How to plan a birthday party

How to plan a birthday party

It snuck up on you again. Maybe it’s your loved one’s birthday or it’s your own. But it’s less than a month away and you have no idea how you’re going to make that special day special.

A trip to Las Vegas is the answer. Las Vegas has a culture all its own. It’s a place that everyone should experience in their life, and there’s no better time to experience Las Vegas than on your birthday.

Now you have the location to make a memorable birthday, but no plan.

We’ve made a list of how to plan a birthday party so you don’t have to. Keep reading for a guide on how to plan a Las Vegas birthday party no one will forget.

The Dirty Details

Even if you decide to throw a birthday in Las Vegas only one day before you plan to head to the city, planning how you travel and where you will stay is an important part of your visit. Before you decide on anything, you need to know your timeline.

That means you will need to know the date you want to leave for Las Vegas and when you will be getting back. Knowing what days you will be in Vegas will help you make a plan for the best birthday party.

But don’t get discouraged if you don’t have a lot of time to plan. Las Vegas is about being fun and spontaneous. You will still be able to find party rooms for rent in Las Vegas.

Now that you know when you’ll be going, you will need to decide if you’ll be driving or taking a plane.

If you want to take a plane, you’ll need to scope out tickets for your party. If you’ll be driving, plan out your route.

When you get to Las Vegas, having a hotel room that wows is essential. Las Vegas has themed hotel rooms that will have your party excited to come back to cut the birthday cake.

Make It Theirs

When planning a birthday party, never forget what it’s about. A birthday is the one day of the year you get to celebrate someone for being them. You need to plan accordingly.

What does the person you are celebrating like to do? Make sure to build the activities you are going to do around their interests. Las Vegas is filled with fun for everyone; you only have to look.

Is the person celebrating their birthday a fan of all things alcohol? Las Vegas has specialty venues where you can test alcohol.

Do they love the theater? Book one of Las Vegas’ incredible shows.

If you want to theme the party, make sure to do it to something they would love.

Every choice you make, from your activities to your hotel room, should center around the person you’re celebrating. It’s their day and you need to make sure they don’t forget it.

Experience Day Life

Las Vegas is known for its twinkling lights, casinos, bars, and shows. It’s the place to be for a night you’ll never forget. But Las Vegas has even more to offer.

Take a look at what you can do during the daytime if you want to plan birthday fun that doesn’t stop.

Experience a bird’s eye view with Las Vegas’s Stratosphere Observation Deck. This observation deck is one of the tallest in the United States. Visit it for a new perspective of the city.

Take a walking tour. Many companies are available to give you the history behind the city. Learning what made Las Vegas into the exciting place it is now will help you navigate your nightlife and give you a new appreciation for it.

Don’t feel like walking? Get on one of Las Vegas’s hop-on-hop-off tours. These tour buses are the way to travel around the city.

On a hop-on-hop-off tour, your party will be able to get around Las Vegas while learning about the city. You can use these buses for your entire stay.

What You’ve Been Waiting For

You’ve spent the day exploring the city. Now it’s time for the party part of the birthday celebration. Las Vegas is party central, but there are some activities that you can do that will make your special occasion even more memorable.

Create a bar-hopping plan. Scout out the best bars Las Vegas has to offer and make sure to hit all the spots on your list. From luxury lounges to locals’ go-to places, make the most of every place your party finds itself in.

There are plenty of party rooms for rent in Las Vegas. Make a venue all your party’s own by scoping out the best place to host your celebration. If you have a birthday theme, choosing a venue with the same theme will make your party even more memorable.

Most importantly, take advantage of the fact that you’re here for a birthday. There are many places in Las Vegas that give birthday deals. Get free shots at a bar or free play at a casino.

In Las Vegas, it’s impossible to not feel one-of-a-kind on your birthday.

This Is How to Plan a Birthday Party

Figuring out how to plan a birthday party is the hardest part of the festivities. But with this list to guide you, you won’t need to worry about anything at your Las Vegas birthday party except having a good time.

Can’t wait to start planning your Las Vegas birthday adventure? Make sure to take a look at our private events option. Rent a room with us for a unique birthday venue you and your friends will be talking about for years to come.

