Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Children's Party Planning Guide

When planning parties for little ones I often encounter parents that are at a loss as to where they should start. Some parents simply lack time to properly organize without becoming totally frazzled.  My advice for parents is to do what makes party planning the least stressful and the most fun for your family, especially the birthday child. Since 2009 I have had the priveledge of helping countless families plan their child's birthday celebration.   From the very simple play party to the most extravagant birthday blowout,  my staff and I have helped to create the "par-tay" magic! As my favorite shirt says: "I LOVE Parties!  Nothing makes me happier than helping a parent create a day that they or their child will not forget.  Whether you are planning a birthday party at Amaya Papaya Play Lounge or another venue let me share my advice on planning the best celebration of your child's birth.

Who...        
            Who are you planning to invite? Maybe you want to have a close family-only event, or maybe you want to invite 25 children (and their adults) to the party. If your child has a BFF, make sure you include them. Sending invitations out four to six weeks out usually ensures a good turnout to your party.
What…
            What is your budget? Decide on a budget for your party. If you are looking to spend $100 or $1,000, you can create a memorable party for your little one. If you are looking at a venue to host your party, calculate the components of the party package within your budget. For example, at Amaya Papaya, some of our party packages include invitations, paper products and balloons, so you could deduct these items off. 
           
 What are you going to do? Themed parties can be so much fun! If your child has a favorite character, movie, or television show, you can use this to determine the theme. Discover your creative side to develop a theme, or you can peruse sites, such as Pinterest, to give your creative side a kick-start! In addition to a theme, you might want to add entertainment. Balloon artists, face painters, bounce houses, enrichment,  characters and a DJ might be fun to add to a party. Make sure you contact your entertainment at least 6 weeks out from your event; they might require a deposit. Certain venues, like Amaya Papaya, are the entertainment. If your budget is tight, put your extra money toward your food and drink. Your guests will enjoy your party better.


When…
            When will you start your party? One decision is weekday vs. weekend. On a weekend, more of your scheduled guests will be able to attend. For older children, a weekday party might be preferred; it stays clear of Saturday sports, rehearsals, etc. The time of day matters as well. If you plan to serve a meal, have your party during lunch or dinner times. If you are not planning to serve a meal, then plan your party between traditional meal times. 





Where…
            Where do you want to hold your party? Home parties can be less expensive and you are not confided to time restraints. Venues, like Amaya Papaya, can be fun, exciting, and they make your job a lot easier, especially the cleanup.  Local parks can be a fun place for a party. Make sure you contact the local Parks and Recreation Department to secure the location. When choosing to host your party at any venue, reserve your spot as early as possible to ensure you are able to get your desired time and location.


Why…
            Why are you hosting a party? Parties are supposed to be fun, so don’t forget the fun items such as: goodie bags for each guest, party games like a piƱata or pin the tail on the donkey, and a fun playlist that gets the party going. Throughout the entire process, don’t lose sight of the reason you are hosting a party: to celebrate the birth of your child with family and friends. Make sure you take plenty of pictures to remember your fun!


I hope this advice has been helpful and that it makes your party planning stress free. This year for my daughter's 11th birthday she opted to have a party in our home in our backyard after having countless parties at Amaya Papaya over the years.  My husband and I planned every activity yet left room for alterations in the schedule. It was a fabulous day for her and her guest. My husband and I left the party happy also.