COMPLETE PARTY PACKAGES PLUS FREE IDEAS for GAMES AND SO MUCH MORE!     

Balloons and Birthdays are practically synonymous, and FUN for everyone!

CheckMarkCosting just pennies apiece, using these party ideas will really help you to stay within your budget

CheckMarkEverybody thinks of balloons for decorations, but we've got ideas here for you for fun games, crafts, favors, even balloon themed food ideas.

You can create an entire party around the balloon theme using the ideas you'll find here!

If picking a party theme that everyone can agree on is proving to be difficult, balloons just might be the answer

Or just use these ideas to add to the fun of your already chosen party theme.

From preschool age kids to elementary school aged kids, we've got game ideas here that will keep them laughing, having fun and staying focused on your planned activities rather than wandering off causing trouble.

Invitations:

Balloon Invitation

It's a balloon party, so forget the paper and use balloons for your invitations. Get 2 or 3 helium filled ones for each invitee, your curly ribbon for the strings, and your Sharpie to write the invitation information right on the balloons. Or, tie the strings together and attach it all to your printed out card stock weight invitation- just include a balloon graphic from the web on it. Have fun together hand delivering your invitations. The kids will be all excited about your party the minute they get THIS invitation!

Cupcakes:

Balloon Cupcakes familyfun.go.com gets our thanks for these marvelous balloon cupcakes! Simple as can be with gel food coloring in the store bought vanilla icing and curling ribbon for the strings. Use a large piece of cardboard covered in white butcher paper to 'stage' your creation to look like floating balloons. Click on the picture for the instructions.

Decorations:

Balloon Banner:

Don't pay through the nose for a Happy Birthday Banner at the party store! Make your own with balloons in a mix of pretty colors that works with your other decorating colors. Helium balloons not required- just the paint friendly stick ups. Click on the link above for complete instructions.

Balloon Stairs

Balloon Stairs:

Put those stairs (that everybody sees when they walk in) to work for you. Use colorful or color coordinated helium balloons attached to your take-home party favors as a pretty display. Tape several to the rug at the top of the stairs to build a barrier to the off-limits second floor.

Birthday Throne:

Use a few more colorful helium filled balloons and crepe paper to decorate a high backed chair as a 'throne' for the birthday child at the birthday cake table.

Birthday Lights:

Dig out the tiny white light string from the holidays to add up at the ceiling in your party room. Use paint-friendly tape or stickies. Tie colorful (no need for helium) balloons between the lights.

Crafts:

String Chandeliers:String Chandeliers This is a craft activity for older girls, perfect for the long hours of a sleepover party. Similar to using balloons as the form for a pinata, these are covered with glued string to make beautiful round decorations that could be tranformed into hanging lamps should the children's parents want to do so. If not, these will be very pretty hanging in the girls rooms, or even just sitting on a shelf as a momento of your party. Get full instructions by clicking on the picture.

Animal Balloons

Animal Balloons:

The younger ones can make animal faces, either using a sticker kit you can buy for a reaosnable price (click on the picture) or if a little older, glue on facial features they make from construction paper, markers, googly eyes, feathers, whatever looks like fun to use at the craft store. Make a couple of examples to give the kids models and get them started.

How about Angry Birds Balloons- here's a terrific template for glue-ons so they kids can make their very own Angry Birds! And here's a shout out to thepartyanimal.com for coming up with these.

Yo-Yo's: The kids can make springy yo-yo's using minimally inflated balloons weighted with beans or rice and linked rubber bands a the 'strings'. They'll need some cheap plastic funnels to get the weight inside, and the rubber bands should be fairly substantial, not the super skinny kind. See the picture of these yo-yo's down below at the end of the 'Games' section.

Games:

Balloon Pit: Balloon Pit

Click on the picture for the YouTube video of these pre-schoolers having a ball in this homemade ball pit. Way cheaper and way more sanitary than paying to use a commercial one. You'll see two different games going on here- finding hidden treasure in the pit and a basic free play. Here's another game idea for this: one team in the pit tossing balloons out, one team outside tossing them back in. Controlled chaos!

And the treasure 'balls' you see in the video are pretty ingenious of theartisticmom.com. Bake little plastic toys into a baking soda balls that will get really hard- see the instructions here. Have a container of vinegar (on a tarp or lots of towels) for the kids to 'melt' their balls and find their treasure - all with lots of fizzles and bubbles and fun for the kids.

      Here's some Outdoor Games

Balloon Splash:

Aside from the terrific fun of water ballon fights, have them draw chalk targets on your driveway and then compete to obliterate them with water balloons.

Or, pair team members together with one water balloon between them. Line the pairs up in two big lines, facing each other. The object here is to toss the balloon back and forth, taking a step apart after each toss. When the balloon breaks, that pair is 'out', and the last pair standing wins for their team.

