5 Essentials for a Successful Birthday Party at a Park
Blog - April 8, 2020

Birthday party outside with tables, chairs, bounce house.

There are affiliate links in this post. Thank you to LGO Bakery for providing the amazing cakes and PartyHostHelpers for providing their service.

My son was turning 6 years-old and having a Birthday Party with his friends at the park was really important to him this year. He’s finally building relationships and wanted to have all his new friends celebrate with him.

Arizona weather is perfect for a party at a park! We had a LEGO Themed party when we lived in Florida and a TMNT party, both at the park which that turned out well. This year he wanted a Lego Ninjago theme party, then a Unicorn theme party for the girls, and then he added a Sonic the Hedgehog theme to the party. I, being a perfectionist, really wanted to do one theme but I decided to let him have it all. I figured it would be a good challenge to try to make it cohesive, and after-all, it is what HE wanted.

Figuring out three themes would be interesting but ended up being super easy with all the help I got.

Looking back, I am so grateful that we had this party as it was the last gathering we had before the Covid-19 outbreak. I could not foresee this and now he won’t see those friends for the rest of the school year since the school has been cancelled in Arizona.

He truly had the memories he deserved and the party was a hit! I would definitely recommend a park party, especially during March. The weather here in Phoenix is beautiful.

There are a few must haves when throwing a park party for children, like having a bounce house and extra tables, decorations and cake.

So, here are my 5 essentials for a successful birthday party at a park!

party host helper putting plates at a party table with a child.

Party Host Helpers

For years I’ve done everything myself. I did it myself because it never really occurred to me that there could be another way. Every time I would have a party for one of the kids, I would say “it’s the last one, I’m done”. It’s just so much work. But the next birthday comes along and here I am again planning, setting up, hosting, running around like a chicken with no head… Until I was introduced to Party Host Helpers in Phoenix. I never considered hiring party staff because I thought I should do it all; greet the guests, set up food and party decorations, clean up and cut the cake. For some reason I thought it was “my duty as a mother”. What I didn’t realize is that taking on too many hats meant that I wasn’t able to really enjoy the party and make memories. This year, having a party host really changed the dynamics of the party. I was really excited at the thought of having to do less during the party, but the real benefit was to be able to truly enjoy the celebration.

sonic cake and party it by LGO bakery

Party Kit + Birthday Cake

Find a place that can set you up with the cake and a party kit. We always get our cake from LGO Bake Shop. They have the most delicious, best quality cakes I have ever tasted. This time we got two cakes, one for the parents and one for the kids. They did an excellent job of decorating the cakes with the Sonic the Hedgehog theme.

A lot of people overlook the cake and the party favors. They tell you: “Just get a cake from Costco, they taste great”. And they’re not wrong, those cakes do taste alright, but nothing compares to a custom cake artfully prepared by a real bakery like LGO Bake Shop. It’s not only the adults that see the difference. They kids do too. Not only in the taste, but in the overall experience as well. Having a “real” cake will make the celebration just a little bit more special for the kids.

Goody Bags

Goody Bags can be a real source of stress for some parents. What to put, how much of it, and how much to spend can quickly become overwhelming. This is why I turned to Oriental Trading to get the supplies for the party’s Goody Bags. Why? Because they have virtually everything you could possibly think of putting into a goody bag, and it is super affordable, so you won’t break the bank, even if you have to make 50 goody bags.

Here is a list of what we used for the party. The kids LOVED the goody boxes.

Get a Piñata

The Piñata is definitely a must-have for a kids birthday party. It’s a great activity to involve everyone, it’s exciting, and there is candy in it!!! It was a big success.

dragon pinata hanging from a tree with child blindfolded about to hit it.

To be on the safe side, I got two Piñatas, one Ninja Warrior Pinata and one dragon Pinata because we had 25 kids invited and I didn’t want to end up short on candy. We ended up using just one and it was clearly overkill having two, but you can never be too prepared…

bounce house

Bounce House & Tables

The Bounce House is always the highlight of any party. It doesn’t matter if you have an entire menagerie brought in by Joe Exotic, the Tiger King, the Bounce House will always win! Sine you are having your party at a park, make sure that the park you are hosting your party at does not restrict which party rental companies can do business at the park. In our case, the city of Scottsdale had restriction so we had to choose from one of their approved vendors.

Many bounce house companies have their different designs for you to choose from on their website and things can get pretty confusing pretty quickly. Make sure you pay attention to the size, the feature (if any), and most importantly the extras. For instance, some companies will charge separate for the generator. Since a lot of people have the parties at their home, they do not need a generator, and it makes sense to make it a separate item. And since the rental on a generator alone can be upwards of $100, it’s a good thing to check beforehand.

I, of course, made the mistake of overlooking the generator. But thankfully, Az Jolly Jumpers caught it and let me know. They also delivered and set up chairs and tables. I highly recommend not relying on the park’s tables as having your own tables and chairs that you can move around and position exactly the way you want will give you more flexibility and allow you to react to changes in attendance.

So, even though right now there won’t be any parties at parks going on, I can assure you that equipped with all these essentials, we will definitely be having another one!

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