How to Host a Baby Shower: Tips, Tricks, Checklist

Last updated: January 17, 2023

A baby shower is a fantastic way to celebrate with soon-to-be parents. It is the perfect event to bring parents and kids together. 

With a little bit of organization and some creativity, you can throw a meaningful celebration that the expecting parents will remember.

In this post, I’ll cover everything you need to plan a great baby shower:

  • Collecting RSVPs
  • Games and Activities
  • Sample Agenda
  • Guest Bios (my secret weapon!)
  • How to Introduce People
  • Group Photo Tips
Why listen to me: I’ve hosted hundreds of parties all over the world. I even helped Shen & Megan take their baby shower from ok to wow before writing this blog post. The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and New York Magazine have all written about me. 

Meet Your Hosts

Megan & Shen are entrepreneurs living in Los Angeles. They recently had a baby! Megan is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and runs a few physical therapy offices in LA. Shen runs a web development agency and a SaaS company called Personal Wine Curator. 

Megan & Shen in LA

Baby Shower Games & Activities 

For their baby shower party, they enlisted the help of their family for planning and logistics. They got 41 people together in total. That included nine kids and 32 adults.

Pro tip: Delegate time for adult games and separate time for kid games. 

Here are their three favorite baby shower games and activities:

  1. Scavenger Hunt: For the kids, they hid socks and small gifts around the yard. The kids then ran around searching for the prizes. This was a great way to get the kids to burn a lot of energy toward the beginning of the baby shower. 
  2. Relay Race: For the adults, teams of four were formed and the race took place in the front driveway. The race started by having each team member spin around a bat then chug wine from a baby bottle. Next they balanced an uncooked egg on a spoon while running, swaddling the egg in a blanket on a baby doll. After that they ran while holding a balloon in between each partner. To finish the race the team had to pop it without using your hands. Shen and Megans only advice would be to make the relay race longer because some teams were done within a few minutes. 
  3. Icebreakers: A crucial activity for any event. They circled up guests and did a round of classic icebreakers. This was an enlightening activity that connected people and provided the right amount of comfort to cross pollinate the many disparate groups of friends and families.

Continue reading: See our article How to Do Icebreakers for the best advice on facilitating icebreakers at your party.

Lessons Learned

I interviewed the couple to find out what they learned from hosting a baby shower in Los Angeles. This will be helpful to you as you plan your own event. 

Q: What was the most surprising part of the party? 

A: Nice alcohol and drinks don’t matter. We forgot a bottle of tequila that was the key ingredient for our favorite cocktail recipe. I asked a guest to buy a bottle from the store for me. She got the cheapest stuff you can buy, it was awful. I quickly realized that the only person who cared was me. 

Q: What was your favorite part about the party?

A: Parties like this are great because you already know almost everyone, and they genuinely want your party to be fun. In other words, they are rooting for you. And since all of your guests want your party to be enjoyable, it makes it easy to entertain. 

Q: Did you stick to your schedule? 

A: The event went on pretty long. We didn’t really kick people out but some people started to trickle out. It was nice because the people who we hadn’t talked to yet stayed. This allowed us to have genuine conversations with every guest. 

Q: Anything else? 

A: One guest didn’t know it was a pool party and didn’t bring a swimsuit for their child. The kid was heartbroken (until we convinced him it’s not a problem to swim in jeans). We learned that even when following up with many emails there will be people that are busy and only pay attention to time and location. If there are other important details, include them in your SMS reminders.

Baby Shower Guest Bios

Guest Bios are short summaries about individuals that can include professional or personal information. 

They help your guests start conversations and feel special and valued at your party. They should be brief, lively, and informal, rather than sounding like a resume or list of achievements. 

Don’t spend more than 20 minutes writing your guest bios. They can be different lengths, and you don’t have to do them for every person. 

Send these Guest Bios in your reminder messages, or create a Google Doc and allow people to change their own bios. 

These are intended to be a teaser for attendees, rather than an exhaustive list of everyone at the party.

Pro tip: Collecting RSVPs and sending out guest bios increases your attendance rate. 

Name Tags

The point of wearing name tags is to make it easy for everyone to meet each other.

You should use name tags at your baby shower, even if you think it feels too formal.

Trust me: Buy some name tags ahead of time!

Put one on yourself, and ask each of your guests to put one on as soon as they arrive. 

The main function of having your guests wear name tags is to set the expectations that everyone is here to meet each other. This reduces social anxiety. It will also help to mix and mingle between your family and friends.

Shen said it was helpful to assign someone to be in charge of name tags because there was a lot of resistance to wearing them.

Group Photo Tips & Tricks

Taking a group photo will create a great memory from your baby shower.

I encouraged Shen and his wife to plan for a group photo with all of their family and friends. They hadn’t considered it when they were planning the agenda.

Afterwards, they got this great group photo:

A baby shower group photo in Megan & Shen's backyard in LA
Megan and Shen hosting their baby shower in their backyard.

Here’s how to setup and take an excellent group photo at your baby shower:

  1. Decide and commit to a time that you’ll take the photo.
  2. Set a reminder for yourself, perhaps with a phone alarm, for when to do it.
  3. When it’s time, turn down the music and make an announcement.
  4. Ask everyone to gather for the photo.
  5. Pick someone to take the picture, ideally on your phone so you’ll have the pictures.
  6. Tell them to take several photos: wide angle, normal, portrait, and landscape.
  7. Done! Thank everyone for doing the photo. Then turn the music back up and continue your baby shower.

If someone doesn’t want to be in the group photo, ask them to take it. 

In this video, I explain all the details you need to know about taking a group photo at your party:

Conclusion

A baby shower is a great way to show the parents-to-be that you care about them. Whether you’re hosting it for yourself, or hosting it for someone you care about, you’ll create new connections, life-long memories, and help celebrate the upcoming baby.

Remember these four things for your baby shower: 

  • Collect RSVPs
  • Send out Guest Bios
  • Use name tags!
  • Get a group photo

My name is Nick Gray and I am the author of The 2-Hour Cocktail Party. This book teaches you how to host a successful party for any occasion, from networking to baby showers to clothing swaps. I have personally helped more than 150 people host a party. Literally all of them made new friends and deepened their relationships with existing friends. 

When is your party? Send me an email and I will hold you accountable. Plus I’ll answer any question you have, free of charge. I love talking about parties.

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About the author

Howdy! I'm Nick Gray. Most people know me as the Founder of Museum Hack. I wrote a book, The 2-Hour Cocktail Party, about making new friends and building big relationships through small gatherings.