Your child’s next birthday is fast approaching and you’re wondering where to hold the party. Perhaps the thought of having it at home makes you break out in a cold sweat. Maybe it is simply not an option.
As the mother of two kids, now a teen and tween, I’ve spent over a decade attending or hosting birthday parties at a couple dozen different spots. There truly is a place for everyone and every budget. Check out this list of 25 awesome and unique ideas for your child’s next birthday party or family celebration and get ready to have some fun!
- Take your group to a local sporting event, such as a Minor League Baseball game. The closest team to San Diego is Lake Elsinore Storm.
- Have an animal encounter at the San Diego Zoo or Wild Wonders.
- Go to a community swimming pool, water park or splash pad.
- Rent a pavilion at a local park for “home base” while the kids run around.
- Piggyback your party on a special event, such as an outdoor summer concert or movie in the park.
- Take a walk or hike at a nature center or botanical garden, where you can learn about the outdoors and celebrate with a picnic.
- Visit a fire station. Most local fire stations offer short tours for kids, let them climb on the trucks, and take photos with firefighters. Have a “Plan B” because the visit will be cut short in the event of an actual fire.
- Pick seasonal fruit at an orchard or visit a pumpkin patch in the fall.
- Throw a party at one of San Diego’s fabulous children’s museums.
- Craft stores such as Hobby Lobby, Jo-Ann Fabrics and Michaels offer classes or parties for kids and supplies are included.
- Create your own furry friend at Build-a-Bear Workshop or “adopt” a baby (doll) at Distroller in Fashion Valley.
- Indulge in movies at a luxury theater.
- Play laser tag!
- Go to a bowling alley. Check websites for group specials and party packages that include two games of bowling, shoe rental, pizza and drinks.
- Scale the highest heights at an indoor rock climbing center.
- Celebrate at a mini golf course.
- Schedule a group martial arts or fencing class, where kids learn age-appropriate skills.
- Go roller-skating and see an outdoor movie at Viejas in Alpine.
- Jump over to a trampoline park.
- Visit the San Diego Humane Society or host a Puppy Party (yes, it’s a thing!). Play with puppies at their Escondido or National City locations. Learn more at www.puppypartysandiego.com.
- Have a party at a bounce house or inflatables venue.
- Gymnastics clubs and gyms offer space and time for kids to run, jump and play to their heart's content.
- Cool off with an ice skating party at San Diego Ice Arena. Ask about party packages that include skate rentals, public skating and instruction, if needed. Recommended for kids who can already skate or have fun trying.
- Book a group class at a painting studio or with a mobile art instructor.
- Celebrate at an indoor play place, such play cafes and fast food restaurants.
Any of these great options are sure to make your next birthday party or celebration special.
Get more ideas of where to host a celebration in our Party Planner.
Katy M. Clark is a writer who celebrates and blogs about her imperfections as a mom.