While kids may be the star and guests of honor at a kids’ birthday party, there’s no reason adults can’t have some fun as well. After all, they have to be there regardless. So why not make it an enjoyable experience? Here are some ideas on how to throw a kids’ birthday party that adults might actually enjoy.
Tips for hosting a private birthday party for both kids and adults
1. Give adults their own space
Set up an area near the kids where parents can gather and enjoy adult conversation while still being able to keep an eye on their kids. Be sure to have adult-sized seating too.
For numbers, expect to have at least one parent per child. Give adults, especially parents, a chance to relax without having a bunch of kids running all around them. This is also a great area to set up drinks and food for the adults as well.
Alt text: Top-down view of festive pink pastries with sprinkles, green and blue party hats and straws, and a sparkler
2. Include adult foods
Pizza, chicken nuggets, and mac ‘n’ cheese may be the staple diet of kids everywhere, and therefore always on the menu at kids’ parties. But adults will appreciate some different, and more elevated, options. Consider adding appetizers like bread and hummus, a charcuterie and cheese platter, and veggies and dip.
Even some simple but sophisticated sandwiches will go over well. Sliders are a great idea as they are also perfectly portioned for kids’ appetites. And if you have to have pizza, include a few pies that are more adult-friendly.
3. Don’t forget the alcohol
Greeting your adult guests with a cold adult beverage is a great way to get them to relax and get in a party mood. Keep that vibe going with a selection of cold beers, wines, or even a few cocktails.
Just keep the alcohol supply limited since the parents in the group still need to be responsible for their kids. If anyone over-imbibes, offer to let them keep their car at the private party venue overnight (if allowed), and call them a taxi or a rideshare.
Even if you don’t plan to serve alcohol, include some sodas, flavored sparkling water, infused water, or tasty mocktails, so parents have options other than a juice box. Also be sure to include plenty of coffee and tea for a much-needed post-drink and pick-me-up for the adults and parents.
4. Think carefully about the activities
Parents will be more than grateful if there are activities that will keep the little ones occupied where they don’t have to be actively involved, so they can actually relax and talk to other adults and maybe even enjoy themselves.
Having arts and crafts may sound like a great idea, but then parents need to keep an eye on their kids. And painting sounds great, until kids get paint everywhere, including on themselves and their brand new outfit. A good idea is to hire a trusted babysitter or two to help with the activities and minding the kids.
5. Help capture the memories
Memorialize the party and let parents and kids have some fun along the way by setting up a photo area. Provide some costumes and fun props, and offer to take photos of parents with their kids in their getups. For a fun memento, try taking photos with an instant camera like a Polaroid, or set up a photo printer.
To go all out, you can even rent a party photo booth that’s all set up to capture the fun. Or hire a professional kids’ photographer to capture all the precious party moments.
6. Let the adults help out
Give parents and adults something to do if they ask to help. They may actually truly want a task to take their minds off the kids’ party and help pass the time.
Create a list of easy tasks ahead of time that you can assign to any adults looking to be helpful, such as restocking ice and drinks, serving cake, or picking up trash.
7. Keep the party short and sweet
Kids have limited attention span and can get over-stimulated, so plan to keep your party on the shorter side. Make sure there’s enough time for the main events, such as serving the birthday cake, opening presents, and maybe a game or two.
Keep it under three hours max, and even shorter for younger kids. You can indicate the start and end time on your invitation so parents know what to expect and can plan accordingly.
Final thoughts on hosting a private birthday party that both kids and adults can enjoy
With just a few changes to the plans for a kids’ birthday party, you can make it more inclusive of the adults in attendance, who might just end up enjoying themselves as well. The tips above help you consider the adults’ needs and will help make your party a success for every guest in attendance.
Now that you know what you need to do, it’s time to start looking for the perfect private party venue to host your next kids’ birthday party.