Western Party 3yr - Bales of Hay
Patricia in El Paso,TX
Living in Texas and the fact that my daughter loves horses, I decided to do a western-themed party for her third birthday.
The invitations were Paisley print stock paper I found on the internet. There was a small rope bow at the top of each invitation. It read: Welcome Cowgirls and Cowboys! Mosey on over to celebrate Katrianna's third birthday. I had the time, address and at the bottom it said"Pony rides, games and good grub".
I had the party in our backyard. For decorations I nailed wanted posters to the trees, there were plastic wagon wheels leaning against walls (I found them at party world). I had balloons, 4 foot high cutouts of cacti standing around, several pairs of old cowboy boots hanging from the fence (I found them at the Salvation Army), a 5 foot piñata shaped like a saquaro cactus was hanging from a tree as well. I had cardboard signs cut to look like pieces of wood nailed to trees. The sign hanging near the food read"Grub". The sign near the drinks read "Waterin' Hole" The sign where the ponies were read" Pony Corral". There was even a sign pointing to the bathroom that read "Outhouse". The tables were covered with red/white gingham checked tablecloths.
The seats were bales of hay. I covered the tops of the bales with pieces of felt that looked like black/white cow hides. I cut the covers to look like real hides. This was to protect the kids from getting scratched too much. I also had regular chairs for the adults who preferred them. My husband wore a hat with cow horns and I wore a head band with horse ears and a mane , along with a horse tail pinned to the back of my pants. My daughter was dressed in a cute bandana print halter top, jean capri pants and a cowgirl hat.
For entertainment I had rented two ponies for the kids to ride and my friends brought two of their horses for the adults to ride. WE have two acres so there was lots of room. I also rented a small carousel ($50 from Party World)) with two ponies for the kids who were frightened by the ponies or were too small. I had a table where I had precut cowboy vests from paper sacks. I had stamp pads and stamps, glitter pens, crayons, markers and stickers for the kids to decorate their own vests. This was a huge hit.
When they finished I used clothes pins to hang the vests from a clothesline. It looked so cute. I had horseshoes set up for the adults. There was another table where I had cutout sugar cookies in the shape of a cactus, boot, star (Texas), chili pepper, hat, cowboy. My friend and I spent a few hours the day before making about 4 dozen of these. Each child got to decorate a cookie. I had icing, sprinkles and candies there. My mom supervised the table. This was also popular with the kids. I made a poster of a cowboy and had the kids play pin the mustache on the cowboy. The winner won a stick pony ($7) It was hilarious. For the smaller kids, I had a kiddie pool filled with plastic balls that they could roll around in and a sand/water table I bought at Toys R Us. Finally, we hit the cactus piñata.
For food, I had brisket, BBQ chicken, hot dogs, beans, coleslaw, mac and cheese and corn bread. For drinks I had juice boxes, water, tea, and bottles of root beer and ginger ale in big aluminum tubs I found at Home Depot. The cake was made by a friend. It was the shape of a saguaro cactus with hot pink flowers on the arms. The goody bags were bandanas filles with sheriff badges, rattlesnake eggs(gum), plastic harmonica, plastic lizards, stickers of horses, and candy. I pulled the corners of the bandana up together and tied it with a piece of rope. They were very cute. I handed them out just before the piñata so the kids could add the stuff they got from that. So when each child left they had the goody sack, a vest, a hat and a cookie.
The kids, especially my daughter, had a blast. I had many parents tell me it was the best birthday party they had ever been to. It was a lot of work but well worth it.
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