How to Throw a Winter Solstice Party

Some people think of the Winter Solstice as the shortest day of the year. But as optimists who look on the sunny side, we prefer to think of today as a turning point toward brighter days to come. What better reason to celebrate? Here are some tips on how to throw a Winter Solstice party that they’ll be talking about ‘til summer.

Solstice Bonfire
A good fire is key to any solstice celebration. Gather around an outdoor bonfire, a cozy fireplace or just a collection of festive candles. Have each guest write down what they want to leave behind from the last year, and burn 'em up. (Tip: Keep water on hand just in case!)

Write Winter Bucket Lists
Here at Toad, we love cold weather fun. Make this your best winter ever by writing a seasonal bucket list. Is this the year you finally read that classic novel? Make it off the bunny slope? Perfect your hot toddy recipe? We think it is!

Stream Stonehenge
Though no one’s exactly sure why Stonehenge was built, it’s clear that whoever made it had the movement of the sun in mind. Evidence suggests that solstice revelers have been flocking to the monuments since ancient times. Now thanks to technology, you can witness the whole thing via livestream, no international travel necessary.

Give the Gift of Nature
We think of the holidays as a time for gift-giving, but that custom actually began with the Winter Solstice. Get back to the tradition’s roots by exchanging small, earth-y gifts, like seedlings, herbal teas, or candles.

Make a Yule Log Cake
A yule log cake, or bûche de Noël, is a solstice double whammy: Not only does this log-shaped confection celebrate the end of winter, it also honors the Norse god, Thor. While the traditional version is made from butter cream-filled sponge cake covered with chocolate frosting, there are plenty of fun modern takes to try if you want to mix it up.

Wreath making

Create a Community Wreath
Wreaths have always had an important place in winter traditions, starting all the way back from when Celts adorned their doors with boughs of holly. Keep the festivities alive by gathering everyone around a table filled with evergreen branches, pinecones, and other decorative pieces for a fun evening of group crafting. Here’s a helpful tutorial to get you started.

Don’t Forget the Music
You can’t have a party without tunes, right? Make a solstice playlist that includes lots of songs about light and happiness—or darkness and calm, whatever vibe works for you—and keep it going ‘til the sun comes up.

Winter sunrise