How to plan a birthday party

There’s no better reason to throw a party than a birthday. Whether you’re celebrating another decade older or your child’s very first year, throwing a soirée to ring in a new age doesn’t have to be stressful. Use our 7-step guide to plan a birthday party that you and your loved ones will remember for many years — and ages — to come.

How to plan a birthday party photographer & planner: Sugar Branch Events | floral: Merci Bouquet | décor: Balloonzilla

1. Hire an Event Planner

Hiring an event planner is optional, but highly recommended. An event planner will not only attend to every detail day-of so you can enjoy your event, but will also have clever ideas and creative tricks when it comes to planning the décor, theme, and style. Event planners featured on PartySlate know the business – and the people in the business. They have built strong connections with sought-after event professionals, and will not only be able to recommend the best venues, photographers, caterers, bakeries, bands, and more, but will also ensure you lock them down for your milestone birthday party celebration.

How to plan a birthday party photographer: Eddy | planner: Marcy Blum Associates | design & décor: Ovando Design and Production | venue: Seagram Building |

2. Find a Venue

Choosing the perfect venue should be your next decision. There are three key factors that go into venue selection. The first is to consider what amenities you might need. Do you need WiFi, valet, A/V equipment, or in-house catering? Use our filters to sort by what you need. Second, think about what type of space will work best for your milestone birthday party. Favorite venues include rooftops, gardens, restaurants, and lofts and warehouses. Lastly, consider if your desired spaces have the capacity to accommodate your event type and guest list. With the help of your planner, you can decide which event space meets all of your needs, whether you prioritize a spectacular view, a venue with activities, or a convenient location.

How to plan a birthday party photographer: Allen Tsai Photography | planner: Pop Parties | florals: Petals Couture | design: Nuage Designs

3. Establish a Theme + Incorporate Personality

Birthday parties are meant to be fun, so now is the time to get creative. Your special day calls for a theme and party elements that reflect your personality – and the options are endless. Themes are a fun way to get the ball rolling, whether you instill a dress code for a roaring 20s bash or transport guests to a tropical paradise at a luau. PartySlate has hundreds of curated photos to help you select your perfect theme. There are so many ways to personalize a birthday soiree – think custom signage, monogrammed napkins, and creative photo ops. Spelling out the guest of honor’s name is an easy way to add a personal touch to the décor.

How to plan a birthday party photographer: Clane Gessel Photography | planner: Leslie Mastin Events | design: Dejuan Stroud, | venue: Topping Rose House | Inc. | stationery: Alpine Creative Group

4. Choose + Send Invitations

Once you’ve selected a venue, curated a theme, and determined your event style, it’s time to invite your guests. Introduce your milestone birthday party in style and make a good first impression with on-theme invitations and beautifully curated stationery. Your birthday party invitations can range from simple and elegant to playful and personalized.

How to plan a birthday party photographer: 2me Studios | event planner: Geffen Events | venue: Buffalo Club | rentals: Hire Elegance | lighting: Daylight Lighting

5. Select Entertainment

There is no better way to ensure your party is enjoyable and memorable than by hiring engaging entertainment. An energetic DJ that gets every guest to the dance floor or a talented band that captivates its audience is an invaluable addition to any event, especially a celebratory birthday party. Event entertainment is not limited to musicians and MCs – magicians, dancers, and acrobats can keep guests engaged and captivated throughout the entire celebration. And don’t forget to hire a photographer to capture every exciting moment, so you can relive your party for years to come.

How to plan a birthday party photo courtesy of caterer: Wolfgang Puck Catering – Los Angeles | floral: Whit McClure | venue: The Ruby Street

6. Find a Caterer

One of the most anticipated milestone birthday party elements is the food. Passed hors d’oeuvres, a sit down dinner, or a decadent buffet can be an event highlight your guests will look back on with watering mouths. Creative catering is a popular birthday party trend, from nitrogen ice cream stations to epic charcuterie boards, you don’t have to play it safe when it comes to birthday party cuisine.

How to plan a birthday party photographer: Sarah Kate, Photographer | design: Emily Clarke Events | floral: Branching Out Events | lighting: Pink Monkey Solutions

7. Finish with Something Sweet

What’s a birthday party without a birthday cake? All eyes will be on your delicious confection when you blow out your birthday candles. Desserts are the perfect way to incorporate your party’s theme or enhance the event’s color palette. Take your sweet treats a step further with decadent spreads that can range anywhere from creative cupcake displays to donut walls and candy stations, all of which are featured on PartySlate. Another delicious trend we love is a cake constructed out of different cheeses. Don’t forget to send your guests off with a sweet surprise – mini macaroons and custom wrapped pastries are party favors your guests will adore.

