Elmo Hawaiian Luau -1yr- Pictures with Elmo
Anna in Towaco, NJ, USA
My husband and I wanted my daughter's one year birthday party to be special!!! She pretty much idolizes Elmo - and we're huge, huge fans of Hawaii!!!!!!! Since we couldn't go to Hawaii on our five year anniversay, we thought we'd bring Hawaii to our home!!!!!!! So, we had an Elmo Luau One Year Birthday Party. We ordered the bulk of our party supplies from www.orientaltrading.com - such as leis, kiddie hula skirts, raffia table skirts, adult hula skirts, tiki lights, beach balls, inflatable ukeleles, inflatable maraccas, aloha name tags, inflatable 7 foot palm trees and monkeys, hawaiian banners, limbo kits, etc...
For the invitation, I searched online for an Elmo picture - one that didn't have Elmo wearing any costume whatsoever, or holding anything in its hands - found it at www.members.tripod.com/~lemonade/elmo/ which was terri's elmo page. We bought card stock paper that folded in half. On the front mentioned how it was our daughter's first birthday luau - with a picture of elmo underneath. Underneath Elmo we mentioned that there was a Special "Kahuna" Guest: Elmo. We bought raffia and tiny little flowers from a craft store such as AC Moore - we created hula skirts on each and every ELMO invitation with the raffia and made leis with the tiniest flowers found at the store - we put it on sewing thread string and poked it throught the invitation with a needle to create a three dimensional Elmo invitation. Time consuming but well worth it - they were so adorable looking.
We even sealed the envelopes with tropical stamps such as palm trees, leis, coconut drinks, etc... and put happy birthday stamps to mail it. On the inside it describe the "fun" that there will be since our daughter was turning "one"! We made the place with our last name along with hut attached to it - for example Place: "XYZ HUT" and it was on the "ISLAND of ANYTOWN" and the "ANYTOWN" was the actual name of our town. We told them to rsvp to the big "kahunas" being mommy or daddy and to also dress their hula best (which there was a prize to the one that was dressed the best)
You wouldn't believe how much tropical clothing there is out there at such low prices!!!!!! The backyard was created very tropical with many of the items purchased from oriental trading company mentioned above. My husband made a tiki bar - purchased wood materials from home depot, bought the raffia from oriental trading company and purchased bamboo from a fencing company in a town nearby (total cost to make about $120.00). We hired a professional barbecue company to cook - there was well over 50 adults and 13 kids ranging from one year to 10 years old. We had food such as barbecued ribs and chicken, hamburgers, cheese burgers, hot dogs, etc.... the cooking lasted for 4 hours not including set up and clean up time. They brought their own grill, tents, food, etc... they took care of making and serving the food for everyone.
Half way through the party our special "kahuna" guest: ELMO arrived - had high fives with kids, danced with them - ELMO even wore a hula skirt and leis, which we provided for him - he danced to some hawaiian music, doing some hula moves with the kids. Pictures were taken with the kids and then Elmo (the "big red monster" changed out of his attire) and another "motivator" did tropical face painting as well as tropical balloon sculpting with the kids. I almost forgot, I had my three oldest nieces (ranging 6-9 years old) to greet each and every guest upon arrival. I provided all the girls with kiddie flowered, colored hula skirts, and leis and flower clips and my three nieces greeted them with "Aloha", gave each person a lei and also a name tag (aloha name tags purchased from oriental trading company) with their names translated into Hawaiian.
Each boy was given a Hawaiian shirt. The hula skirts from oriental trading company and the hawaiian shirts from old navy were considered their "party favors". I waited to purchase the shirts from there until they went on sale - half off. The Elmo and face painting, and balloon sculpting lasted an hour and a half - it provided dances as well as games, too. Then, we had an cake - which of course had an Elmo with a hula skirt and leis. We also had a limbo kit that came with Hawaiian limbo music - plus a built in pool, and various sized baby pools.
Tables were decorated with raffia skirts (purchased from oriental trading company) and ocean color plastic tablecloths (purchased from party city). Many helium palm trees and other tropical balloons, including various elmo balloons in addition to hawaiian banners including elmo ones too. Hawaiian punch was served to the kids - and we even had a sno cone machine and tropical drinks offered to the adults with parasols (the tropical umbrellas found in drinks). We bought tropical palm tree rafts to fill up our pool area and even bought fish netting and sea animals to attach to it. Hawaiian music pretty much played throughout the party and everyone is still talking about the party and how much of a blast they had!!!!!!!!
This is definitely one party we will always remember and cherish for our daughter!!!!!!!!! You need time to plan the party ---- and a lot of the materials could be handmade to save money. For instance, the leis - purchase flowers from a craft store, plastic thin straws and sewing thread. Basically, cut the straws into 2-3 inch pieces, string the thread through and a flowers on either end of the straw. Continue this effect until the lei necklace is complete - at least a 36" length necklace, if not longer. Hope you had some great ideas from our idea. "Hang Loose"!!! And "Aloha"!