movie.
In the promotions, remind people of all their choices: not just Dorothy, the Tin Man, the Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion, but also the Wizard, the Wicked Witch of the West, the Good Witch Glinda, Auntie Em, and Toto too! If you’re able to accommodate dogs, you might have more than one Toto at the party. (and believe me, people may be eager to bring dogs so think that one out!)
Cover tables with emerald-green cloths, paving a line down the center with yellow napkins folded into rectangles, to mark the Yellow Brick Road. Arrange straw flowers in small tin buckets or watering cans at intervals around the table. Play the soundtrack from the Wizard of Oz or an instrumental version of the songs, to bring back memories of the first time your guests saw the classic movie.
Oz is where fairyland meets Kansas, so now is the time to mix down-home gingham with sparkling crystal, and delicate teacups with sturdy stoneware plates. For the menu, think “country picnic” crossed with a child’s birthday party: cornbread, tomato sandwiches on crusty home-style bread, and warm blueberry muffins, followed by a dessert course of pastel cupcakes decorated with sugar pearls. Or you can serve poppy-seed cake as a reminder of the field where Dorothy almost lay down to sleep.
Teas to serve: cranberry, mint green , or cinnamon spice tea
To make the experience truly memorable, let the guests recreate the Wizard’s award ceremony:
Before the party, prepare blank cards whose outside covers represent the different Oz characters:
- Dorothy – red slipper
- Scarecrow – white diploma rolled up and tied with a ribbon
- Tin Man – pink heart
- Lion – gold circle (medal)
- Wicked Witch – black witch hat
- Good Witch — sparkly pink circle (bubble)
Make sure there is enough white space on the inside to write a sentence. If you make the cards out of colored paper cut into appropriate shapes, paste white paper inside.
Prepare enough cards for all the guests, with multiples of each design. Put all the blank cards in a basket covered with a napkin, and pass the basket around the table inviting each guest to take a card.
Hand out sparkly pens to inspire Oz-like thoughts.
Ask each guest to write a message in their card to encourage the character it represents. For the Wicked Witch , it might be, “May all your troubles melt away like water.” For the Tin Man it could be, “Your warm heart never grows rusty.” The only rule is that each message should be positive.
Collect all the cards with their messages and put them back in the basket.
The hostess or one of the Wizards picks out the cards at random, and passes them to one guest at a time, going around the table. As each guest receives her card, she reads the message out loud.
Then everyone can move on to dessert.
Additional Activity Suggestions:
- Share famous quotes from the movie
- Play name that tune
- Have a sing a long (who hasn’t wanted to sing “Ding Dong the Witch Is Dead?)
- Host a trivia contest between the tables and see which tables knows “Oz” the best.
- Share behind the scenes info on this 1939 classic film.