Why celebrate a Birthday When it comes to birthdays, they are celebrated all over the world and they are celebrated to make the anniversary of many things. You'll want to keep in mind that most people will mark this special day with parties and gifts, but sometimes it is almost a rite of passage when it comes to those special milestone birthdays. During birthday parties one of the most popular traditions is the birthday cake. Typically ornately decorated and lit with candles that the birthday person gets to make a silent wish on then blow out. The number candles tend to go with the age of the person who will blow out the candles. Often, it is used because the candles are too great in number. You'll want to make sure that you consider using a number candle to pick up the pace of the tradition to "blow the candles out". Also it is a common tradition for the birthday person to cut and receive the first piece of cake. When it comes to someone's birthday, they are to be respected by their friends and family. You will find that when it comes to receiving gifts, you'll get special gifts or a special meal. Children's birthdays usually include games and sometimes special entertainment like a clown or magician. Parties can include balloons, streamers and party favors for guests. Sometimes you'll receive special gifts that include your birthstone. The birthstone is a gem that goes with the month of your birth. Birthstones often go back to more biblical times, but you'll also find that there is a list of things that go with a month, such as a birth flower. You will want to consider it to be great luck when you receive your birth flower for your birthday and you'll want to have the matching number of flowers to your age. Birthday Party history and facts Today, we celebrate birthdays with treats, cakes, and tons of fun shared by close friends and family. It was not just a joyous occasion centuries ago. In fact, in Europe birthdays were considered to be something much different. Originally, a person feared their upcoming birthday. People were fearful, because it was a day that people believed that evil spirits could harm you. Birthday parties were devised as a way to keep those spirits away by surrounding yourself with friends and loved ones who often brought small tokens and food to share. People would try to use noisemakers to scare off the spirits that may be handing around the house. It was in the middle ages that birthday parties began to take on a more celebratory state and the tone turned more positive. But they were not yet commonplace amongst peasants. When it comes to birthday parities, it was usually only celebrated by royalty or some of the lords and ladies that were very wealthy It wasn't until reformation that the birthday party became a more common occurrence in England. Then people would begin to make cakes for the birthday person and they would place hidden fortune tokens in the cake for the guests to find. It is thought that children's birthday parties originated in Germany and was called Kinderfeste. Over the years, the art of throwing birthday parties went form a small party to elaborate parties that are only fit for royalty. The art of throwing parties have come along way. You will find that people celebrate parities for children. You will find that there are typically milestones that will be celebrated for adults too. When a person turns 21, 30, and 50, it is typically a big deal to celebrate. A cake is typically served and a person is asked to blow out the candles while making a wish. Birthday Cake facts In the US it is very common for you to celebrate your birthday with a wonderfully designed and tasty birthday cake. Keep in mind, it was the Greeks that were the first to make a cake for celebration. It was commonly used in the celebrations of the birthdays for gods and goddesses. For those who were wondering who came up with placing candles on the cake, well, it was the Greeks as well. It was because if the Greek god Artemis, where the cake was first topped with lit candles. In the middle ages, the English would conceal symbolic items inside the cake. Each item was a prediction for the finder's future. You will find that things like the coins, rings, and even thimbles baked into the cake. The birthday cake made its way to Western culture in the mid 19th century and has been an important part of birthday celebrations since. There are some superstitions that believe pertaining to the way it is cut. If the knife touches the bottom, or when pulling the knife from the cake itself there are pieces of cake stuck to the knife, than the birthday person must kiss the nearest person of the opposite sex. Many people will blow out the candles on their cake while making a wish, however, the trick is to blow them all out. If the candles are blown out in one blow and the wisher keeps the wish a secret, then it is believed the wish will come true. Typically, a birthday cake is decorated with lots of flowers and balloons, but it is covered in bright colors. For kids, it is popular to have cartoon characters or their favorite them on the cake. You will find that there are a lot of people who will make their own cake or bake a semi-home cake from a package, or the birthday cake can cost up to a few hundred dollars. The importance of Milestone Birthdays You have to keep in mind that with a milestone birthday, it is a special event that no one can ignore. It is just one of the few times in a person's life where you need to focus on yourself and celebrate your growth. When it comes to a milestone birthday, you will find that there is some serious partying done, but also that the gifts are very extravagant. Most of these birthdays are a sort of coming-of-age along with increased privileges and responsibilities. The milestone birthday starts with your first. It tends to be a big deal, because in one year an infant can grow so much. Normally during a child's first birthday it is more about the family and friends of the parents as opposed to a party for the child's friends. Most children on their first birthday are given either their own small cake or their own piece to eat however they like. The first birthday ends to get a little messy, because you usually want to encourage your child to just dig right into the cake. The next most important milestone birthday is usually the 13th birthday. This is when a child officially becomes a teenager. The importance of being 13 is that you are considered to be on your way to being an adult and therefore, you are taken more serious. You'll want to keep in mind that there are plenty of other birthday parties to look forward to after this milestone birthday. The 16th birthday is the year that most US states allow a teen to legally drive without their parents present. Then there is your 18th birthday. You are no longer a child (but that doesn't really make you an adult), however you are able to do many adult things like vote and join the military. In the eyes of the law, you are an adult. Don't forget the 21st birthday. It is a milestone birthday because you are legally allowed to consume alcohol. The next milestone comes at 35. This is when in most countries, someone can run for the highest political office such as President of the United States. Typically, after 40, you are considered to be over the hill. Then you will still have a milestone birthday, every ten years. These birthdays may not be something that you look forward to, but it is still a big deal and needs celebrated. Happy Birthday song When it comes to a birthday, there are a few ways of saying that it is time for cake, but it is known to everyone who is young or old, that all you have to do is start singing "Happy Birthday" and soon the cake and all the candles will appear. The song is made of four bars and only sixteen words. It is a very simple song, but it has a very deep meaning. In fact, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, Happy Birthday is the most popular song in the English Language. Most of the time, it is sung in English, however, you'll want to keep in mind that there are many languages that translate the song, even if the country or culture is not use to using English celebrations. The Hill sisters composed the tune, -Happy Birthday To You-, in 1893. Originally the schoolteachers wrote the tune to a song entitles -Good Morning To You- and was sung to the classroom every morning. Keep in mind that the version that most people know was copyrighted in 1935, but the copyright will expire in the year 2030. In fact, technically it is illegal to publicly perform -- Happy Birthday To You- unless royalties are paid to the Summy Company and its owner Warner Chappell who bought the company in 1990. Did you know that the value of the song is estimated about $5 million, but the fact is that it is not clear as to who wrote the song? And because strict copy law issue, many people who are shooting a film will not show the full content of the song, and that is why you'll often see them singing another song (For He's a Jolly Good Fellow) instead of singing the birthday song. Types of Unconventional Birthdays Keep in mind that a birthday is not just a reason to celebrate your coming into existence, but there are a number of reasons that you would celebrate a birthday. You will find that there are a lot of people who celebrate an unconventional birthday and these types of celebrations are held all over the world. You will find that an unconventional birthday is just one of the many ways that you can celebrate your life. People use the term -Birthday- to describe milestones in their lives. The term is also used to mark important beginnings or ends in a person's life. A lot of people who have joined a recovery group or use a 12-step program will also mark their first day of sobriety, because it was a huge accomplishment. This day is marked every year with a -birthday chip-, a token to remind you of the hard work done to get through that year and the long road still ahead of you. Then there is the term a birthday suit. This is something that is well known, but it basically means that you do not wear clothing. On the day of your birth, you came out of the womb naked therefore being in your -birthday suit- you are naked. Birthday is also a term that is used when you have created something very spherical. You'll find that they are celebrated yearly, but perhaps monthly is another option for celebration. This is often done when a business first opens its doors. You will find that the birthday will be created by the company and celebrated for years to come. Keep in mind that not only do people celebrate birthdays, but birthdays are celebrated all around the world and it represents a day of creation. Presidents Birthdays and national holidays Not everyone's birthday is celebrated by a country, but when it comes to the birthdays of past Presidential leaders, you will find that it is not only a day for celebration, but it is a day of fun and a reason not to be at work. Keep in mind that it is a national holiday and it gives any business an excuse not to work. On the third Monday in February, we take time to celebrate the birthdays of some former Presidents. Originally though the Presidents birthdays were celebrated separately. President's day was first thought of in honor of George Washington's birthday, but it has now become a day of honor for all the past presidents. Lincoln's birthday was celebrated at a different time, although his birthday is actually February 12. Lincoln's birthday was never a federal holiday like Washington's. This holiday became real in the late 1980's, where it was first termed as presidents day and it was a way for you to honor mostly Washington and Lincoln, however, it is for all the presidents of the US. Keep in mind that it is not the same holiday through out the states. In fact, in Massachusetts the governor issues an annual Presidents Day proclamation honoring Presidents that come from Massachusetts. Alabama observes the day as Washington and Jefferson Day, and in Virginia, George Washington's home state, the holiday is known simply as George Washington Day. The next time that you celebrate president's day you may want to think about how the country sees the holiday and how it has not