Jedi Training 8yr - Darth Dogs & Wookie Cookies
Jere in Chambersburg, PA USA
July 2009 Winner
This year our son wanted a Star Wars party. He's been wanting one for a couple of years, but we didn't have too many ideas - but this was the year! We started about two months ahead of time.
First thing we did was purchase a cd rom from ebay. It's titled Star Wars Epidode III Revenge of the Sith - Activity Center. It's a game and activity center all in one. This gave us the background printing for the invitations. I printed the backgrounds on white card stock. I made them double sided. On the one side - it was a fighting type of scene that is made like stationary paper - great for putting addresses on them. The other side was a faint picture of a star trooper - nice for putting other words over them. Then I came up with the wording for the invitation. I combined some ideas from this site along with my own. The first part was printed in font like the movies start - small letting going away from the reader. It read: Eight years ago a baby boy was born. His name was Nickolas and he was strong with the force. Hidden away on a remote planet called Earth Nick's Jedi training has been progressing well. But now the Sith have learned of the boy and seek him diligently. To overcome this threat Nick will need the help of others. So a call has been sent out in the form of this invitation to come and learn the ways of the Jedi. Only with the strength of the Jedi can the Sith be defeated."
In the middle was a different font - more bold and not moving away from the reader. It read: "You have been chosen to join Nickolas to fight the evil of the Sith. Jedi training has been disguised in the form of a birthday party. Training will begin on July 3rd at 5:00 p.m. at the Earth station located at (our address)." In smaller font: "*Please note - you may arrive in costumre - as the Sith may be watching but please leave all weapons at home. All you need will be provided. All make Jedi trainees may bring along items to sleep over and review the original "training dvds"." Then in the second font - "If you dare to accept his challenge please inform the Jedi council at (phone #) with your urgent reply. May the force be with you!". It was an awesome invitation! We folded them in a tri-fold and placed stickers along the edges. No envelopes were needed for mailing them as the addresses could be printed on the backside. These were sent out about 3 weeks ahead of time.
Next I purchased some items to complete some of the games that I had in mind. On ebay I found a lot of Star Wars masks and a Yoda backpack. So now I could plan the games and decorations. I purchased approx. a dozen black tablecloths along with some black and blue balloons at the Dollar Tree. I moved almost all my furniture from our living room into the dining room (with the exception of the sofa and entertainment stand). I then covered the large windows with my son's Star Wars comforter - hangin it so the main scene was visible and looked like a large wall décor. Then I blocked out all light from the window using black tablecloths. I hung the black tablecloths the whole way around the room - making it look very dark inside. I also covered the entertainment stand and cut out the opening of the tv (so they could still view the dvds). I placed colored light bulbs in our floor lamps (blue and black) to give the place a different look. I also covered the end tables with black tablecloths. On the end tables and the top of the entertainment stand we decorated with my son's Star Wars lego sets and other Star Wars toys - this was an easy way to decorate with not spending a lot of money. I hung pictures that I had printed out (from the activity center) in our family frames around the room.
Outside we put up a canopy for the Cantina - red and black and put tablecloths down on the sides of the canopy to give it a darker feel. Then the party began. First thing that we did was bring all the kids into our living room. We had approx. 10 kids. Three girls and the rest boys. We had them check into the uniform station (only two can in uniform). I purchased brown white and tan material (almost like a felt type). I used approx. one yard per child. Along the fold I cut a place for their head to go thru and tied them at the waist with a belt made of the same material. Boys had brown and tan girls had white. After this was done my older daughter (dressed like Padme) and niece (dressed as Leia) came into the living room to welcome the Jedi trainees. They introduced themselves and had the trainees do the same. We had originally planned on giving them badges and name tags but ran out of time in making them). They actually sell these at the Disney parks with the Jedi training logos on them if you are close by and want to purchase them. After introductions Padme introduced me (I was Jedi Master Siri Tachi). I asked the trainees if they knew the ways of the Jedi (some of girls didn't) and told them why the Sith was after Nickolas and what we would be doing to become Jedi's. This got them very excited and ready to have fun!
