Wednesday, August 8, 2012

A Fire Fighter Fifth Birthday Party!

A very close friend is throwing a Fireman Themed Party for her soon to be Five year old daughter (so technically I suppose it is a Fire Girl party?). Anyway, I LOVE party prep and would be happy to dive in and help, but the party is the same weekend as Joshua's baptism. I won't be much help the weekend of the party, so I thought I would gather a few of my favorite ideas AND explain how even a crafting newbie can get great results without much effort.

The first hurdle to any great party is choosing a location. My friend happens to have a GREAT location. Her husband has been a firefighter so she is able to have her party at the local fire station! With a location like that she won't need much decorating. If you aren't so lucky as to have access to a fire house of your own, I recommend sticking to a fiery color scheme and make a focal point of your main food table or activity area. I love the mix of colors and patterns in the image found on Stop, Drop, and Blog.

I recommend covering a wall or two in paper that fits your theme. I love the brick paper used on the buffet shown below from Crazy for Design. A 50ft roll of brick paper used to cover bulletin boards can be found for around $15. Or you can simply buy wrapping paper in your party colors (I would suggest red, orange, yellow, black, or maybe polka dots or stripes in those colors) and use it like I did here.

I like to continue the color scheme as far as I can and the food is often an easy next step, especially at a kid's party where you can get away with lots of candy (which can always be found in specific colors). Any candy (or food) in red, orange, yellow, black, white, or silver will add to the decorations but also fill your guest's little tummies. Walk the candy aisle of your favorite store just looking at packaging and colors, for example Reeses Pieces are the perfect fire colors. I would also play up the theme as much as possible, using food in the color scheme that also have (or can be given) names that fit the theme. For a fire party I would serve Red Hots and Hot Tamales candies in snack sized packages with the original packaging. Red and yellow sweet peppers would be an easy color fit for a veggie tray. Coke, Diet Coke, Coke Zero all come in cans that fit the fire color scheme. (image below from Amy Atlas)

Hot Dogs would also be a great choice but with a sign emphasizing the word hot with flames or something. (For Lydia's 4 and Fabulous party I did something similar, but wrote "Haute Dogs") Doritos and barbecue potato chips, either in a bowl or in individual size packages, would fit both the colors and the fire theme. Finally, I would make some signs giving foods theme related names. Pretzel sticks can be labled match sticks. Licorice could be firefighter ropes. Squiggly straws to drink out of can be fire hoses. Tootsie rolls could have a sign that says "stop, drop, and roll"! Water bottles can have labels that say "fire extinguishers". You can easily print one sign for each item to place in front of or on the food container. Play up the theme by adding coordinating ribbon like in the image below.

Fire hats and badges are a must for this party. If you aren't up for cooking, I would check into buying a party tray or two of sandwiches from Firehouse Subs and ask them to throw in free hats for all the kids (they give them away at the restaurant). Otherwise, you can order hats for around $1 each and fire badges for less than $1 each. Or you could print this free badge template onto sticker paper and let the kids color their own badges. If you are computer savvy, you could customize your own badge stickers, or order customizable stickers like the one below available here.

If I were to suggest one semi-homemade project it would be adding candy "fire" to cupcakes. The cakes could even be store bought if you aren't feeling up to making a lot of stuff. Then it is really easy to melt hard candies, let them cool, and break them to look like flames. Really, no artistic ability needed! (full set of directions here)

Finally, there are lots of fire themed printables available, both through party websites and fire prevention sites. Check out the Free fire themed maze shown above . Here is a fire truck coloring page with room for the kids to draw themselves in the window. Here is a cute fire truck printable. It was meant to be for a bingo game, but could also be used for name tags if cut apart. If you are feeling a little crafty, check out this free multi page printable to make a 3D paper fire truck!

Activities for a fire themed party are easy if your location is a fire station. Ask if the kids can climb inside the truck, turn on a siren, take a spin on the fire pole, or have a firefighter talk to the kids. Otherwise, you could play a fire themed version of Simon Says where the kids stop, drop, and roll but only if the fire fighter says. If your location has a second story, find or make a net and have a grown up drop stuffed animals for the fire fighters in training to practice catching. Finally, an outdoor water game relay race, where you fill a large bucket of water by running smaller cups of water back and forth would be fun. Tryout a few of these ideas and with minimal effort, you're guaranteed one "hot" party!


Andrea Dillivan said...

Thanks Cheryl! It's gonna be a blast!

Funtasia Nyc said...

Themed birthday parties are certainly fun and a sure fire hit for kids. And how cool would it be to have a fireman-themed party for a girl!
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Shauna Hoogland said...

Your Fire badge printable link isn't correct. =/

mark lawrence said...

How beautiful birthday party arrangements! Well done my friend. I liked this party theme a lot and would be using this inspiration for my nephew’s 7th birthday celebrations. We are planning a grand DIY party at one of his favorite outdoor party venues in Chicago.

Lauren said...

But only if your free badge link went to the correct location....