This weekend my kids are invited to two birthday parties each, both on the last day of Passover. For us, it's not a big deal, we don't celebrate the last day as a holiday, and we allow our kids to make their own choices about what they will and won't eat during the holiday. But for more religious families it would be a problem. You can't completely avoid other people's conflicts when you schedule a kid's party, but holidays have a special weight. While you might not feel guilty if you schedule over a guest's t-ball game, you might if you schedule over his religious holiday. So, what do you do if you discover that you've inadvertently scheduled your child's party during a holiday? We have tips.
Avoiding a problem is always the best solution to a problem. It's always a good idea to check a calendar and make sure you aren't scheduling over something important. I once heard of a couple who was amazed at how easy it was to book their wedding venue, until they realized they'd booked it for Easter Sunday, and they were Christian. If you see a holiday on the calendar that you aren't familiar with, ask someone. Or use, the all powerful Google to try and figure out if it's an issue. If you do accidentally schedule over a holiday that you don't celebrate, you have three options.
1. Reschedule - Before deciding on this, check with your entertainer or any other vendors you may have and make sure they can be rescheduled. If you've rented a venue, check your contract. Rescheduling should only be done if a LARGE number of guests won't be able to attend. After all, these are kids - if you reschedule for two guests, those are the same two guests likely to have the flu on the rescheduled date. The one time that rescheduling is a MUST is if you've scheduled a party for a school or other public organization (such as Girl or Boy Scouts) on a religious holiday. Schools and public organizations have a responsibility to make sure that ALL their members or students can attend, regardless of religion.
2. Try and work around the problem - If a parent tells you that you've scheduled a party during a holiday ask questions. Is the food a problem? The time of day? The activity itself? There may be an easy work around so that all your guests can attend.
3. Learn for next time - You can't make everyone happy and no one guest will make or break a party. Apologize and promise yourself you'll check the calendar next year.