Star Wars is cool to little ones. Even if they’ve never seen the movies, they somehow know that Yoda is a good guy and Darth Vader is someone’s father.
At some point, we realized we were doing it more for ourselves than for him. I suppose it was when I was driving all over Oakland, in tears, trying to find gray or silver paint to create a Death Star piñata out of a baseball while the kid was at home with Rookie Dad Alec admitting he didn’t know what a Death Star was (“a robot” he guessed).Jedi destroys Death Star. Or tries to.
Inspired by good friends online, I thought I could host a crafty, quickie cheap Star Wars themed party because I know all the shortcuts. And, for the most part, that was true. It only really fell apart at the gray paint phase of the adventure.
Holden asked for a Robot party first. No problem, I thought, we could use Wendy’s super adorable Robot pattern and the whole party would be sorted. Just add food and kids. Done and done? Not so fast.
Later, he updated his desired theme to include “Robots-Lego-StarWars-electric” and that kids should bring bikes. Ugh. Ok, well I didn’t give up my aim to please, because there is some overlap in those ideas. (I had vaguely heard of Lego Star Wars but, at age 4, we hadn’t gone there yet.) And there are droids robots in Star Wars. So, we decided to press on letting Holden call the shots.
I ordered an ice cream cake. With a robot on it. Check.
Inspired by Mommy Poppins, I decided to create a Jedi Training party. We put emphasis on an obstacle course rather than hiring character actors for kids too little to know the characters. We kept it relatively simple with things we had on hand (or thought we’d use again if we purchased). Kids had to do the following to earn their Star Wars sticker:
- Hit the target with a bean bag sack. [note: The target was painted by me under strict direction of Holden. When struck, it played the Star Wars theme music as rigged by Alec. My mom sent the hacky sack things.]
- Run around 6 orange cones. [Yes, I bought the cones. But we'll use them right? at 4 for $3 we bought a dozen]
- Punch a punching bag 5 times with boxing gloves. [Grandma had bought Holden and Milo a punching bag for getting out all that good boy energy. A worthy investment in our future]
- Crawl through a tunnel. [We borrowed a great one from Whitney. Love!]
- Stand in the right spot and whack at the Death Star piñata. [The right spot was a hoola hoop also borrowed from Whit, and the fabulous piñata was a baseball painted gray and stuffed with Star Wars themed crap from the party store]
- Earn sticker.
The thing that made me most excited about the course was seeing the kids want to do it over and over. So what if they were just after the loot in the Death Star. I choose to believe they loved my course. After 30 minutes of this, my husband busted open the piñata and we moved on to food and cake.
- Marie’s tips for staying sane during an indoor little kid birthday party
- Design Mom feature on truly budget birthday parties, like $5
- Even more Star Wars party ideas
- Pictures of the Death Star, for kids with no idea why you painted the baseball piñata gray.
- My favorite little kid Star Wars present: Darth Tater