Want to throw the best kids birthday party ever? Of course you do because you are a good parent and you want to give your kids everything you never had. Or maybe you want to give them everything you always had. Either way, there are ways to throw the best kids birthday party ever and not kill yourself doing it.
The best kids birthday party doesn’t have to cost a fortune. It doesn’t have to stress you out. It doesn’t have to be elaborate and involved. In my experience, the you can throw the best kids birthday party if you have pizza, cake, and lots of running around. I’d say that’s true at least for kids 12 and under. Teenagers are another thing. Check back with me in a few years.
I recently hosted my son’s 9th birthday party at X-drenaline in Atlanta. This is one of our favorite places to burn off extra energy. It has all the accouterments of a trampoline center. Dodge ball? Check. Foam pit. Check. Plenty of trampoline space? Check. They also have a ninja course (think American Ninja Warrior for kids) and a rock wall. Plus they have tons of comfortable parent seating, free wi-fi, and a decent snack stand. And the birthday parties are SO easy and SO fun. We had such a good time I started to think about what makes a spectacular birthday party. Anyone can tell you what to do, but here is what NOT to do.
7 Tips to Throw the Best Kids Birthday Party
1. Don’t have the kids birthday party at home.
Ugh. The best kids birthday party does not entail me cleaning my house from top to bottom or nagging my husband to get his honey do list done. Can you have a fantastic birthday party at your house? Sure. But the work that’s involved might kill you. At X-drenaline, they helped with set up, did the clean up, and did the watching and entertaining of kids. Yes!
2. Don’t make all the food yourself.
You could show off your culinary prowess but the kids won’t appreciate it. Guaranteed. Save your skills for your next dinner party and focus on things like pizza, sandwiches and of course a fabulous cake (that someone else made). If the center that is hosting your party offers food, take them up on it.
3. Don’t forget siblings.
Yes, it’s hard to include everyone but it will make the families feel included and you will get some great karma points. Make sure your venue can handle extra kids first though. At X-drenaline, I paid for 10 kids and then paid for any extras the day of. If your budget doesn’t allow for all the siblings, be sure to let the parents know beforehand. I’ve found most parents totally get it. Try to have extra goodie bags so no one leaves without a treat.
4. Don’t feel pressured.
Let go of the pressure! You do not have to throw the best kids birthday party ever. You don’t even have to throw a birthday party. Do what you can when you can. There are seasons of life when an impromptu playdate at Chick fil A qualifies as a fabulous option. Maybe another time you’ll throw a big bash with camels. Just do you. Don’t let ‘My Super Sweet Sixteen’ shows make you think you have to go crazy.
5. Don’t get a small cake.
Cake is one of my favorite parts of any birthday. Don’t tell me I’m alone in this! I always make sure there is more than enough cake. Have enough for the parents and all the siblings. And have enough to take home after so you can enjoy it by yourself with a nice glass of Moscato. I’ve found a typical 1/4 sheet cake works for a party of 12 kids. Make sure your venue will let you bring your own cake in too.
6. Don’t spend tons of money.
This is a given right? You don’t have to spend tons of money to throw the best kids birthday party ever. Your kids don’t need that. They need to feel unique and that this is their special day. Your kids just want to feel loved and celebrated. And you can do that without spending your whole paycheck. At X-drenaline, everything except the cake and goodie bags are included. Parties here start as low as $149!
7. Don’t think you have to throw the party on a Saturday afternoon.
Try to find an alternative time for your child’s birthday party. Saturday afternoons are so packed with activities for so many families that trying to get people there (and on time) is tough. Saturday afternoons are also the most expensive times at most venues and the ones that are booked first. What’s wrong with an after school party on a Wednesday? How about a Sunday evening party? If there is a school vacation coming up, you could even think about hosting a party during the day.