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How to plan a birthday party

There are lots of things to consider when planning a party or event so we have put together 22 of the most important things to think about in your planning.

These things can either have a major or minor impact but they are all really important in creating an awesome party or event.

  1. Day & Time – The wrong day and time can affect guest behaviour and attendance. Expect your guests to leave early if they are working the following day.
  2. Lighting – The wrong colour or brightness can affect how guests feel and act. Lighting affects how your guests feel and react to the party.
  3. Size of Venue – Too big and the atmosphere is instantly lost. Too many rooms and guests are disconnected.
  4. Number of Guests – This ties in with venue size and matching guests to the size of the venue. Small parties can still be awesome if planned right.
  5. Type of Food & How Much – Too much food and it affects how guests act and effect party energy. The wrong type of food can cause mess and serving issues.
  6. Type of Drinks – Exciting drinks will make your party unique. Not enough drinks can affect how people act.
  7. Guest Dress Code – What guests wear will affect how they feel and act. Dress up parties create novelty and excitement. The wrong type of shoes will affect how many and how long guests are on the dance floor.
  8. Age of Guests – Too much of a variety of age groups can affect how guests act and how long they stay at the party. Guests with kids will always leave earlier than guests without.
  9. Decorations – The décor you choose will create a big impact on how your guests feel. Exciting décor creates novelty and stimulates your guest’s senses.
  10. The Temperature of Your Venue Space – Too hot or cold and your guests will leave early. Plan for the worst if choosing an outdoor event space and it will save you a lot of stress.
  11. Floor Plan of Your Venue – Create a floor plan that keeps your guests together.
  12. Format of Your Party – Make sure the party flows and something is always happening. Formalities done early is one of the key elements to success.
  13. Information You Put On Your Invite – Boring invites usually won’t encourage people to want to come to your party. Create something exciting and unique.
  14. Type of Furniture You Use – Too much or the wrong type will affect how guests act at your party. Too much seating kills the party energy.
  15. Entertainment You Choose – The wrong or no entertainment can affect how long guests stay and how they act and feel. Entertainment is really important and creates great party energy.
  16. Amount of Pre Planning You Do – If you want a stress free experience plan ahead. Leaving everything until the last minute always causes great party stress.
  17. What Help You Choose For On The Night – Don’t want to spend your whole night working? Consider hiring some party help for on the night so you can enjoy your own event.
  18. What Your Guests Have To Do On The Night – If your guests are bored they usually go home early. Give guests a range of things to do.
  19. Music Choice – The music is the soundtrack to your games party. It will affect how your guests feel and whether they dance or not.
  20. Location of Venue – Too far away or expensive to get to (if ubering it in) will affect guest attendance.
  21. Size of Your Dance Floor – Too big and the atmosphere is instantly lost. It is always better to go smaller and have it full than the other way round.
  22. It’s Not All About You – The more you focus your planning on your guests’ party experience, and what enjoyment you can create for them, the better the party will be. I guarantee you will get a lot more enjoyment out of your party if your guests are partying hard and don’t want to go home than if they are all itching to leave.

What you have read is not about spending more money on your event. In fact, in most cases, it will probably save you money if you do it right. It is more about creating the best party experience possible so all your party planning isn’t wasted.

Spend your party budget on the most important things and I assure you your party will be a great success.

The above things all need to be considered when planning a party and it can all seem a bit overwhelming if you haven’t planned a party before. If you are not really sure what to do I highly recommend speaking to one of our Partyologists for expert party advice.

You’ve all seen the super extravagant birthday parties that can make any parent or kid a little jealous. They probably have a bounce house, the food is catered, and decorations are handled professionally. What a perfect Instagram party for the mom, and bragging rights for the birthday child! From the outside, this probably looks like the best birthday party ever, but in actuality, maybe it isn’t. Kids have just as much fun at a basic party as they do at an over-the-top celebration. Having the party at your house can add a ton of extra stress and pressure, so finding venues for a birthday party in Lawrenceville, GA, might be the best option for you! There are some easy tips to follow to plan a birthday party that everyone will enjoy. Keep reading to learn more.

