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Child’s Play! Kids’ Party Planning

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Find out how to cheat your way to the perfect birthday bash without leaving DB [PHOTOS COURTESY OF Freepik]

Planning kids’ parties gets easier as they get older. Once they hit their tweens, you don’t have to invite their whole class along, and you can pret ty much get away with a movie (plus hot dogs and popcorn) for a couple of besties. But for younger kids, parties need to be more elaborate – and there’s more competition involved – so it ’s worth thinking seriously about what you want to achieve and all the exciting alternatives on offer.

As any parent will tell you, the basic elements that need to come together are the supplies, the venue and the refreshments (including the all-important birthday cake). Get these worked out well in advance and you should be able to cheat your way to a fun, relatively hassle-free birthday bash.

The first thing you, or rather the birthday boy or girl needs to decide on is the theme. Go with unicorns, pirates, princesses, or minions… whatever’s on their radar at the time. The theme is a big deal because it will dictate the look of the party, of everything from the invitations to the cake.


For the sake of your time and sanity – not to mention the environment – avoid paper invitations. Choosing an electronic invitation service, such as Paperless Post, keeps the process straightforward and makes your guest list easy to manage digitally. Get the invitations sent out at least a month in advance to avoid disappointment.

If you follow this writer’s advice, you won’t be needing much in the way of party decorations but you will need basic supplies – balloons, tableware, wrapping paper and those all-important take-home party bags. For all these, look no further than the dedicated Partytime shop-in-shop at Bookazine in DB North Plaza (2987 1373). You’ll find a quality range in cool colours and of-the-minute themes.

But back to the party bags. What do you put inside them? You can relate the contents to the party theme (as long as it’s unisex) or you can make up two sets of bags, one for the boys and one for the girls. But one-bag-fits-all is the best (easiest) way to go. Young partygoers will thank you for fun treats like bubble wands, whoopee cushions and, of course, slime.


Be wary about hosting a children’s party at home; it’s a big ask. Your living room will get wrecked, and you’ll find yourself running around organising games, breaking up fights and laying out food, while the other parents relax in the corner drinking your Prosecco.

The best bet, unless the weather is truly dreadful, is to take the party outdoors. This way, the kids will be able to let off steam without destroying your home and you’ll find you have a lot less to do – lay on sunscreen, bug spray and a bunch of water games, and you’re good to go. If you don’t have a garden, check in with your village management office to see if your local playground is available for hire, or simply hit up Tai Pak Wan.

If you can afford to add on a bouncy castle, do it! Kids never get tired of inflatables and they’ll play on them for hours. Talk to Ben White at Pui O-based Jumping Castles (9662 1747). Ben delivers free to DB and his castles all feature a jump area and a slide of some sort and they come in small, medium and large sizes – the small ones suited for children as young as two and the largest good for kids up to 12. All you need for Ben to set up an inflatable is a reasonably level area – indoors or out. For added fun, he can also supply a helium-balloon kit that includes a recyclable helium tank and 50 balloons.

Or how about an ice-skating party? At DB Ice Rink in DB Plaza (2234 0187), there’s fun to be had for kids of all ages, and skating aids to guide the less steady partygoers across the ice. The staff are happy to help you set up your own catering supplies at the rink – and, if you want to sit back while the staff teach (and supervise) your partygoers, you can book a group lesson.

Equally close to home, EpicLand in DB Nor th (2441 0098) is a great one-stop party option catering for groups of 10 to 50 plus. A typical party package at the 14,000-square-foot indoor entertainment centre includes party invites and banners, two hours use of a private function room and access to the play zones. Slime, nerf, art, disco and laser-tag party packages are also on offer.


Kid’s parties today aren’t the jelly-and-ice-cream sit-down affairs many of us remember, so don’t feel you need to provide a full-on spread. If you’re heading to the beach, or any venue where food is not provided, a good option is to present the food in individual party boxes. Keep things simple and cute, you only need a few items in each box – a cheese straw, a homemade sandwich, some crisps/ grapes, a small yoghurt and plastic spoon, a fairy cake, a pretty napkin and a paper hat.

This is a fairly healthy option too, right? No doubt, small people love additive-packed, sugary snacks but you’re well advised to jettison the junk, and avoid the dreaded sugar-crash tantrums too! For tunately, festive food is extremely easy to hack while keeping all the fun and flavour. Start with the bubbly: add citrus slices to sparkling mineral water for a refreshing tipple, or try infusing whole jugs with mint, cucumber, apple chunks and strawberries for a carbonated cocktail. Meanwhile, swap salty crisps and pretzels in favour of crudités and veggie-based dips and, assuming no allergy restrictions, switch salted peanuts for almonds, walnuts and cashews gently toasted without oil in the oven.

Taking it easy with the snacks frees you up to go big on the main event – the birthday cake, everyone’s favourite part of a party. Whether you’re looking for a 2D Bob the Builder or a 3D mermaid on a rock, bakeries like Complete Deelite in Central (3167 7022) can whip up the requisite confection to match any party theme, as well as health-focused “naked” birthday cakes and cupcakes – where the sides remain un-iced.

If you’re looking to go a step further, and brave enough to DIY, then it’s easy to find instructions for gluten-, nut- and refined-sugar-free birthday cakes online. These “free-from” cakes are healthy and wholesome, and can look every bit as good as the regular ones. Simply search for diabetic-friendly bake recipes; you can add natural sweetness later with fruit toppings.

So there you have it; throwing a successful kid’s party is doable… and can be a lot of fun. Just be sure to plan ahead and pull out all the stops, you don’t want to be known as the parent who threw the boring bir thday bash.

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