These Galentine's Day Party Ideas Would Make Leslie Knope Proud

These Galentine's Day Party Ideas Would Make Leslie Knope Proud

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February 13, 2024, is fast approaching, and there are few things I love more than an excuse to gather the girlies and hype each other up. While you certainly can and should show love to your besties all year round, there's also a semi-official day to celebrate your best friends—all thanks to my personal superhero, Leslie Knope of Parks and Recreation. That day, of course, is Galentine’s Day.

As Leslie (iconically portrayed by Amy Poehler) explained on Parks and Rec back in 2010, February 13 is for the girls. Yup, Galentine's Day is a full 24 hours dedicated to celebrating the female friendships in your life.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with spending February 14 with your partner or going on the Valentine’s Day date of your dreams, but there’s something special about celebrating the forever love that comes with female friendships, no matter how you feel about V-Day itself.

Whether you're new to the concept or just looking to take your Galentine's Day festivities to the next level, I've got you covered. Take a page out of Leslie’s book, gather up all of the Ann Perkins-tier friends—which is to say, all of the rainbow-infused space unicorns and beautiful tropical fish in your life—and plan something special!

So, when is Galentine’s Day?

Per Ms. Leslie Knope’s edict (which is how I live most of my life anyway), Galentine’s Day falls on February 13, or the day before Valentine’s Day.

Where did Galentine’s Day come from?

Like Festivus and Slapsgiving before it, this holiday was born on a television show. Galentine’s Day first entered the mainstream on a 2010 episode of Parks and Recreation (aptly titled “Galentine's Day,” in case you were wondering). In this episode, Leslie plans a brunch for all of her closest friends, complete with presents, hearts, declarations of love and, of course, the key to any good celebration: lots of mimosas.

Haven't seen the original Parks and Rec episode? Catch up on all the Galentine's Day goodness below:

“Every February 13, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it, breakfast-style," Leslie explains. "Ladies celebrating ladies. It’s like Lilith Fair, minus the angst. Plus frittatas.”

While the holiday started on the small screen, it quickly took on a life of its own, thanks to both the popularity of the show and the ingeniousness of the idea. Today, Etsy is brimming with Galentine’s Day merch, Hallmark sells dedicated cards, and you can even buy Galentine's Day bouquets. Suffice to say, this made-up holiday has officially made its way into the mainstream, and I’m here for it.

How can I celebrate Galentine’s Day?

Ultimately, Galentine's Day is just about having fun and making special memories with your greatest gal pals. (Or pals of all genders! Really, there aren't rules.) There's no right or wrong way to celebrate: If the group chat bonds over drinking rosé and rewatching classic rom-coms, all the more power to you! But if you need a little inspo, here are some Leslie Knope-worthy celebration ideas.

1. Host a pajama party.

Who said sleepovers had to end in middle school? Absolutely nothing screams BFFs like a true girls night in. Ask your friends to pick out a pair of Valentine-themed pajamas (they can be hot or sweet, depending on your vibe) and have the crew over for drinks and Chinese food. Then, break out a fun game—try We’re Not Really Strangers if you’re looking to get deep, or the classic Cards Against Humanity for the silly crowd. For extra fun, organize a gift or card swap!

We're Not Really Strangers Card Game - an Interactive Adult Card Game and Icebreaker

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2. Get a tarot card reading.

If you’re gathered with your girls, you may as well get witchy, right? Or, at least, that’s what I do. If none of your friends know their way around a tarot deck, find a virtual tarot reader to pull cards for you and your group. Not only will you leave with insights into your life (and perhaps the lives of your friends), but you’ll also definitely have a lot to talk about over dinner afterward.

3. Celebrate with high tea.

Whatever happened to the tea party? Bring it back this Galentine’s Day. Book a table at a spot that offers tea and crumpets, or host the girls for a DIY tea and snacks situation. Get dressed in your best Bridgerton 'fits, or keep it casual. It’s your day, so you can decide!

4. Take a dance class.

There’s nothing like a night with your girls to make you feel empowered and hot as hell—which you always are, but it’s nice to have the reminder. If you’re looking to tap into your hot side this G-Day, set up a dance class for the girls. You can go to a heels or pole dancing studio, or just find a tutorial online.

Giggles and gorgeous Instagram content are guaranteed.

5. Have a rom-com movie night.

It’s the season of love stories, so why not live vicariously through a fan fave? Grab a list of the crowd’s favorite romantic comedies, and pick one (or more!) to watch together in honor of G-Day. Make sure to get lots of snacks, cocktails, or mocktails as you cozy up for a GNI. Bonus points if you dress up as a character from your favorite film.

6. Host a sex toy party.

If your girls are game, take a spicy route this Galentine’s Day. Every person can buy and bring a favorite sex toy. Then, when you’re all gathered (and perhaps a few glasses of vino deep), have a White Elephant-style exchange. You’ll likely learn some hot new tips from your friends, have lots of laughs, and leave with a prize! What could be better?

7. Have a photo shoot.

Round up some candy hearts and balloons from your local CVS, and set up a mini photo shoot for you and the girls. You can all wear a Valentine's-themed 'fit (or perhaps some lingerie, if you’re feeling more of a sensual vibe) and snap some pics of each other. Make sure to hype everyone up when they’re in front of the camera. You and your girls will be feeling yourselves, Beyoncé-style.

8. Go to the spa.

You know what’s better than being pampered all day? Getting pampered all day... with your besties. Make some appointments for facials, massages, body wraps, and relax this Galentine’s Day. You deserve it!

For the baddies on a budget: grab some of your favorite products online (or from your own arsenal) and have a spa night at home.

9. Have a potluck.

Enjoy a feast of your own creation! Each guest brings their signature dish, and that way, you all enjoy a delicious multi-course meal with much less prep.

10. Have a vision board party.

Looking for greater success in your relationships or career? Or maybe, you just want to do some good old-fashioned arts and crafts? Either way, a vision board party is perfect for you and the gals. Buy a bunch of magazines (or have everyone bring them from home) and make boards that reflect the future you’re hoping for in 2024 and beyond. You’ll learn more about each other, and vision boards are known to aid in manifestation!

11. Go the classic route.

If you’re a Galentine’s Day traditionalist, you can totally celebrate by “kicking it breakfast-style” just like Leslie and the gang did on Parks and Rec. While you may not be able to hit up the JJ’s Diner, you can definitely find a local equivalent. (Just make sure they have amazing waffles, as Leslie would.)

If you’re feeling extra adventurous, replicate the gifts Leslie gave her friends: hand-crocheted flower pens, a mosaic portrait made out of the crushed bottles of each person’s favorite diet soda, and a 5,000-word essay about why each lady is so awesome. Easy enough, right?

What are the best Galentine's Day gifts?

Of course, gifts are not at all required for G-Day celebrations. Leslie Knope herself was famously a fan of the handmade and heartfelt card! But if you have some extra cash and want to spoil your girls this Galentine’s Day, there are plenty of options, from fun cards to hot surprises.

For The Girls

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Leslie Knope-Inspired Galentine's Day Card

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Leslie Knope-Inspired Galentine's Day Card


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