Summer is just around the corner and it’s birthday season. Many parents get stressed at the thought of planning a birthday party, but you don’t have to be one of them; there are plenty of simple things you can do to make this birthday a special one. So, with the beautiful weather arriving, why not bring the party to one of the beautiful parks in Calgary? Just follow these simple steps to a fantastic party!

Establish a guest list. You many want to invite just your child’s closest friends. A huge party can be a pain to organize, and a pain to manage.

Choose a park in a central location, so none of the guests have to commute too far. A park with a playground is great, as you can have your party right next to it and the kids can play for hours.

Grab some cool paper, glitter glue and markers, and have your child help make the invitations. Include the your child’s name, the location, time, and date of the party, contact information, and a request that the parents inform you if their children have allergies so there are no problems with food.

Make a list of the things you have to bring, or clip out the one below, and then check it again on the day of the party to make sure you don’t forget anything.

  • Balloons: have two or three for each child, including a special “Happy Birthday” balloon for the birthday boy or girl. Most dollar stores will gladly fill up the balloons with helium for you and attach some ribbon for a small fee.
  • Lots of blankets: don’t bother with chairs, instead, layer a variety of blankets or large beach towels and there will be lots of room for all of your guests.
  • Cooler: fill it with plenty of juice boxes, water bottles, and kid-friendly sandwiches cut into quarters.
  • Cupcakes: sure, a birthday cake is the norm, but cake requires a knife, utensils, plates, napkins, and a table! Instead, make (or buy) cupcakes, personalize them with a little coloured icing, and – voila! A stress-free treat!
  • Beach bag: fill it up with the necessities – a mini first-aid kit, plenty of wet naps, sunscreen, bug spray, paper towels, a camera, extra batteries, face paint, a large blow up beach ball, and a garbage bag.
  • Goodie bags: veering away from the traditional goodie bags, take a few fun items (such as: bubbles, sugar-free bubble gum, flower seed packets, and mini watercolour discs) and wrap them in coloured cellophane, finishing them up by tying the open end with ribbon. To make it extra special, take the wrapped goodie packages and put them in a small terracotta flowerpot – the kids can paint the pot and plant the seeds at home!
  • Hula-hoops: what child doesn’t like a hula-hoop? They are just a couple of dollars each, they are tons of fun, and the kids can take them home at the end of the party!

On the day of the party, make sure you are the first person there, so you can get everything set up. Spread out your blankets and tie the balloons onto corners of the blankets in groups of two or three. This makes it much easier for the other guests to spot you, and you can untie each group of balloons to send home with the kids as they leave.

The rest of the party will take care of itself! Sure, it seems like a lot of preparation, but it will be virtually hassle-free. All you’ll have to do is sit down and enjoy the party.