Fetch Party 7yr
Julie in St. Louis, MO USA
I have triplets (2 girls and a boy), so planning a birthday party that all will enjoy is a challenge. We hit the jackpot this year for their 7th birthday. They love the new PBS show Fetch! with Ruff Ruffman. Since there are no invitations, plates, etc. available at this time for Fetch!, I had to use my creativity. I created an invitation using the Fetch! coloring page from the PBS website that said be ready to be a gameshow contestant and share in some snacks. When the kids arrived we had them place their gifts in clothes baskets (more on this later) and go into Studio G and watch a little of a Fetch episode while they waited for the other guests to arrive. To decorate Studio G, I took a huge cardboard box and cut out a doghouse shape. I spray painted both sides yellow and hung a sign on it that said Studio G. I hung it in the doorway that leads into our family room. Once they entered through the doghouse door, they saw a sign hanging from the mantle that my daughter and I made that said Fetch with Ruff Ruffman with the word Fetch colored and decorated with drawn lights like the logo for the show. I placed flower pots of silk flowers on the hearth and around the room just like the real Studio G. We of course had a mailbox and a Fetch 3000 that I drew on a whiteboard. Once everyone arrived, I explained that we would have three teams each led by one of my triplets. I got a bag of 12 stuffed dogs from the party store. So 4 kids were on Team Husky, 4 on Team Beagle, and 4 on Team Doberman. The kids took their dogs and lined up outside Studio G and waited for the arrival of Ruff Ruffman. Ruff was played, of course, by my husband dressed in a yellow t-shirt with a yellow spot pinned on it, yellow shorts with a yellow tail pinned on, a black nose drawn on with makeup, and socks pinned to his glasses for ears. He welcomed the Fetchers and introduced each team as they ran through the doghouse door. One of my triplets was instructed to go to the mailbox and take out the first Challenge envelope. I had typed up directions that they would all go outside and each Fetcher would get three tosses of their dog to see how many times they could throw it through a hula hoop that Ruff held up. The team that had the most total tosses got 400 points, second most got 300 points, third got 200 points. We returned to Studio G to receive Challenge 2 which came from combined ideas I got from this site. They went to the dining room for snacks where I had placed new, clean dog dishes at each place. In the center of the table was a plastic container labeled Dog Food that contained Kix cereal. Two other plastic containers said Dog Treats. One had Scooby Graham Snacks and the other had Puffed Club crackers. While they were snacking, they chose a name for their dog and wrote it on one side of their bowl and their own name on the opposite side. They also used brushes we had from Build A Bear and groomed their dogs for the show. Ruff introduced each team to come in and perform in the dog show. Of course the show ended in a tie for 300 points each, because they all did such a great job! Challenge 3 was a fetch relay race. We took 3 new squeaky dog toys and the kids had to carry them under their chin down to a teammate at the opposite end. The winning team scored 500 points, second got 400, and third got 300. Challenge 4 was the Half Time Quiz. Ruff read 10 questions based on results and things that had happened so far at the party (i.e. whose team has the beagle). Parents wrote answers for the teams on clipboards. Correct answers scored 100 points each. Challenge 5 was cake and ice cream. I ordered a grocery store bakery cake with a dog on it, but we had the colors changed so it was yellow like Ruff. The challenge was that the dogs had to bark Happy Birthday and the teams scored 50 points per dog who barked or 150 points per team. Challenge 6 was a favorite, the dog rescue obstacle course. Each Fetcher had a turn putting his/her dog on the 3rd step of a short ladder. They had to run around 3 cones, jump over a broom placed on two step stools, grab a sock and run drop it in a dog dish, step through a hula hoop, and step up on the bottom step of the ladder to grab their dog. We added up the times for each member of the team and the fastest team scored 700 points, second got 600, third got 500. The final challenge 7 was to find all the gifts that a party helper had hidden earlier (while kids were snacking on dog food). This is why we placed gifts in clothes baskets so they easily could be carried upstairs. They were hidden in the three kids bedrooms and we put an empty clothes basket for each team in the hall. They were to find as many gifts as they could and put them in their teams basket. Teams earned 100 points per gift they found. Then we went downstairs and opened the gifts. Finally back in Studio G, Ruff reached back into the mailbox and pulled out the prizes. $5 fast food gift cards for the winning team and $1 gift certificates for the other kids. The kids also took home some of the activity pages we printed from the Fetch website along with their dog and dish. Everyone had a blast, and we did all of this in just about 2 hours for 3 birthday kids for under $100!