Talk to Your Child

This birthday party is going to be a team effort between you and your child. Of course, the parent will be in charge of the hard work, including the planning, organizing, reserving, cooking, baking, etc. However, don’t forget that your child can still play an important role! Discuss venue and party options and get your little darling thinking about what would be fun for them. Sometimes your own backyard can be the best venue because the guests will feel comfortable and at ease. Ask your child if they want to have a really big party or perhaps a little bit smaller of a gathering. Spending quality time with closer friends might actually be more fun for them than inviting a huge group. Understanding what your kid really wants out of their party is important. Is it more about the activity, the food, or being with some of their favorite people that will make their special day great?

Understand Your Guests

As much as this party is to celebrate your beloved child, you’ll want the guests to have a great time too! Sometimes having two separate occasions for friends and family is a good idea. Since kids almost always act differently around their friends, this can be more fulfilling for both groups. Ask if your child would like to have two different gatherings and what they would like each to include.

Think about Interests

Usually, children are friends with others who share similar interests to them. If your child is really into being active and running around, how about laser tag? Or, if learning about science or history seems to be piquing your child’s interests lately, looking into parties at a local museum could be a great idea. Planning a celebration that evokes excitement or passion in your child will help them to feel at ease and excited about the party. It could help them feel more involved with the planning, and ideas for activities may even come to their mind before yours!

Sometimes, planning a joint birthday party makes sense. Whether you have two children with birthdays that are close together, your children are twins, or your child has a friend who they want to have a party with, a joint birthday could be the way to go. Whatever your reason is for combining your kiddo’s birthday party celebration with another child’s (whether it is yours or not), there are many different things to consider when planning.

Joint birthday parties can be a fun and simple way to knock out two parties out at once. But there are many problems that could come with it. The kiddos may fight about the theme, the type of cake, what friends to invite, what to do at the party, and anything else that is involved in the birthday party planning. Because of this, you need to plan carefully and make sure the children can agree, at least on some of the plans.

How to plan a birthday party

At Jumpin’ Jamboree in Kendall, we know how hard it can be to plan your kiddo’s birthday party, especially when it is a joint party. Our birthday party packages can help make the planning process simpler. In this blog, we are going to give you tips for planning a joint party and how to make sure none of the birthday party kiddos gets upset.

Celebrate Alone

Whether you are having a joint birthday for both of your kiddos or your child is having a combined birthday party with their friend, make sure you celebrate alone as well. A small family birthday celebration for each child or for your own child will allow them to feel special on their big day, even with a joint party planned for later. Sharing attention can be hard for children, so having separate celebrations can allow them to have their moment in the light! This celebration doesn’t have to be big, it can be a simple little family birthday party with a cake and a few gifts.

Ask Their Opinion

Before you get started with planning a joint birthday party, make sure the kids want it! You will want to ensure that both children are okay with having a joint birthday party and sharing the spotlight. If they aren’t, you may want to avoid planning a joint birthday, it will likely only end in tears.

Plan The Party Size

When you have a joint party, it is likely to be bigger than a single child’s birthday party. Unless the two kiddos have the same group of friends, you will most likely be inviting more children. This means you need to plan accordingly. Think about the space you have, where you will be hosting the party, how much food you will need, and other factors that are affected by the number of kiddos.

How to plan a birthday party

If you are hosting the birthday party at home, you may not want to invite that many children. If you are planning a joint birthday party with three or more birthday kiddos, you will likely have a larger party. This means you will need a space to accommodate all of them. At Jumpin’ Jamboree, our indoor inflatable play place can host a ton of children! Our party packages can take care of eight to 40 children. This means that our space is perfect for larger parties!

Get Two Cakes

When you host a joint birthday party, two cakes is a must (unless of course, you are celebrating more than two children). Each of the birthday kiddos should have a cake of their own, allowing them to blow out their own candles and have a cake design they want. While that may seem excessive, just think about it this way: if you were having separate parties, you would be getting two cakes anyways! This will keep kids from fighting and getting upset. Plus, if there are a ton of kiddos at the party, multiple cakes will be a good food supply!

