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- Themed Parties
Planning Exciting Adventure Parties for Kids
Whether you are planning a birthday party or just a get together for your child a few simple steps can ensure a successful party. Children love parties that are fast paced and filled with action. Sometimes parents just can't afford to rent big jumpers or feed a dozen kids at a pizza fun place. There are dozens of ways you can still make the kids smile at home and stay within your budget.
Last year we moved to a new place. My son knew no one. With summer coming and not wanting him to have to play alone until school starts in August. I decided to give him an pirate adventure party, Having little money to spare I made a plan of activities he could do in our yard with the neighborhood kids at little to no cost. You can have a themed party like the pirate adventure or just have a fun afternoon of activities and fun.
If you decide to serve food keep it simple. At my sons adventure party we served fruit and a few cookies. For their drinks they had Kool-Aid. He also thought coconut milk would be cool, but I curtailed that idea.
Another idea if you want to serve a lunch is just hotdogs and chips. Children usually prefer simple foods to more sophisticated foods we enjoy as adults.
Let your kids help with the invitations. It will be a fun afternoon of crafts with them. My son who is five will be in kindergarten in August was having an adventure party, we decided to make the invitations look like treasure maps. If your child cannot write yet let them color a picture and then add the party information to the bottom on it for them. If they are older let them make and design their own invitations, A few gentle suggestions may be needed here and there.
The Activities and Games
If your having a themed party try to plan your games and activities around that theme. Each activity gave them clues for treasure I hid in the yard at m sons pirate adventure party.
For the pirate adventure I took cardboard from a big box and made two pirate ships. I then painted them. Then for the party we set the ships opposite of each other. We made two big totes with water balloons. We split the kids up and two teams and let them throw the balloons at each others ships like cannon balls trying to sink them. The team that sunk the other ship first won the game.
I also have a lot of trees in my yard. I took and made moss on the south side of all the trees but one using food coloring. I gave the each team a compass and had them try to find the tree with moss on the north side first.
My son has a big wading pool with sand in it to play with. We had a sand castle building contest in it. I had hidden a package of the aquarium gem stones from the dollar store that look like gems. As they made their castles they found their gems. I had numbers marked in black permanent marker on the back of a few of the stones. I made clues according to the numbers they got to help find the treasure.
I decorated our back deck to look as much like a pirate ship as I could. I threw an old fish net over the railing. I hung a plastic parrot up. I made a cardboard wheel to stir the boat. I strung some old white sheets up for sails.
I took an old refrigerator box which I got from an appliance store and used yarn to make spider web looking stuff inside. I laid it on its side. I threw in a few plastic snakes and spiders to make it look more like a cave. Then I took a water hose and connected it at one end to pretend there was a waterfall there. Then I set up the slip and slide going out from it. The kids had to go through the cave in one of their clues and make it down the slip and slide to get another clue for the treasure.
I boiled eggs and used markers to make them look like eyeballs. I lined them up into to two teams again and gave the first one in each line a spoon and a eyeball egg. They had to go to a tree and around it and back without dropping the egg. Once all team members made it they got another clue. You can do this activity with a uncooked egg too. I boiled mine because of their age and the mess. This activity can be used at any party minus the eyeball painted on them.
I then lined each child up in their teams again and gave them balloons to hop with between their knees to a big tote. The team that got all their balloons in the tote first won the next clue. If they dropped their balloon they started over. If after three attempts they couldn't make it there with their balloon the next team member took off with the balloon and they rotated to the end of the line.
I had party favors like plastic swords and eye patches, but they are not really necessary unless you just want to do it. The kids will love it. These are part of the things we did at my sons pirate adventure party. You can have as many activities as you feel comfortable doing and have time for.
More Games and Activity Ideas
Games and activities for the party need to be age appropriate. Younger children need games that require less coordination since they are still developing the muscles that help them have it. You could hide treasure or prizes on the ground in open sight , so they are easier to find. You could have them bring their trikes and have a race.
Other games for children that are older include potato sack races, three legged races, and tug of war. You can modify tug of war and take two milk crates and place them six to ten feet apart. Have two kids climb up on the crates and try to make their opponent step off. You can also take two litter coke bottles and fill them up with sand about 1/3 of the way up. Take a soccer ball and place the bottles like bowling pens and play soccer bowling. Give each child two chances each round to knock over all ten bottles.
Another game is to give each child a clothes pin and have them attach it to their clothes. The object of the game is to try to grab each others clothes pins without losing their own clothes pin. The one who ends up with the most pins is the winner. Bean bag toss tic tac toe is another game children like to play. Make a tic tac toe board on a old tarp or on the driveway with chalk. If you use the tarp you can use tape or a marker to make the board on it. Children can take turns throwing their bean bags at the board. Who ever gets three in a row wins. Be sure to make ten bean bags in two different colors.
Make a golf course out in your yard if you have clubs. Save some cans from your cooking. Small coffee cans work great. Drill a hole in them for drainage. If you do not use small coffee cans then use your bigger vegetable cans. Make sure the can edges are not sharp, so they will not get cut when reaching in to get their balls. Bury them in the ground and take dowel sticks with material tied to them to mark the holes. If you don't have dowels you can also use sticks or tree branches. Garage sales are great places to buy used clubs. I got nineteen for five dollars at one recently.
These are just a few ideas to get you going. The possibilities are endless.
Just have fun! The kids will have fun if things are upbeat. Make sure they have plenty to keep them from getting bored. Give them a chance to use their imaginations if it is a themed party. You will be surprised what they come up with on their own.