Olympic Party -8yr- Pin The Flame
Amy in Caldwell, NJ
We used many great ideas from this site, but embellished as follows for my 8 year old son's Olympic party:
As the athletes "checked in" upon arrival, each were presented with an outline of their country's flag on half a sheet of paper, and a pile of crayons and markers to color in the stripes, stars, etc. of the flag. We then used double sided tape to stick them onto the kids' backs. Unfortunately several of them fell off during the very active events, and became a nuisance- needed better sticking flags. At check-in we also gave each kid a cocktail sized flag taped onto a plastic drink stirrer along with a glob of fun tack. They each had to locate and stick their flag onto their country on our laminated world map(like the ones in schools). We just taped the map up onto our garage door- it worked fine, and we slid in a geography lesson on most of them!
My son & I made our Olympic torch out of: paper machier, orange felt glued to cardboard for the top, some duck tape, red floral sprigs, and silver spray paint... it was big hit for the Opening Ceremony Parade. My son lead the parade weaving all around our yard, bushes, and house. We blasted on our stereo out the windows, the well-known Olympic Fanfare (by composer John Williams is the famous one most folks recognize- but listen before you buy a CD) Much fun! - My husband got several large cardboard rolls (24" diameter and 8 feet long) from his pal the carpet guy. We used these to create one doozy of an obstacle course in the front yard, along with some blow-up beach balls of the globe, and some small soccer cones.
To include the less athletic kids, we also had an apple dunking event and a "Pin the Flame on the Olympic Pyre" game. Used a large cardboard box, some aluminum foil, and several sheets of construction paper to fashion a shallow dish, and then cut out flames for the kids to attach with tape after being blindfolded and spun around a few times.
I made a (mostly organic) cake by piecing together 5 different 8" cake rounds (got to have several flavors, too that way!). Along the top rim of each cake, I used fruit to make the five clors of the interlocking Olympic rings: kiwi, raisins, pineapple, strawberries, & blueberries.
We tried to group the kids by younger siblings, kids his age, and bigger/older kids, so among each group there would be fair competition as each cycled through the events. Well, any hopes of a point system to award medals at the end of the party were dashed as all the kids just ran around from one event to the other. They seemed to like it fine that way, so I quickly threw a gold medal on each one of them toward the end of the party.
We tried to make a pinata out of paper machier also. We were shooting for a shotput (a rather easy choice, just a big punch ballon underneath). Well... the ballon expanded as it dried on my porch in the sun, it cracked the thing open, and the second layer of paper machier just caved the whole thing in. We laughed as we depicted our pinata as now a hackey-sack ball. Groan. We did make sure to fill our sad pinata up with MANY dozens of bouncy balls, some small, large, some that blink, etc. We never put candy in our pinatas, but kids do still enjoy them. The hardest pinata my son & I have made was for his 5th Birthday, a Doctor Doolittle-themed party, as he wanted a Pushmipullu. It actually came out looking something like a gazelle with two heads, but I digress...
Party favors for each kid to take home were a paperback of the popular series from Magic Tree House, book #16: "Hour of the Olympics" by Mary Pope Osborne. - You know how they say for planning purposes to count on 1/3rd of any party invite list not to come? Well.. I only had 2 kids say they couldn't make it to this one, so we had way more (mostly boys) than I had hoped. Yikes. Managed to have no bloodshed, and I'll credit all the pitching in from several adult family members that made this event work.
I was told the next week by a few moms that my son's was the best birthday party they had ever been to, which startled me, what with all the professinal party places that seem to flourishing thesedays. After the 32 happily worn out, well-fed kids left, I collapsed in a heap for 2 days, and we mostly ordered out. Wow, did this project kinda snowball… - Amy G.
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