We proceeded outside to the first Jedi challenge. It was the Yoda Strength test. Using the Yoda backpack I purchased on ebay (you can also buy these at Disney) the trainees had to go thru an obstacle course in the backyard. We connected them to a clothesline strung thru and around items using a keychain clasp. Following the clothesline all trainees had to go one at a time carrying Yoda to see if they could master this challenge. It was a lot of fun and they cheered each other on! Second challenge Save the Princess and Queen! Using white and black balloons that we had blown up the night before we put a picture inside two balloons (one of Padme and one of Leia). They had to pop the balloons in order to save the Princess and Queen and find their pictures. This was quite a challenge as the wind was blowing wildly! Once this was complete a visitor showed up (my oldest son dressed as Obi-Wan Kenobi). He had all the trainees set down and showed them how to handle a light saber. Using different techniques they learned the ways of light saber handling.
He then passed out light sabers to each of the trainees. I actually got a great deal on the light sabers at Wal-mart the week after Halloween (they were only $2 each!). The trainees were told that they were going to be given the light sabers but the sabers would only used for a couple of challenges and then be given back the the Jedi Master until a time that the trainees turned into Jedis. The next challenge was a light saber remote challenge. In this challenge the trainees had to keep balloons in the air using the light sabers. This was even more of a challenge since the balloons kept blowing around with the windy day and when they touched the ground they popped! Moving on the the next challenge Princess Leia and Obi-Wan had the trainees practice team training using the light sabers the trainees had to destroy bubbles blown at them without hitting their team mates with their light sabers.
After this challenge their light sabers were taken away as they all completed light saber training. Next was Wookie training. Using cross bows (Nerf) they had to shoot at Chewy (my oldest son using a mask that I had purchased). Chewy also had a crossbow and was shooting back at the trainees. Each trainee had five crossbows to shoot (they came back again and again to shoot at Chewy!). After Wookie training was Blaster Training! Using water guns (they looked like Blasters) the trainees had to try to shoot Clone troopers (adults wearing masks). We divided the trainees from the adults using our driveway - everyone had a blaster and could shoot until out of water (no refills). The adults got wetter than the kids (more kids then adults). But the kids had a blast!
After blaster training we took a break at the Mos Eisley Cantina. Each trainee was given a menu that looked like this: Wookie Cookies - a delicious cookie filled with wookie filling made up of peanut butter oatmeal and cocoa (plus wookies) - (these were actually no-bake cookies). Darth Dogs - twice the heat of one darth - these dogs "invade" your taste buds (using hot dogs - cut in half - put one half thru wooden skewer stick - then the other - leaving opening in middle - wrap pillsbury bread stick around middle of stick - bake at 375 degrees for 12 minutes. Looks like a darth maul light saber.) Pizza the Hutt - not as "thickskinned" as Jabba but as tasty as they come (delivery from a local pizza place by one of our friends). Edible Ewoks - these little guys are squeaky clean no fur to be found (gummy bears) (we had also thought about doing chocolate covered gummy bears but the birthday boy doesn't like them - so we left them out). Padawan Popcorn - set your sights on the "Padawan" at their fullest - don't go for the ones not popped to their best! (micro-wave popcorn). Hoth - see what happens when a meteorate hits this snow planet (cookies and cream dessert - Oreo pieces mixed with Cool Whip).
This was a big hit! Mini Land Speeders - can these speeders cruise right into your mouth? (regular potato chips). Speeder Fuel - don't forget to refuel your speeder! (sour cream and onion dip) Tribal Horns - can you hear the call or do you make up one of your own? (Bugles snacks - they're shapped like horn!) Light sabers - choose your color - are you light or dark? (chocolate covered pretzels - red blue and green chocolate on 2/3 on pretzels foil wrapped aroune handle). Yoda Soda - Drink do you dare? (green hawaiian punch mixed with Sprite and green sherbert). Jawa Juice - a fine mix part jawa part juice (red hawaiian punch mixed with cranberry gingerale) At the table I included name cards for each item. The kids loved trying to figure out each item as they were thru the buffet line.
After we ate the training continued. Next up was Crossing Mustafar (the lava planet). I placed red table cloths on the driveway divided the trainees into two teams they had to work together to cross Mustafar using cardboard "stones" placing them one in front of the other (they only had one per each child and two extras per each team. The first child had to place the stones until the last child was on a stone and picked up the one behind them passing it to the front of the line doing this after each step until all the trainees were across. They they did it back across again using the last person as the first to cross this time. They liked this one so much that they did it over again! Next up was detonator training. They had to pass a detonator (a ball with a light in the middle) until the light went out (the person holding the ball was out). Like hot potato - but with no actual winner. All the trainees were given a choice of wearing a mask - I bought 13 from ebay - they liked being able to change characters. Just make sure that there are some for girls if you invite girls to your party!
After this we destroyed the Imperial Ship. My oldest son created a chalk drawing on our driveway of the Imperial Ship. Using water balloons the trainees had to bomb the Imperial Ship to make it disappear. There were rules - no throwing at each other - and they had to stand so far away from the ship. This was a big hit!
Once training was complete we brought out the birthday cake - I made a cake of Han Solo's ship - the Millenimum Falcon. I used a football helmet cake pan - cut off the mask part to make the front the ship - added it back on to round out the sides of the ship and also added a part on the top and bottom of the cake (using a round 8" cake cut in half-thru the middle) to give the ship more of a rounded look. Using an additional piece of another 8" round cake - I made the cockpit of the ship. I had to use skewer sticks to hold the cockpit in place. I used icing with a shade of tan to cover the ship and pipped in the lines of the ship all around. Overall it was a good cake - but due to heat - it was starting to shift a little by the time it was cut. While cutting the cake the birthday boy opened presents. We took pictures of each child with their presents and the birthday boy so that we would remember what each had given to him.
After cake and ice cream we brought the kids back inside for the Knight ceremony. I presented the trainees with their offical certificates (I printed them using some pictures I found online - a Jedi logo - and word perfect). They read: "Jedi Training Certificate of Achievement" "This certificate announces that on 07-03-09 (Name) has proven to be worthy of training to become a Jedi. The bearer of this honor is now a Padawan a student devoted to the ancient training of the Jedi Knights. Fom this day forth remember a Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense never for attack. The Force will be with you always." I signed each of them "Siri Tachi Jedi Master". When I handed them their certificates I also handed them back their light saber that they had used in training. They were surprised that they got to keep their light sabers. At this time parents were coming already for pick up.
We still didn't get to do a couple of things (due to time) so we passed out the favors (yes more things!) which included : park buckets (these were Halloween buckets - purchased for $.50 each at Wal-mart the week after Halloween). Inside was a small activity book ($1.00 each Wal-mart) Star Wars yo-yos Darth Vader pencil glow braclets (pack of five $1.00) Star Wars pez ($1.00 each- dollar store) and a Star Wars happy meal toy (looked at yard sales for these) and a couple of the edible light sabers. They got these buckets their light sabers a blaster (squirt gun) their certificate and a plastic cup from the Cantina ($.79 Toys R Us) that they used earlier (we put their names on them).
The other games that we ran out of time for were destroy darth vader (my oldest son made a Darth Vader picture) we were going to use Nerf guns to shoot Darth vader. We also made pod racers (using boxes) - they were to have pod racing around our yard. We also had a Darth Vader pinata that was filled with candy that we forgot all about!! We had so much fun but ran out of time! As the kids were leaving my oldest son dressed up as Darth Vader to bid each child good-bye - little did he know that they now all had their light sabers (given out at the ceremony while he was getting his costume on!)- and a battle ensued! Darth finally gave up and when away! There were some that stayed overnight for the all-night viewing - we watched the original Star Wars trilogy all night long. The boys lasted almost until 3am - then finally gave up to sleep.
Overall it was a great party - everyone said they had a blast! Even the adults had fun - some adults broke the rules and were blasting each other - they were more out of control than the kids!! Great party - now I just have to make sure next year is even better!!"