Birthday for 5 year old.Is it ok to have it in park and not feed parents.

Sjk - posted on 02/18/2015 ( 12 moms have responded )




I wanna have a birthday party for my son in the park (Ive seen a few people have birthdays there but never thought Id think of it too .Looks like thats the cheapest place to have a birthday) and will make a cake and cupcake at home few chips , pizza for the kids and milk/drinks and cut fruit with a 3 planned games and then free play in the park and return gifts for the kids (Im against party favors which I see just a wast of money I plan to get the kids pens, book set) .
My son wants 10 of his friends and I have a few friends 3/4 whom i would like to invite . so that should be about 15 /20kids or so in total of ages 3 years to 6 years .
Is it tacky if I get food just for kids?????
so far ive always had home parties just for family n friends with just finger food for all and cake for all.My condo is small so am worried that so many people means its pure madness .Most of the party places ask for $185 up for just 10 kids.and my son has been attending birthday parties .In all of them the parents were also fed- pizza hotdogs, nuggets etc etc.
Just need to keep my kid happy by having a birthday that he wants although i dont agree in spending too much . spending $200 up for a birthday !!!! Also I have more than 1 kid so doing this for all of them will be quite expensive in 1 year.
what do you say?should I just spend the money like other parents to make kid happy?? Should I just downsize it to freinds and family and just 2/3 of his good friends from school? I just feel pressure to invite the kids who invited my son for their birthday too.
what have you moms done.


Dove - posted on 02/19/2015




Nothing wrong w/ a party in the park. Why not make it mid day after lunch (like 1-3 or 2-4) and put on the invite... 'snacks and cake provided'? That way most people won't be HUNGRY, but anyone (adult or child) that wants a bit of a snack can have some chips and fruit or something and it'll be cheaper on you. :)

In my opinion... simple and cheaper is ALWAYS better.

Jill - posted on 02/19/2015




If you shop the outside edge of the grocery store and stay out of the center processed aisles, you can do a party on the cheap. Anything boxed will cost you. How about simple fruit kabobs? Get some ideas on Google images. Or how about cool veggie platters like this one at veggie-kids [dot] com/halloween-treats-the-winner-of-free-birds-movie-giveaway/ Feel free to be creative with your own ideas, that one was for a Halloween event

If you just do fruit and veggies plus your cake and ice cream, then everyone has something to snack on (parents, too) and you can keep the cost very low.

Trisha - posted on 02/19/2015




Another option: Find a park with firepits! Then just do hot dogs for the meal. If the parents don't want their kids eating that or would prefer something else, they will bring alternatives.
A bunch of hot dogs, buns and marshmallows shouldn't be too hard to arrange. Just make sure that you have bottles of water and juice for the kids.
If you are friends with any of the other parents ask them to stop by and pick up a carafe of coffee for the parents.
Ideal situation: Park with firepits and a splash park. :) I bet as a kid that would be a total hoot!


View replies by

Gena - posted on 02/21/2015




Nicole, now you can imagine the hectic time i have when Family Comes. I have 22 uncles and aunts and 18 Cousins. Thats why i started with doing a Kids only Party this year.

Nichole - posted on 02/21/2015




I agree with having it later in the day and putting snacks and cake on the invite. Also for the cake, there is no reason to get one from the grocery store. My oldest is 5 and I have made her birthday cake every year. Most of the time the cake only gets half eaten, and it's a huge waste. Also, there is no need to invite all of their friends. As far as the size of the party is good to have some ground rules set now, so that they know what to expect. My daughter knows that only family comes for her birthday because we have 6 (yes 6) nieces and nephews alone, not to mention aunts and uncles, and grand parents. That is more than enough. After this, you can mention setting up a play date with his frineds to hang out and play video games, board games, or something else on another day. Of course, our plans may change next year once my oldest starts school, but I'm hoping we set an expectation for her on this one.

Raye - posted on 02/20/2015




I agree with having it between meal times and letting those invited know it is cake and ice cream only. Having it at a park is perfectly fine, hopefully there is a shelter area with tables.

