Castle Birthday party ideas and photos submitted by:
Wendy from Sacramento, CA
For the Castle Birthday Party I made three particle board castle walls as you can see in the pictures. Each wall was made up of individual bricks of Styrofoam I cut to size (I used a paper stencil I made). The bricks were varying thickness like a real wall. I sprayed each brick with matte primer gray then random splashes of black and another gentle coat of gray. I varied each brick and cut with and exacto knife. I went to the local hardware store and bought the cheapest board I could find, had them cut one sheet into 3ft height. I sprayed the wall matte black-not glossy. I used tacky glue to attach and used wire through board attached to fence stakes pounded into the ground.
Behind each wall were several buckets of filled water balloons so at the end of the party the daddy's and any courageous adult could lead a battle behind their castle walls with the kids. Keep walls far enough away from the party for accidents not to hit grandma and far enough from each other so overzealous adults don't hurt the kids. We called this area the battle field.
I also made two card board castle walls designed to encircle the party table area. I made it out of a giant cardboard box cut into two pieces, keep in mind that when you cut the positive will be the negative. To reach other try to keep it even. Again I used an exacto knife to cut. I used poster board paint watered down a bit I couldn't find gray on its own for some reason so I made the gray with black and white. Don't forget to mix a huge batch or you will have to try to get the paint to match when you run out which could be a nightmare
In front of the Castle birthday party wall are family crests of all the last names of people coming to the party. There are many family crest sites that will allow you to search and look at the picture for free. I simply googled and found the best ones I could. On the back of each crest is whatever other information I could find out about individual family like when there family arrived in America first or who and what the famous people related to them have done. Not only were these time consuming, they were a huge success. The adults at the party had the game of finding their own crest -no cheating looking on the back- but it was something made specifically for them to take home.
To make each crest I used a sketch pad and drew each crest with info on paper then got poster board cut in half and cut a crest shape at bottom sketch in pen then painted with poster paint or kids paint on hand.
I also made a separate poster with each design explaining what each shape meant historically like chevrons and crosses depicting your family were in the crusades or the symbol that meant whether you were first born or the seventh son etc.
I also cut poster board into fours so that on the craft table the kids could design their own crest for themselves. I bought several sets of markers for this. We also had construction paper and scissors held by nana for whatever anyone wanted to add.
On the side of the Castle birthday party wall were flags. I used a dowel from the craft store, 69 cents painted it black from leftover paint then used an old blue sheet to make a flag with and some floral wire and glue so that it would stand. Used a hammer and pounded into ground (I used blue because it was one of our family colors).
We also made Castle birthday party crowns for the boys (or girls if they wanted a crown). I got the premade craft foam crowns on sale and glued fake jewels on top of each crenellation. For the girls I made pretty hats out of old rolls of wrapping paper insides, painted them aluminum paint cause that is what I had on hand and sprayed a coat of glitter over the top. I lined the bottom of each hat with pretty purple ribbon or whatever extra pretty ribbon I had (we had mostly boys). Then I used tulle by the yard from an old wedding package, tied a knot on one end and pulled the fabric through the top of hat making a princess hat!
Each boy was made cup for their "grog" out of large plastic cups bought during the after summer sales. I ringed fake jewels around the bottom and top with super glue and used a paint marker to write special titles on each cup, lord, Logan, prince Joey kind Zaya etc.
Each girl had a pink cup just as large covered in pink princess jewels with their princess titles to match.
Whenever I made separate girl boy Castle birthday party items I was sure to offer girls to try a crown instead of a tiara whenever they wanted. Some girls like more girly things and some don't. I made extra of each in case we had a surprise guest and kept a paint pen in pocket in case of last minute personalization was needed.
I also made a throne that unfortunately got forgotten at home but we draped a small chair in cloth and tied with a ribbon. You could add whatever boas or kingly item you can find. Grandma made the prince a kingly cape.
