Pirates of the Caribbean - Cardboard Ships
lisa in Dacula, GA USA
My son Jake loves the movie Pirates of the Caribbean, so for his 7th birthday we decided to use POTC for the theme. I used many Pirate party ideas from the site and adapted them to the theme.
First, I found the POTC graphic of the skull with sword and gun. I used it as a full page background for the invitation. I used the wording "Ahoy there mates! Ye be invited fer some birthday spirits at Captain Jake Sparrows Pirates of the Caribbean Party" (I used the wording from other ideas found on this site). I set the time for 2:30 p.m. so a meal was not required-- just cake and ice cream. However, I did make some snacks for the adults. I used the idea of the invite in the bottle. However,I labeled it using the same skull graphic as the invitation. Each child had a pirate name. For example, Jake was Captain Jake Sparrow, and another child was Bootstrap Blake.
The house was decorated with red, gold, and black balloons. I put a homemade sign on the front door that read, " Property protected by pirates! Enter at your own risk!" using brown mailing paper with burned edges. I hung a few pirate skeletons around the backyard, lots of Pirate Flags I got from US Toy Co., parrots, and had the Disney cd "Pirates of the Caribbean"(not the soundtrack from the movie, but the dialogue and music from the actual Disney ride) playing in the background.
On the long party table I used store bought pirate party plates, napkins, cups, and tablecloth. I placed a homemade painted wooden treasure chest in the center and filled it with gold coins, gold beads, rings, and king and queens crowns, etc. Coins and beads were scattered all along the table.
As the children arrived, they each received a black head scarf and sash made from inexpensive gauze fabric. Jake had a red head scarf and sash since he was Captain Jake Sparrow. They got their faced painted (mustache, beard, scars, etc), a POTC tatoo (again,the skull) which I bought very cheap from ebay. They sat and watched POTC movie until everyone arrived(APPROX 5-10 MIN).
After everyone arrived , we started playing games. The games were played outside, however I hade a backup indoor plan in case it rained. Each game held a clue to find the treasure chest. 1)We played "Pin the Patch on the Skeleton Pirate".I drew a picture of a skeleton pirate I found on a pirate website, and I made paper eyepatches to pin. Each child received a real Pirate eyepatch for playing and the winner received chocolate gold coins along with the eyepatch with the first clue attached.
The clue led us to the next game which was Cannonball Pop. I threw blown up black balloons on the ground and the children popped them as the POTC music played. I placed Smarties inside the balloons and one balloon also included clue 2 which led to the next game which was "Pass the Parrot"(played like Hot Potato).Also, I played the POTC song, "Yo Ho! Yo Ho! A Pirates Life For Me" while we played the game. As each child got out he/she received a lollipop.
The winner received Spongebob Dig n Dips Treasure chest candy with clue 3 taped to it which led to the 4th game, "Sink the Ship". We made the two ships out of cardboard, however, one ship was the "Intercepter" with a British flag on it and the other ship was the "Black Pearl" with a Pirate flag on it.The Interceptor team had red, blue, and white cannonballs. The Black Pearl team had black cannonballs.
Cannonballs were newspaper balls with a strip of colored electrical tape wrapped around it.When the music started, the teams started throwing their cannonballs into the other teams ship. When the music stopped, the team with the most cannonballs in the other ship won the game. The kids loved playing this game and the winners received their Pirate swords. The losers had to walk the plank (board across a Pirates of the Caribbean pool with water-shooting cannons)to receive their swords. Then everybody walked the plank---about 3 times!!
I knew the kids would want fight with the swords so I told them that when I said "Go" they would have a 60 second sword fight! And when I said "Stop" the swords would be put in their sashes until after the party. The kids loved the sword fight and were really good about putting their swords up. The clue was taped to a sword and it led to the party table where we ate cake, ice cream, and sharks blood punch(Hi-C frozen into ice cubes and Sprite). The cake was the pirate ship cake recipe from Family Fun com. To make it go with the POTC theme, I made it like the Black Pearl. I used black paper for the sails and 2 skeleton Pirates from the Imaginext Phantom Crew to put on top. Also, I printed out a small pirate flag( just like the one on the Black Pearl) and glued it to the top of the black sails.
The cake was a huge hit! After the children ate I told them to look under their plates to see if they had the next clue. The clue led to the gifts where Jake had to open up each gift to find the last clue (it ws in the last gift of course) It told them to look for a pirate tied to tree, which was the skeleton pirate on a tree outside. Oh, I gave them their loot bags which were brown lunch bags and on the front there was a typed note that said "Hands off! This booty is the sole property of (pirate name)". They ran to the tree and found the treasure! Each pirate got equal share of loot including gold coins, beads, rings, spyglasses, ring pops, candy necklaces, shark bites fruit snacks, ugly teeth, plastic mini treasure chests, and other candy, and placed it in their loot bags. It was a lot of work but well worth it. The kids had a blast are still talking about it!!
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