Balloon Snatch:

Tweak this old standby game by adding in some competition and turning it into a relay style race. Have a big pile of 2 different colors of balloons (no helium required) some distance away from your two teams of kids, with a tape "start" line on the ground that they have to stay behind. One child per team will race to get their teams color of balloon and pop it by sitting and bouncing on it. Once broken, they race back to their team and the next one repeats the process.

Blow the balloons up good and tight for the younger kids, less so for older ones as the less blown up they are the harder they are to pop. You can also challenge older kids even more by having them bring the balloon back to their team to break by squishing it between the backs of two team members. Not easy.

Noodle Balloons:

With pool noodles cut in 1/2, a couple of laundry baskets and maybe 20 balloons (regular, not helium), challenge the kids to maneuver the balloons into the laundry baskets with no hands and no feet- just the noodles.

They'll figure out it takes 2 kids and 2 noodles chopstick style to accomplish the task- if they don't give them the hint that they need to cooperate. Next, separate the laundry baskets by a good distance and challenge them to carry the balloons from one basket to another, also just using the noddles. Then, they can try to keep all the balloons up in the air- using just the noddles.

      These games can be played outdoors OR indoors, depending on your space

Knock-Kneed Relay:

Little ones can't manage this one, but give older kids well blown up balloons to carry between their knees down the length of your relay race course and then to pop between their legs before the next team member takes off with his or her balloon.

Back-to-Back Relay:

Little kids CAN manage this one. Instead of trying to break the balloon between their two backs, have them carry the balloon between their backs down your relay race course.

Balloon Snatch:

For older kids, in teams with each team having more balloons in their team color than they can easily hang onto. Each team will try to 'steal' the other team(s) balloons, while protecting their own from getting snatched. Make it clear the kids are to only touch balloons- not kids (to keep it from getting too rough).

Balloon Kick:

Younger and older will enjoy this one. Have about 2 balloons per child, each with a few grins of rice or beans inside to giving them some weight. Sit the kids in a big circle, or two circles if you've got a big crowd. Toss a balloon into the circle that the kids have to keep from hitting the floor using only their stocking feet. In a few seconds, add another, then another, etc. They'll need a good amount of room for this.

Balloon Shot:

With a posterboard target on the wall or a tree outside and a line the kids have to stay behind, give each child 3 or 4 uninflated balloons to blow up some amount (that's the trick here) and then aim at the target and let it go. Team points for whoever hits the target. The sound these flying balloons make will delight them.

Netless tennis:

Give each child a paper plate with a tongue depressor handle, and pair them up to keep the balloon aloft with their paddles. Beans or rice inside will increase the challenge. Have them count how many hits before the balloon hits the ground, and the highest wins.

Balloon Up:

Put the kids in a tight circle, count them off 1-2-3 so each has a number, and then put the last one in the center with the balloon. That child tosses the balloon high and calls out a number (within the range) and that child has to get the balloon before it hits the ground- with help or hindrance from the other kids in the circle. If he/she can t get it in time, they're out. If they do, they take center stage to reapeat the process. Balloon Yo Yo

YoYo Sling:

Suspend your demo balloon yo-yo (from the craft activity above) from a door frame and with the kids standing behind a line they try to hit that target with the yo-yo's they made. Score by team each time they manage to get it.

      

Party Treats:

Cake Pops:Balloon Pastry Pops Make these cute and tasty pastry balloon pops - they're not hard! Use long bamboo skewers for the sticks (pointed tips cut off) and they'll stand tall and pretty in a vase on your party food table. Hand them out as party treats or send them home as party favors.

      

Favors:

Turn your Party Favors into a Game:

Put your favors inside balloons that you attach to a foam board or corrugated cardboard backing and let the kids collect their favors by popping the balloons with darts, or if they're too young for darts, with pushpins. Full instructions are available for you here. This is perfect with our free, printable I.O.U. party favors.

Balloon Animals:Balloon Animal

Grab some long balloons for twisting (at Amazon, under $10 as of this writing for 100 of them, varied colors) and the instructions for making various animal at magic.about.com and get some assistance from family members to make one of these for each of your guests. Yeah- you'll break a few, but you've got like 100 to work with as you learn. The kids will think you're a magician!

Or, give each child a handful of the twisting balloons along with the web address for the instructions.

SO MANY things you can do with balloons!

Build your whole party plan around these balloon party ideas or just pick and choose some to include along with other games within a different themed party. Make the balloons match your theme with a little art work on the balloons.

We'd LOVE to include your good balloon party ideas here for other parents. Just send them to me.

Photo of me and my kids

Have a great party!

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