How to have an NBA themed birthday party

Just because the NBA is still in lockout and does not appear to be any closer to a resolution, does not mean that you cannot still throw a basketball birthday bash. This is an especially good idea for children's birthday parties. Kids may not understand everything that's going on with the NBA lockout but they do understand that they want to celebrate their birthday with one of their favorite things— basketball.

Me with my girls' basketball team of last year. We took 1st place. This years' season has just started.
Lisa Mason

Here are some ideas on how to have an NBA birthday party:

Guest of honor's favorite - Know who the guest of honor likes most in the NBA- team and players. This will help you use this theme throughout the party. Decorate in his favorite team's colors, wear a jersey from his favorite team yourself and show that you really know him by knowing who he loves in the NBA.

Cake and party favors - Get a basketball themed came, a cake in his favorite team or even of his favorite player's face. The party favors can be basketball themed for even more fun. Look for cards, accessories, whistles and other fun party favors in an NBA/basketball theme.

Decorations - Do the basketball theme throughout all of the d├ęcor. Everything from tablecloths and napkins to wall hangings and the music can be done in an NBA theme.

Watch old NBA clips - Play old clips and recordings of NBA games, especially if you have any of the guest of honor's favorite team or players. Pull out those old games you stashed from last season and have them playing during the party to help set the tone.

Costumes - For added fun, make it a costume party and have all the guests comes dressed as their favorite NBA or WNBA stars or invite them to wear their favorite NBA jersey. If you go the costume route, give out prizes to the best costumes.

Drills and competitions - If possible, have the party outdoors or at least with access to a basketball goal. You can run drills and competitions to keep the party lively and give out prizes to the winners.

These are just a few ideas of how to have an NBA birthday party, despite the current lockout preventing the season from moving forward.

Lisa is a youth basketball coach, resident of Texas and long-time fan of the San Antonio Spurs and Silver Stars.

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Updated Monday, Oct 3, 2011