History is full of great combinations. Laurel and Hardy, Fish and Chips, Chocolate and Peanut Butter, Long Island and Iced Tea— these are just a few great combos. But a brilliant combination that doesn’t get talked about enough is the combo of Foam and a Dance Floor.
The foam party has been a staple of nightclubs for decades at this point. There are very few sights as impressive as the lights of a dance floor filtering through millions of bubbles covering the bodies of revelers as they let the music drive their dance moves.
But what is a foam party? Is it as simple as dumping soap on a bunch of people while loud music plays? No! The foam party has a fascinating history all its own. And if you know what you’re doing, you can even throw one of your own.
A Frothy History
While some old movies feature people playing music surrounded by soapy suds, the foam party as we know it today started in Spain back in the 80s. The club scene in Ibiza was known to be pretty wild, and foam helped it get even crazier.
At a club called Amnesia with an outdoor dance floor, the promoter got the idea to cover everyone with bubbles as a promotional stunt. They used soap and firehoses to make their foam at first, and it was a hit.
Unfortunately, it was also a mess. There was a lot of water and dirt left over after all the partiers went home. So it became important to find a way to make lots of bubbles without pouring lots of water on the floor.
Eventually, foam cannons that fired out suds without blasting out a bunch of water were created. By then, foam parties had spread to the UK, and from there to the US and the rest of the world. As with any trend, their popularity waxes and wanes, but since the 90s, they’ve never totally gone away.
These days they can be just as popular for kids parties as they are in nightclubs.
Finding a Foam Party
At this point, you may be asking if there is a party venue near me or party halls near me that are throwing a foam party regularly or as a special event. The best thing you can do is use the internet to your advantage.
Clubs in your area regularly put their event schedules on their websites or post them on their social media accounts. By following your favorite spots on social media or regularly checking a club’s website, you will never miss your chance to go buck wild at a foam party.
But what if there aren’t any nightclubs in your area throwing foam parties? Does that mean you’re out of luck? Not necessarily. Because you can always throw your own.
Throwing Your Own Foam Party
Why should nightclubs have all the fun? Figuring out how to have a foam party at home has never been easier. Chances are good that you can find a foam machine for rent near your home no matter where you live in the USA.
But before we get into how to throw a foam party, there are some things that we need to make clear. We won’t be getting into how to make a foam machine or any tips for so-called DIY foam party preparation.
That’s because peppered between examples of awesome foam parties online, you can find some examples of people who tried to do it themselves without taking into account potential risk factors.
Those risk factors include using the wrong kind of soap to make your foam, not being careful about where you’re having your party, and using machinery in a way for which it wasn’t designed— such as trying to convert an appliance into a homemade foam machine.
But as long as you avoid those pitfalls, you’re in for a great time. Here is a guide to how to throw a foam party:
Choosing Your Location
Before you do anything to prepare for your foam party, make sure you have the space for it. Most companies recommend you have an area that is at least 20 feet by 20 feet for your party goers to get sudsed up in.
You can have an indoor foam party or an outdoor foam party. But if you don’t have enough space, people won’t have room to really play in your foam. For example, many people love making foam angels. If the dance floor is too packed, that can’t happen.
One important thing to note if you plan to have your party indoors— move all your electronics away from the area you plan to fill with foam and cover the outlets. There will be a lot of moisture around and you don’t want anyone getting electrocuted!
Rent Your Equipment
Since making your own foam machines is not recommended, you need to know where you can get access to the gear you’ll need. Many companies that rent out things like bouncy castles also have foam machines. So check around your area for those companies.
As for the equipment you’ll need, you want to start with your foam machine. You may not need a giant foam machine—one high powered foam cannon may be enough for your party. Check with the people that are renting out the machines for their recommendations.
Something that many companies offer, in addition to foam machines, is inflatable dance floors. These often range from 20’x20’ to as large as 40’x40’. The great things about these inflatable floors is that they have a rubber surface that is resistant to becoming slippery, and they can help contain the foam to one specific area.
The last thing you’ll want to get is your foam machine solution. Over the years, the companies that make solution specifically for the foam party industry have made great leaps and bounds. You can find foam solution that is biodegradable, hypoallergenic, and non-toxic.
Your foam machine solution is very important. The best stuff uses very little water. That means your party goers will get wet in the foam, but the floors and surfaces won’t be ruined. A good foam solution virtually eliminates cleanup—especially for outdoor parties.
Cheap or homemade foam can sting your guests’ eyes or even cause chemical burns. So be sure you get the good stuff.
Don’t Forget the Sight and the Sound
A foam party is a delight for your senses. The feel of the bubbles is great. The smell is very different than a typical dance floor. But to get the full enjoyment out of your party, you need lights and sound.
Having multicolored lights that pulse or rotate makes your foam look amazing. Some simple theatrical lights can do great things for your guests.
As for the sound, you want a banging soundtrack to your foam party. Either hire a professional DJ or rent a good sound system. When your guests can really feel the bass as they swirl their foam, you will know that they are having an unforgettable night.
Just make sure that you are careful with where your equipment is plugged in. Again, you don’t want to run the risk of anyone getting electrocuted.
The last thing to keep in mind are a few safety tips. Let people know that bringing a towel is a good idea. Also, make sure people don’t wear flipflops or high heels. Flipflops are easy to lose, and high heels can slip very easily.
As the person throwing the foam party, be sure to control the amount of foam you fire out. Generally speaking, you’ll want to keep your foam to waist height. If you put too much into your foam area, you may completely cover your shorter guests, which can lead to panic attacks or injuries from running into people.
Lather, Rinse, Repeat
If you have never gone to a foam party, you don’t know what you’re missing. These parties are so fun and so wild that you will want to repeat the experience over and over again. Foam and parties are a brilliant combination— find yourself some bubbles and have a night you’ll never forget.