As Chrissy Schubert’s son’s birthday approached she knew social distancing meant she wouldn’t be able to host a traditional birthday celebration with friends and family. But her church small group already had something planned.
The women of the group decorated their cars with signs and balloons and drove down Chrissy’s street – creating a birthday parade just for Chrissy’s son Camden.
“It feels so great to be celebrated,” Chrissy says.
While you may not be able to throw the big bash you had planned, you can still celebrate your child’s special day and have a party your family will never forget with these 7 ideas.
Host a neighborhood birthday parade.
Chrissy loved the birthday parade for Camden so much that she and her group decided to do parades for other kids.
She says to organize one is easy. Just gather up signs, balloons, and other decorations and pick a meetup spot in the neighborhood of the birthday boy or girl. Decorate the cars, line up and roll out.
Be sure to let the parents know when the parade will arrive so the child will be outside to see the fanfare.
Someone should play the “Happy Birthday” song from their car. Others can honk. Just have fun with it.
Decorate your home – and the whole neighborhood.
Chances are you were already planning to decorate your home for your child’s big day. But think of how special your kid will feel if the whole neighborhood is wishing her a happy birthday! Call your neighbors and ask them to make happy birthday signs to place in their front windows or yards. At a set time, take your child for a walk or drive to see the signs. Better yet, get your neighbors to come to their front doors to wish her a happy birthday (at least six feet away, of course.)
You can even get your decorations shipped in a box directly to you. Here are a couple of our picks:
- This colorful decoration kit comes with a banner, pom poms, balloons, swirl decorations, and garland in a rainbow of colors.
- If you want to go for a theme, this dinosaur decoration kit comes with everything you’ll need including a balloon garland, a silver foil “ROAR” balloon, a banner, tassels, and cake toppers.
Create a video of birthday wishes.
Use iMovie or another type of editing software to create a video of birthday wishes for your child.
You could have family members and friends simply record and send a personal message for the birthday boy or girl. Or you could kick things up a notch and have each person sing a portion of the “Happy Birthday” song or your kid’s favorite song.
Wrangle a birthday video message from your child’s favorite character.
While Miles Morales can’t physically come to your kid’s birthday party, Spiderman may be able to stop by for a virtual visit instead. Just contact local companies that provide costumed characters for children’s birthday parties and find out if they can offer a pre-recorded message or a live chat through a platform like Skype or Zoom.
Host a Netflix party.
Just because you can’t host a sleepover for your child’s birthday doesn’t mean she can’t watch her favorite movies with her closest friends. Host a Netflix party! Simply download the Netflix Party extension and your child can watch a movie with her virtual party guests. They can even talk to each other about the movie using the app’s chat room feature.
Host a virtual activity party.
There’s no shortage of services out there for parents looking to throw virtual activity parties for their children.
Sky Zone Trampoline Park offers a free virtual birthday party experience for kids. Invite up to 10 people, and a Sky Zone team member will guide your child and his guests through 15 to 20 minutes of games, active play, and singing “Happy Birthday.”
Sky Zone sets up the Zoom video link and creates the online invitations. All you have to do is send them to your guests.
- Welcome (2-3mins)
- Birthday Child Shout-Out (2mins)
- Group Game (5mins) – Games & Dances vary based on age of child
- Learn Dance (10 mins)
- Birthday Song (3mins)
- Surprise! (2mins)
- Simon Says
- Head, Shoulders, Knees, Toes, SkySocks
- Dance Battle
- Tik Tok Dances
If your child loves LEGOs she’ll love Snapology, which is now offering virtual birthday parties for up to 20 children. Each private event includes a Snapology instructor who will lead your child and her guests through fun and engaging. Best of all, the activities will help children learn STEM/STEAM concepts, but the kids will be having too much fun to notice they’re doing something educational. They’ll have time to catch up and hang out, too.
Also, you can find several virtual paint parties on EventBrite.
Host a Zoom dance party.
Right now, folks are using Zoom for everything – business meetings, online classrooms, virtual happy hour, and even virtual Sunday brunch. Why not use it to throw a birthday dance party for your child?
Set a time for family members and friends to gather online. Help your daughter or son put together the perfect playlist. Be sure to decorate the room you’ll be broadcasting from with streamers or balloons. You and your guests can also set a background that fits the theme of your party without having to physically decorate. Canva has a lot of Zoom background templates for you to choose from for free. Dress your child in a fun outfit. If you have time and if it’s in your budget, you could also have party favors (such as hats, boas, bubbles, or noisemakers) and cupcakes delivered to the virtual party guests.
Once it’s party time, turn on the music and just dance it out!
Later the guests can sing “Happy Birthday” to the kid of the hour and then take some time to chat and hang out.
Don’t let social distancing stop you from making your little guy or girl feel special on their big day!
Looking for more party decoration inspo? Check out these kits!
Related: We have many more ideas on our Pinterest page.
Have you thrown a social distancing birthday party? Share your photos and ideas