There is nothing quite as fun for a child as their birthday party. I have been to countless kiddy birthday parties of my cousins, siblings, family friends, neighbours, and kids I babysit, so I think I can consider myself an expert. II have come up with a list of 8 great birthday party venues/ideas if you and your child are stuck on what to do for their birthday. These ideas were created with the help of all the people mentioned above.
1. Bowling Party
My little brother has a friend who every year has his birthday at AMF Bowling. I think bowling birthdays are a lot of fun because the kids get to play as a team and have fun. They also get a party room with food platters, lolly bags and a party host. Depending on what package you get, you can also get game arcade tokens for all the party guests, a present for the birthday child and birthday cake. Depends on which centre but Laser Skirmish is also available. The kids always have a "ball" at these parties and it's a great venue and great value for money.
Shaun says, "Next year when I turn 11 I will still have my party at AMF, it is the most fun place to go".
2. McDonalds / Hungry Jacks These parties seem to be nearly extinct nowadays. Last month my sister was invited to a friends 9th birthday at McDonald's and I was so surprised, I went along just to see what the parties are like now. The kids had a great time, they got to have a party room with coloring pages and crayons, they got to play on the playground, and have fun all together. They sat down and had their Happy Meal but then they were off running around on the playground burning off everything they ate anyway, and all of the kids had water as a drink. They also had a McDonald's themed birthday cake and the birthday girl got a Ronald McDonald plush toy as a gift. The party was really well organised and fun, they even had a party host who played a few games with them like "Chinese Whispers" and "Red light, green light". The venue might seem small, but kids know how to have a good time. The party went for an hour and a half and then my sister went back to her friend's house for a while. It was a great party.
"McDonald's parties are easy to organise, quick and easy and you don't need to clean up any mess. My kids always love it" - Denise, (Sherry's mother).
3. Indoor Play Centres These venues are really popular these days. With so many play centres around Melbourne I can't explain what they all do since all of them run their parties differently, but they offer a party room, food and access to the playground. Parties don't generally run for long but you can still stay past the party time. Kids love running crazy at play centres and it will definitely wear them out for the drive home. My siblings love going to parties here. Indoor play centres don't charge for each child. You pay for a party package and there is a miniumun number of kids who must attend for you to choose that package. Extra siblings of friends who come along have to pay extra and if they are seen eating the food or drinks for the party kids and haven't paid, then parents will need to pay for them. Indoor play centres create the perfect atmosphere for a party and your little one will have an awesome time at one. Great value for money indeed. Some great play centres where I have attended excellent parties are: Playzone, Crocs, and the Silly Seahorse.
4. Movies This may seem like a weird place to hold a child's birthday party, but if you're looking for something low key, with no mess, but still something nice and fun for the child to look forward to, a movie birthday is always a good idea. Look online at Village Cinemas or Hoyt's and see what movies will be playing. Get your child to choose a movie (look up the trailer on YouTube if you want) and then send out invitations. You can make up the invitations yourself and decorate them with pictures of the actual movie. Once people have RSVP'd then buy the tickets. My brother is having his 10th birthday at the cinemas and he and a few friends are seeing "The Croods". I think it'll be fun and the guests will enjoy it. Also state on the invitation whether parents will need to pay for their own child's snacks, or work out if you'll buy each child a snack or get two children to each share a box of popcorn, or whatever you decide.
"I can't wait for my birthday party. I get to see a funny movie with 5 of my best friends. It is an all boys party and also my brother will be there" - My brother.
5. Pool Party If your child is a summer baby, why not have a pool party? If you're lucky enough to own a swimming pool, know a friend who does, or have a swimming centre close to you, organise a pool party. Swimming centres don't actually host parties, but you can still hold the party there. The kids can have a great day at the pool, and you can then go back to your house for cake and presents. Pool parties are great because the kids will be swimming and having fun all day. Make sure you supervise them in the water and get them to tell you where they are off to. Bring your own food or order some food at the cafe. A pool party is definitely a great place for your child's next birthday.
"When I was 9 I had my party at the pools. My friends and I had an awesome time, we were at the Wave Pool in Dandenong. My mum bought KFC for us for lunch and we sat all together and ate. At the end of the party 2 of my best friends came back to my house for the cake. That was one of my favorite parties and I'll never forget it" - Dylan, aged 14.
6. Sleepover Party
Sleepovers are every little girl's dream, and a sleepover party is just the most fun party a little girl could ever have. Set the party time for late in the afternoon, around 4. The girls can set up their sleeping bags and then play together. Have some yummy food for dinner and have lots of snacks throughout the party as well. Organise some games or get your daughter to think of some. It depends what age they are really.
Some fun sleepover party ideas are watching movies, playing 'Truth or Dare', doing each other's make-up, hair and nails, or playing with dolls. It all depends on their age but if they're old enough, they can host the party and choose the activities. Sleepover parties don't just have to be for girls, suggest it if you have a son as well. Make sure you set a reasonable number of guests for the party, depends on how big your house is. Sleepover parties are fun for the kids, but will probably cause a lot of mess, giggles in the night and not much sleep for you. Choose carefully!
"Last year I had a sleepover party at my Dad's house because it's bigger. I invited 5 of my friends, we watched two movies, played with the cat, did each other's hair, watched music videos, played 'Sing Star' and 'Just Dance', then we went to sleep at 11 at night. The next day we stayed in our pajamas until 2pm and we made pancakes, played on the trampoline and played' Just Dance' again. It was like a 2 day party. I loved it" - Shenae, aged 10 (cousin)
7. Jumping Castle Party
This is all depends on if you have enough room in your yard for one. Kids love jumping castles, and what's better than having your very own castle for the day to go crazy on with your friends and family? I went to my brother's friend's birthday party last year and he had a big Scooby Doo jumping castle in the backyard with a slide and basketball hoop inside. The kids had a ball and were in it the whole day. His mother also set up some games like a pinata, 'Pin the Tail on the Donkey', and 'Pass the Parcel' as well. There was also a shell sandpit set up for the kids and two plastic bowling sets. The kids had an awesome time and surely tired themselves out. Hiring out a castle is expensive, so make sure you do your homework and look online for different prices. Some places charge you by the hour, others will just charge you if you want it all day, or overnight.
8. Disco Party
This is a popular one among the girls. Set up a disco in your garage, backyard or inside, wherever you've got room. Get a shiny disco ball, play some awesome music and get the kids to have a fun time dancing, singing or doing karaoke. You can also play some fun party games as well that involve music. My neighbour had a disco birthday last year and she and her friends had a great time. The disco was held in their garage, the rest of the family stayed inside and chatted, ate and drank while the girls had a fun time. We were invited to the party, and my sister had a great time. They played singing games, danced and had a go at karaoke.
"My friend's disco party was so fun. I danced so much that my feet hurt. I got to dress up nice. It was cool. There was also a disco ball on the ceiling. We had yummy food and also took breaks and played games like the chocolate game, musical chairs and statues" - My sister.
Hope you have found a great party idea for your child's next birthday party.