become equally cherished throughout the States. Independence Day and US birthday July fourth happens to be one of the most important celebrations to Americans. You'll find that this is the day that the declaration of independence was sign centuries ago, which lead to America's freedom from English rule. For some this is just another day off, a day to watch fireworks, party with family and friends, have a few beers or take a little vacation. However, there is plenty more to this celebration of the nation's birthday. July 4th is an important day in our history. It is the day we should remember all of the rights and freedoms we have as Americans and enjoy them. Keep in mind, many people sacrificed their own life and freedom for America to be able to stand along. Freedom is not cheap. On our Nations birthday, we should take time to remember those who made those sacrifices. There were 56 men who signed the declaration of independence. They couldn't have imagined what that document would mean to Americans now. In fact, 5 signers were captured by the British and tortured before they died. Twelve went home to find their dwellings ransacked and burned and nine fought and died from wounds or hardships of the war. That is almost half the men who signed out nation's greatest symbol of freedom. However, they still signed the document and they knew that by doing so was treason and that came with a punishment of death. Some of us take this holiday for granted. Our Nations birthday, July 4th should be celebrated with family and friends. While you are enjoying the fourth of July fireworks, you may want to keep in mind that it means more than just a time for picnics and fun, but it is a time to remember all of those who sacrificed their own life in order to ensure freedom for the future generations. Train Birthday Party for the Little Ones Boys and girls of all ages have a deep and abiding love of trains. From Thomas the Tank to The Little Engine that Could, trains make an excellent theme for a birthday party for your favorite youngster. The great news is that there are plenty of great party favors and decorations on the market to make your train theme carry through all aspects of the birthday party. You can purchase invitations that are shaped like a train and appropriate for the specific train theme you have in mind. Even old-fashioned steam engines make a fascinating setting and theme for little ones who are filled with imagination. You do not need to go overboard on the decorations for a train themed party in order to get the theme apart but there are some great goody bags that can be made in keeping with the theme. A train pioata is a great way to get the kids in on the action and having a great time. You may also choose to have all the little ones dress up as a train engineer for a little interactive fun with your train birthday party idea. You can also choose to play a DVD of your favorite train story for the entertainment of the little ones and in hopes of a little bit of quiet time before the sugar induced highs of after cake time. Speaking of cake, there are plenty of cake forms and cake themes that are ideal for train cakes and children's birthday parties. From the popular character cakes that are related to trains to other train themes such as The Polar Express there are plenty from which to choose when it comes to the perfect birthday cake for your train themed party. A little cake with a little ice cream and it will soon be time to take a whack at the train themed piņata mentioned earlier. Most party supply stores should have an abundance of train themed party supplies. From hats to plates, cups, and napkins there should be plenty of wonderful party supplies to help you convey the train theme of the party with little additional efforts unless, of course, streamers and other party supplies are needed. Your little ones are very special after all and as parents we all want to do our very best to insure that each party is a special memory fit for a lifetime. Goody bags are becoming a more and more important part of birthday parties in modern society. The train themed birthday party lends itself to plenty of train themed goody bag fillers. Among those wonderful items are coloring books, storybooks, puzzles, train whistles (their parents will love you and it is the perfect revenge for the air horn your child came home with), and stickers. This is a great way for your child to give back to those who have given him or her gifts while providing something appropriate to the theme for everyone to remember this particular party by. If you are looking for a little something extra for your child's train themed birthday party you might want to talk to local train companies and see if there is a train museum near by or if you can possibly book a train car or a room at the train depot in which to host the party. This will create a very special memory for your little one and everyone that attended the party. Some trains actually run day trips that last a couple of hours. This will be a thrilling party experience for your little one's friends if you can manage this great escape of a train themed birthday party. You may also talk to those in charge at the train station for ideas and suggestions they may have to make your child's special day a little more thrilling. Just remember that after a party like this, next year will be a hard act to follow. Throwing a Mardi Gras Birthday Bash Mardi Gras is almost synonymous in many circles with fun and festivity. From the novelty of getting 'throws' from the parade routes to the revelry of the movie and exotic spices in the food and the great flavor of the drinks that flow freely Mardi Gras is known as a great time to be had by one and all. Though few around the world will ever experience the true debauchery of an earnest French Quarter Mardi Gras you can use the Mardi Gras theme and the "let the good times roll" attitude that has made the New Orleans spin on Mardi Gras a sight to behold around the world to your very own celebration of life. Life is, after all, what Mardi Gras revelers are celebrating first and foremost. If you are wondering where to begin this is a toss up. I'm not certain which is more important when it comes to bringing the feeling of an honest to goodness Mardi Gras celebration worthy of the Crescent City. Would it be the food or the music? I guess that depends on the things that are most important to your celebratory needs and what kind of facilities and equipment you have available for most. The music for Mardi Gras should be fitting of the season and of celebrations, yes even if the one celebrating is a bit over the hill (be sure to include a genuine New Orleans funeral march in the mix if this is the case however). You can find excellent sources of Mardi Gras music in CD format online for your listening and birthday party pleasure. The food of New Orleans is glorious indeed though many necessary ingredients may be a bit difficult to come by once the bayou has been left far behind. No matter where you are though it is quite possible to order many boxed mixes of New Orleans favorites that will work well with the Mardi Gras theme for your birthday party. If you want to hold true to the spirit of Mardi Gras you will opt for King Cake rather than a traditional birthday cake though a normal cake decorated in the purple, gold, and green of Mardi Gras will do in a pinch. Red beans and rice, jambalaya, bread pudding, gumbo, and oyster po-boys are excellent fits for a Mardi Gras theme if ingredients and the mood strikes. Purple, gold, and green are the colors of Mardi Gras so be sure to use them well when decorating for your Mardi Gras themed birthday parties. Great party favors include items such as beads in the famous colors of Mardi Gras, doubloons, and feathered masks. The idea is to be fun and festive and you don't really need to spend a fortune in order to do this. Most party supply stores can get everything you would need for an unforgettable Mardi Gras birthday party no matter what time of year it is. Whatever you can't find locally it is more than likely you will be able to find online with minimal effort to suit your Mardi Gras Birthday party needs. If it's a large gathering with people of varying ages you may want to use a punch bowl with non-alcoholic hurricanes to make it a little bit more authentic. If this is an adult only gathering be sure to include a little bit of the good stuff in the mix for that oh so potent kick. Hurricanes have taken on a bit of a new meaning in the aftermath of Katrina though it is still an important drink in the New Orleans tradition. Let the party take you where it leads but remember that the real goal is to celebrate yet another year of living with as much zeal as possible. Regardless of anything else those who live, work, and play in the City that Care Forgot know how to throw a real good bash. Check out favorite Cajun recipes, order a boatload of good drinks, bring in great friends, and pipe in the music for an unforgettable event. The Wild Wild West Birthday Bash There is that little kid in all of us that wishes we could have been around in the days of the Wild West. Whether your interests were in blazing new trails into undiscovered country, riding the range, going on a cattle drive, homesteading, or panning for gold there is something romantic about the old west that so many of us find appealing whether male or female, old or young. The Wild West lends itself to many wonderful and exciting birthday party themes for the brave host or hostess. Hopefully some of the ideas mentioned below will get your creative wheels turning and help you plan the perfect birthday party for the Wild West Wannabe in your life. Wagon Trail. You can create a wagon trail of sorts of your own, in your own back yard. This is great for younger cowboys and trailblazers. All you really need is a covered wagon (feel free to use your imagination for this), an open fire (check with local regulations but open fires are great for cooking hot dogs, s'mores, and using a Dutch oven for stew as well as warmth and light at night (especially if this is an overnight party). Gold Rush. This can be a blast, literally if you aren't careful with the TNT. Seriously make fake TNT for decoration as well as rocks that have been painted gold, frosted mugs for the root beer (especially if the crowd is under 21), and chicken nuggets and corn nuggets for lunch with a gold themed birthday cake to top things off. Have everyone dress up like prospectors and go out panning for gold if you have a creek nearby that would be safe for 'prospecting'. It's a great outing and a lot of fun for everyone. Even if you don't strike gold you might find an interesting rock or two that make excellent keepsakes. Of course there are the cowboys of the old Wild West. You will want to wear cowboy boots, a hat, a bandana, and a six-shooter on your hip for added effect. Great food would be anything that can be made on a grill though hot dogs are a general favorite among a younger cowpoke audience. Barbecue is a good choice for adult Wild West parties and the cowboys need to be sure to have a good cowgirl by their sides. Square dancing is a great entertainment that can be fun even in birthday parties for little ones. Of course the birthday boy or girl should get a sheriff's badge to distinguish them from all the other guests at the rodeo. In fact, you might find that a trip to the rodeo is a perfect accompaniment to the Wild West Cowboy party theme. The important thing when bringing a touch of the Wild West to your birthday bash is to remember to work to make it fun for everyone. If you are going to have guests of all ages, make sure that there are appropriate activities to keep them all entertained and happy rather than; isolating events to suit the target age group of the big event. This makes for happier parents, happier children, and guests that stick around longer and want to return next year to see what new and wonderful ideas you will come up with. The Perfect Birthday Party for your Little Princess A princess birthday party is what almost every little girl dreams of at some point in her childhood. Make your little princess' dream a reality by planning the perfect princess party for her. There