Idea No.


10 Challenges Party -10yr- Creepy Crickets



September 2005


Casey in Haslett, Michigan, USA


Fear Factor Party

10 Challenges Party   For my daughter's 10th birthday, we decided to have a "10 Challenges Party"

We delivered invitations that we created on the computer with the following info:  "We're looking for a few good contestants...  Are you clever?  Daring?  Adventurous?  Ready to meet "The Challenge"?  Then come to ___'s 10 Challenges Party for her 10th Birthday" Location: ___'s  Challenge Arena (and address) Contestant Registration (dropoff) begins at ___ Contestants will experience brainy... athletic... food... creepy... and especially fun... challenges"  etc. etc... you can make it as creative as you wish.  We included an application that had basic information to fill in plus their answer to the question:  'Why would you be a good contestant?"  They were asked to bring their completed application to the party. 

As contestants arrived, they were greeted by a large banner across our garage advertising the party.  My daughter was in charge of having them fill out their registration and waiver with their parents (nothing too scary but lighthearted and fun).  Then they made wristbands that were used for one of the challenges.  When everyone arrived, they all took the 'oath' before beginning - promise to be a good sport, can opt out of any challenge before or during it - will try my best - and realize this isn't a competition against others, just a challenge for themselves... 

And we announced each candidate, using their application that they brought to the party, their age, town, and a bit about themselves:  "___ is a 10 year old from right here in Haslett, likes to challenge herself, is a good sport, and enjoys sports in her spare time.  Give it up for ___"  Everyone clapped at each other's intro.  and we videotaped bits and pieces of the entire party.  And now for the challenges: We got many ideas from hours of reading suggestions for Survivor and Fear Factor parties on this website and others.  We invented some of our own to go along with it. 

1.  Iron Toes - I set up each event with a little story, like on Fear Factor.  "This water... was flown in... all the way from the glaciers of Alaska....  The temperature is a chilling 28 degrees Fahrenheit... Your challenge... should you accept it... is to pull marbles from this tub, using only your bare feet... We call it Iron Toes..."  Fill a tub with ice and water and marbles.  Kids had to pull out marbles with their bare feet.  It is harder than you might think!  Rather than having a winner at each event, we had divisions - 10 or more marbles in 30 seconds = "Fearless Champion"   7-9 marbles = "Tough Professional"  4-6 marbles = "Strong Amateur" and less than 4 marbles = "Fearful Sushi" (sushi is a term we use in our family when we play games - whoever is last is called sushi - must be a spinoff for the old "last one is a 'rotten egg' - you can make your own titles for each division)  If everyone is a "Fearless Champion, great. 

2.  Marshmallow Madness - Using the long handled animal shaped "grabbers" - you squeeze the handle and the critter's mouth opens and closes - often a crocodile or shark - kids had to grab marshmallows out of a tub of them and put them into a big plastic cup.  They were blindfolded for this.  You can make your own times and divisions - we used the same 30 seconds 10 or more marshmallows = Fearless Champion... and so on. 

3.  Icky Poo Pick Up - we got these large sticky hands with a long sticky string coming out of them - it is through Klutz press - they are actually called Icky Poo - and kids had to snatch up those magazine subscription cards off the carpet by flinging the sticky hands - again a time limit and dvisions for their achieved title. 

4.  Worm Challenge - with hands behind backs, kids had to pull gummy worms from a tin pie pan with whipped cream on top.  Makes a great photo op!   

5.  Pucker Up! - suck a lemon for a certain amount of time.  I tried to make this harder by soaking the wedges in lemon juice overnight, and having the kids chew super-minty gum for one minute before their turn to suck.  Everyone could do this so if you want to make your challenges really challenging - skip this one. 

6.  Oh, Baby! - We didn't want to have too much gross stuff like Fear Factor, but we did go with the baby food challenge - without labels on the jars, kids first tried to match up the flavors to the numbered jars on a worksheet.  Once they learned what they were, they lined up around the table and looked under their napkin to see which flavor they had to eat.  Only one kid ate 10 spoonfuls of their squash.  Some actually had the gag reflex and had to leave the room.  I think I would try for good tasting baby food the next time to make it easier and less gaggy - applesauce is not too bad. 

7. Key Crusade - Handcuff partners together - partners are decided by matching up wristbands that are numbered on the inside. 

