Candyland -4yr- Cardboard King Kandy Castle
Katie in Pocatello, Idaho, U.S.A.
My daughter Makenna loves to play CandyLand so we decided to plan a CandyLand themed party for her 4th birthday.
INVITATIONS: For the invitations I bought blank cards that were green and white gingham. On the front of the card I added a green bow and glued on a small flat sucker for the kids to enjoy. On the inside, I had printed in colorful font King Kandy, Mr. Mint, Princess Lolly and more, are helping to celebrate when Makenna turns 4! Come join us for a sweet celebration! I then added the party information. We hand delivered the invitations and also gave each child a CandyLand book.
DECORATIONS: For the decorations we reserved a large open room. We wanted the room to be very colorful and, of course, full of candy! I had three rectangle tables in a U shape in the middle of the room. They had pink, green, and white tablecloths on them. At each table I placed a purple placemat. I bought yellow, orange, pink, purple, and blue dessert plates and drink cups at a discount store. I placed them alternately on the table so that it was all very colorful. I also purchased ring pop suckers and napkins with candy on them. I used the ring pops as napkin holders and placed them next to each plate. It was so cute! For centerpieces, I placed a clear plastic tumbler in the middle of the table and filed it with tons of Twizzler licorice so that it fanned out like a bouquet of flowers. I also placed giant Hershey kisses on either side and sprinkled jelly beans throughout the rest of the table. In the center of the U-shape formation of tables was a small round table that held the birthday cake. The rest of the room had lots of colorful balloon bouquets as well as giant pieces of candy decorations.
For the candy decorations, I took two small styrofoam plates and stapled them face to face. Then I wrapped them in colorful tissue paper with sparkles on it. I tied it with curling ribbon at each end so that it looked like a piece of hard candy. I also made lollipops this way but I used large plates and glued a piece of styrofoam in the middle of the plate. Then, I stuck a dowel rod into the styrofoam and glued it in place so it wouldn't come out. I tied the tissue paper at the base of the dowel rod using curling ribbon and I had a lollipop! We also hung multi-colored streamers from one end of the room to the other. The biggest decorations were part of the games and activities. We wanted to create a life-sized board game of CandyLand. I had purchased some file folders at a discount store for very cheap. I had blue, red, yellow, purple, and green. I opened up the folders and laid them flat on the floor, connecting them to make the path the kids would follow. I started in the hall and wound my way up and down the party room. At different places around the room I set up the lands in CandyLand. In the hall, I had lots of colorful balloons all over the floor. I also had a sign that said CandyLand in candycane-shaped letters. I had cardboard cutouts of gingerbread men and for the gingerbread tree, I used a display board and drew the gingerbread tree on it. I cut it out and poked tiny holes in the tree that I stuck tootsie pops in to look like the berries. I had copied all of the characters and blown them up on a projector to trace and color them onto display boards or poster board.
At each land the kids stopped and did an activity. I will describe each activity later. Inside the room the first land the kids came to was Peppermint Forest. I did this in a corner and I hung up red vinyl tablecloths to add some color to the white walls. I had purchased large squares of sparkly snow batting, candy canes, silver tinsel with candy canes, and 12 candy cane decorations after Christmas for 90% off. I laid the snow down on the ground and shaped the edge so it wasn't just square. I lined the edge of the snow with the candy cane tinsel. I sprinkled peppermints all over the snow and I taped the large candy canes on the red walls and hung them from the ceiling using fishing line. I also bunched up red and white sparkly tissue paper to look like peppermint grass growing along the back of the forest wall. I had a cutout of Mr. Mint standing behind the ring toss game they would play at his station. The next area was Jolly and the Gum Drop Pass. I had a cut out of Jolly standing near the path as well as a bouquet of balloons. I had taken very wide but short cups that looked like gum drops when they were upside down and spray painted them different colors. I also sprayed glitter on them so they really looked like gum drops. I placed them along the path to make the bridge.