We had several Castle birthday party games, some of which from this site. We had a Sword in the stone sitting near the entry to the "castle" which was really stuck in tight. It was a sword made of wood (they used them for practice fighting in sport swords). I painted it to look like it was metal and leather with simple extra aluminum paint and taped off where I didn't want it to go. I stacked together leftover Styrofoam glued with tacky glue and let dry overnight. The next day I carved the stone to look more like a stone. I sprayed the whole thing in gray primer and over sprayed with black concentrating in certain areas to melt the foam to give more rocklike effect then covered with more gray primer. Once dry, stab sword strait down pressing firmly into "rock" and don't pull in and out, it will loosen it. Next to the word in the stone was a red toy chest made to look like a treasure chest. We put presents in this as people arrived and above all that was our family crest.
Another Castle birthday party game we played was dragon hunt. We filled specific colored Easter eggs with various age appropriate toys and hide each color according to age and difficulty. This was a great game for mixed age parties. Each kid was assigned a specific color to hunt (the color reminder was a pipe cleaner wrapped on watch of their wrist). Isabella had green and she was two, so she had her eggs more in the open while Joey had blue, his were up higher and were harder to find. Each child was given a paper bag with their name on it to search for their dragon eggs.
The next Castle birthday party game we played was the joust. I made jousting stick out of used wrapping paper tubes, painted them silver and made three. Each child had to throw through the hula hoop, distance according to age. This was a game that the dads couldn't resist their hand at who did the most either.
The next Castle birthday party game we played was "save the damsel". I borrowed a old strawberry shortcake doll (only one we had we all have boys) gave her a princess hat to match the girls and put her on a bench at the end of the game then put a daddy in a dragon mask in the way to scare the kids away from saving the damsel in distress. The youngest kids just tried to attack the dragon with the sword and threw the balloon at him growling and chasing- the older boys were more serious and bounced the balloon on the sword and attempted to save the damsel. It ended up being a game of attack the daddy in the mask and the damsel was in the lawn. It was fun that way too.
The last Castle birthday party game we played was Slay the Dragon. This was where the sword in the stone came into effect. The littlest kid got to try to pull out the sword first then so on to the last none of them were able to do it on their own until they all tried together creating a great working together moment. Once the sword was removed from the stone the littlest got to try to "slay the dragon" using the wooden sword. The pinata from birthday in a box website was cute and little so if you want a lot of extras throw in separate bag, toss out once he has been slayed.
We have a lot of allergies in our family so we don't do candy, just bubbles and toys or fruit snacks, dried fruits like raisins are great too (of course for this we had to have ring pops).
Castle birthday party Food: we kept this part more simple because we couldn't BBQ at the park and our house couldn't make enough food. We ordered pizza and had ice chests overflowing with juice tea and water and another with soda for us naughty adults and another ice chest just for ice. It was hot in August. Each table was covered with simple table clothes and adult had regular plates and cups. We had a premade fruit and veggie platter from Costco that were gone fast!
The finale big thing we did was spend two days making a Castle birthday party cake. This was absolutely my son's favorite part! We used the Wilton castle cake set- this is pretty expensive but we make cakes pretty regularly so we will use it again. We added a fondant dragon and a gum paste flame saying happy birthday to Logan and a moat of blue icing and we found little knight play set at Michael's crafts store and had them storm the castle. All the rocks and gravel are of fondant and the cake was very heavy so we had to use a heavy board to transport. Each layer was a different flavor so as to give people more options
Oh and the Castle birthday party invitations were hard to find a boys castle, everything was princess but we found one on vistaprint and it was able to be personalized with color changes easily. And you could get matching thank you notes!
I've also added a picture that shows my little knight brandishing his sword and knight costume at the end of the day about to attack his cousin. Everyone was invited to dress as a prince or princess for the party. We took lots of pictures, more than I can display but this is the main things that we did.
Sorry one more thing, the favor boxes we found online at Oriental Trading. There was a mix up and not all the items were in each box that I ordered so it was as good thing I check way before the party date that all was included. I called them and they were able to send me free replacements right away, without any problems.
Ahh one more thing, after each Castle birthday party game I awarded a child who tried hard (with a large difference in ages there is hardly a clear winner ever) a special badge of honor. I cut out circles out of poster board and used scrape pieces of leather I found in my craft stuff, glue on and decorate each badge with things like: shiniest armor, jester in training, queen for the day, dragon slayer etc. Every child including some adults received a badge- I put double sided mounting tape on the back- if you have a bunch of old pins this could be done too.
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