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13 Birthday Party Theme Ideas That Kids Will Love

May 12, 2023 6 min read

Birthday parties are one of the most exciting times for kids. It's a day of fun, games, and lots of cake! But with so many parties happening every year, it can be challenging to come up with unique and entertaining ideas. 

Enter: Fun party themes.

A themed party is a great way to make your little one's special day even more memorable. Need some inspo? We've got you covered. Whether you're throwing a first birthday party or 12th, here are 13 kid-approved party themes that'll turn an ordinary birthday into an extraordinary experience.

1. Pirate Theme

Turn your backyard into a treasure island with a pirate-themed birthday party for kids. Incorporate Jolly Roger flags, treasure maps, and more. Centerpieces could be mini treasure chests full of chocolate coins that tie into the party decorations. 

Provide the pint-sized party pirates with pirate hats and eye patches to set the scene. Create treasure hunts, walk the plank, and also make sure to have pirate-themed snacks such as fish sticks and goldfish crackers. For the drinks, think sea-blue lemonade. 

2. Carnival Theme

Bring the carnival to town with a festive birthday party. Hang colorful flags and paper lanterns from the ceiling and transform your backyard into a carnival playground. Arrange carnival games such as ring toss, bean bag toss, and balloon darts.

Give the guests something to munch on with traditional carnival food such as popcorn, hot dogs, nachos, and cotton candy. For a twist on the classic carnival theme, get creative with vintage-inspired games such as Pin the Tail on the Donkey and a Dunk Tank. Finish off with a funnel cake station and, of course, carnival-themed cupcakes.

3. Unicorn Theme

Is your birthday kiddo crazy about all things unicorn? Transform their birthday party into a magical, mystical place with a unicorn-themed bash! Hang stars, unicorns, and clouds from the ceiling and create a beautiful rainbow backdrop.

Divide your party into different “stations” and let the little ones play unicorn-themed games such as “Pin the Horn on the Unicorn.” For snacks, think fairy bread, cupcakes with fondant stars and rainbows, and unicorn-shaped cookies. End the day with unicorn-inspired cake pops and ice cream cones. Make your decor function with this oh-so-cute Unicorn Float and the Rainbow Lounger

4. Space Theme

Launch your child’s birthday party into outer space with a galactic theme. Decorate the walls to look like stars, and get creative with glow-in-the-dark paint, colorful streamers, and a star-covered ceiling. Transform your living room into an observatory for the young astronauts to explore.

Serve up some “space snacks,” such as moon pies, star-shaped sandwiches, and alien cupcakes. Get the party guests star-stunned with a rocket launch, moon sand play, and an astronaut dress-up competition.

Or better yet, head outside for some Backyard Rocketship Sprinkler fun! Light up the night sky with sparklers and send your guests home with their very own astronaut helmets.

5. Rainbow Theme

Get creative with streamers and balloons in all shades of the rainbow. Hang rainbow-colored letter banners and cutout clouds to create a colorful backdrop. For a challenge unlike any other, hide a few pots of gold around the party venue and give an awesome prize to the lucky finders. 

For snacks, serve up rainbow-inspired treats such as rainbow popcorn, fruit Loops, and Skittles. Bake a beautiful Funfetti cake or cupcakes and cookies with sprinkles and colorful fondant decorations. And, of course, no rainbow party is complete without an Inflatable Cooler: Rainbow Cloud Floating Drink Station

6. Tea Party/Garden Party

For your little princess's birthday, a tea party is a perfect birthday party theme idea. Set up the backyard with small tables draped in pink and white tablecloths, pretty teacups, saucers, and tiered stands holding finger sandwiches and pastries. 

Fancy dress costumes like hats and gloves or even special princess dresses for your little ones can complete the perfect theme. For tea (and garden parties), serve up delicious varieties of herbal and fruit teas with honey and lemon slices on your very own Floating Bar Cabana

7. Winter Wonderland

Bring the winter season indoors with a frosty winter wonderland-themed birthday party. Decorate the room with white and silver streamers to create a snow-filled atmosphere. Organize an indoor snowball fight area and hang plenty of snowflakes, icicles, and other winter-inspired decorations around the house. Encourage everyone to dress to the winter theme!

Stock up with plenty of warm treats such as hot cocoa, snowman-shaped cookies, and candy canes. For party favors, send everyone home with a mini snow globe or a winter-inspired coloring book. 

Tip: Take your next party up a notch by turning it into a sleepover. Pull out the Kids’ Sleepover Beds, with the flocked material and iconic, nostalgic motifs; these will have images of sugarplums dancing in their heads all year long. 

