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2nd Birthday Party Ideas

Updated on July 7, 2015
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Awe, your baby is turning two! You probably went all out for their first birthday, because that is a big deal! It doesn’t mean that you can’t go all out for the second birthday and have a big party!

Having a party for a two year old is an even better idea to them, because now they are actually big enough to sort of understand what is going on and can dance and just have a blast!

When it comes to 2nd birthday party ideas, it’s just a matter of knowing what your two year old likes and planning everything around this from choosing the theme, to creating the invitations, food selections, planning games, and picking out favors.

Themes

When brainstorming themes for 2nd birthday party ideas, it’s best to first think about your child’s interests. Being an almost-two-year-old, they are probably interested in quite a lot of things at this point, so jot them down and try to pick out the ones that would be easiest for you to plan a party with. Here’s a few general ideas:

  • Cartoon characters: Your child likely has a favorite TV show by this point, so if they like Dora the Explorer, Mickey Mouse, Bubble Guppies, Lazy Town, Super Why, Sesame Street, or whatever other shows kids are watching these days, you cannot go wrong by turning it into the party theme.

  • Tutu party: A “twotwo” party for a little girl turning two! It’s perfect. Watch your little princess light up as all of her friends arrive in tutus. This party calls for crowns and wands so each little princess feels special!

  • Cupcakes: This is quite the easy theme to do, and can be made gender neutral very easily with the correct color selection. A cute idea for this party is a decorate-your-own cupcake station! It can be used as a favor, or done after singing happy birthday with everyone decorating their own little cupcake to eat. Oh, and don’t forget the easy-to-make game of pin the cherry on the cupcake!

  • Zoo: Every child loves going to the zoo, so why not bring the zoo to your backyard? A petting zoo, that is. If you have a nearby farm, a lot of times, they offer animal “rentals” where they will bring a bunch of animals for a few hours and set up a petting zoo with pony rides.

  • Dinosaurs: Again, this theme can be made gender neutral depending on your theme color selections. There’s a lot of fun to be had with a dinosaur party, including searching for fossils and bones in a sandbox. Give two year olds a special hat, a shovel, a sandbox and a mission and they will have fun for hours!

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Invitations

The invitations will depend on which theme is chosen, but when it comes to 2nd birthday party ideas, DIY invitations are a great idea because they are at an age where they can help you make them! If you are having a large party where you will be sending out more invites than what you care to make, ordering a digital file from Etsy.com is a great, inexpensive way to go, and it’s quick!

Some ways toddlers can help make invitations:

  • Painting: Let them have at painting a few blanks however they like, then you will turn these paintings into invitations. Just trim them to size and write the information that is needed.

  • Embellishments: It’s probably best to not let your toddler man the glue bottle just yet, but you can certainly place a dot of glue somewhere and guide them to place something on top of that glue!

  • Handprints: Handprints always make for cute decoration, so let them use fingerpaints to place their handprints on the invites. This is especially a great idea if there is a blank side of the invitations.

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Food

Choosing food for a 2nd birthday party is probably one of the tougher aspects of planning because toddlers are such finicky eaters! One day they may love something and the next, they will fight you tooth and nail to not eat it. Here’s some ideas you might try:

  • Flavor ice: Set up a station with shaved/crushed ice and many different flavors to pour over the ice. I don’t know what it is about ide, but toddlers love to chew it! So, giving it some flavor might be a huge hit!

  • Mini cupcakes: This is probably something that should be at every toddler’s birthday party. Make it the mini cupcakes since they have little bellies.

  • Chip bar: Okay, still not the healthiest thing you can have at a toddler’s birthday party, but they love munching on crunchy things!

  • Fruit and veggie dippers: Using small beverage cups, place ranch in the bottom of the veggie cups and caramel or yogurt in the bottom of the fruit cups. Place appropriate fruit and veggies in each cup, preferably cut into long pieces.

  • Juice fountain: Toddlers love juice and running water, so mix the two and have a juice fountain!

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Games

When planning games for a 2 year old’s birthday party, it’s best to try to think like a 2 year old and what they are capable of playing. Here’s a few games that can be a lot of fun!

  • Balloon pop: Put a folded piece of paper in each balloon but only a few of the balloons get a specially marked piece of paper saying “winner!” The winner(s) get a prize, of course!

  • Cutouts: Make construction paper cutouts that go with the party theme. These will double as decorations until the game is played. Write a different number on the back of each cutout and hang them at a level that’s easy for the children to reach. They will pick one off the wall and win the prize that coordinates with that number.

  • Pick a duck: Or any other squeaky bath toy that goes with the theme. Just like the carnival game, a number is written on the bottom of each one indicating a prize level, and is then placed in a kiddie pool. Everyone is a winner!

Favors

If you need some 2nd birthday party ideas when it comes to favors, it’s probably best to shy away from sweets at this age. Many parents would not really appreciate their toddlers being sent home with candy.

Stick with something fun like a little instrument, bubbles, a silly hat, or fill little buckets with fun-in-the-sun essentials like shovels, sunglasses, a sieve and a sun hat! Oh, and don’t forget to say “thank you!”

Tips for Throwing a 2nd Birthday Party

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