Make It Special

Having a joint birthday party can make a child feel like their day is less special. While a joint birthday party can often be a great idea, you will want to make it extra special. Rather than planning a joint birthday party at home, plan something exciting and fun!

A combined birthday celebration at Jumpin’ Jamboree is a great option. Kids love these types of parties, but having an individual birthday party for each of your children can be over the top. That is why joint parties are great when you host them at these fun places! Both kiddos will be able to enjoy it for their birthday. As a parent, you know that having extravagant parties at places like Jumpin’ Jamboree is something that will not happen every year, but when you plan a joint birthday party, it should happen! You want to make these combined celebrations extra special.

Cater to Different AgesHow to plan a birthday party

If your children are a few years apart, you will want to keep that in mind. Your younger child may like to have a princess-themed birthday party but the older kiddo will likely not. Planning a birthday party that they both will like is important and help keep disagreements at a minimum. However, finding something that they both will like can be the challenge.

Once again, Jumpin’ Jamboree can be the right choice! Every kid loves the bouncing, jumping fun that Jumpin’ Jamboree offers. Our inflatable playground makes the perfect party place for kids because it is fun for all ages! We even have a toddler zone to keep the younger partiers happy.

Following these tips can help you plan the perfect joint birthday party and avoid as much kiddo drama as possible! When you are planning a joint party, Jumpin’ Jamboree in Kendall is the best choice. We cater to all children and all age groups, we can host large parties or small, and every kiddo will love playing on our inflatable playgrounds!

If you are looking for a kid’s party place for your kiddo’s joint birthday party, be sure to check out Jumpin’ Jamboree’s party packages! Contact us with any questions you may have or to reserve your party space!

How to plan a birthday party

If you have the privilege of celebrating a loved one’s 90th birthday, you want to make this celebration all that he or she deserves, but how do you go about planning for such a momentous occasion? To help you along the way, here are a few party ideas and tips to keep in mind as you plan the party of a lifetime.

This post may contain affiliate links. For more information, visit the disclosure page.

Involve the Guest of Honor In Planning

First and foremost, consider including the star senior in your party planning. After all, the big day is all about them, so their happiness should be your inspiration.

If your heart is set on a surprise party, consult with multiple individuals who know him or her as well as you do to ensure that they’ll enjoy every aspect of the party.

Plan Ahead

An individual as special as your favorite senior is sure to have countless friends, family and loved ones who want to join in on the festivities. For everyone’s convenience, you may want to choose a date at least two months in advance to give out-of-town guests enough time to make travel arrangements.

Whether you’re planning a big birthday bonanza or a simple and sweet soiree, be sure to give yourself plenty of time to accomplish all the details that a 90th birthday entails.

Create a Budget

From a fitting 90th birthday party theme to decor and gifts, party planning should be fun. Before you begin gathering the must-have items, consider your budget.

Whether the sky is the limit or you have a more modest budget to work with, the perfect party can be accomplished at any price tag. Once you decide what to spend, the fun can begin.

Consider a Theme Party

When shopping for party essentials, your first step is to select a theme. Limited only by your imagination, you can draw inspiration from the birthday person’s interests, hobbies and personality to create a theme that is uniquely theirs.

From vintage themes that humorously celebrate their age to whimsical varieties that highlight their youthful heart, you can find countless ideas to help make their party the talk of the town.

Choose the Perfect Invitations

With a theme in mind, it’s time to pick out invitations . Whether you put your DIY skills to the test or purchase a pre-made option, invitations are a fun way to introduce guests to the party’s theme.

Along with the party’s essential information, consider including directions and an insert with hotel recommendations for out-of-town guests.

Decorate with Style

Birthday party decorations can turn an average day into an unforgettable memory. Centerpieces, streamers, tablecloths and more are just a few of the items you can use to transform any space into a party zone.

With such a milestone occasion, photos are a priceless way to decorate. Using pictures from years past and present, the guest of honor as well as friends and family will love the walk down memory lane.

Consider Offering Party Favors

While optional, party favors are a great way for guests to remember the big day. Whether it be humorous, sentimental or a delicious treat, send them home with something remarkable as a token of your appreciation for their presence.

Gift Ideas

Available in all shapes and sizes, the right gift allows you to express your love in a creative way. For the tender-hearted individual, a personalized present with a photo is a great way to show that you care.

