Idea No.

19899

Army Party -9yr- Obstacle Course

Award

Date

May 2009

From

Margie in Los Alamos, NM 87544

Special Mention

Army Boot Camp Party

ARMY PARTY  9 year old.  I found a lot of great ideas on this website and also on the army website.  They have clip art of all their medals, patches, seals, etc. there < http://www.army.mil/symbols/>.  We are not a military family, nor do we know anyone in the military.  So, we probably did a lot wrong, but the boys LOVED this party.   Before the party, I downloaded clip art - from the website above - of the following military medals and badges:  Silver Star Medal, Special Forces Badge, Purple Heart Medal,  Physical Fitness Excellence Badge, Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service, Artillarty Badge, Army Achievement Medal and Air Medal.  I printed enough copies of each badge and medal for all the party guests onto sticker paper and cut them out.  I only printed 2 purple heart medals (on sticker paper). As the children progressed through the party games, they received these award stickers to wear on their shirts.  The also moved through the ranks from Private to Colonel.

INVITATIONS: The invitation was written like a draft notice.  The army seal was at the top <http://www.army.mil/symbols/Downloads/ArmySealHigh.jpg>.  Under the seal, in capital letters it said, Official Recruitment Notice.  Under that it said: You are hereby ordered for induction into the Armed Forces of the United States, Special Forces Unit.  MISSION:  Rendevous with an elite force of young men to celebrate Daniel's 9th Birthday.   Should you choose to accept this mission REPORT TO TRAINING CAMP:  15 September 2007 LOCATION: -------------------------- ARRIVAL TIME:  10:00 AM  COMPLETION TIME:  12:00 PM UNIFORM: Camouflage or green/tan/brown clothing (optional) CONFIRM:  -----  ------------ by 9.10.07 Birthday Rations (cake & ice cream) will be served. Recruits will run basic training drills.  They'll be crawling on grass and using water grenades during their missions.   Please bring a towel.

DECORATIONS:  I bought the typical army party ware:  Camo plates, napkins and cups with a green tablecloth and forks/spoons.  I decorated with some green and army balloons. 

COSTUMES:  The invitations had asked each guest to wear camo  and they all did.  Additionally, when each guest arrived, he received a camo bandana for his head, camo face paint, army tattoos, a dog tag with their name on one side and a nickname (ie, Tank, Ammo, Fast Fire, Bazooka, Sniper, Bomber, Viper, etc.) on the other and the Special Forces badge/patch that I had printed and cut out of sticker paper (which I stuck on their shirts). 

ACTIVITIES:  While we were waiting for everyone to arrive, the boys did a craft.  This was a sticky foam army tank craft kit that I purchased at a hobby/craft store.  When everyone was ready, I had the boys line up and I issued each guest a weapon:  a cork rifle that I had purchased at a recent craft fair.  These rifles were hand made out of wood and black PVC pipe.  The corks were attached with fishing line so the wouldn't get lost.  I had the boys practice proper loading and firing skills.  I tried to talk to them the way a superior would and referred to them as Private ______.  They had to practice standing attention and at ease with their rifles as well. 

Our first game was an OBSTACLE COURSE.   Carrying their rifles, the boys had to climb the rock climbing wall of our play structure and slide down the slide.  They had to run through tires (blown up inner-tubes) without tripping, cross a balance beam, and crawl under a row of chairs.  At the end they had to shoot empty soda cans off of a box with their cork guns.  The boys had a super time with this.  They started yelling at each other to complete their mission!  After the obstacle course, each boy received the Infantry patch/badge and the Physical Fitness Excellence patch to stick on their shirts.  They were upgraded from private to corporal and referred to as Corporal ________ by me. 

The next activity was the AIRBORN MISSION.  Each boy received a foam glider/plane (purchased at a party supply store) with their name on it.  They had to aim their glider at a target drawn on poster board, and laid on the ground.  They each got 3 chances, and my husband recorded their scores.  After this, they all received the Air Medal and were upgraded from âcorporal to lieutenant.  The winner also received a prize a small army set from a discount store.

The third activity was a tank PiNATA filled with various prizes from the party store (ie, camo super balls, small water guns, etc). 

After that, we played PIN-THE-MEDAL-ON-THE SOLDIER.    I enlarged clip art of a soldier for this activity.  The kids each received the Distinguished Service medal and were upgraded to Sergeant.  The winner received a prize.

Next, we played HOT GRENADE.  The boys sat in a circle with a green grenade water balloon and passed it around as music played.  When the music stopped, the child holding the grenade was out.  If you popped the balloon, you were also out.  The winner received a prize.  They were upgraded from Sergeant to Captain.

Next, we played BOMBS AWAY, which is basically a water balloon free-for-all.  I found grenade water balloons that actually looked like grenades!  We had filled them before the party.  The boys had a blast with this.  After this activity, the boys each received the Silver Star for valor in the face of enemy fire (grenades).  They were upgraded to Major. 

Our last activity was RESCUE THE WOUNDED SOLDIER.  I divided the boys into 2 teams.  One child from each team was designated as the wounded soldier.  Each team had to bandage their wounded soldier using an entire roll of toilet paper and then drag him, on a beach towel, to safety.  At the end of this activity, each child received the Medal of Honor, and the 2 wounded soldiers also received the Purple Heart medal.  After all this, each child received the Army Achievement Medal and was upgraded to Colonel.

 CAKE:  In between those activity, we had cake and ice cream.  The cake was a regular rectangle cake covered in crushed graham crackers to look like sand.  I put some army men and plastic military vehicles on top.  I piped green, army-colored shells around the edges.  At the very end we opened gifts. 

FAVORS:  The boys took home their loot from the pinata, their costume (bandana, dog tag, etc.) and their cork gun/rifle.  The winners of the 2 each took home their separate prizes.  I have to say that not knowing anything about the army or military, I was not enthusiastic about putting this party together.  But my son begged me for several years, and I finally relented.  Amazingly, it turned out to be the best party I've ever done for him!  The boys really got into it!

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