8. Superhero Celebration

Calling all superheroes: Get your little one and their friends ready for a day of excitement with a superhero-themed birthday party. Transform the birthday soiree into a crime-fighting mission with superhero decorations, such as balloons of their favorite characters and cardboard cutouts of Batman, Spiderman, and Wonder Woman.

Play superhero-inspired games such as “Pin the Cape on Superman.” Serve up some super snacks such as superhero-shaped sandwiches, pizza slices in the shape of lightning bolts, and cookies cut into star shapes. Make sure to have a DIY cape station for the little superheroes to take home as a party favor.

9. Pool Party Theme

Cool off with a pool party. Set up water guns, squirt guns, and pool noodles to keep the kids entertained. For decorations, hang beach balls and inflatable floats from the ceiling for a true summertime feel. You can also arrange a poolside relaxation station with beach towels, hammocks, a kiddie pool, and sunglasses.

Make sure to have plenty of beach snacks such as watermelon, popsicles, and chips and salsa. Play pool party games such as 'Marco Polo' or 'King of the Pool.' Finish up with a sweet treat like ice cream cones and ice pops. Send the pool-goers home with a beach towel or flip-flops as a party favor.

Pro Tip: Take the pool party to the next level with plenty of fun floats — from cool tubes to pink swans, we have something for everyone. 

10. Halloween 

Birthday celebrations don’t need to be 100% birthdays. Bring in your love of other holidays, in everything from St. Patrick’s Day to Halloween. You don’t have to be born on October 31st to celebrate the orange and black holiday. You have our permission and encouragement to make June into the spooky season. 

Transform your home into a haunted castle with cobwebs, spiderwebs, and creepy decorations. Set up a graveyard in the backyard for some outdoor fun and get creative with party games such as “Mummy Wrap,” where you try to turn yourself into a mummy with toilet paper. Set up a karaoke station and see how many times you can listen to “Monster Mash” or other Halloween-centric tunes. 

Put together a spooky table full of ghoulish snacks such as witch-shaped sandwiches, bat-shaped pretzels, and monster cupcakes. Send your guests home with goodie bags filled with treats such as candy and gummy worms.

11. Hawaiian Luau

Transform your backyard into a sweet oasis with a Hawaiian-inspired birthday party. Hang bright, colorful decorations such as blow-up palm trees and leis to create a tropical atmosphere. Set up limbo sticks and hula hoops, or organize a Hawaiian-themed scavenger hunt.

Feed the little ones luau-inspired treats such as pineapple skewers, spam musubi, and coconut shrimp. Get creative with a DIY station for leis and flower crowns. Top it off with a tropical-inspired cake or cupcakes and tiki torches for the perfect luau party. Send your guests home with a unique keepsake, such as a mini surfboard, a hula hoop, Clear Pink Glitter Flamingo

12. Disney Theme

Bring the magic of Disney to your kid's birthday party. Create a storybook setting by decorating the walls with their favorite Disney characters. Play Disney-inspired music to get the guests in a party mood.

You could organize food stations with cupcakes, popcorn, and candy floss. Serve up Disney-inspired drinks that play off the famous pineapple Dole Whip and household characters. 

For games, play Disney-theme bingo or have a balloon pop contest. End the day with a large Disney character cake, and let your kid's dreams come true.

13. Red Carpet Party

For a glam party idea unlike any other, bring the red carpet to your home. This can be as simple as a movie night get-together or a full-fledged Oscars party for older kids. You can play classics from the James Bond or Harry Potter franchise or show that year’s (age-appropriate) nominated films. To make this the perfect party, arrange a popcorn station and queue up a playlist of movie hits (John Williams, anyone?). 

A Final Word on the Best Party Themes

Choosing the right birthday party theme for your kid ensures that they will remember it forever. With an array of themes to choose from, you can get creative with the decorations, snacks, and games to make their day even more special. 

When in doubt during your party planning process, remember that a little imagination goes a long way — use these 13 birthday party theme ideas to awaken your imagination, have a blast, and create a memorable party that your family will love!

Sources:

The Jolly Roger & Other Pirate Flags | World History Encyclopedia

Celebrate Disneyland's 65th Anniversary With These Disney-inspired Cocktails | Travel + Leisure

15 Over-the-Top Carnival and Fair Foods You Can Make at Home | Allrecipes

Monster Chocolate Cupcakes for Halloween Recipe | Allrecipes

8 Easy Summer Birthday Party Ideas for Kids | Parents

Spam Musubi Recipe | NYT Cooking


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