For the senior who loves a good laugh, a funny shirt, mug or other item is sure to cater to their sense of humor.

Serve an Impressive Cake

When you think “party,” you inevitably think “cake.” A 90th birthday celebration should be no exception. In fact, such a momentous occasion calls for an equally impressive cake . I

f you are skilled in the kitchen, you can bake your own dessert as a sweet way to honor your favorite senior. With countless designs available that range from whimsical to humorous, inspiration won’t be hard to find.

Food Options

Depending on the time of day, you may have a group of hungry mouths to feed. Regardless of the time, everyone appreciates a little finger food. However, if your party takes place around lunch or dinner, you may want to provide a more substantial selection. To cut costs, consider asking for volunteers to cook, bake and provide snacks.

Do You Want to Provide Entertainment?

Whether big or small, the best parties have some sort of entertainment. If you’re hosting a large event, you may want to hire a band or DJ. For a smaller affair, something as simple as organized games will keep the event upbeat and lively.

Make a Keepsake for the Guest of Honor

After all is said and done, the star of the show would love to carry home a sweet reminder of their big day and everyone who cared enough to celebrate it. With this in mind, consider creating a scrapbook or video that they can treasure the rest of their days.

By Ricky Eisen Posted in Birthday, Family Matters

How to plan a birthday party

Kids’ birthday parties give parents an opportunity to use their creative side. There are endless possibilities for themes, decorations and food that can make your fete grand. By choosing an age-appropriate theme and kid-friendly menu, you can have a celebration your little one will remember for years to come.

It is easy to fall into the trap of planning your kid’s party around the time of year or season. However, just because it is November, does not necessarily mean you should throw a autumn-themed soiree. Consider the child’s interests, hobbies, favorite movies or characters when selecting a theme for the party. Keep in mind that kids enjoy things that are personal to them. Be sure to involve them in party preparations. After all, it is their big day.

If you need help with decorations, go to the local party or craft supply store for inspiration. You can even order party supplies online. To make your own decorative pieces, print pictures pertaining to your theme. Place said images back-to-back with a string in between for an easy and inexpensive mobile. Another festive homemade creation is a banner. Purchase colorful stationary or even themed paper that you could print single, large letters on each page to read “Happy Birthday.” Clip each page to a string, rope or streamer with clothespins for some cute décor.

While you can get creative with other aspects of the fete, food should remain on the simple side. Most kids like simple eats, like finger foods. Consider edible options that are easy to grab on the go since guests are running around. Chicken fingers, pigs-in-a-blanket and mac and cheese are all delicious easy-to-make choices. To be on the safe side, stay away from peanut butter for those with nut allergies.

While food can be kept simple, dessert may be more of a culinary adventure. A great option is to have a make-your-own sundae station with a variety of ice cream or frozen yogurt flavors. Fill bowls with your popular toppings, such as candies, sprinkles and marshmallows. Another choice is to serve cupcakes, either homemade or from a bakery. Again, young guests love treats they can grab.

The best part about throwing your kid’s birthday party is that there is so much you can design yourself. Remember, have fun and create a day that your little one will never forget.

Useful Party-Planning Apps


    A party planner right in your device, the application prepares everything, from guest lists and receiving RSVPs, to shopping lists.
    Choose from more than 60 designs to create party invitations. An added bonus is that invites can be sent directly from your phone though text message or e-mail.
    Organize your dining situation with this virtual seating chart. Import friends and use its drag-and-drop function to set guests’ positions.

About the author Ricky Eisen

Ricky Eisen is the founder and president of Between the Bread, one of Manhattan’s most renowned and prestigious corporate catering companies. With more than 35 years of experience in the food and beverage industry, Eisen oversees all Between the Bread events. Through her career, Eisen has made several television appearances, including The Apprentice, Good Morning America and local morning shows. She continues to provide catering for charities and has served on the board of the Israel Cancer Research Foundation of New York. Eisen studied political science at Hunter College in New York City.

Personalization Is the Key to Throwing a Memorable Birthday Party

How to plan a birthday party

Thomas Barwick / Getty Images

Chances are, if you are like most adults, you don’t remember the first party you attended as a child. And it is even more likely that the first party was a birthday party. In fact, it may even have been your own birthday celebration.