are so many things you can do with the princess theme that will be both fun and incredibly memorable. Regardless of what you decide to do be sure that there are plenty of cameras on hands for lots of fantastic pictures. There are all kinds of great party games that can be played at a princess party and the best place to look for inspiration is your favorite childhood fairy tales. Instead of pin the tail on the donkey how about a rousing game of kiss the frog? Instead of running around with a tail to pin in a donkey your little princess and all of her princess friends can run around trying to pin a pair of puckered lips on the frog. It's a fun variation on a traditional birthday party favorite. For crafts you can have each party princess make her very own tiara to wear for the day's festivities. It's a lot of fun, it gets all the little girls together, quietly one hopes, in one spot and concentrating on a specific task. They will also have this great keepsake to bring home with them. You'll want to be sure to get a photo of each princess wearing her tiara as another souvenir. You can also opt to craft a photo frame in the princess theme for each princess to make to hold her tiara photo and take home with her. Crafts are often quite inexpensive and are a lot of fun for the little princesses and their moms to work on together. Keep the food down to finger food that is low mess and princess approved. Cake and ice cream are almost required but if the party is going to last for any length of time you might want to include ham and cheese rollups, finger sandwiches, a fruit and veggie tray, and a few cookies for a light lunch and a little nourishment for the parents that brave the onslaught of pink to come along. Don't forget to have princess punch with your favorite red powdered drink, ginger ale (or lemon lime soda), and vanilla ice cream. Of course no princess party is really complete with a bard telling tales. Have readings of favorite princess fairy tales and perhaps a viewing of a beloved fairy tale movie (such as Disney's Cinderella, Little Mermaid, Sleeping Beauty, or Snow White). This provides a little more quiet time in which the princesses can settle down and the craft table can be cleaned up to prepare for the cake, ice cream, and presents later on. Don't forget to get great goodie bags for all the little princess guests. One of the best ideas I've found is a princess purse filled with little brushes, lip-gloss, and plastic jewelry make a great haul for the guests and are a lot of fun to put together. Decorations should be rather simple, pink and lavender or green streamers are great for the theme and confetti followed with plates, cups, and napkins in a color that is appropriate for the party theme (if there is a specific princess being honored) are a great beginning and younger children really do not need much more decoration than that unless of course you have a princess that has a soft spot for balloons. In that case enough cannot be said about the importance of balloons. All in all, creating a spectacular princess party for your little princess isn't as difficult as one might think and can be done quite nicely even on a budget. The important thing is to have plenty of food and plenty of fun items and activities to keep your little princess and all of her princess friends busy from the beginning to the end of the party. The Margaritaville Birthday Theme Party For pirates of all ages, shapes, and sizes there is little better than a Jimmy Buffett themed birthday party for fun and play. Much more than good music Jimmy Buffett has created a lifestyle all his own through his music and with the enthusiastic support of his fans. His music isn't limited to one genre and doesn't appeal to one specific culture, instead the appeal is nearly limitless, which makes this a great theme for a birthday party that is open to an audience of all ages though a firm favorite for celebrating the big 4-0 as the result of "A Pirate Looks at 40." To pull off an excellent Margaritaville party blenders and ice are a must. The next thing you need to worry about is food. Some great food ideas for a Margaritaville themed party would be boiled shrimp, build your own cheeseburgers' (in paradise of course), complimentary finger foods and fixings, and a little bit of sponge cake and/or fruitcake probably wouldn't hurt things at all. They would definitely work wonders to the Jimmy Buffett approved theme of the party. If you are in serious need of inspiration for menu ideas check out the menu at Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville Cafe. If you are in the right climate and the weather is cooperative a patio or backyard party is definitely the way to go. Decorate with tikki lights, shark fins, flowers, coconuts, and any other tropical themes that capture your attention and imagination. Be sure to put grass skirts on the tables you set up with the fabulous foods, and place a nice tikki bar for serving the required margaritas. You can also choose to serve non-alcoholic margaritas to the little ones if there will be children in attendance and have them available for adults that are driving or do not wish to partake. Have fun with the food and keep it appropriate for a tropical or Jimmy Buffett theme. Music is a must for this particular birthday party theme. You simply can't recreate Margaritaville without the sounds of the town blaring out across your speakers. You do not need to limit the music of the evening to Jimmy Buffett though he should play a prominent role in the entertainment for the evening. Other great sounds that will compliment the theme of the evening include the Beach Boys, Bob Marley, and Bobby McFerrin. Of course use your imagination and go with your taste. My personal preference would be a showcase of all things Jimmy Buffett for the evening but that doesn't work for everyone. Be sure to take measures to insure that everyone makes it home safely if you are serving alcohol and work to make sure that everyone has a fun and memorable evening in Margaritaville. You might want to include contests such as the loudest "Hawaiian shirt" for extra fun or the most memorable flip-flops. Remember the goal is to have fun and make sure that everyone attending has fun also. If you have the equipment Jimmy Buffet karaoke is a must and video recordings for future black mail and a recording of the revelry are also highly recommended. All in all, Margaritaville is a place that many of us dream of going to escape the every day. Wouldn't it be a great theme for a birthday party that makes that day a little more special than the rest for everyone invited and not just the one celebrating? The next time you are lost for a great theme to add to your birthday party theme inventory, consider the benefit to one and all of adding an evening under the stars and on the sand to your plans. Margaritaville is the perfect setting for a truly festive celebration no matter how old the pirate in your life may be. Just remember to keep the saltshaker in sight at all times and the party should go off without a hitch. Teddy Bear Birthday Party Theme What little girl doesn't have a special spot in her heart for her favorite teddy bear? I know our little angel calls her teddy bear her best friend and loves this bear more than life itself. It has been her constant companion since she was the ripe old age of six weeks old and has calmed her through hurt feelings, nightmares, and new houses, as well as fights with her brother and scolds from mom and dad. Her teddy bear is her friend, protector, defender, and confident. For this reason it should come as no surprise that a favorite birthday party idea for our little girl was a birthday in which bears reigned supreme. The first thought that many have when it comes to Teddy Bears and a birthday party with Teddy, as its main theme is probably the Build a Bear Workshop or other similar businesses. While these are great for parties and give each girl attending a little something to take home with her, they are also quite expensive. If you want to spend a little less there are plenty of options. If you want to make all of her friends want you as parents, the Build a Bear party plan really is grand. Keep in mind though that if you think she's going to abandon her lifelong companion (unfluffed and coming unstuffed teddy bear numero uno) for the Build a Bear bear think again. She will just now have two bears sharing her nighttime cuddles trust me on this. Another great thought for teddy bear parties is of a slumber or pajama party with teddy bears having a place of honor with each and every one of the very important guests. Teddy bears and other stuffed animals are often security blankets of sorts for young girls in stressful situations or that are away from home. They help smooth the transition and make the night go better despite the fact that some girls are ashamed of their need for their fluffy friends. By inviting your guests and their favorite teddy bear or sleepy time companion you are inviting them to bring their security and a touch of home along with them. This will help calm scared children and make a night away from home less frightening. A Teddy Bear tea party is another great way to go. Teddy bears share everything with their human companions; it makes perfect sense that they will also share teatime. You should decorate this tea as any other tea with flowers, the tea set, and have a seat for teddy bear next to every little girl in attendence. If you want to be extremely fancy you can have place cards to assign seating for bears and girls along with gloves and hats for the girls to wear during the festivities. Food should be finger food such as teacakes and cookies, finger sandwiches, and punch in teacups of course. You will want to take photos of these girls in their Sunday best having tea with their best friends and send them home in keepsake frames. This will be a party to remember and a lot of fun for the kids and parents. Just remember to wipe the crumbs from Teddy's face so that he is ready for his close-up and have a world of fun. Sweet 16 Birthday Party The 16th Birthday for most young girls is a very special birthday. It is one that should be made memorable and there are many ways in which this can be accomplished. If you are like many moms and dads out there you might be a bit challenged is to exactly how to make that birthday stand out above and beyond the rest, especially in light of what seems to be competing and often escalating birthday celebrations. Keep reading for some excellent birthday party ideas to make your daughter's day shine. While there are many friends that your daughter will have and many Sweet 16 parties she will attend you want to make her birthday party a little bit unique. For this reason there are several party ideas that will be mentioned below. You can elaborate on one theme or mix and match a few themes that capture your attention. Regardless any of these themes should be a little something special to make the day, or evening, a special event full of fond memories for your teen. Throw a masquerade ball. This allows everyone to dress in costumes, dance, drink punch, and have a ball, figuratively of course. This can be a lot of fun and you can even have those in attendence make their own masks for the grand event even if you choose not to use costumes and go a little less formal. Use plenty of balloons to set the stage and make the evening quite an event. You can have a spa event for an all girls sweet 16. This event would include having facials, pedicures, makeovers, and a great chick flick for the evening, followed, of course by copious amounts of Haagen-Dazs(r). A great way to do this is by approaching your favorite home party plan representative from a company such as Mary Kay or Beauty Control for the spa portion of the party (be sure to invite parents and have friends bring money to buy their favorite products). It's a great way to get a makeover inexpensively and learn about proper application of cosmetics and which colors suit your needs. If these ideas aren't appealing, how about a Surf's Up Sweet 16? Even if you aren't near a beach you may discover that you can bring the feeling of the beach to your own back yard. Be sure to have surfboards to