Idea No.

7234

Pirate & Princesses 7yr - Cannon Ball Carry

Award

Date

Sept. 2003

From

Audrey in Glendale Heights, IL  USA

Special Mention

Pirate Girl Party

For my daughter's seventh birthday and first party with classmates, we decided to do a "Pirates & Princesses" theme since she wanted a couple of boys from her class to attend. 

Giveaways for the pirates: 
1. At the dollar store I found long plastic pirate swords with belt fasteners so they could be worn. 

2. I made pirate hats from black felt and hot glued the skull design and a red feather to each of them (I measured my four year old's head and luckily one size fit all). 

3. To complete the look, I cut out hook shapes from cardboard boxes, wrapped them in foil, and inserted the long end into a styrofoam bowl for their "Captain Hook" hand. 

Giveaways for the princesses: 
1. At the same dollar store, I found cute sparkled wands with streamers attached for the flowing effect. 

2. I bought birthday tiaras from the party store and attached Disney princess streamers to them.       

Activities:
1. I created "treasure boxes" for the goodie bags out of plastic boxes with lids.  I spray painted them black, drew the gold belts and locks on yellow paper and glued them to the boxes.  When each child arrived, they went to the craft table to decorate/personalize their empty box with glitter, letters, and various shapes.  They were told to keep their box with them, because they would be filled throughout the day. 

2. For between decorating and waiting, my husband cut out various shapes from a large wood board, assigned them points, and had the children throw bean bags into the holes.  They had to keep track of their points to see who had the most in the end and were given a prize. 

3. "Ride the Pirate Ship" - I decorated the kid's red wagon with masts, nets, sails, and pirate flags to make it look like a pirate ship.  My husband attached it to his riding mower and pulled two kids at a time around our front yard and driveway.  The children loved this!

4. We chose a parrot for the Pinata and filled it with various hard candy.

5. "Pin the Pirate/Princess Flag on the ship" - the children had the choice of a princess or pirate flag to pin on the ship.  I drew a ship on large posterboard and put the flag pole in the center.  Whichever flag was closest to being on the pole would determine if the ship was a princess ship or taken by the pirates.  In the end, the children helped each other by guiding the blindfolded person to the correct place to put the flag, even though they knew only one person could win. 

6. Obstacle course - two teams had to carry the cannons (black water balloons) with ladle type spoons while walking the plank, twisting around stuffed water creatures, and back without dropping the cannon.  Each member of the team that won was awarded with various prizes. 

7. No pirate theme would be complete without the treasure hunt.  We split the 12 children into three groups of four.  Each group had their own starting clue with three additional clues hidden throughout the backyard.  We made the clues different for each group, because they each had their own treasure box waiting for them.  We decided making three groups find one box was not fair and did not reward the losing team's reading skills or efforts.  The groups opened their boxes (I decorated them similar to their goodie boxes) at the same time and found plastic jewels, rings, beaded necklaces, ring pops, small pirate action figures, chocolate gold and Disney princess coins, and fake paper money.  I added some sticky goo lizards and spiders on top for effect.     

Decorations:
1. Our above ground pool with deck was the perfect to call "Pirate Island."  I created large pirate flags from black garbage bags, painted skulls on them, and placed them around the deck.  I also attached a pirate map (pirate theme tablecloth) to the gate for decoration, as well as a block to open the gate. I also painted a skull on our halloween scarecrow's hat and put him up on the pool as the pirate captain.

2. Princess castle was the patio. I created flags from white garbage bags and drew jeweled crowns on them. I also decorated the patio with balloons and store bought "Birthday Princess" banners.

3. The princesses ate at the princess table with "Birthday Princess" tablecloth, cups, plates, and napkins.  The pirates ate at the adjoining pirate table with store bought pirate tablecloth, plates, napkins, and cups. The boys were much more excited about their tableware than the girls.

4. The cake - I made a princess castle cake with pink and yellow frosting, ice cream cones, flags, and found small "Cinderella" figurines and a carriage.  This was the first time I have done this and aside from being a bit lopsided, the girls loved it!      

The party took some planning and a lot of effort and creativity, especially to keep it inexpensive, but we know it was a great success.  I can still hear the children shouting, "This is the best party ever!"

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