We do some wacky stuff for kids parties.
Ponies. Clowns. Singing mice.
That used to be enough.
Now, we rent out restaurants. Create horse-riding adventures. Rent bounce houses and cotton-candy machines and maybe even boy bands.
Every year, then, becomes a practice in topping what we did last year. Or what the last kid did.
You served hot dogs and had Lady Gaga sing for your kid’s party?
Well, we’ll get Ke$ha and serve pizza.
The Party of the Year can have a few gems on the editing room floor. Some doozies on the “not quite list.” A handful of award-winners that just didn’t see the light of day.
Here’s a few that didn’t pass the test. I’m not suggesting anyone start crafting the invites, but if they get you thinking outside the party box …
1. Political party party
Attire: Red or blue, according to your political affiliation (Actually, the kids’ parents, unless their name is Alex P. Keaton). Independents can wear camo or pink. Lobbyists wear green.
Props: Political signage that reads “Marie in 2023” or “Grace for Congress.” Red, white and blue bunting. All kids in blue sit on one side of the table, those in red on the other. Libertarians have to pick a side.
Party Favors: Stimulus funny money, American dollar toilet paper, madlib absentee ballots.
Games: Pin the tail on the donkey, hanging chad scavenger hunt, debate/Greco-Roman wrestling matches.
The Catch: If the birthday girl is a democrat, she has to disperse all her gifts in the end to the kids in attendance.
2. Let’s Change Dad’s Oil party
Attire: Coveralls, steel-toe boots and a cap that depicts either a NASCAR team, energy-drink logo or inflammatory remark about politics or the female form.
Props: Lug nuts in the candy dishes, bowl of Texas tea, and a surprise visit from the Michelin man.
Party Favors: Work gloves, girly calendar and a first-aid kit.
Games: Match that oil filter to the car, 30w vs. 40w oil taste test, diagnose that engine knock.
The Catch: Little kids have little hands, making them perfect for reaching oil filters on foreign cars.
3. Thug It Out/Punk It Out Party
Attire: Gang colors, baggy pants, smelly raiders cap, in a pinch.
Props: “The party’s here!” spray-painted graffiti-style on the garage door, police tape around the perimeter, uncensored rap music.
Party Favors: Plastic brass knuckles and nose rings, mug shots/finger printing for every party girl and boy, electronic ankle monitors that dispense candy,
Games: Guess that gang signal, temporary tattoos with Sharpies, pin the tail on the law enforcement officer.
The Catch: If the real cops show up, everybody run!
4. Pitch-Black Party
Attire: Black, of course. Knit caps and turtlenecks if possible, and black gloves.
Props: Nothing. It’s dark.
Party Favors: Black licorice, mini flashlights (without batteries), bandaids and ice packs (in case party-goers run into each other, the walls, or any metal polls).
Games: Marco Polo (without the swimming pool), Man on the Ground, Find the Pinata (everyone gets a bat.)
The Catch: You’ll have to give out those funny sunglasses you get at the eye doctor when the party lets out, because the kids’ eyes will likely still be dialated.
5. Disney Channel kids show party
Attire: Dress as your favorite Disney character – no, not Mickey and Goofy. The petulant kids, tweens and teens that make up the tribe of miscreants our kids seem to worship.
Props: Copious snack food, rock-band instruments (87.6 percent of Disney kids are in, aspire to be in, or have a boyfriend/girlfriend who is in a band), and a curious absence of any competent parental figures.
Party Favors: Magic wands, shaggy kid wigs, copies of “Mouthing Of To Parents Weekly.”
Games: Laugh-track Olympics, cupcake throwing contest, Parent Pinata.
The Catch: Parents must go to the market or remain in oblivious stupor in an upstairs room for the balance of the party, only to descend upon the party, feign utter disgust at the activity and resulting mess, then fail to render any sort of consequence. To anyone.