set the theme and plenty of tikki types of decorations and some excellent surfing music. You could take the event one step further and make it a luau. Use your imagination and make it an event to remember. Make your Sweet 16 a Red Carpet Event. This is a great idea for a birthday party. It allows all your friends to make a grand entrance, that you can record with a video or digital camera in their beautiful dresses (you can go semiformal if finances are a concern), and can make great scrapbooks that everyone can take home if you have a computer, scanner, and printer at home. Don't forget to create Oscar worthy goodie bags with great little gifts from the local party supply store or Bath and Body works. It's a lot of fun as far as parties go and may be a little something new and different among friends. There really is no one way that is right or wrong for celebrating your daughter's Sweet 16. The important thing is that you create a budget and plan your party theme to fit within the scope of your budget. Even with limited funds you can have an excellent birthday bash for your teen on her sixteenth. The ideas above are a great place to start. Hopefully you will take one of these ideas and make it your own or at the very least have jump-started a few new and different ideas to add to your growing list of hits, near hits, and misses. You may just have the one hit that will make your daughter's eyes light up. Star Wars Birthday Party Even though there hasn't been a recent film release, Star Wars remains a popular favorite among fans new and old. Kids of all ages from 2 to 52 find the world that was created by Star Wars creator George Lucas to be an infinitely fascinating world in which to allow their imagination and fantasies to take flight in that galaxy far, far away. If your special birthday girl or boy is a fan of these films this is the can't miss party theme to add to your perfect birthday party list. There are many ways you can go that will bring the theme to light in a way that allows everyone to have fun. First of all, you could have a classic Star Wars event with the original Episodes (IV, V, and VI) showing one after the other throughout the party. This is perfect for an overnight or all day sort of party as it allows breaks in between the showings and plenty of time to incorporate some serious snack making or pizza ordering without interfering with the DVDs being played in the back ground. If you want to take things a step further you can also have your guests come dressed as their favorite Star Wars characters from all six films. If you are truly adventurous you can do a back-to-back showing of all six films though this makes for a very long weekend sort of event. Perfect if your birthday falls on around a 3-day weekend such as Labor Day or Memorial Day. Otherwise it's a great idea but you may want to break it up into two years' worth of celebrations. If you are friends or your child's friends are a creative bunch you can have a session where guests speculate and create tall tales about what happens between Episodes III and IV as well as what happens to favorite characters after Episode VI. This is a lot of fun and creates a sort of role-playing atmosphere for the party that can be a huge amount of fun. If this isn't enough activity and you want a little something to wear the kids (big or small) out you might want to invite your guests to a Jedi training academy of sorts. Set up an obstacle course for everyone to follow and a series of exercises similar to what Luke went through in The Empire Strikes Back. The winner can get some Star Wars themed award for giggles and a little added entertainment. Most bakeries are likely to have a great form cake on hand or in inventory for Star Wars because the theme remains so popular. If not however. There are great cake ideas online that work beautifully for a Star Wars theme with home made birthday cakes. It's really great if you can try one of these because it will be something a little different from what everyone else who does a Star Wars themed party will have. Of course you could always go with a background of stars and the original Star Wars logo painted in yellow. Simple and yet completely appropriate. If a Star Wars themed birthday party is anywhere on your wish list for your birthday or your child or significant other's birthday by all means make your best effort to make this a fun and memorable event. May the Force be with you. Scavenger Hunt Birthday Party for Teens Teens are often the most difficult among us to impress. Too old for many of the theme party ideas that often appeal to younger children and not quite old enough to appreciate some of the more entertaining adult party themes there seem to be very few options available for awesome teen birthday parties that will go down in record books. If you are looking for something a little new and different to do this year, try an Amazing Race sort of scavenger hunt for your teen's birthday. Be sure to have interesting prizes and a gift for the birthday boy or girl to give in the name of the winners. This is a party that needs to be planned ahead of time as permission may need to be given by parents for some of the more exciting scavenged items. It's also a good idea to discuss this with other parents as they may have a few great suggestions for items that must be obtained in search of the holy birthday party Amazing Race grail. Keep the prizes simple and fun and keep the goals for each leg of the race challenging enough to be entertaining but something that can be accomplished without risking life and limb. Make sure that there is a little more to the challenge than having to go from one house or store to the next and buy, beg, or borrow items. Make some of the items things that must be carefully considered and well planned on behalf of the winning team. This makes the entire process more fun for everyone and a birthday party theme that will be remembered. The most important thing to remember when planning a party such as this is to keep safety a first priority. If possible it is probably best to divide into teams and have one adult per team (even if the teens are old enough to drive) you definitely want to make sure that the parents of every teen involved is aware of what will be going on and that you have contact information for everyone. This can be a lot of fun, especially if you get the parents of your child to participate by issuing challenges of their own, or becoming a "pit stop" for the process. It's a great way for the parents to be involved and a lot of fun for them as well. Finish the event with pizza, cake, and video footage (that you planned ahead of time) of the festivities from one location to the next. It should make for an excellent night to remember not only for your teen but all the other teens involved in your Amazing Race birthday party. This sort of party is a little more costly then some others may be (unless you plan very carefully). You also might want to include a couple of crafty activities in the Amazing Race or as part of the scavenger hunt in order to prolong some of the events and hand out disposable cameras to each team in order to "capture" some memories and create a scrapbook of the Amazing Race. If you have a scanner and printer you can make a scrapbook for each guests to take home. The most important thing about a party of this sort is that you use your imagination to keep things safe and entertaining for all involved. The Amazing Race/scavenger hunt party has the potential to be a special memory for your teen and his or her friends for years to come. Go with the flow and remember that it's about fun. If something goes wrong for some reason just pick up and move on to the next event rather than getting bogged down in the details. One word of caution, plan to have plenty of food on hand regardless. A gaggle of hungry teens can go through plenty of food and pop in an amazingly short space of time. Reality Television makes for Great Birthday Parties Reality television seems to be taking the world by storm. What once began as a few shows on cable television dedicated to real life situations has spiraled into what seems to be a gold mine for television studios around the world. With so many people watching television and tuning in week after week as dreams are won and lost it makes sense that children, teens, and adults alike might find the idea of a reality television inspired birthday party appealing on many levels. There are many directions you can take with party ideas such as this and the planning is often the most expensive part of these parties and that requires a little time and attention. You just might take the neighborhood by storm by creating your own reality television inspired birthday party. If you are a little stuck on ideas, perhaps the suggestions below will help. America Idol. Arguably the most popular of all reality television shows this is one that seems to get the largest audience response and has won top billing in the ratings war since it's first season. Bring the search for the next American pop star into your very own living room by setting the stage and inviting guests to hit you with their best shots at star dom. You can have a panel of judges that have comments to make after each performance and you can establish a rule that requires everyone to perform at least once. This is a fun party to have but be sure the judges are kind (in other words, no Simon for the sake of fragile egos). The Amazing Race. This is a fun birthday party idea because the winner isn't determined by one thing alone. This will require a lot of advanced preparation in order to make entertaining but is a lot of fun when it is pulled off well. Enlist the help of others for any driving that needs to be done and for great ideas for challenges. This is about working together as a team and having fun so keep things somewhat challenging but also fun so that there is a sense of accomplishment for doing a job well for everyone involved. Survivor. Fans of Survivor know that this is so much more than just a television show. It is a phenomenon that has taken the world by storm. Your first rule of order will be to divide the guests into teams. I recommend drawing toothpicks with different colored plastic on the ends rather than choosing teams so that no one is left out and that one team doesn't have an unfair advantage because they know each other better. You will want to have challenges that are both physical and mental to help build a sense of team. Be sure to have an assortment of dollar tree "survival gear" to give out as prizes. Campfire foods such as hot dogs and s'mores are a good idea and make for easy clean up without damaging the theme too terribly much. Once all the games have been played you can settle in for a night of Survivor episodes on DVD or DVR. With reality television being so widely watched it is a great idea to include your favorite show in your birthday party idea box. There are plenty of shows from which to choose the trick is in finding the one show that sparks your interest as well as your imagination. Hopefully you've gotten some great ideas for beginning here.
