Dinosaur Theme Party -7yr- Dono Toss
Jeri Lynn in Thibodaux, Louisiana USA
My 7 year old son wanted a Dinosaur themed party and so it started...I start researching early so I can get the best prices and have plenty of time to plan ideas for games and decorating. Our parties are usually very large between our large families, friends and now classmates so I try to give the best party at the cheapest cost. I found the best deal for the theme style he wanted at BirthdayDirect.com because shipping is free when you spend over $45.00. So I purchased the basics. I always purchase a few themed pieces that I match with coordinated solid colored pieces to keep the cost down but still have the theme he wants.
I printed invitations using a Workshop Greetings CD we had at home (alot cheaper than preprinted ones) with the Stampede to the Nesting Grounds wording which I found on this website.
I decided to hand-stencil loot bags instead of purchasing themed ones to save money. I hand stenciled 50 plain brown lunch bags with dinosaurs (stencils found at Michael's and Dollar General). I used different shades of brown, green and orange craft paint so each was unique. The paint cost about .44 cents a bottle from the craft dept at Wal-Mart but goes a long way. They actually came out really cute.
In the bags, I included bubbles which I made dinosaur labels for (clearance 8ct for $1.00), happy b-day horns (clearance), squeaky balloons (Dollar Tree/12ct for $1.00), stretchy dinosaurs (Target/Halloween section/60pc for $3.99), mini dinosaurs (Dollar stores and Wal-Mart ranging from .88 cents to $1.00 for at least 12ct), dinosaur sponge capsules (Dollar Tree/18ct for $1.00), dinosaur-shaped Ritz (12ct for $3.69), 2 dinosaur themed books I printed from www.learningpage.com and of course, several different candies. I always forget to give out the loot bags at the end of the party so I started giving them out when the children arrive. I put their names on them so they can keep track of theirs and the can put the other stuff they get into them.
I printed up a Happy B-Day dinosaur banner I found on www.dltk-kids.com. I purchased 3 plain white paper tablecloths ($2.00 each)on which my sister-in-law and I stenciled dinosaurs and put wiggly eyes on them and Happy 7th Birthday, Jayden with sponge letters. A lot cheaper than themed ones at $5.60 each and came out really nice and they were original. When the children first arrived, I had craft stations set up so they could make a bookmarker using precut foam pieces, sticky dinosaurs and various other shapes (all found on clearance at Michael's and Wal-Mart) and a dinosaur necklace using glow-in-the-dark (for boys) and sparkly (for girls) cording (.70 cents for 10 yards at Wal-Mart), regular beads (already had) and dinosaur shaped foam beads (OTC $4.95 for 500pc). Also had an octagon shaped pinata (Dollar Tree/$1.00) which I turned into a pull-string pinata for safety reasons which I filled with a variety of candies, stickers, toys, etc. The boys enjoyed making the crafts just as much as the girls did if not more. It kept everyone occupied while waiting for guests to arrive.
Games: 1st - I did a version of the Cake Walk using dinosaur footprints (which family members and I cut out from cardboard/free) spray painted brown, sponged with black paint and numbered with white paint. I played two songs "Ice Cream and Cake" and "Peanut Butter Jelly" (which the kids loved) and when we stopped the music we pulled a number and whoever was standing on that footprint won a prize.
2nd - my goddaughter drew freehand a dinosaur on a white posterboard which we used to play Pin-The-Horn on the Dinosaur with horns I copied and cut out.
3rd - Dino Toss using some stuffed dinosaurs (Dollar Tree/$1.00 each)which the child tossed into a volcano (made by my brother-in-law) and whoever got the most in won.
For game prizes, I found some wonderful things at the dollar stores and on clearance at Wal-mart all for $1.00 or less. I had girl prizes, boy prizes and unisex prizes - the prize bags were tied with pink, boy and yellow ribbons so I could know the difference. The cake was made by my Aunt's relative who does wonderful reasonably priced cakes. She used dinosaurs, mountains, trees and rocks that I found at the dollar store. It turned out great.
We also made paper-mache eggs using balloons, once the paper-mache dried, I popped the balloons to get them out, stuffed them with miniature dinosaurs, patched and when dried again I spray painted them almond and sponged different colors on them to make them appear speckled. The children enjoyed "hatching" the eggs in their own unique way from punching to stomping. Each child was able to have two eggs and were begging for more. (Might have to do some for Easter stuffed with little Easter prizes)
At the front of our home we placed a sign that said "Jay's Party" for new classmates who didn't know actually where we lived. I also had dinosaur footprints leading from the front of our home to the back where the party was held. It seemed as though everyone had a great time and apparently the party turned out to be the talk of the community because I heard positive feedback from several people who were not even there! So far, we have had a Halloween costume party, Blue's Clues, Bear in the Big Blue House, Jimmy Neutron, Rescue Heroes, Power Rangers and now Dinosaurs. I keep having to get more creative! No telling what next year's theme will be.
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