Noodlebug's 5th birthday was on May 18 and we had a (non-licensed character) Superhero birthday party! I pulled a lot of inspiration from Pinterest and the internet for this one. It was very important to me that the kids be the superheros so we had no licensed characters. No Batman. No Superman. No Spiderman. Nada.
I got my invitations from Tiny Prints. I use them every year. I am a big fan of paper invitations. I think they are more formal and make a nice souvenir. Plus, I don't have to worry about people not getting the invitation. So many times I have not received digital invitations from people and then found out about a party at the last minute. Tiny Prints gives you the best of both worlds because they offer digital websites where your guests can RSVP. Here is the invitation I used:
We created a Superhero Academy at our house. I made handmade reversible capes in gender-neutral colors for all of the kids using the wonderful tutorial from HIDEOUS! DREADFUL! STINKY! For kids this age, I highly recommend going with the 30 inch length. Otherwise, they look too short. I also ordered some mask/sunglasses from Oriental Trading Company.
I used an old hot water heater box and spraypainted it to look like a phone booth. When the kids arrived, they entered the phone booth and selected a cape and some sunglasses. The kids mostly liked crowding into the booth together.
The guests then headed to the backyard to the fueling station to fuel up with healthy snacks. We didn't have anything sugary. Berries, carrots, crackers, etc. I used the wonderful free printable from Simply Swanky for the food signs.
After snacks, the kids officially entered the Superhero Academy. Their first task was to cross the LAVA PIT!!!! This was by far the hit of the party.
My husband rigged up a board across a baby pool we already owned. We filled the pool with water and I threw in some red food coloring. I bought a cheap fog machine off eBay for the steam effect. The kids wanted to do it again and again.
After that task, they moved on to MIGHTY MUSCLES.
I used a dowel rod I already had along with two styrofoam balls from Michael's. Be warned. These balls are very expensive. I used the Michael's 40% coupon. Because spray paint tends to melt styrofoam, I handpainted the balls and added "1 TON" to each one. It made for a great photo op.
Then, it was on to LEAP A TALL BUILDING IN A SINGLE BOUND. I had been hoarding boxes for months and spraypainted about 7-8 of various sizes. I used the smallest size as the building the children would jump over and the rest as a backdrop.
The next activity involved a bit of creativity. It was called SAVE THE CIRCUS. I have this great circus playtent from Bazoongi that I wanted to use but had to figure out how to incorporate it. I told the kids that some toxic slime had taken over the circus and the circus animals had fled. (to the MAGNIFICENT MINDS jar!!!) Each child needed to enter the tent and retrieve some of the toxic slime. My original idea was glow sticks that served as Kryptonite but I wanted to stick with the non-licensed character theme. So, the toxic slime was glow-in-the-dark slime from Oriental Trading Company.
The last activity was a wild one. I called it SAVE THE PLANET. I purchased a giant Gigaball from eBay and told the children that a giant meteor was headed to Earth and they had to stop it. This was the other big hit of the day. The kids took turns getting inside the Gigaball and getting rolled around.
Then we had the graduation ceremony. Each child got a certificate that I purchased from Designer Girl 007.
So, their favors were the cape, sunglasses, slime, certificate and sticker.
I tried really hard to recreate this photo booth. It looked great but we couldn't get the results we wanted.
I think the photographer needed to be a little higher up and photographing from overhead.
Everyone seemed to have a good time. With sixteen kids, it was a lot of work but I think it was memorable.
I purchased all the signage and certificates from Designer Girl 007.
All photography by Paul McGavin.