Pajama Birthday Party There are many great types of birthdays for kids to have but one of the most exciting; particularly the first time is the pajama party. Girls especially love to have pajama parties, slumber parties, sleepovers, and any number of other names you can come up with to say the same thing. The point is they love having their friends over to spend the night and cause all manner of mayhem and mischief. There are many great ways you could pull off the perfect pajama party but you must remember at all times that a house full of giggling girls requires a good humor and a huge bottle of your favorite head ache remedy (non-alcoholic on this occasion of course). Once you have a nice supply of aspirin on hand you may begin hashing out the details. One important detail however is when during the sleepover cake and ice cream should be eaten and gifts should be opened. Most children prefer sooner during the event rather than later so that they can play with their haul of loot with their friends. If this is the case, you need to have the decorations in place ahead of the party, which is probably a good idea anyway. If you've decided on a particular theme great, if not there's really nothing wrong with a pajama theme for the cake and decorations. You can even have fuzzy bunny slippers if you want and no one will complain. Speaking of fuzzy bunny slippers, the dress for a decent pajama party is ultra casual. Why not wear a pair and see what everyone thinks? If bunnies aren't your thing, there are plenty of pajama footwear options available that should be a hit for an event such as this. Be sure to bring your favorite nail polish along as manicures and pedicures are often the rule rather the exception as the night hours move along. You might find that by the next morning you have a different color of polish on every fingertip and every toe. It's all in good fun though and perfectly acceptable pajama birthday party attire. The problem with a pajama birthday party for many parents organizing them is that we underestimate the eating abilities of a few girls no matter what age they may be. Be aware that having plenty of food on hand, that these girls can help themselves to is an absolute must for the success of your pajama birthday party. Great midnight snacks might include pizza rolls, chips, a veggie tray to keep in the fridge, and microwave popcorn (a must if movies may be involved). You should also have some easy to prepare breakfast "fixings" on hand too because it is unlikely that anyone involved is going to have too much sleep. This means sleepy breakfast preparation. Cereal, toaster waffles or tarts, and oatmeal are excellent choices for easy to prepare breakfast choices to have after a long night of pajama partying. Be sure to have plenty of milk and juice on hand as well so that various morning tastes are accommodated. A pajama birthday party is a right of passage that many girls dream of before it happens. Be sure to plan activities and events that will keep the night moving on and make efforts that everyone feels comfortable and at home. Get to know parents and be sure to invite favorite night time friends (i.e. Teddy bears or favorite blankets) along for security and to insure that things go smoothly for all invited (this is particularly important with younger girls having their first pajama parties). You want to make sure that the night is a success by making it memorable for your daughter and her friends. Have plenty of craft projects, great food, even better movies, and games on hand to keep boredom from becoming an issue. If you do all of these things your daughter should have the pajama birthday party of her dreams. Over the Hill Birthday Party Ideas While there are many people who treat the 40th and 50th birthday as a time to mourn there are others who elect to use this is the perfect opportunity to celebrate. Life goes on and there is no better way to celebrate that fact than with friends and family. An "Over the Hill" birthday should be one that brings together both in a roaring fashion. Hopefully some of the ideas below will get your wheels turning for a grand plan for your own over the hill birthday celebration or that of someone you love. My favorite idea for a great Over the Hill birthday party bash is a roast. You see them on television all the time. They are irreverent and quite hilarious. This only works if you have the type of friends and family to pull this off and not be offended by the things being said but can be a ton of fun with the right audience. Have a great meal and allow all the guests, who are interested at any rate, to get up and deliver their 'toast' to the guest of honor. If you want a night of laughs this is definitely the way to celebrate your life and the friends you have (at least those that you had yesterday anyway). You could do an AFI sort of theme in which you have films or slides showing of various events throughout the guest of honor's life. This is a great way to pay tribute to someone that has meant a great deal to you when planning a birthday bash to be remembered. Have a red carpet sort of theme and allow guests to pay sincere tribute to the birthday girl or boy by extolling their virtues. This is another great celebration that is a lot more sentimental in nature than a roast but along the same lines when it comes to decoration and meal planning. For another funny over the hill birthday party idea look to the past. If your birthday girl or boy is a relic you can give the party an Old West or Gold Rush theme. A party such as this can be a great deal of fun to plan and even more fun to attend. Set up a Wild West saloon and have everyone come dressed for occasion. This is a great photo op for most and if you plan things well the theme can be one that will go down in memory by every guest, especially, the guest of honor. Be sure to keep the drinks flowing and make the food portable (finger food is almost always a good plan for adult birthday parties unless they involve plenty of space for sitting down to dine). Of course there is the standard Grim Reaper type of over the hill birthday party. There are things of course you can do to make your party stand out from all the rest but that will require a creative spark and knowledge of the guest of honor to pull off well. Use what you have to work with in order to create the perfect celebration of life or death in the new century. Of course if you are truly brave you can make it an out of this world experience and go with the black but give the party a supernatural theme. The sky is the limit when celebrating milestone birthdays and nothing is too outrageous depending on the personality of the guest of honor. Just remember that over the hill doesn't mean not long for this world and life, at all stages, should be celebrated and honored. A great over the hill party can be had for the cost of very careful planning and a great group of friends and family in order to help pull things off. If you are lost for inspiration hopefully the ideas mentioned above will help at least point you in the right direction if not solve your party planning woes. Mission Possible -- Spy Birthday Party For the little spy master or mistress in your life the idea of a spy themed birthday may be the absolute best gift you could give. It is an even better gift if you take the time to carefully plan an evening and event that every guest, especially your child will remember for a long time to come. There are many great themes upon which you can expand and build your Master Spy party for girls or guys and make it the most talked about birthday party of the birthday party season. Begin by establishing a particular theme or plot for the party. Are you going to make the party a mission based party where there is an objective or are you going to set up a spy training camp? Either makes for excellent themes but really must be decided in advance. If you are going with the objective you need to have an objective that is challenging but not too terribly difficult. You could set up a scavenger hunt sort of objective where each item lends a clue to the next item and a riddle to solve to get there and the first team to the final objective wins spiffy new goodies for their bags of spy tricks. For the training camp you can have a little more creative fun. You can set up an optical course and play memory games. You can have coded messages that each guest must decipher as one of the activities. You can incorporate this into a mission later in the festivities or leave it as a separate activity or use it both times with a different cipher for each message to make things a little more interesting. Goody bags for a party with this theme can be a ton of fun. You can put in a mini camera, binoculars, sunglasses, water guns, notepads and pens (for deciphering codes of course), and an ID badge for each with a photo slot in which you will put their photos before they leave. This is a party that can be a lot of fun without breaking the budget. Decorations should be what you would expect in a spy headquarters or training academy. Most of us can draw them or print them from online. Some excellent examples would be targets for target practice, code ciphers, a briefcase or two, folders with "Top Secret" stamped on them, and a few building schematics tacked onto a bulletin board for an authentic feeling. Food for a party like this doesn't have to be elaborate. Kids love pizza so pizza and pop are excellent choices with cake and ice cream to follow. If pizza isn't your thing think kid friendly with easy clean up when planning the menu. If you want to be really cruel you can make the mission about finding the stash of presents (you will have to hide all the presents as they arrive however in order to make this work) but it is a fun game to play and the idea of a spy mission birthday party is often appealing to both girls and boys. When planning your spy themed birthday party be sure to make it fun and challenging but not over the heads of the age group for which you are planning. You want everyone to leave happy and to have had a lot of fun. Most importantly you want your birthday boy or girl happy so keep his or her wishes in mind and let her add input when planning the party. Laser Tag Birthday Party As far as birthday bashes go, laser tag arenas are taking the birthday industry by storm. Gone are the days when only little boys are interested this is a game that anyone, no matter how big or small can have a great time exploring and makes for an interesting and entertaining birthday party idea. If you have a laser tag arena in your neck of the woods it is very well worth checking out as the perfect location for your next birthday party event. The great thing about most laser tag arenas is that you do not have to sacrifice the idea of a themed birthday party or gathering in order to incorporate the laser tag action into the party. There are plenty of themed parties that work wonderfully right alongside the action packed time that can be spent enjoying life on the laser tag floor. Now there are plenty of themes you can bring to the laser tag table with you but my personal favorite is that of a spy mission or secret agent. Most arenas will be happy to play along to your party needs if you are booking with them and let them know far enough ahead of time to make the proper preparations (provided they are reasonable and age appropriate of course). Check and see if they may have a few 'secret agent missions, that they can incorporate into the festivities and make the decorations, cakes, and plates fit with the secret agent theme. You could also have everyone dressed in black from head to foot to pull off the theme even better. Army men are still fascinating to boys of all ages. Whether the birthday boy in your live is 10 or 25 chances are quite good that he would not turn his bag on the idea of a camouflage birthday cake or dressing in his favorite camo for a rousing game of laser tag. It is quite easy at the moment to find all manner of camouflage plates, napkins, and party favors that will accommodate the army greens and be an excellent addition to the party (I wonder if you hide the cake on camo plates if the calories will still count?). Kim Possible is all the rage on Disney these days and proves that girls can be spies too. If you have a girl that is interested in laser tag there is really no reason whatsoever that she should not have her birthday celebration at your local laser tag center. Girls definitely like to play with these toys too and might just prove to be superior in battle when all is said and done. If you are interested in a theme that is out of this world for your laser tag festivities there is no reason not to pursue a space aged them with your laser tag maneuverings. A birthday party is supposed to be fun and you can pretty much do what you want in a venue such as this without the mess and after party clean up. Have fun and choose a theme that the birthday boy or girl will enjoy and appreciate. When it comes to a laser tag birthday party you need to book early and make sure you have all the information you need when booking in order to insure that you will have the space you need when you want it. Check with policies on cake and/or other outside food as it may vary from one arena to the next. Be sure to check out food offerings there, as many