Carnival/Circus Party Ideas

Welcome to the Big Top! AA guide to throwing the ultimate Carnival themed Birthday Party!
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Oct. 10, 2008 - PRLog -- The Circus has come to Town! What an amazing party idea for both girls and boys of all ages! Indoors or Outdoors, In a rented Hall or your very own Backyard! The ideas are endless so lets get started.
Invitations: A big red ticket stub that reads "ADMIT ONE" to our "Big Top Birthday Party." To make the card use red (yellow) paper cut into a rectangle shape. The ticket should be sized to fit into a small envelope. Use a round 1" paper punch at each corner to give it the rounded detail. Practise a bit on scrap paper first! On the backside of the ticket write out the party details like time, place and date. Seal the Invitation with a circus themed sticker and deliver.
 Decorations: Balloons, balloons & more balloons! You cannot have too many red, yellow and blue helium filled balloons. They are also a great take home gift for the guests. Decorate your ceiling with red & white streamers to give it that Big Top tent feel. Tape alternating red & white streamers from a center point of your room and drape all the way across the ceiling to the corner of the wall. You can use balloons to cover any tape marks that are showing. Make 2 carnival booths with a large refrigerator box cut in half. Use 3 sides of the box and cut out a service window. Paint your booth with brightly coloured stripes or circles and place upon sturdy table. If the party is outdoors, be sure to pitch a carnival tent for shade on a hot day. A regular dining tent will do - just decorate it as you would indoors. Hang dozens of feet of multi coloured plastic pennant banners all around party area. Get out the poster paint and make a huge "Welcome to the Carnival" poster. Cover all tables with red, yellow and blue tablecovers. Gather up all your child's (friends, families) stuffed animals and place around space for both play and decoration.
 Games: Here are my top five pics for carnival party games. (1) Duck Pond - Use a permanent marker to write the numbers 1,2,3 on the underside of several small rubber ducks. Float the ducks in a large container or small kiddie pool. Each child picks a duck and receives a prize from the box matching their number. The duck is placed back in the water. (2) Mouse Holes - Using a large cardboard box cut 3 "mouse holes" onto the bottom edge of box. The holes should be 3 sizes-small, medium and large. Mark the smallest hole with a #3, the medium whole with a #2 and the largest whole with a #1. Use a golf club or simply roll the golf balls in attempt to get them through the holes. Each player receives 3 chances and receives a prize that corresponds with best hole they made. (3) Lollipop Tree - Using a large Styrofoam ball and several lollipops. With 3 coloured markers, place a coloured dot on the end of each lollipop stick and insert into the Styrofoam. The 3 colours will correspond with the 3 numbers. For example, red is 1, blue is 2 and yellow is 3. Each guest receives the lollipop plus the prize that corresponds with the number. (4) Bucket Toss - You need 3 buckets decorated with colourful wrapping paper and placed at 3 distances about a foot apart. Mark the closest bucket with a #1, the second with a #2 and the farthest with a #3. You can use 3 balls, pennies or bean bags. Each player receives 3 chances and receives a prize that corresponds with the farthest bucket shot made. (5) Balloon Darts - Use a thick piece of cardboard attached to a piece of plywood. Blow up small balloons in 3 separate colours and thumbtack them into the cardboard. Using a black marker write numbers from 1 to 3 on the balloons. For example, red is 1, blue is 2 and yellow is 3. Attach at least 20 balloons to the board to make sure everyone can pop at least one. It might be best to have a few extra balloons ready to go just in case the board gets low. Each player gets 3 darts to pop balloons. Give younger guests a push pin and help them pop a balloon of their choice if safety is an issue. A lot of fun! Each game has a point system. You can either place the 3 prize boxes (#1, #2, #3) in a central area where the kids can immediately collect their prize or hand out numbered tickets and they can collect their prizes all at once when the have completed all the games. Box 1 should include the smallest (inexpensive) prizes, box#2 the medium prizes and the #3 box should contain the larger prizes as they are the hardest to achieve. Every child should get at least a small prize (#1) for playing each game. Make sure each child plays every game 1 time before "closing the midway." The kids can of course still play the games, but the prize and ticket portion is over. Some other popular games are Pop Bottle Ring Toss and Bottle Bowling.
 Activities: Face Painting - Kids love to have their faces painted! Enlist some extra hands to help out at the face painting table. You can paint simple things like big red clown noses, big curly mustaches like lion tamers, ruby red cheeks like female trapeze artists or whiskers like the ferocious lions & tigers. It wouldn't be a carnival without a clown walking around for entertainment! Get family and friends involved to help out - I'm sure someone owes you favor! A good investment for the party is to rent one of those big jumpy inflatables like a Moonwalk. The inflatables are always a huge hit with guests. A neat idea is to gather up a bunch of kooky clothes, big sunglasses, funny hats and colourful clown wigs into a big dress up box beside a photo booth. Have each child dress up in a crazy clown outfit and take their picture with a digital camera. The pictures are great in a thank you note! Lastly, you must have a Balloon Animal table. They are quite easy to master if you learn only 2 or 3 designs. Balloon animal kits and instructions can be purchased everywhere and are quite inexpensive. Sounds like a good job for Dad!
 Loot Bags & Favors: Use all the prizes the kids won throughout the day as their party favors. When the kids arrive or start playing the games, make sure to give them a small gift bag so they may collect their prizes as they go. Having their names on the bags would be a good idea! Some ideas for prizes are noisemakers, blowouts, stickers, tattoos, bubbles, pinwheels, clown noses, lollipops, foam airplanes, rubber balls and any little trinkets that can be bought in bulk.
 Menu: Carnival Food of course! Here are some delicious old fashioned favourites - Hot Dogs, Corn Dogs (Pogo's), Cotton Candy, Caramel Apples(apple slices with caramel dip) & Sno-Cones. Have small bags of animal crackers and popcorn ready in your concession stand for pre lunch snacking. The guests will be building up quite an appetite with all those games and activities! For a real carnival feel, you can rent popcorn machines, cotton candy machines and sno-cone makers from your local rental supply store. If not, no worries, items like cotton candy & even caramel apples can be purchase pre-made. No go and plan the Biggest & Best party ever! - party supplies canada - more ideas!
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