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Inexpensive Hawaiian Luau Themed Church Banquet Ideas

I am searching for ideas on what to serve, how to decorate, and how to entertain for a Hawaiian luau. Our church youth do a Valentine banquet each year and this year's theme is a luau. The meal must be inexpensive but elegant and the decorations homemade.



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By Allison (Guest Post)
January 11, 20050 found this helpful

In college my friends and I hosted a luau in one of our dorm rooms. We found some large pieces of paper (newsprint maybe?) and drew a beach scene. We used posterboard to make headless stand-up beach people that guests could stand behind for pictures. Of course we all dressed up, too--grass skirts, coconut bras, even flippers and snorkels. I don't think we did a costume contest, but that's something you could do. We kept drinks and fruit cold in a wading pool full of ice. (The ice later turned to water, so clean-up in the dorm room was tricky.) We had Beach Boys movies playing to create a beachy atmosphere. We played twister and had a limbo contest in the hall. It was really a lot of fun!

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January 11, 20050 found this helpful

Dear Sue, here's a good, easy recipe for a dessert you might want to serve at your Luau: AMBROSIA CAKE: Combine 1 1/2 cups graham cracker or ginger snap cookie crumbs with 2 tablespoons sugar and 1/4 cup melted butter or margarine and press into bottom of 13x9x2" pan and set aside. Dissolve 2 packages (3 oz. each) pineapple or pineapple-orange gelatin in 2 cups boiling water and cool for about 35 minutes. Stir into gelatin a 20 oz.


can (UNdrained) of crushed pineapple IN SYRUP (you want the extra sweetness) and 1 cup diced oranges. (If using canned oranges, use the 11 oz. can and do drain before adding to gelatin.) Chill 'till slightly thickened (about 30 min.). Fold 2 cups of whipped cream sweetened with 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1 cup of shredded coconut into gelatin mixture and pour into pan. Chill 'till firm and top with shredded coconut . Cut into squares to serve; serves 16. Have fun!

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By Michele (Guest Post)
January 11, 20050 found this helpful

Look on orientaltrading.com for ideas. We thru a luau party for Girl Scouts. We cut construction paper flowers for leis and strung them together with string and cut straws in between. Took a cardboard box and drew and painted fish on it and cut circles out for bean bags to be thrown threw. Made a scene out of a huge piece of cardboard (fridge box) and painted it out and cut heads on it.


The kids stuck their heads thru the cutouts and we took pictures.But go to the website listed and you can find all kinds of ideas. On the food, we had those huge cans of fruit cocktail. A leader and her husband cooked a pig from their farm and brought (cut up already so the kids didn't freak..lol), I can't think what other food was there but the kids and parents loved it.

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By Becki in Indiana (Guest Post)
January 17, 20050 found this helpful

I threw a Hawaiian-themed anniversary party for my in-laws a few years ago. I borrowed some posters featuring palm trees, etc from a local travel agent, and had Hawaiian music playing inthe background (check your public library -- Andy Wiliams and Elvis both had Hawaiian albums, in addition to Don Ho). I served Waikiki Chicken (1 cup each of barbecue sauce and crushed pineapple, 1/2 cup brown sugar -- mix well, pour over chicken and bake -- or do it in the crockpot) and rice.


Pineapple rings add a nice touch, or get some of that tropical fruit cocktail with mangoes, etc. Rather than specifically Hawaiian, think "tropical" -- dishes of goldfish crackers, blue jello with gummi fish in it, etc. At our party, we asked guests to dress Hawaiian style -- I bought a bunch of loud colorful Hawaiian shirts at Goodwill and handed them out. Flowers behind the ear for the women, in addition to flower leis. Flowers and pineapples for decorations and centerpieces.

Have fun -- ALOHA!!!

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By Michelle (Guest Post)
July 29, 20070 found this helpful

Hawaiian/Maui Style Pizza, macadamia cookies, fruit kabobs and punch.

Decorations: volcanos, huts, palm trees, surf boards, leis.

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By JAN. (Guest Post)
June 12, 20080 found this helpful

I had a piano recital (I am a music teacher), and each of the students purchased grass skirts, leis, and flowers in the girl's hair. Afterwards, we had the party outside with a cd of Hawaiian music playing, a big bowl of floating candles on the refreshment table.


Just served punch and cookies. I prepared each student a "tropical" gift bag with fun crafting things that I gathered up..
They enjoyed dressing up!

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