Theme Idea 3: The LaMaze-LeMans Car-Seat Rally
A car rally may seem like an unlikely way to celebrate baby, but it can be an interesting and memorable way to help new parents celebrate with their friends. The invited group arrives at the rally starting point where they are given instructions about where to go, along with general directions for how to get there. Guests are teamed up in groups of four or six, depending on the size of the vehicle that will be making the trip, and then they drive from the start point to the end point as instructed in the route directions.
A road rally is not a race. Participants must follow all local and state traffic laws. They are completely legal, and they do not require any special permits. Along the route, signs are posted that give either further instructions, route alternates, or valuable information that will be needed to decode riddles or clues en route to the destination.
A successful rally requires mapping out a strategy and a road route, but it is well worth the extra effort. This shower is the party solution for car buffs and is a great way to get men involved with all the planning. What’s more, they will be willing and excited participants.
Invitation Ideas and Script
The LaMaze-LeMans Road Rally requires an innovative invitation. For a full-throttle version, hot glue a Matchbox toy car on.
Hit the Road with us!
A Road-Rally Baby Shower to honor
Kate and Scott
And help them celebrate the newest member of their team!
Saturday, February 13th at 10 o’clock in the morning
We will stop for lunch at Jake’s Pizza and be back by 4 P.M.
With plenty of pit stops along the way.
Menu Ideas and Options
Since dinner will be served at the destination, the only additional food that is needed for this party is the “One for the Road” snack pack. You can assemble individual backpacks or fanny packs and count them as favors, or you can pack a Styrofoam cooler for each car. Here are some popular snack items:
- Bottled water or flavored water
- Bottled or canned Frappacinos or other coffee-flavored drinks
- Travel mug with hot coffee (sippy cup optional)
- Rocky Road Trail Mix — nuts, marshmallows, and three kinds of chocolate chips
- NASCAR Pez dispenser and candies
Color Palette and Décor
Use the color palette straight from the road way — Stop-Sign Red, Caution-Light Yellow, Go Green, and Asphalt Black, mixed with checkered flags to carry your theme across the finish line. Road signs, caution tape, and colorful pennants should figure prominently in the day’s décor.,p>Give each car a pennant flag to tie to the antenna and mark their inclusion in the rally as they hit the road. Fill cellophane bags with snack mix and tie with bright-yellow caution tape. Be sure to have a checkered flag at the ready when guests arrive at the final pit stop.
Choosing the Rally Route and Perfect Destination
There are lots of organizations and car clubs that sponsor and create road rallies. Many have webpages with route suggestions and rules. There are also books available on this subject. Remember to allow about eight weeks to plan and prepare for a road rally. To get you revved up about planning the LaMaze–LeMans Road Rally, there are some basic road rules:
Choose a finish destination. Consider local eateries of interest—a famous hot dog stand, a local diner, a popular burger joint, or a happening sports bar. The destination should have ample parking and be able to accommodate the number of guests you will be bringing there to eat. You could also end at a beach or park and have guests pack a picnic lunch.
Select a starting point. This should be within a few miles of the finish destination to facilitate getting guests back to their cars easily. It should have good parking, restroom facilities, and be easily accessible to roads and highways.
Determine a route. Even though your starting and ending destinations may be reasonably close to each other, for the road rally you will be taking the scenic route to get there. The ride from point A to point B should be anywhere from ten to fifteen miles long, with three to five “pit stops” and lots of interesting things to see. Keep in mind that pregnant women require frequent bathroom breaks, so allow for a route that can accommodate this need.
Map the route, run the route, then map it again. Once you have determined the roads to be traveled, prepare a map. Then drive the route yourself to double-check mileage, markers, and other considerations. Once you are satisfied that the route will work, finalize the map.
Label the route. On rally day, you must put up signs and clues along the route to assist rally drivers in finding their destination. Print signs clearly and post securely in prominent areas. At each pit stop, offer a clue for where to find the next sign or a hint about the destination.
Prepare an information package. Make sure every car has cell phone numbers and other vital information in case a car gets lost or other problems arise.
The Perfect Game or Activity
The rally may be all the activity you will need, but if there is lag time while waiting for guests to finish the rally, challenge friends to map out the shortest route to the hospital. Check routes on a GPS system or at Mapquest to determine the shortest distance between mom and delivery.
Gifts That Work with This Theme
When the theme is travel, baby equipment that makes traveling easier will get the checkered flag.
Car seat. This is a great group gift. Federal law requires new parents to have a car seat before they leave the hospital with their new bundle of joy.
Baby backpack carrier. Let baby be a backseat driver and see what Mom and Dad are up to.
Sheepskin car-seat covers. Keep baby warm in winter and cool in summer.
Car seat accessories. Toys that strap on to the seat tray, mirrors that allow mom and dad to see baby from the driver’s seat, and sun shades that affix to windows to protect baby from burning rays are all much-needed items.
A memento of the big rally is all that is needed to say thanks for coming. Try ordering customized key rings or create a LaMaze–LeMans bumper sticker. Fanny packs or backpacks for the travel snacks also could be part of the favor packs.