My daughter surprised me this year when she asked for a Disneyland themed birthday party. Not a princess party or a Mickey or Minnie Mouse party but a Disneyland themed party. She’s never even been to Disneyland. Maybe that’s why.
I struggled at first trying to formulate in my head how this was going to work. After a bit though ideas started to come together and something clicked. In the end the party turned out great! In fact it’s probably one of my favourite parties that I’ve thrown for my kids so far.
The party kind of snuck up on me so for the invite I needed something quick and Disneyland themed to the max. I found this amazing image of a vintage poster from the opening of Disneyland. In Word I put a text box over the original information and then plugged the party info instead. I then printed these out myself and they were ready to be handed out. They were a bit grainy but really they turned out great!
At Party City I found yellow, light pink and aqua streamers and this set the tone for the party decor. I liked the combo of the colours together so I ran with it. I hung the streamers over the table, yellow, pink, aqua, and repeated this 3 times.
I put a yellow tablecloth on the table, square pink plates and aqua polka dot napkins on each plate and down the centre of the table. I also made two of these Mickey Head centrepieces. You can find the tutorial on the blog Simply Being Abby. I put one at each end of the table. I stuffed some styrofoam into these flower pots that I already had and then added some pink Easter crinkle paper. They were sort of a last minute addition as I don’t usually do centrepieces but I loved them!!! They turned out so cute!
In order to add a bit more “character” to the tables I made some paper sleeves for these fun mini milk bottle glasses that I already had. I put one at each place setting and each glass had a different Disney Character on it.
I don’t normally add place cards to the table but because each place setting had a different character I knew there might be fighting over who got what character so I decided to iliminate this possible problem by using place cards and they worked great! I downloaded the Disneyland font on Dafont to add some extra fun!
I also made Mickey Mouse head shaped Oreo cookies and put one at each place setting in the centre of the plates. You can find the tutorial on how to make these cookies on the blog, Some Day I’ll Learn.
Yellow, pink and aqua paper straws added the final touch to the tables!
I usually get the birthday kid to sit at the head of the table so I made this fun Mickey Mouse head banner to hang across the wall just over the chair at the head of the table. It’s basically black paper plates in 2 different sizes. I found the smaller plates were still a bit too big for the right proportions though so using an utility knife I cut out the centre of the smaller plates. This size worked much better for the ears. I taped the plates together and then punched holes into the ears so I could hang them with string. In Word I made these large letters to spell out Abby and I just cut them out and taped them to the plates.
One of my favourite decorations were the Mickey Head balloons that I found at Bargain Balloons. They’re just like the ones at Disneyland and I love them! The balloons are 15″ so I didn’t want to bother with helium as I figured it would take a lot to fill up each balloon. Instead I found these balloon sticks at a dollar store. I blew up the balloons with my own lungs, attached the sticks and then put 2 – 3 balloons in vases that I filled up with rice. This worked great. The rice held the balloons up and I could place the vases anywhere in the house. I had some at the front door, on the floor in the living room, on some side tables and in the windows of our dining room as you can see in the picture below. The balloons were a bit of an investment but I loved how they looked. It was totally worth the money and I also put a balloon into each treat bag for the kids to take home.
This was one of the trickiests parts of the birthday party but also one of the funnest. When you host a birthday party in your home you need to come up with activities. I decided early on I wanted to do a bit of a treasure hunt with the kids that would require them to go to the different lands of Disneyland. I figured I’d do 5 “lands” and the kids could do an activity at each one. I made it like a treasure hunt with different clues in each land that would then take them to the next one.
In each land as the kids did the activities they were going to win a small price so I made up the treat bags to look like Souvenir Bags. The kids could take the bags around to each land as we visited them and put their prize/souvenir into their bags. The kids loved this!
Our activities included…
Bingo – I made up a basic bingo card (click here to download the template), I then found clipart from the internet and inserted a different character into each square. I then printed out the card, moved around a few characters and printed the card out again and just repeat this till I had as many completed bingo cards as I need. With the template above you can print out a few and then reinsert the ones you’ve printed into the computer and print out a few more on the opposite side of the page. That way you get 2 to a page. The kids loved this game and it’s great because it’s something they can all do at once. We went for first line first and then for a blackout so the game lasted a bit longer.
The Donald Waddle – I broke the kids up into 2 groups and had them line up in 2 rows one after another. The two kids at the front of the line had to put balloons between their legs and waddle in a straight line to finish line and back. When they returned back to the line the next kid grabbed the balloon and waddled to the finish line and back. We repeated this like a relay and the team that got all their members back to the line first won. Honestly this was the least popular game. The kids didn’t really get it and found waddling with the balloons really hard, although this was kind of the point!
Pin the Ears on Minnie – I made a giant circle in Word and kept moving it around on the page printing it each time. I then cut out the different shapes and taped them all together on a piece of poster paper to make one giant circle. I then made a little pink bow and taped that on top of the circle. For the ears we used big black paper plates. I put painters tape on the back and two kids at a time (each with one ear) took turns trying to attach the ears to the giant circle to make Minnie’s ears. We used scarves to blind fold them and we spun them a couple of times first which they thought was pretty funny.
Musical Plates – I bought some paper Mickey and Minnie plates and I threw them around on the floor and we basically played musical chairs. I played Disney songs on our tablet, the kids wandered around and when the music stopped they had to be standing on a plate to be safe. If you weren’t on a plate, you were out. I did it so that there were 2 teams because the Mickey Plates were blue and the Minnie plates were pink so each time the music stopped 2 kids were out. By the end there was only one person left for the Mickey team and one person left for the Minnie team. I played the song one last time and it was like a competition to see which team won. The kids who were already out really liked this because they could cheer for their team mate.
Hidden Mickeys – This was the most popular activity by far! In Disneyland there are hidden Mickey’s all over the park. I printed off a bunch of black Mickey heads (9 to a page) and pink Minnie heads. I then had my family go all over the house and stick the heads to the walls and furniture (we used painters tape so it would come off easily and not wreck any walls). I broke the kids up into two teams. One team had to find the Mickey’s and one team had to find the Minnies. We gave the kids roughly 30 seconds to go find as many Mickey and Minnie heads as possible. The team to collect the most heads won!
After the activities were over we headed to the dining room for some food. While the kids were eating we played some music from Disney movies. The kids loved this and many of them were signing along to the different songs.
My daughter doesn’t really like cake so she requested an ice cream cake instead. I had a hard time deciding if I wanted DQ to put a picture on the cake for me but in the end I just ordered a plain white cake. I had found a package of Disney characters so I decided to add these onto the cake and figured a plain white cake would be a good background for them. I purchases some bubblegum flavoured cake decorations at the grocery store and added them to the cake for a bit of colour. I think she liked it!
At the end of the party the kids got to take their souvenir bags home which included all their prizes, a Mickey head balloon and a Mickey Head sugar cookie that I made. I decorated them with white icing and chocolate sprinkles. You can see the video here.
This really was one of my favourite parties. It was so colourful and fun! Now I want to go to Disneyland!