Simple Celebrations: A Rainbow 4th Birthday Party

C started planning her birthday party months before it actually arrived. It was a new experience for me to have no say in the theme decision. Naturally for her first and second birthdays I was able to have complete creative freedom, and for her third birthday I steered her toward an idea that I knew would be easy to plan (Pinkalicious), since the party was just a week before my scheduled c-section with T. But this year she stated very decidedly that she wanted a rainbow party. At first I tried to combine rainbows with the hot air balloon picnic I wanted to throw for Tessa. I think it would have worked pretty well, but then Charlotte started naming friends she wanted to come to her party, and when combined with both our extended families the guest count would have quickly overwhelmed our house and backyard. Thankfully my best friend Mysti came through with a genius idea. Since her son’s birthday was only a couple weeks after Charlotte’s, why not do a joint party at the Amazeum, our local children’s museum? It was a brilliant plan. The rental fee was a bit steep, but if we split it it was very reasonable. Both Charlotte and Mysti’s son Sam love the Amazeum, their party rooms are big enough to accommodate lots of guests, and the party planning would be very low key, leaving me free to put most of my creative energy into Tessa’s first birthday celebration. Sam wanted a Paw Patrol theme, which worked beautifully because all the dogs are dressed in a different rainbow color.

The Amazeum supplied balloons, tablecloths, plates, and flatware, also in rainbow colors, and the museum itself is incredibly colorful. The hardest part of the plan was making C’s “rainbow twirly dress” that she requested, but my talented mom came through for me, spending hours sewing the perfect outfit.

The Amazeum didn’t allow any wall decorations, only table decor, which limited what I could make (which was all for the best really). For the cake table I made big rosettes in rainbow colors, and for the guest tables I made some colorful tissue puffs. I found a rainbow tablecloth at Target on clearance. Score! I played around with different rainbow cake ideas, but in the end I kept it simple and ordered cupcakes from Walmart with different colored icing. Sadly these didn’t exactly match the picture in my head (and they forgot purple) but they were colorful which was the point.

The party was in the afternoon so we just provided some finger foods along with cake. Mysti made these adorable dog bone sandwiches and found some scooby snacks (cookies). I put together some rainbow fruit cups and bought a big carton of colored goldfish.

Mysti found some really cute paw patrol activity books to hand out as favors, and I put together some rainbow seed packets with Skittles and this free printable I found on Pinterest.

Charlotte asked for a “rainbow hunt” as her party activity, so I put together a super simple photo scavenger hunt. I sent the kids to different areas of the museum to find items in all the colors of the rainbow. When they found a color they held it up and we snapped a picture. I didn’t expect the whole group to make it through the museum without stopping to play, but we made it all the way to “find something blue in the water zone” before everyone lost interest. It was a fun way to get pictures of the party guests in the actual exhibits.

This turned out to be a fun, simple party that was relatively inexpensive. I am all for destination parties for sure, and after this year I plan on having joint parties for the girls as long as they will let me. 🙂 What about you? Do you prefer a destination party or do you like hosting?


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