Idea No.

13783

Carnival Party 2-7 yrs - Circus Music

Award

Date

June 2006

From

Christine in Oxford, Michigan

Special Mention

Carnival Party

We just celebrated our 3 boys (ages 7,6,and 2) birthdays with a carnival party this past weekend.  I bought actual "Ticket" invitations at Walmart that read Admit One on the cover. I included all the important details including that the party was being held at our last name Fairgrounds (our backyard).  Each envelope had the child's name written in primary colors and I attached 2 balloons that I cut out of construction paper and added curly ribbon to them.  I bought white bags at the dollar store and wrote each child's name in primary colors and my boys added a few colorful stickers.  We bought tickets at Walmart and put 20 tickets in each bag. 

When the children arrived I greeted them at my neighbor's Kool Aid stand in which I covered in red and white striped fabric (Walmart) and a sign that read Tickets and Welcome to the our last name Carnival.  My husband created the sign on the computer using primary colors and pictures of hot dogs, tickets and smiley faces.  I gave each child his or her bag and told them to find me if they needed more. 

I had a jar full of M and M's and had them guess how many and the child who came closest won.  We decorated our backyard with banner flags and balloons.  I had borrowed circus music from the library and had that playing the entire time.  My husband brought up the stereo speakers from the basement and hid them behind the food area. I had the food under a tent. 

I rented a popcorn machine and a sno cone machine (a big hit).  I had also purchased extra popcorn in case we ran low.  We served hot dogs, chips, lemonade, kool aid and pop. 

We also had cotton candy which I bought at the dollar store and divided it up and tied each bag with a different primary color curly ribbon. 

My husband cut a branch off our tree and drilled 39 holes for the jumbo suckers I bought at the dollar store.

He put sand in a bucket and "planted" our sucker tree.  The kids loved it.  We rented a moonwalk and had 9 games.  I rented a quarterback toss and a hockey shoot out game from the same company we rented the fun food machines and moonwalk. 

We had a bucket toss. I bought 4 buckets and ping pong balls from the dollar store.  I lined up the buckets about 6 inches between them and had the kids throw the balls into the yellow and red buckets. 

We had an actual carnival style  bean bag toss which I borrowed from our neighbor. 

We also had a ring toss in which I took empty water bottles and refilled each one with water and a different food color dye and used the rings from a pool game (dollar store).  My son created a Spiderman toss in which we took the webs from the Spiderman Web Lauch game we already had. He drew the Green Goblin and we attached him to a 6 ft piece of wood, put it in the ground and the kids had to throw the webs at the goblin. 

I used our Twister game put it on the grass and had the kids throw pennies and try to get it in the circle.  I also had a tic tac toe game.  I bought sundae dishes (dollar store)and filled them with a little water and had the kids throw ping pong balls at it and try to get tic tac toe.

Each game or activity had a colorful sign created by my husband off the computer indicating the name of the game and how tickets were needed. It also had a smily face with either 1 or 2 fingers showing the number of tickets.  The signs also had pictures of what the game was (football for the football toss). We stapled it to a piece of coordinating construction paper and attached it to a paint stick (Home Depot and Meijers) and put it in the ground.  There was also a balloon attached to the stick. 

My mom had white canvas aprons that we decorated.  We painted balloons with fabric paint on them and wore the aprons during the party. 

My husband drew, painted and cut out the face a man holding a snake wrapped around its neck standing in front of a circus tent. We took pictures of each child's face in the cut out.  We also had face painting. I had another neighbor volunteer and make balloon animals and hats for the kids. 

Instead of a cake, I baked cupcakes and decorated them with sprinkles.  It was 7 wks in the making, but a huge success.  I had a lot of help from family and friends. 

Even the next day I had people calling saying what a great time they had.  It was well worth it and the kids loved every minute.

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