will have a fairly decent selection of snacks for your partiers if that is your preference. The most important thing is that everyone involved has a great time. Sit back and enjoy the party while your guys and girls fight it out in the arena. Of course, if you are really brave you can venture into the fray. You might find a hidden talent and a happy birthday boy or girl. Hollywood Birthday Party Theme for Teens Hollywood is source of seemingly infinite fascination with teens. They are constantly looking to Hollywood for fashion tips, entertainment, and, far too often, advice and guidance when it comes to daily life. The good news is that while Hollywood may not be the theme you want your teens carrying around with them every day it makes for a great birthday party theme if you are inventive, creative, and can find the good in everything. There are plenty of events in Hollywood that set the stage for elaborate and very fun birthday party events that will impress even the most cynical of teens and have their friends talking for weeks to come. Your teen's birthday may even become the birthday event of the year if you plan carefully and put the full power of your creativity into play for the big event. Remember however, that whatever you plan must be somewhat flexible as teens are also notorious for putting bumps into what would otherwise be a smooth ride. One great Hollywood theme that is often a joy for teen parties, especially among teen girls is the idea of an awards show. This includes the proverbial Red Carpet, plenty of photo ops, and a dress code that is quite formal (this should be noted in the invitations). It is all in good fun however and you do love your children right? Besides, the planning of an event such as this can prove a worthy challenge. You can use glittery star nameplates to indicate seating, have the "Oscar Room" decorated elegantly with a white table clothe and fine china, and have cameras flashing throughout the event to record important moments. Don't forget the completely "Oscar worthy" goody bag. Great ideas to fill this bag include items for facials, manicures, pedicures, a photo frame for the fabulous photos you will be sending home, and an autograph "scrapbook" in which you can all work to create a scrapbook of the evening with photographs and autographs. Diva dinner. This idea for a glamorous Hollywood themed birthday is a little more irreverent than the notion of an Oscar party, which might make it a little more entertaining. This is also the sort of party that is best left to girls rather than attempting to include girls and guys. When your guests arrive dressed to impress you will hand out feather boas and sunglasses that are worthy of Hollywood (be fun and think "Glam"). You will want to have plenty of photo ops throughout the evening so be sure to have cameras at the ready and create a backdrop for more formal photos of all the divas together or any diva to take with the birthday diva. You can all get together to make photo frames and bring your photo with the birthday girl or the group en masse home with you when the party ends. Over the years Hollywood has brought many laughs, tears, sighs, and sobs into our homes. It makes perfect sense that teens are so fascinated with the comings and goings of people in this very unique city. Bringing the glitz and glam of a Hollywood birthday party into your home for a night, or even a weekend is a great way to make your teen a very happy teen but more importantly it is a while it's fun on occasion to have all the attention that the lights of Hollywood can bring it's even better to have friends and family who love you. Classic Movie Birthday Party Theme If you are like most adults in the world you search far and wide for a somewhat unique theme for the next great birthday bash. If you are at a bit of a loss this year, how about going with a classic movie theme. You can either choose one movie or let guests come dressed as favorite characters from individual movies and have a hodgepodge collection of music and DVDs available to set the theme for the party. You can also elect to have movie posters from the movie (if going with a specific movie theme) or a variety of great classics if going with the flow and letting everyone become their favorite classic movie characters. If you want to get really creative you can assign characters to guests and make an adventure of having guests try to guess the character and the movie. The sky is the limit when planning a classic movie birthday party. If you are considering going with one specific movie however, please feel free to select from some of the excellent themes and ideas below. 1) The Godfather. I can't think of a more appropriate birthday party for a good many of the men I know. It's a great classic movie and the guys will have a great time going over their favorite Godfather lines all night. Have some great Italian music, Italian food, and plan for a night of fun. Don't forget to have the movie on hand so that arguments over infamous lines and old scores can be settled. 2) Casablanca. This is great theme for a birthday party for the one you love or a romantic celebration such as Valentine's Day or an anniversary. Have white table clothes, the soundtrack from the movie, an elegant dinner, and dress in clothes appropriate for the era. This is a classic movie and will definitely be a night and a party to remember. 3) Star Wars has finally attained status as a true classic and while it may be more modern than what many have in mind for those of the thirty something generation it is a great movie to incorporate and will make for a ton of fun that really is out of this world. Again the soundtrack and the DVD make lovely companions to a party of this theme and you can argue over favorite lines and make wagers accordingly. Wage war with blasters and light sabers and dress as your favorite characters or assign characters to various guests. 4) Favorite Movie Villains. This is another great theme for a classic movie party that doesn't get used nearly often enough. I think we all have one villain that we can identify as a favorite rather it was one that scared us into spilling our pop or one that we can identify with to some extent it is great fun to celebrate life by exploring that little touch of darkness within. It also tells a lot about the people you call friends. 5) Old Westerns. For those who are looking for the perfect excuse o start a campfire and sing campy old trail riding music, there is little like a wild western movie theme to make those dreams a reality. You could even complete the evening with cowboy karaoke and s'mores. Just make sure you have plenty of your favorite westerns on hand in case you forget the lyrics. Classic movies provide an excellent source of inspiration for all manner of wonderful ideas for themed birthday parties. You could even go with a John Wayne theme, World War II theme, Steve McQueen, or Clint Eastwood birthday party theme. Let your imagination run wild and have a great time making the plans and choosing the decorations for your perfect classic movie birthday party ideas. You never know when you'll end up striking gold and creating the perfect night for the special someone you know and love. Camping Birthday Party Ideas While girls dream of parties with "jammies" and pillow fights little boys often dream of sleepovers that are held beneath the stars. There are many ways this can be incorporated into a birthday theme for your little man's big day. No matter what age, there is something that boys find fascinating about sleeping in the great outdoors and a camping birthday party is a great way to do this, even if the great outdoors go no further than your own back yard. A favorite theme among those holding camping birthday parties is that of a trail ride. With this you can bring your gear along with you, ride horses, cook, eat, and sleep under the stars. If you don't have a trail ride, horses, or long trails in the wilderness nearby don't despair. With a Dutch oven, an open fire, a few sticks, and little bit of imagination you can have your very own cowboy camp out birthday bash celebration. Don't forget the fixin's for some s'mores while you're making plans and be sure to have a camera handy as you create an unforgettably fun birthday bash and camping party for that special guy in your life. Be sure to include a few tall tales to share around the campfire. Now might be a great time to brush up on your Paul Bunyan and Pecos Bill stories. A military camping birthday party is another great camping party idea. Right now boys need good solid heroes and the military is a great place to find them. If you have friends or family that are serving over seas this might be a great way to help your little guy bring them closer to home for an evening and could be the best birthday memory he'll ever have. Set up pup tents, visit your local military supply or surplus store for MREs (meals ready to eat), have everyone wearing their favorite camouflage, and have an army green face painting contest before bed time. A safari camping theme is another great theme for a terrific camping birthday party. Begin by having everyone dress appropriately for a day underneath the hot African sun, khakis, and an appropriate hat work well. Create a safari pack (goody bag) for all the kids including really chip binoculars, a net for catching stray bugs (really great for lightening bugs at night), safari themed stickers, and a picture frame that is worthy of a fearless safari adventurer (you'll definitely want to send them home with photos of their safari attire). Set up camp for the evening and serve animal crackers for dessert. You can populate the tent with stuffed animals of favorite safari animals and supplement the adventure with a trip to the zoo for even grander effect and more fun. If none of these are getting you very excited you could always go with a Rocky Mountain sort of theme for your camping birthday party. Be sure to have plenty of stuffed black bears and have everyone wear red flannel and denim. This is a great and fun sort of adventure for the little men in your life and a great fun party idea. It also presents a few wonderful photo ops for souvenirs and your very own memory book. Have the tents pitched in the backyard and the grill should be set up to feed your hungry mountaineers. If you are fortunate enough to have a creek on your property or live very near one you could even have your 'adventurers' go panning for gold. A camping birthday party presents endless opportunities to put your imagination to work creating a new and wonderful theme. Even if the weather, for some odd reason, doesn't want to cooperate you can bring your great outdoor adventure inside and still have a grand time. If you live in an apartment or an area in which you are uncomfortable having a camp out, there's no reason you can't have a wonderful camp "in". Bring the Barbecue to the Birthday Party Grown ups deserve to celebrate their birthdays too. Birthdays are after all a celebration of life and one more year on the planet. It makes sense however, that grown ups would like a little something more substantial than the typical cake and ice cream and childish fantasy theme for their celebrations. This doesn't mean that grown ups have forgotten their fantasies however and this leaves a lot of room for interpretation on the theme of barbecues when it comes to a great birthday celebration. You can go the Cowboy way when it comes to a birthday party barbecue and throw a shindig that would make old "W" proud. Texas sized ribs, hamburgers, steaks, hot dogs, and country music for all. Be sure to wear your cowboy boots and have gingham table clothes for this event that should be a family friendly way to go. Don't forget to bring all the "fixin's" or ask the guests to pitch in their best dishes in true southern tradition. This is a great way to go for those with big families that want nothing more than an excuse to celebrate their lives together. If the cowboy way doesn't exactly ring all your bells and whistles there is always the notion of a Caribbean barbecue. This is a party that would make Jimmy Buffett proud. Speaking of Buffett it's probably a good idea to bring some of his music along to set the tone