Ledia - posted on 02/19/2015




Here's how it works around here. If the parents are expected to stay, you feed them, but if they are just dropping their child off for the party then picking them up afterwards, you don't have to feed them. Some parents choose to stay even if it is a drop off type party, and you don't HAVE to feed them, but it is polite to do so.

If money is tight, schedule the party between meals and just do cake and ice cream for everyone. You don't need hot food unless the party falls right at lunch or dinner time.

There are also cheaper options than pizza, but they might require more work....
You can do ham and cheese sandwich triangles--make them cute with colorful toothpicks--and a large pasta salad for less than $30. Serve bottled water to drink--much less expensive, and much healthier than juice packets or sodas.

Gena - posted on 02/18/2015




I agree,if you invite the parents you should have snacks and drinks for them. I would feel very very akward if i was invited with my son and i wouldnt get anything to drink or snack.It would be rude. This year was the first year i did a kids only party at home. I made hotdogs and i made a cake. I bought icectea and some balloons. We played a treasure hunt game so eatch child got a bag with some sweets. There were 5kids plus my son..and i am going to do it every year like that from now on. Befor my family members and the kids parents woukd come. I always just made hotdogs,i mean its a children bday party so no fancy platters for the adults. I bought fanta coke etc but not the proper brand. We drink the cheaper version so our guests can aswell at a bday party. I must really admit i actualy never enjoyed the grown ups coming. I never had time for the children because i was constantly busy making coffee for the grown ups.
Thanks to Jodi we did the party for 2hours wich was perfect time wise ;)
I guess you cant do a kids only party at the park and certainly not with so many children. But if i were you i would just make some more pizza and bring some more chips and drinks etc that the parents can also eat and drink.
And i agree with Evelyn,a party does not have to be all fancy and expensive to be fun. My hubby and i were invited to his uncles 60 birthday. We were so many people that everybody had to where a name tag. Then we went on a ship ride with apero,then two private car bus's to drive everybody to a fancy restaurant everybody got the same fancy menu,a march band came to play. We hardly spoke to anybody and we actualy didnt enjoy the food. I dont even want to think how much that party costed! But i am sure we would have had more fun if it was a simple party at their home!

Ev - posted on 02/18/2015




I do not understand why parents think they need to go all out for a birthday party like this. It gets expensive and the kids rarely or barely remember the day. I have always done just close family and close friends. We had cake and ice cream and presents. That was enough. I think if you are so worried about expenses and have other kids to do birthday parties for that maybe sticking to cake and ice cream might be easier to do if you plan to have more than just a few kids around. If it were a few kids (five or less) then I could see doing the food. Its so hard for a lot of people in this economy to provide that types of parties that their kids see and want and they can not do. A theme party or at a place that is expensive is not really necessary. I do like the idea of the park and you could do just a cake/ice cream party there as well with some games. Keep in mind that its your money and how much you can actually afford. Do not do things just because everyone else is.

Jodi - posted on 02/18/2015




If you are actually inviting the adults to attend, then it is a bit rude not to feed them as well as the kids. Maybe you could just make up a platter of crackers, cheeses, dips and fruit for the adults? Then make sure the cake is enough to feed everyone.

Victoria - posted on 02/18/2015




In Mexican fiestas (if you've ever seen a quinceanera or wedding or grandma coming from mexico, you already know) we have to make HUGE things of food for birthdays, but its very cheap food, for example, rice and beans (very cheap), and brisket or chicken (mexican markets are a good place to buy) and i mean i made a potato salad that was really good, my mom made sandwiches for everyone, it doesn't have to be anything huge the sandwiches were just ham and cheese and cut diagonally, my dad makes cheese enchiladas (very easy) and a salad. Doing it yourself makes everything cheap.

Michelle - posted on 02/18/2015




I think it's a bit rude to only feed the children. At the ages the children are the parents would expect to stay and you should feed them. It doesn't have to be hot food you can provide cheese, dips and crackers, fruit and vegetables to dip into the dip, sandwiches and chips etc.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms