Buzz Lightyear (3-6yr) Paper Mache Planets
Sherry in Milton, Ontario Canada
Our son loves Buzz Lightyear so this year for his 3rd birthday we had a "Buzz" party.
The invitations were purchased and helped to set the tone for the 10 - 3 to 6 year old guests.
I decided to really emphasize the space theme so we started out (a month before) making fantastical paper mache planets and a red, green, purple, white and silver rocket ship for Buzz. Next I used recycled boxes and paper tubes to create a space station. We used little Canadian flag stickers on the station and rocket. I poked holes in the space station walls and put a battery operated set of Christmas lights inside it, pushing just the tip of the lights through the holes. I made a satellite out of a styrofoam ball with shish-kabob sticks pushed through the center. On each stick end I put a smaller styrofoam ball. I painted the entire thing with sparkley silver paint and put a circle of star Christmas garland around the whole satellite.
At the dollar store I found flashing "belly button" lights that I pushed into the foam balls. The station lights as well as the belly lights are battery operated so I turned them on just before our guests arrived. I also used silver Christmas balls and stars to help to create our space theme. I strung all of the decorations from the ceiling with monofilament (fishing line) as well as streamers in blue and Buzz green. We also had some marbled balloons (more planets and comets) to help with our fantasy galaxy. My son helped with the paper mache and painting - he loved it.
Instead of buying party hats, which I find rip so quickly, I decided to make purple fabric Buzz Lightyear hoods for every party guest. (I used the hood pattern from Simplicity pattern 9385 - I had it from making Buzz for Hallowe'en!) Each guest was given a hat at the door, welcomed to "Star Command" and asked to be a space ranger for the duration of the party. It worked well during the party, because I could get the kids attention by saying "Okay Space Rangers next we're going too" The 8 little boys and 2 little girls would all perk up and smile!
I purchased a Buzz tablecloth and napkins but used plain plates and cups in different "Buzz-like" colours (orange, purple, yellow and green). The plastic forks, spoons and knives (for the adult space rangers) were all different colours as well. I went to the discontinued aisle in the party store and found all these mixed odds and ends. I just stuck with "Buzz" colours (orange, purple, green etc.) and got them for a steal. We started off by making craft foam door hangers for their rooms at home. I bought the door hangers pre-cut and found self-sticking foam star shapes and letters. Before the party we printed each child's name on a paper bag and put all their supplies inside. Each child got the letters to spell their name and a handful of stars. Because the shapes and letters were self-adhesive there were no sticky hands and no glue on the floor of Star Command!
I painted a 3 foot Alien with only 2 eyes instead of 3 and made separate eyes for each kid to play "Pin the eye on the Alien". I printed colouring pages off the internet of (5)Aliens and (1)Zurg. I got my son to colour them. We cut them out and pasted them onto clean used pop bottles. We used a small rubber ball and played "Defeat Zurg" which basically was a bowling game. We set up the "pins" (with Zurg behind all the aliens) and each kid was given a chance to knock down the pins. The kids really enjoyed it!
We had pizza - Star Command's meal of choice - along with some veggies and chips. I made a ball (planet) cake and decorated it with crazy purple and green swirls. I put tooth picks around the middle of the cake and wrapped "Fruit by the Foot" over the toothpicks that acted as support for the (Saturn-type) rings around the cake. We had Heavenly Hash ice cream with the cake (not very good for those with nut allergies!)
I had some extra colouring pages for the time when we were finished our activities and the time that the Moms came to pick them up. I found Buzz fabric at Wal-Mart and made shoe-bags with a draw-string at the top as the loot bags (my kids always dump the loot and throw away the bag, this way the kids could use the bags again.) We had Buzz fruit candies, candy rockets, rice krispie squares, mini playdoh containers, Buzz Lightyear stickers, mini crayon packs, mini notebooks (generic ones that I put a Buzz Sticker on) and plastic ranger badges as the loot(also in the discount aisle). They also got to take home their purple hoods.
The party wasn't that expensive. I did purchase some of the themed items, the fabric for the hoods and bags, but by going with "Buzz" colours in the paper goods, streamers and craft materials I saved a bunch. By using the Buzz stickers on the notebooks, I could buy the books in bulk instead of buying the printed Buzz notebooks at a $1.50 each. I'm not sure who had more fun my son, the other 9 Space Rangers or myself!!