Idea No.

13635

Pirate Party 4yr - Scurvy on Skeleton Island

Award

Date

June 2006

From

Angel in humble, tx USA

Special Mention

The Pirate Party

4 year old pirate party! My son loves pirates and decided his 4th birthday party should be a pirate theme.    We started planning 4 months in advance so that we would have time to get everything ready.  We decorated the yard in pirate flags and pennants and fake styrofoam chains, skeletons and signs warning of pirates.    When everyone started showing up for the party we gave them each their own pirate name on a pirate name tag along with a pirate bandana, sash and eyepatch.    Pirate name tags can be purchased at Oriental Trading and pirate names can be found by doing a search for pirate name generator on the internet. The bandanas were made by me out of halloween fabric that had spider webs on it that was purchased for 75% off on the clearance rack and the sashes were also made by just cutting strips of red fabric with pinking shears. 

The first game we had them all do was the "walk the plank" game.   I had a large board that was about 7 feet long that I had painted to look rustic and set up on concrete blocks.    The kids each took turns walking the plank and trying to avoid falling off and being eaten by the inflatable crocodile that was laying underneath.  I was able to buy the 54" crocodile at the local dollar store. After everyone successfully walked the plank they received a piece of treasure.  Treasure was given after every game and it included mardi gras beaded necklaces, gold medallions, and skull rings. Once everyone had finished the plank I had them all sit down on the ground.  Each child was given a "treasure chest" (baby wipe box spray painted brown w/ plastic paint). They were all given a baggie of stick on gems (purchased at Oriental Trading) and asked to decorate their treasure chest.   Make sure to mark each treasure chest with the child's name on it (we used the extra pirate name tags). After every child was through we put the treasure chests aside and then went inside the house to play some more games.  

The next game was throwing bean bags (made out of black fabric and rice) into a small treasure chest.  After this game we played "X marks the spot" which was just our take on pin the tail on the donkey.    I drew up a treasure map and then each kid had to try to put a sticker with their name on it over the X while blindfolded.  They had a blast doing this since many of them missed the map completely.  After successfully finishing both of these games and winning more "treasure" we decided it was time to take a break and have some snacks. 

For food we had chips, dips, pirate m&m's and plenty of fresh fruit since we would not want any of our little pirates to get scurvy.   For beverages we served Pirate Beer (root beer), cherry limeade and lemonade and orange juice (once again to prevent scurvy). 

After finishing our snacks it was time to play "Sink the ship".  I had purchased 2 sheets of OSB wood at Lowes for under $10 sheet and I had cut them out into a 2 giant pirate ships.   I painted each ship and gave it a really cool pirate name like "Scallywag" and the "Yo Ho Ho" and then I set them up in the yard facing each other.  We divided the kids up into 2 teams and each team got a set of "cannonballs" made out of balled up newspaper covered in colored electrical tape.  Each team was instructed to throw their cannonballs at the other team and after 2 minutes whoever had more of their cannonballs behind the other teams ship was the winner.    We played this game 4 or 5 times and the kids had an absolute blast doing it.  After each win the team who won would receive 2 pieces of treasure and the other team would receive 1 so that everyone came out a winner. 

After finishing our Sink the ship game we took all the kids back in the house again to open presents and then we cut the cake (shaped like a giant pirate ship).    We sang Happy Birthday to the birthday boy twice.   Once was with his real name and once was with his pirate name….Capn Beardbeard I-wish-I-had-a-beard.   After the cake we all participated in a pirate dance.   We had a friend make us a pirate cd from a website that she is a member of so we had lots of fun songs.  While doing our pirate dance and singing "Arrr" I had someone sneak around to the front door and ring the doorbell  a bunch of times then drop a note and clue.

The kids all ran to the door and when they opened it they found the rolled up scroll with a green feather attached.    I read the kids the note informing them that their treasure had been "plundered".    They were confused at first but quickly realized that their treasure chests must be in trouble and they all went running outside to see if they were still on the table. Of course, the went nuts when they realized they were gone but I calmed them down and asked them where a green feather could have come from since it might be a clue to finding their treasure chests again. They quickly realized it had to have come from a parrot and they remembered seeing one earlier at a neighbors house.  I had decorated 6 of our neighbors yards in the pirate theme for our treasure hunt. We had a parrot cove, serpent pass, graveyard of sunken ships, skeleton island, black rock and palm tree pass.   At each yard that they came to they found another clue that would help lead them to the treasure.  When they finally got to the last clue they rounded the corner to find a big blanket with a giant "X" on it and underneath it was their treasure chests filled with all kinds of pirate things like chocolate gold coins, pirate bubbles, etc. These became their goody bags for them to take home.  This party was so much fun for both the parents and the kids and nobody wanted to go home. I had all the kids come up to me for the next few days asking me all kinds of questions about pirates and to just say "thanks" since they all had such a great time.

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