The next stop was Peanut Acres with Gramma Nutt. I covered a large storage bin with a green tablecloth. Gramma Nutt was standing on top of this. In front of her I had a tray that I wrapped in green tissue paper which was filled with potting soil. I purchased some pumice stones that were in the shape of a peanut and painted them brown to look like peanuts. These were inside the tray of dirt and we played a game with them that I will explain later. The next station was Lollipop Woods. I had a lot of candy and lollipop decorations in this area. I had also traced Princess Lolly onto cardboard and hung her up from the ceiling so she looked like she was flying over Lollipop Woods. I had long pieces of styrofoam covered in green tissue paper with the lollipop decorations sticking out of them so they would stand up on their own. I also made some lollipops out of craft foam and taped them in a circle on the ground for a game.
The next land was Princess Frostine at Snowflake Lake. For this, I had taken my daughter's round sandbox and put it upside down. I covered it with a light blue tablecloth and put fake snow all around it to look like a frozen lake. I hung snowflake decorations from the ceiling and along the wall and I also hung strings of blue curled curling ribbon from the wall. Princess Frostine was taped to the wall as well. Next was the Chocolate Swamp with Gloppy. For this I had a round table that I covered with a brown tablecloth. I had a cutout of Gloppy on top of the table and in front of him was a chocolate fountain with assorted food for dipping.
The final destination was King Kandy's castle. For this, my husband found very large refrigerator boxes as well as a water heater box and various other cardboard boxes. We constructed the castle by placing the fridge boxes right side up about four feet apart. We placed the water heater box on its side and laid it across the fridge boxes connecting them all together. On top of the water heater box we stacked a big square box and then a smaller box. On top of that, we taped assorted colors of 5 balloons on top of each other so that when it was finished it looked like the round part of a gumball machine filled with gumballs. We wrapped all of the boxes in assorted colors of butcher block paper you can get in the large rolls. We hung curtains from the refrigerator boxes to fill in the gap between them and this is where the kids would enter to get their prize at the end of the game. We also took small boxes wrapped in sparkly tissue paper to act as turrets on top of the castle. We made windows and hung up colorful decorations. We had pinwheels sticking out of the turrets and gumdrop decorations throughout the castle. It was a huge decoration, definitely the focal point of the party, and it was rather cheap to make. King Kandy was standing on top of his castle.
ACTIVITIES/GAMES: We divided the kids into groups and had different activities and games going throughout the party. We had one station outside because it was July. We filled 200 water balloons and had the kids place the balloons in a colorful parachute. We had them each hold a handle and try to pop the balloons in the air and catch them without the balloons breaking. By the end, the kids would pop the balloons in the air and then hide under the parachute like an umbrella to keep from getting wet when the balloons exploded.
Inside, we had a group of kids that sat at the craft table. They were making their own Candy Crowns. I had gotten enough crowns from Burger King for all of the guests. I spray painted the crowns gold to hide the BK logo. I had trays of assorted candy like Necco wafers, Smarties, Chiclets, and Sprees. I also had lots of glitter glue. The kids had fun decorating their crowns and by the end of the party, most of them were dry enough to wear home. When they were done with the crowns they went to my sister-in-law and got candy tattoos. I had found assorted Tootsie Roll, Charms, and Dots candy tattoos at ShopKo for $1 a package. Each kid got to choose a few different tattoos.
The last activity was playing the actual game of CandyLand. I had my older nieces and nephews help with this. We used the actual cards from the game and had the kids draw the cards to move on the various squares of the game board. At each station, they had to stop and complete the task as well as collect their prize. At the gingerbread tree, they pulled a sucker from the tree. At Peppermint Forest, they tossed rings onto red dowel rods sticking up out of the snow. The prize was a candy cane shaped pen and some peppermints if they wanted them. At Gumdrop pass, they had to look under a gumdrop and see if there was a prize. I had hidden little boxes of Dots under some of the cups. They kept looking till they found one. At Peanut Acres, the kids had to play a matching game with the peanuts. I had the pumice stones that were shaped like peanuts lying in the dirt. Each peanut had a candy sticker on it with a matching one on another peanut. The kids had to turn the peanuts over until they had found all the matches. The prize was a marshmallow Circus peanut.
