I would suggest that you gather as many hiking boots as you can. They will be returned. Unlaced they can fit a small plant. Now that we are into fall you can purchase inexpensively, christmas cactus, other green plants, etc. and put the small pot right into the boot. These can be your center piece. Also, if you have a special team in your area you can also find a nice size rock and paint them, as I have, for Ohio State "Go Bucks" And they can also be a center piece. Then each can be a door prize at the end of the party, sparing the boots! :-)
I saw these at a craft fair not too long ago and thought that they were really cute!!
Someone had taken some old worn out hiking shoes/boots and planted hens and chicks in them.
They cut holes in the tops and sides of the shoes, then filled the shoe w/ dirt & planting the plants.
They had some that had flowering plants in them though I'm not sure what kind they were. To give them an even more inertesting look they left the shoes outside so that moss grew on the shoes. What a neat affect that added to them.
I went to thrift stores and yard sales to pick up my boots now I'm letting them "season" outside until they are ready for me to do my planting.
Hope you like the idea!
Are those mylar 'Space Blankets' expensive? they use a lot of them at the finish line of a marathon. They are a classic item mentioned in 'ten essentials' lists.
Get some inexpensive water bottles and label them with the guests names - fill them with things like whistles, safety matches, a compass (real or a toy), a bandanna, spare shoelaces - things like that.
Make color copies of a trail map or topographic map and use it to cover the front of inexpensive notebooks for hiking journals.
Buy inexpensive photo albums and cover the front with the topographic map paper, or other outdoorsy paper.
Make coasters or ornaments out of felt to be shaped like hiking boots or a compass. You could also do keychains - shrink plastic would work well for this - the kind you can print on and then shrink.
Little first aid kits out of film canisters.
(can you tell my husband is a Boy Scout leader?!??!)
Why not wrap up some bags of trail mix, granola bars, power bars, and beef jerkey. (all favorites of backpackers) You could even put them in earth toned gift bags or brown paper bags.
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