As kids arrive, they register by filling out the waiver - parents, too - nothing too scary but "official" and decorating a wristband - cheap leather types from Oriental Trading - and decorated with colorful Sharpie permanent markers. For this event, I pulled numbers from a bag to determine partners.   Partners were handcuffed using metal handcuffs after I set the stage by saying they were actually used to arrest my great uncle's cousin's wife's best friend's girlfriend.. Or something like that.. And some jail story We handcuffed on the shoelaces because around ankles or wrists can be painful.  They had to run to one area, dig a key out of a box of keys (we have a bunch of old ones that we had collected  - you could ask hardware stores to save some throw aways from the keys they make - they had to unlock their handcuffs, then run to another area, find a second key, unlock a padlock that locked up a suitcase, get into the suitcase, pull out 10 gold plastic coins and run to dump them in a bucket.  Under 20 seconds or whatever you decide after setting up your area and trying it out - would be a Fearful Champion, etc. 

8. Gooey Golf - I filled a baby inflatable pool - actually not filled, but a fair amount - with vanilla pudding - premade giant cans from a local warehouse club - giant sized applesauce, watered down , and green food coloring.  Then we buried golf balls in it.  Kids had 20 seconds to pull out golf balls - most got right into this without any fear whatsoever.   

9.  Creepy Cricket Challenge - We put over 200 crickets - we got a bunch of small ones but decided we needed much bigger ones, so we went back for a bunch of big ones, too - biggest is best - we put them into an empty aquarium and cut cardboard with arm holes so they wouldn't get out.  We put in a bunch of tiny, rubber snakes, frogs, lizards.  Kids had to pull them out.  The crickets actually jump out of the way when hands go in, so it wasn't as creepy as it could have been.  We could have hid the lizards between layers of paper towels where the crickets would be resting.. Some kids did not take this challenge even though the crickets weren't that creepy. 

10.  Extreme Obstacle Course.  We set up 10 flags around the yard that kids had to grab and stick to velcro that was stuck onto a rag that was tied to the area such as a tree or basketball hoop, etc. We got a "creeper" - one of those things people lie on to change their oil under their car - and they had to move in and out of cones on the creeper - we talked about safety first and gave them garden gloves to protect their hands.  They also had to jump on the tramp and throw out 10 tennis balls off the tramp over the netting.  They had to climb through nylon tunnels we had purchased through Oriental Trading, hop in a potato sack, and more, finally ending by climbing up our large inflatable slide that hooks onto our "SimpleSet" pool.  The times qualified them for their Sushi to Champion status.  I took stats on separate pieces of paper for each contestant, and they got this when they went home the next morning. 

We had an awards ceremony the next day (after a not-so challenging dinner of pizza and pancake breakfast)  I had found awards to go along with each challenge and each contestant was eligible to win one of the events, even if they had the best times or scores for more than one.  Often one kid was really excited or super-cute during one particular event so they were declared the winner of that event.  Everyone got prizes that went along with each event, but one person got an extra prize for each event.  Examples:  Iron Toes - everyone got a drawstring bag with cool marbles inside.  Winner got some funky socks to keep her Iron Toes warm! Oh, Baby - everyone got a "baby bottle pop" candy, and the winner got a gift card to a local restaurant so she could get something that tasted better than baby food!   Extrememe Obstacle Course - everyone got a neon green t-shirt ($3.00 at Wal-Mart) with an ironed-on decal that said "10 Challenges" on the front, and in smaller letters "I took the Challenge" on the back, and the winner got a coupon for climbing the rock wall at the sports store in our shopping mall. 

For the Icky Poo Pick Up, everyone got a sticky hand (Oriental Trading), and the winner got two kid magazines (remember the game had them picking up those annoying magazine subscription cards that come inside of magazines!)  For the gummy worm challenge, they got bags of gummy worms, and the winner got some extra cool big boxes of candy like you get in a movie theater.  Gooey Golf - everyone got a tube of "goo" - another kind of candy, and the winner got a gift card to the local putt putt golf place. It was great fun thinking of the cool prizes to go along with each event, and the special prize for the winner of that event. 

This party was way-cool - kids are still talking about it - and after videotaping, they loved watching themselves on tv the next morning.  We gave each contestant their own copy of it on DVD.

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