Around the world, birthdays are celebrated as we mark the end of a year and the start of a new one. Relatives and friends gather to share food and drink, bringing gifts and enjoying a special birthday cake. Because these life events occur only once a year, there is a certain amount of pressure on the host to deliver a memorable event.

But memorable does not have to be “perfect.” Instead of stressing over every last detail as you strive for perfection, focus on planning a birthday party that is personal for the guest of honor. Those unique touches will make the birthday party one to remember for years to come.

Making a Birthday Party Special

Birthdays are personal, and birthday parties should be as well. If you don’t know your guest of honor, gather some information about them. What are their hobbies and interests? How do they spend their free time? Learning whether they enjoy playing golf, cooking, or traveling will present numerous opportunities for you to personalize their party with creative details.

For example, use a favorite hobby as a theme for the birthday cake and decorations. For the golfer, set up a putting green in a corner of the backyard or venue for guests to try their hand. Use green tablecloths with golf ball candle holders. If your guest of honor is a traveler, send out traditional tourist postcards in lieu of customized printed invitations and offer a varied international menu from some of the places they have visited.

For a children’s party, finding hobbies can be challenging depending on the age. So, if the child is too young to be playing soccer or performing in dance recitals, pick an area of general interest and make that your theme. For example, if the birthday child is fond of pirates and adventure, hold a scavenger hunt. For younger children, keep it simple and have them work in teams of three and keep the list of items short.

Older children will enjoy the challenge of finding numerous items on their own, relishing the competition for a prize. Children remember what they did at a party and whether they had fun playing games. Less important is whether the balloons matched the napkins and the overall color scheme.

Piñatas or Cocktails?

All successful birthday parties—and all successful parties in general—require advanced planning. When planning a birthday party, there are a few different elements to consider so let’s break it down into two types of birthday parties: children and adults.

Children’s Birthday Parties

When children reach a certain age, they become well aware of when their birthday is, even though their concept of actual time may not be that accurate. It doesn’t take long before they associate a birthday with a party, cake, candles, decorations, and presents! Fun and games for all can often leave the host frazzled and exhausted. To minimize the stress level when planning a children’s birthday party, follow these tips:

  • Limit the number of children: The rule of thumb is to match the number of guests with the age of the birthday child. For example, invite four children for a four-year-old’s birthday party. While that may not be reasonable in the circumstances of a large family, in general, it is better to invite fewer children to a children’s birthday party. It doesn’t take long for a well-planned party to spiral out of control when too many children, excited for the party and fueled on a sugary cake, take over. Games become hard to control and the birthday child is often overwhelmed. If you do need to invite a large number of children for whatever reason, then have additional help. Having extra bodies, whether that is paid staff or a few friends and relatives, in charge of keeping the children entertained can be a lifesaver.
  • Keep it short: While an hour and a half may seem like a short period of time to celebrate a three-year-old’s birthday, that 90 minutes can seem like 900 minutes when cranky children in need of the afternoon nap begin their meltdowns. So keep the official party time to an hour and a half; many parents, when picking up their children, stay and socialize at the end of the party so the party will go for two hours anyway.
  • Time it Right: Cocktail parties can start at 5:00 in the afternoon. Not children’s birthday parties. If the guests are still of napping age, time the party in between the morning and afternoon naps. Starting sometime before noon and ending by 1:30 p.m. works well; guests will arrive rested and ready for a kid-friendly lunch. School-aged children can certainly stay up late, but that is not the best time for a party. Plan your celebration to end by 5:00. After a few hours of play, they are tired and hungry for dinner, the perfect time to send them home again.

Adult Birthday Parties

Many adults are really children at heart, and they look forward to and enjoy a celebration in their honor. It is a chance to enjoy the company of friends and family, receive gifts, and be the center of attention for a little while. That being said, some adults prefer small, intimate gatherings to celebrate; others can’t wait to shout from the rooftops and party at a large-scale daylong event. So the first step in planning an adult birthday party is to get to know your guests and tailor the party to their personalities and interests.

Milestone Adult Birthday Celebrations

Big birthday milestones don’t necessarily need to be celebrated in a big way. For those who have a large family, an extensive social or business network, or those who enjoy mingling amongst a crowd of well-wishers, bigger may be better. For others who may have a close inner circle of friends, or perhaps a small, close-knit family, more intimate gatherings may be preferable.