At Lollipop Woods, the kids walked around the circle of lollipops on the floor to the CandyLand soundtrack. When the music stopped, they had to get on a lollipop. Then we called out a color and whoever was on that color got a prize. We kept playing till everyone won. They each got to pick a swirled lollipop and a round notebook that looked like a lollipop. For Snowflake Lake, the kids played Pin the Snowflake on Princess Frostine's wand. I had drawn Princess Frostine ice skating on the lake holding out her wand with a snowflake on the end. I taped the poster to the wall and then cut out snowflakes the size of the one on the end of her wand. The kids tried to get it in the right spot and when they were finished, they got to go to Snowflake Lake and pick a snowball which was actually a Little Debbie's Snow puff cookie that looked like a snowball. They looked very cute sitting on top of the lake.
As the kids got to the chocolate swamp with Gloppy, they got to dip regular, strawberry, or coconut covered marshmallows into the chocolate fountain. When they were finished with that, the kids made it to King Kandy's Castle. Once they reached the castle, they got to pull back the curtains and pick their prizes. They each got an inflatable beach ball with a swirled design that I wrapped in cellophane and tied the ends with curling ribbon so it looked like candy. I had also filled a toilet paper tube with crayons and candy, then wrapped it in bright tissue paper and tied the ends with curling ribbon so it looked a piece of candy as well. All of the younger kids got a CandyLand coloring book that I had found at the Dollar Store that came with a poster and stickers. The older kids got a deck of playing cards that were shaped like candy.
COSTUMES: The only costume that I had at this party was the birthday girl. My daughter has red hair and likes to pretend to be Princess Lolly. I bought a purple dress and sewed little lollipops around the bottom. I also made her a lollipop crown by hot gluing lollipops onto it. Then, I took some fairy wings and glued lollipops onto those. She looked so cute and the best part was when we caught her lifting up her dress to lick the lollipops!
SNACKS: This party was full of candy! We served mini cupcakes and we had an Ice Cream Sundae bar. We dished up Neapolitan ice cream and let the kids choose their toppings. We had cut up bananas, strawberries, nuts, marshmallow cream, chocolate and strawberry syrup, sprinkles, and whip cream to top it all off. We also served party punch with sherbet and Sprite mixed together to make it frothy and yummy.
CAKE: I had the cake in the center of the party room so I wanted it to be another focal point of the party. I made three round cake layers. I had a large plastic cake pedestal that looked like glass. I set the 12 layer on the bottom and frosted it pink. I put an 8 layer on top of that and frosted it green. I used white pillars to hold up the last layer that I frosted pink again. It was about 4 Then I took the colorful ice cream cones and cut them in half lengthwise so they still looked like a whole ice cream cone. I alternated placing pink, green, and yellow cones around the outside layers of the cakes. Then I took white frosting and a large Wilton star tip (1M) and swirled it on top of the ice cream cone so that it looked like real ice cream. I topped the cones off with a gumball. Around the base of the largest cake layers I also put miniature cupcakes swirled with frosting (like the ones you see at bakeries) and gumballs the same as the cones. I placed those in between the ice cream cones. I finished the top layer with a regular sized cupcake that I swirled green frosting on top of with a pink gumball to complete the layers of pink and green. It turned out so adorable and just perfect for a Candy party. My daughter had to stand on a chair to reach the candles on top, it was almost as big as she was!
FAVORS: The favors the kids went home with were the ones they collected while playing Candy Land and the crowns they made.
This party took some prep work and a long time to set up, but it was really fun with the help of my family. It was definitely worth it to see the look on the kids faces, especially my daughter's!
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