and there are plenty of other Caribbean or island inspired musicians to get you through the evening. Caribbean Jerk is a great rub or sauce for the chicken or fish you throw on the grill and you can make do with other traditional Caribbean fare for your dining pleasure and that of your guests. You could also go the humorous route for your big day and go the redneck barbecue birthday party route. You will want to use cheap paper plates, cheap plastic furniture, a metal tub filled with ice and RC Cola (r), plastic forks and knives (the Sunday best of course), and typical redneck food such as pigs in blanket, gumbo, fried chicken, and potato salad. This can be a really fun party if all the guests get into the festivities and dress and act the part. It is definitely a barbecue that will be remembered, and talked about. One of the favorite types of barbecues for a birthday bash however, is the Luau. There is something about those Hawaiians that really know how to do a barbecue the right way from the very beginning. Decorations should be island and tropical in nature. Be sure to use coconut cups for drinks and have plenty of Spam on hand (it's a delicacy there)! You will also want to be sure to have plenty of leis for all your guests and grass skirts, hula music, and plenty of loud Hawaiian shirts for the duration. In fact, a Hawaiian shirt contest (for the loudest of course) is almost a pre requisite. A barbecue is a great way to bring friends and family together to celebrate birthdays. If you are a little lost as to what to do to celebrate your grown up birthday or that of a loved one, try one of the ideas above or choose your own unique spin on the theme of a barbecue. An Egyptian Themed Birthday Party Ancient Egypt is a fascinating place all these years later. From mummies and pyramids to pharos and scarabs there is plenty of fuel for the fascination pyre. Keep in mind however, that the goal here is for the kids to have a great time, not to be frightened so keep the scary stuff to a minimum if possible (even if your child is brave to a fault that doesn't mean that some of the guests won't be frightened and you want the experience to be pleasant for everyone). Decorations for this are not as difficult as you may think. In fact, some of these decorations will double quite nicely for Halloween or may already be in your Halloween stash. First of all, if you have a canopy or tent lying around this will make an excellent substitution for a pyramid. You can fill your canopy or tent with relics that are authentic looking for what would be inside an Egyptian pyramid. Use skulls (leftover from Halloween decorations) on the floor, gold coins (or doubloons, which can be purchased rather inexpensively at many party supply stores), sequins that look like jewels, and fake jewelry that might have been worn during the period. Of course the piece de resistance will be the mummy wrapped in the corner (if this isn't part of your Halloween stash it should be after this). Now, what self respecting mummies home doesn't have a great curse to go along with it? Before allowing the guests into the "pyramid" you need to make sure they are aware of the curse that goes along with it. It's a fun little addition to the theme and a lot of fun to watch their eyes as you tell the tale of the mummy inside and why the tomb is cursed. If you are still looking for excellent activities you can bury treasure in your sandbox (if you have one) and let them all take turns digging up treasures and/or artifacts that they can take home with them. Make sure everyone has at least one turn and gets one thing to take home from the digging. You can either barbecue dinner or order pizza or something simple for dinner. I recommend letting the guests eat inside the pyramid for fun (if it isn't too terribly hot) and allow for a showing of The Mummy afterwards (provided the audience is old enough and interested). You could also allow them to play in the tomb for a while or make it an overnight event and allow them to camp in the tomb if it's a tent. Great goody bag gifts include flashlights, glow sticks, spiders, chocolate coins, stickers, and other candy jewelry. One great game for an Egyptian themed birthday party would be wrap the mummy. Divide the kids into groups of three and have them take turns racing to wrap the mummy (a member of the team) in toilet paper. Do this so that everyone has the opportunity to be wrapped -- just be sure to use the cheap brands of toilet paper for this particular project and plan on having plenty in case they get a little overzealous. Most importantly you want to plan an event that is fun to participate in and that will have all your guests eager to come back for the big birthday bash next year. Just remember you'll be expected to top the current theme and might gain a reputation for throwing the cool parties. A Tie Dyed Birthday Bash If you are looking for an excellent birthday party idea how about having a hog tie dyed good time? Tie dye was all the rage back in the 1960's and appears to be making a rather lengthy come back with a few fun variations of course. This is a party that will be appropriate for all kinds of kids and many different ages. If you are having a party that will include boys and girls this is definitely a great possibility to consider for party entertainment and even to center the entire party around. First of all, the 1960's produced some excellent music that makes the perfect backdrop for your tie dying and other activities. You do not need to limit your artistic flair to shirts in this instance however, be sure to have plenty of paper, paint, pens, pencils, and crayons around to keep the artistic bent up and running throughout the entire party. If you have a swimming pool it might be a good idea to let everyone play in the pool while the shirts are setting or pursue some other sort of fun activity in the meantime such as a movie or another craft project. One great craft project would be a groovy photo frame for each guest to place a picture of himself or herself wearing their tie dyed creation with the birthday girl or boy. It's a great keepsake and will pass a little of the time during the party. You could also have them work on a scrapbook of the party and allow each one to take one home with them (this is often more appealing to the girls than the guys) or hand painting headbands or bandanas to match their tie dyed tees. We've discussed the activities and the music now let's discuss the menu. You can make a tie dyed tee shirt cake if you are feeling quite ambitious or get one from your favorite local bakery if you are good at describing what you want and place your order far enough ahead of time. You can have fun allowing each guest to create his or her own psychedelic pizza. You would make the dough of course and allow them to decorate the pizza with sauce, veggies, pepperoni, and/or ham. It's a lot of fun, good food and something that will make the party a little bit unique. You will also want to have plenty of good snack foods on hands such as chips, sausage rolls, pigs in blankets, sloppy Joes, fruits, cake, and groovy chocolate chip cookies if you want to be the grooviest mom of the day. Be sure to play good music and laugh a lot. You should also make a point of getting photographs of all party guests in their works of art, a pair of jeans, and bare feet. It will be a cool memory and a lot of fun. This is a party that is cool to have in almost any season (minus the pool in winter in most locations of course) and any location. Be careful though as you are working with dye. You want to make sure that the area you are working in is well ventilated and that you protect your flooring and any furniture in the area (clear plastic drop clothes work wonders for protecting floors and furniture from dye and paint). This is the type of party that is not only a great deal of fun for you as the parent but also for all the kids that are invited. Everyone gets to take a little something cool home with them and they get to work with their hands and imaginations to create something special that is all their own. As far as parties go, this is one of the coolest to have, especially for those hard to impress and please teenagers that seem to take over our beautiful little babies after about 13 years though it is suitable for younger kids as well. A Pirate of a Birthday Party Pirates have for a very long time been a source of great fascination for children. This is why a pirate themed birthday party can be one of the most interesting and entertaining party ideas on the planet if you are willing to pay careful time and attention to the planning process. There are things you will need, of course, in order to pull the pirate's party off without a hitch and the most important is a lot of patience and the ability to organize well, plan for contingencies, and be flexible when the big event finally arrives. If you can do all these things with style and grace then a pirate's life really may be for ye. Set the stage with the invitations. A great idea to use for the invites is a pirate's map. Let "X" mark the spot, give the date and time and remind everyone to dress in their pirate's best (make a costume contest a part of the festivities). This lets everyone know the theme ahead of time as well as the fact that they should show up dressed for the occasion. I suggest making a cute rhyme in a pirate's voice to go along with the invitation. Something like Ho ho hum and a bottle of rum Our good lad "name" turns nine So come ye to the Weatherly's And have a mighty fine time. For decorations you will want to make the party room or the exterior of the house, wherever you are actually having the party look as much like a pirate's ship as possible. It really is best if this sort of party can be had outdoors in order to provide great places for burying treasure and hiding stuff. If that isn't possible however, you'll just have to get creative inside the home. Party games for a good pirate party are almost limitless. You can begin by handing a clue and explaining that there is a treasure map that has been divided into four pieces. The first clue will take you to the first piece, which will then have another clue that will lead you to the next piece until you find all four pieces. This buys a little time for getting things ready for snacks, cake, ice cream or other adventures that may occur later and gives the kids an objective. Once they have all the pieces you can tell the story of the lost treasure and then allow the kids to go on a massive hunt for the treasure. You could of course have teams with two different treasure chests if you want to make it a competition or race though both teams will win their treasure in the end. You could also, for younger kids, have a nice rousing game of pin the peg - leg on the pirate or a game of walking the plank if you have a swimming pool and are certain everyone can swim (though swim trunks are highly encouraged for this rather than pirate's costumes) and there is an adult waiting at the bottom just in case. Whether or not it's a pirate's life for you, chances are quite good that throwing an excellent pirate themed birthday bash will make you the mom of your little one's dreams -- at least for a day and will give the neighborhood and, of course, all your guests something to talk about until the next great event takes place. A Night at the Drive In Birthday Party Birthdays are a very special time indeed. One party theme that works well with people of almost all ages is the idea of a movie night. Whether you want to make your movie a drive in movie or you prefer the modern conveniences of air conditioning in the summer or heat in the cooler months then that is understandable you can bring the movie night in. If you'd like something a little new and different then creating a drive in movie is a great way to go and you can invite all the neighbors so that no one chooses the moment your movie begins (hopefully) to start making a ton of noise. The idea of a drive in movie can be expanded somewhat by the movie you select as well. Screens for playing the movies and DVD projectors can also be rented as well as speakers to play the sound. A good place to put the screen is on a garage door if you are a little