Just because we’re in lockdown doesn’t mean you can’t throw your little one an amazing birthday celebration, says Amanda Rabinowitz, founding owner of Jellybean Concept Events. Virtual parties are now all the rage, and to help you, she has put together a fun and easy party planning guide.
The virtual invite
The internet is jam-packed with free, easy-to-use and creative templates that you can use to design a digital invite for your child’s first online birthday party celebration! On the invite you would put the link to the party that the party guests need to sign up with. You would also add the date, time, theme and the password for the link. (The password is good to have in order to avoid unwanted visitors gate-crashing the party.) It’s very important to include info on what your guests will need to prepare or bring to the party beforehand. For example, if it’s a craft party, or a movie party, what needs to be ready before your guests join in.
Top tip: For easy-to-use, FREE e-invites, try paperlesspost.com.
Each streaming tool has a unique feature which may or may not make it suitable for the number of guests you plan to invite.
- Zoom is great for larger groups. (Use a password to prevent uninvited guests attending).
- Google Hangouts works well for smaller groups.
- House Party is also another option, which is fabulous for tweens. The best feature about house party is that the app includes free games that your guests can play. These include Heads Up, Trivia, Chips and Guac and Quiz draw. These are all free.
Ensure your guests all have downloaded the tool you plan to host your party on beforehand to avoid delays. Keep the number of invited guests to a minimum in order to avoid complications. We suggest keeping guests to a maximum of 10.
The party theme
A theme is not an absolute must. However, sometimes it makes it fun for dress up purposes, games and decor. Themes could include dance party, craft party, movie party, superhero party, or PJ party.
Kids party entertainment companies are able to offer entertainment via virtual platforms. The entertainment generally includes teaching a dance, playing group games, scavenger hunts and singing happy birthday. Don’t try book entertainment for longer than 45 minutes as kids will lose attention (depending on their age of course).
Magicians and puppet shows are another great form of virtual entertainment. The best part is that the suppliers don’t need to be local. You could book someone from across the globe! Perhaps book a virtual Elsa or even Spiderman to visit the screens of your guests and sing happy birthday to the birthday child.
If budget is a concern, stream a YouTube video with DIY crafts or even a Zumba or yoga class for kids to join in. For YouTube craft classes ensure you tell the parents before the party, to have certain tools on standby for kids to use.
POA of party
Since you are the “host” of the party (if you have not organised a party entertainment company to do this for you), you need to have some sort of plan of action on how the party will run. As everyone enters the “virtual room” allow for some chatting and talking over one another. Hint: add some background music.
Allow all the guests to deliver birthday messages to the birthday child. After this, the next step is to play your games/virtual entertainment. This ultimately would be the highlight of the party.
When the entertainment is complete come out with the candles and let the birthday child make a wish. Everyone would sing happy birthday together.
The virtual party won’t go on as long as an ordinary party would, but aim for an hour or so as a decent time frame.
It’s amazing what you can find around your house to use as decorations if you have to. Random candles, fairy lights or even Christmas decorations can all be used. The advantage is that the clean-up of virtual parties is always minimal, so focus on the tiny space you need to decorate, and have fun doing it! There are amazing DIY decor classes on YouTube for you and your kids to DIY all your decor.
Top tip: Create your own home-made bunting – it’s colourful, festive and reusable every year!
No one expects gifts, but a little spoil never hurt anyone! Certain online platforms are still delivering essential items while other platforms can reserve items in your cart until lockdown is over.
Collectively, Jellybean Concept Events has been planning parties for over 20 years. If you’re nervous to plan your own virtual party, you can contact them via email at email@example.com for assistance. You can also contact them for kids’ party virtual entertainment and DIY party boxes.
Our experienced editors work with trained journalists and qualified experts to compile accurate, insightful and helpful information about pregnancy, birth, early childhood development and parenting. Our content is reviewed regularly by our panel of advisors, which include medical doctors and healthcare professionals. Meet the Living & Loving Team and our Online Experts.