The key point here is to weigh in with your host regarding their thoughts on their celebration. If the event is a surprise, then talk to the guest of honor’s spouse or partner or closest friends to determine which approach is best. Surprise parties can be fun, but the surprise element should be a positive experience stemming from the timing of the celebration, not missing the mark on the party itself.

Personalization is key to making a birthday party memorable. Research back to the year they were born and incorporate newsworthy details from that time period into the party theme. Depending upon the year, invite guests to dress as they would have if it were that year. 1960s hippie clothes and 1980s big hair can make a party fun and provide great opportunities for photos, laughter, and reminiscing.

Need kids birthday party ideas? Party planning doesn’t have to be stressful. Follow these tips to plan a fun, stress-free celebration for your child!

For some parents planning a child’s birthday party can be a blast while other moms and dads find the party planning process stressful and a chore. Whether you opt to host a large expensive kid’s party event or prefer a small gathering with family and close friends, it is important to plan a birthday party that is fitting for your child’s age and temperament and takes into account your family’s style and budget.

Young children often get overwhelmed and over stimulated easily. We have all been to birthday parties where children are in tears over costumed characters or overwhelmed with the large numbers of unfamiliar faces. Consider your child’s personality and preference and plan a party where your child can be comfortable, be himself, and have fun.

With thoughtful planning, kid’s birthday parties can be meaningful occasions of joy and celebration with limited stress for adults.

Tips for Planning a Kids Birthday Party

Involve Your Child in the Party Planning:

  • Start by meeting with your child to plan her birthday party. Toddlers may simply tell you the flavor of the cake that they’d like, whereas preschool children often have specific birthday party ideas, “I want everything to be purple – my favorite color.”
  • Talk with preschool and older children about a party theme (if they’d like one), whom to invite, and where to have the event. You might give your child a choice between two outdoor playgrounds, for example. See if your local Bright Horizons center hosts birthday parties.
  • Create the invitation with your child, if you have time, or purchase one. If you decide to make your own party invitations, young children can paint or draw on them while older children might help make the invitations on a computer.
  • Plan the food, cakes and drinks that will be served at the party. If the party has a theme, you can buy or make snacks that go along with the theme (i.e. Pirate Booty for a pirate’s party). You can also involve your child by baking the birthday cake or cupcakes together.

What to Consider When Making the Kids Party Guest List:

  • Small groups are recommended for young children. Some people believe that the number of guests should match the age the child is turning. If you feel a need to reciprocate for other kids’ birthday parties your child has attended, consider reciprocating with a fun play date.
  • Do you want to include extended family? If so, consider having a children’s party and then a separate family pot luck or party.
  • Think about inclusion. Be considerate of children’s feelings. If you decide to host a large birthday party, either invite the entire class or don’t distribute invitations at school. It is fine to invite just your child’s close friends, but the invitations should then go out by post or email.

Fun Birthday Party Ideas & Activities by Age Group:

  • When considering birthday party ideas for toddlers, most enjoy simple party activities such as playing with balls, water play, bubbles, giant cartons, or some colorful play dough with a variety of cookie cutters. Find more toddler activities!
  • Preschool children enjoy simple party games, movement, and art activities. It’s helpful to plan the activities with your child. Consider mural painting, dance and freeze when the music stops, or a cooking project. Find more preschooler activities!
  • Kindergarten and elementary school children will probably have more elaborate birthday party ideas and activities in mind. If finances permit, consider an activity such as miniature golf or bowling. A theme party where children make puppets and perform a puppet show is a fun option and not too costly. Find more kindergartener activities!
  • Older children may request a sleep over birthday party. Consider whether this is something you would like to supervise recognizing that you probably won’t get much sleep. That said a sleep over with a small group can be a wonderful close time for children that they’ll remember for years.
  • Need birthday party ideas that range different age groups? Children of all ages enjoy being creative. Consider decorating party hats, making picture frames (and putting a group photograph of the children at the party), or having children decorate their own cupcakes or cookies.

There are many factors to consider when planning a child’s birthday party and stress shouldn’t be one of them. Remember that every family is unique and the ultimate goal is to plan a fun and memorable birthday party for your child.

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