lost on that particular matter. Once you've decided the movie you can go about elaborating on the theme. If you choose something that is relevant to a specific time period (such as Grease for the 1950's), Bill and Ted's Adventures (for the 1980's), and the like you can have your guests put on their best 50's or 80's finery and come dressed for the occasion. Be sure that in addition to the movies you have music that is appropriate for the theme to play before dark arrives and afterwards. Everyone can have a lot of fun dancing and you can set up a concession stand area with pop, popcorn (an absolute must -- you will be glad to know that you can even rent popcorn poppers for the evening as well), whole dill pickles, nachos and cheese, hot dogs, pizza (if you're feeling really ambitious) and other favorite movie munchies. The idea is to make the evening a fun evening for everyone. Great decoration ideas, in addition to the screen of course would be cardboard cut out cars, movie posters, and Christmas tree lights to create rows for 'parking'. You will want to make sure that there is plenty of seating available. Folding chairs work perfectly for an event such as this. You should also make sure that you have plenty of waste bins available for the garbage that may be accumulated throughout the evening and recycling bins if appropriate (people who do not ordinarily recycle often will if presented with the option to do so). If you take the party indoors you can still accomplish the movie feel but make it feel more like a theater than a drive in. Use Christmas tree lights along the floor and turn off all other lights in the room once the movie begins. You can rent a big screen television for the evening or a projector and a screen. You may also want to consider pushing the furniture back against the wall and leaving the center of the room free for throw pillows that allow guests to sit (or lay) on the floor to watch the movie. Place movie posters throughout the room to set the tone and have the concession stand in another room so that it can be enjoyed and seen without disrupting the movie. A Circus Birthday Bash Worthy of the Big Top If you want a very happy child, considering throwing a birthday party worthy of the big top. A circus theme for a birthday party is sure to thrill and excite your little one and guests alike. Be sure to make the event one worthy of its title though and keep the action lively and moving throughout the event so that little minds with short attention spans do not have an opportunity to move on to more mischievous pursuits. The first thing that is an absolute must for a circus theme is a big top. This may run a little high on the decoration dime but can be done quite nicely without booking a huge back yard with a tent. In fact, you can create a tent in your very own living room if you are so inclined to do so. Helium can be rented quite inexpensively and you can create the illusion of a tent top by filling the ceiling with brightly colored balloons and streamers to match. In addition to this you can have the entrance of the room made to look like tent flaps. Push all the furniture along the wall and allow the little ones to seat themselves on the floor along the "center ring" where all the action will be. Now, you really should make an effort to have some sort of entertainment for the kiddos with an event of this nature. It can be a clown act, magic show, or simply someone making balloon animals for the birthday boy or girl and his or her guests. Face painting is another great activity to include on your list of events and shows and a lot of fun for the little ones. Be sure to include several great games (ring toss, pin the nose on the clown, and corn hole are great games worthy of a circus theme) and a craft activity or two in the running so that the little ones do not sit idly very long. It is always a good idea to keep them occupied and having fun. The big top provides some excellent dining delights that carry over quite well into the birthday party theme. Hot dogs are an excellent lunch for a room filled with excited little ones. Candied apples, popcorn, and peanuts are also a great and fun addition to birthday party food that work well with the circus theme. Be sure to enlist serious muscle for the clean up when all is said and done. Goody bags can be a lot of fun for this particular event by using popcorn bags for the bag and filling them with circus animals, bubbles, glow bracelets, circus themed stickers, and other nifty little items. Oriental trading and local party stores might prove to be an excellent resource for goody bag gifts. Don't forget to include a photo frame with a photo of each child with his or her face painted or balloon animal as a keepsake. The main thing to remember when planning a party worthy of the big top moniker is that the most important thing is that everyone has a good time. Don't sweat the small details so much that you aren't able to enjoy the event. Other great ideas to make this an even bigger event include things such as renting a moon walk for kids to jump and play in, renting a cotton candy maker, and having a real popcorn popper rather than relying on microwave popcorn. There's something about the smell that just makes it feel like a circus. Another thing you need to do when planning a big top or circus themed birthday party is plan for contingencies, such as rain if the party was to be held outside. The show must go on whether it is storming or whether the sun is shining brightly so be sure to have a back up plans in case things go awry. A Casino Night to Remember Birthday Party Life is a gamble. What better way to celebrate that gamble than by rolling the dice or playing cards all night? A great casino night is definitely a lot of fun to be had by all. You can choose. Of course you will not be able to use real money for this but can allow each guest their own set of chips or monopoly money to play with for the evening and have fun prizes for the winners and funny parting gifts for those who do not fare so well. The important thing is that you are celebrating the great gamble that life really is in the perfect style for doing so. Whether you go for a grand James Bond Style Casino event complete with tuxedos and a full and flowing bar or go for a more tropical sort of casual casino theme it is important that the music and drinks flow freely and that everyone has the opportunity to have a great time. Great decorations for your casino night will differ according to the style of casino you are attempting to incorporate. Needless to say gaming tables, a roulette wheel, and lots of dice are sure to please your guests as great party decor. Otherwise go with the sub theme of your party. Be sure to let your guests know if there is a dress code for the evening when sending out invitations. You may purchase your invitations online quite easily or print your own. Again you will want to go with the method that works best with the theme of the Casino birthday party you are throwing. If it's an over the hill sort of birthday party you might want to make the invitations humorous with some sort of reference to the fact that lighting the candles on the cake may be a gamble in and of itself. Remember to let your invitations begin the party theme and work from there to build things up. On the big night you can raid your local party supply store or an online party supply shop for all sorts of gambling related decorations. From fuzzy dice to oversized cardboard cards and hundreds of things in between you can go as elegant as you'd like with your casino night birthday party or go for some of the more 'party' themed casino settings that you will find as well. You are only limited by your imagination and personal tastes when it comes to properly decorating for your casino birthday party. With that in mind, make the decorations as fun or as elegant as you can stand. As for the food, what sort of self respecting casino wouldn't have a grand buffet prepared. Display your food buffet style and if possible have a catering staff circulating with drinks throughout the room. For your casino night birthday party finger foods are the best. Shrimp cocktail, crab puffs, petit fours, cocktail sausages, meatballs, sausage rolls, pigs in blankets, dips with appropriate bread and crackers, finger sandwiches, and any other great finger food you can think of. Another great addition to your buffet table would be a chocolate fountain with plenty of marshmallows, pretzels, and fruits to cover. You will want to be sure to have appropriate casino sound effects. While it isn't possible to have a wall full of slot machines, at least not in my neck of the woods, you can get the slot machine sound effect for a more realistic feeling in your casino or you could skip the slots and keep this a table games only section with great music overhead. The choice is yours and the sky is the limit. Be sure to take plenty of photographs in order to create a scrapbook of the grand event. Not only will this help preserve your own memories of the evening but it also makes a great gift for the guests who have shared moments in your life and make the gamble worthwhile. A Birthday Party at the Scene of the Crime Television shows such as CSI (and the subsequent CSI Miami and CSI New York), NCIS, and Cold Case Files have made crime scenes and crime investigations the new murder mystery parties. They are a great deal of fun when properly planned and well executed but leave a lot of room for failure if poorly planned or inflexible. If you are considering a party such as this, a great party for teens and adults alike be sure that you either have an actual mystery to solve as the evening progresses or that you simply use the theme as a backdrop. There is no real right or wrong way to do a birthday party but if you want to throw the party that everyone will be talking about you'll need to create a crime for the scene you're investigating and leave clues all around to help with the investigation. Decorating your crime scene party can be a lot of fun with crime scene tape and chalk outlines on the floor. Be sure to make them realistic in size by having someone actually lay down for you to draw the outline. You can leave fake footprints, fingerprints, and clue cards throughout the room (not too well hidden unless you want people snooping). You can even enlist plenty of help when leaving the clues and decorating because of the novelty of this sort of party. You do not have to limit the festivities to one room and you can, if you are feeling truly adventurous, have a different case going on in different rooms and have the kids draw numbers for teams and race to solve the crime first. You might also do well to set up a lab, complete with microscope and tables dedicated to sorting out the evidence and make notes for the shocking conclusion of the crimes in question. Of course you will want to make the crimes simple and solvable by leaving clues that the kids will have no trouble finding or deciphering without making it too easy. Use your favorite episode for inspiration if you must and throw in a red herring or two to keep things fun. Young and old alike, the kids will have a good time arguing over the clues and trying to determine who really committed the crimes (and of course making up their assumptions and stories as to why the crimes occurred in the first place). For food you can have an actual CSI cake or go with cookies that are shaped like footprints or thumb print cookies for an excellent play on words. Of course by the time kids are old enough to enjoy a party such as this they probably would be happy with good food rather than themed food and pizza, sloppy Joes, finger foods, chips and dips, and cookies and cake will make an excellent food addition to the party without needing to fit in with any one theme. Be sure to have plenty of pop and bottled water on hand though because crime solving is thirsty work. In real life it is best to leave the jobs of solving crimes up to the men and women who were trained to do so. In the world of birthday parties however, crime solving and crime scene investigating reign supreme as the next great thing in birthday party ideas.
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