The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer.

Back in December, my carpool friend and I talked about how long it was going to be between January and spring break, especially since Easter is so late this year. How would we make it through February and March, we wondered? What would we look forward to? Perhaps we should have a random party to cheer us up. And because I remembered that Brandi’s friend Jennie throws a birthday party for Abraham Lincoln every year, I randomly suggested that my carpool friend and I should throw our own Abe Lincoln Birthday Party. I mentioned it to Mike, who happened to come across the information that this year would be the 200th anniversary of Honest Abe’s birth. So then, of course, we had to have the party. Even if we were the only ones there.

When I sent out the Evite, the final lines were, “Stop rolling your eyes! This will be fun!” But we still got quite a lot of eye rolling. People called us dorks. And nerds. Some people, though, were apparently nerds just like us, because they got really into the idea of Lincoln trivia, a Gettysburg Address game, and everyone’s favorite activity: beard making. There was a lot of trivia/beard smack talking going on at my school last week. Teachers were studying up on their trivia and demanding to know what the media would be for the beard making (I wouldn’t tell them, but I will tell you: cotton balls, black paint, and yarn. Also, I made a lot of copies of this beard template for people to use).

Besides those games and the beard making, I made apple pie and flag cupcakes (I figured that was easier than flag cake when it came to serving at a party). My friend blew up some pictures of Lincoln and we hung them around the house (including in Alisa’s bathroom). We had a “guess how many pennies are in the jar game.” And I tied patriotic ribbon (supplied by Alisa) around rolls of pennies for the prizes. Also, I bought Sam Adams as our beverage of choice. It’s vaguely presidential. Sort of. (It was either that or Natty Greene’s.)

I don’t actually know anything about Abraham Lincoln. I mean, I know the same stuff that my sixth graders know: He was tall, he wore a hat, he had a beard, he made the Emancipation Proclamation, he was assassinated. I respect him for leading our country through a difficult time, but I haven’t really read any books on him or anything. So of course I was in charge of the trivia game. Some of my questions were a little too hard. But there was a lot of studying going on! In my defense, I was afraid of making them too easy. There is a very fine line to walk when it comes to trivia. In the end, I think I had a nice balance of questions, but there were a few anxious moments. Of course, if you are going to come to an Abraham Lincoln party, you are probably going to go with the flow and play along, even if the questions are too hard.

An Abraham Lincoln birthday party is one of those things that could either go well or go very badly, but in the end, I think people had fun. We had snacks, we had craft time, we played some games. We did not sing “Happy Birthday.” Now there is talk of coming up with other random reasons to throw parties. Brian suggested a Taft party. But I am not sure about celebrating Taft. Would I have to put a bathtub in the living room for people to get stuck in?

(The title is from a quote by Abraham Lincoln: “I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer.” He seems like a fun guy.)

Our pictures are here, and Alisa’s pictures are here.

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    The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer. – Through a Glass, Darkly

8 Comments

  1. Tee hee hee … a Taft party. [When I read that, I said, “You’d need a bathtub.” And then you went there.]

    This looks like fun! But I wouldn’t have to make a Lincoln beard. I’d just let mine grow out for a couple months in preparation. 🙂

    Posted 2/14/2009 at | Permalink
  2. Kyra Joy

    Kari, you are my hero!!! Lincoln and then you!!! This is super fun!!!! I searched all of Gettysburg one day for a Lincoln cookie cutter just to be able to channel my frustrations toward my thesis. I finally found some on Ebay a few years later!

    Posted 2/14/2009 at | Permalink
  3. sounds like a super fun party. also, Mike’s beard is awesome.

    flag cupcakes….BRILLIANT! 🙂

    Posted 2/15/2009 at | Permalink
  4. If you were to make this party an annual event – I know someone who maybe grew up and lives in Abe’s hometown and has access to a crazy awesome Abe gift shop. They sell Abe beards & hats.

    (You should come to Springfield sometime. We have Lincoln’s home, Lincoln’s tomb, Lincoln’s law office, the Old State Capitol, New Salem, and the really great Abe Presidential Library & Museum. All of your Lincoln needs in one great location.)

    Posted 2/16/2009 at | Permalink
  5. My husband’s birthday is the same as lincoln’s this would have been a hilarious theme to have!
    Maybe next year…this was so hilarious! how fun!

    Posted 2/16/2009 at | Permalink
  6. I’m so happy you threw Abe a party this year! I didn’t have the energy to do it this year. Last year was the 10th annual, so I decided it would be okay to not host one this year, but I’m SOooooo glad you picked up my slack. Your party looks way more fun than any of mine ever were. I can’t believe how cute the beards are! I might have to borrow that idea when I host a party again.

    Posted 2/16/2009 at | Permalink
  7. Kari

    Thank you, guys! We had lots of fun. Bethany, we hadn’t necessarily planned on making it an annual event, but you might have convinced us with the access to beards and hats.

    Also, Jennie, I am relieved that you aren’t pissed that we stole your idea. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, etc.

    Kyra Joy: I wish I’d had a cookie cutter, dangit!

    Posted 2/16/2009 at | Permalink
  8. oh my goodness, this is so cute. you are so awesome that i hate you. how do you come up with ideas like the mini cupcake flag? that is amazing.

    Posted 5/9/2010 at | Permalink

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