Children received a "Message in a Bottle" invitation. I purchased the paper at Hobby Lobby and typed up the words for Alyssa's invite. Then, I asked my hubby to burn the edges of the paper. We rolled it up and tied it with a pink pirate skull ribbon. The invitation was placed inside a plastic bottle with a tiny bit of sand and novelty items. The bottles were bought at Oriental Trading. I didn't like the invitations they provided which is why I made my own invitations for the party. We tried to hand deliver as many invites as possible to cut down on the cost for shipping.
|Paper Eye Patch and Ring|
|Pirate Party Invitation|
There were very few decorations this year. We blew up a few pirate balloons and used the treasure hunt items and snacks as decor. I also purchased a pink pirate table cloth for the gift table. The event center provided the black table cloths. The balloons were from Oriental Trading and Hobby Lobby.
I found the skeleton skull at Ross during an after Halloween sale. I didn't know that it lit up at the time. We placed black plastic treasure chests on the party room tables filled with skull candy and Sixlets (pink, white, and black).
|"Walk the Plank" Hung High as Decor|
Until Treasure Hunt Began
Unfortunately, several bottles from our Oriental Trading package were damaged. I didn't want to deal with refunds and didn't have time to wait for new bottles to arrive. I used the dented bottles to create a treasure hunt. I made up the riddles using ideas seen online in addition to my own. I needed to make many adjustments due to our party location.
|Treasure Hunt Bottle Clues and Letter|
|The Treasure Hunt Letter That Arrived|
The children needed to solve riddles and complete obstacle tasks in order to find the hidden treasure on site. They walked the plank, tossed cannon balls at Captain Jeff and his ship crew, dug for a coin, and spoke with a pirate. I apologize for the lack of action shots. I was leading the kiddos through the hunt so I wasn't able to take many photographs of the treasure hunt.
|Message in a Bottle Arrived|
|What's Behind the Curtain?|
|Behind the Curtain:|
Treasure Hunt Coin Dig
|Walk the Plank:|
Clue Hidden Underneath the Plank
There was a blue ocean tarp under the plank at the party.
|Cannon Ball Toss|
Bottle Clue Hidden at the Bottom
The golden treasure chest which stored the goody bags was my husband's old childhood chest. He dumped everything out so that we would have a chest big enough to hide the favors. The children were excited when they found it under the cake table!
|Alyssa passed out the party favor chests|
The children found their mini treasure chests full of pirate novelties such as pirate tattoos, stickers, eye patch, telescope, bandana, pirate loot bag with chocolate pirate coins, treasure map, compass ring and a pirate souvenir coin at the end of the hunt. The favor bag items came from either Oriental Trading or Hobby Lobby.
Jeff and I work on the cakes together. I search the web for cake ideas and decide on a cake design and plan of attack. I bake and freeze the cakes in advance. I also make homemade buttercream frosting the day of the party. Jeff does most of the cake carving. We work together icing and decorating the cakes hoping our plan works.
Treasure Chest Cake
I used finely crushed vanilla wafer cookies for the sand around the treasure chest. A rice krispy treat wedge held the lid of the treasure chest up.
This cake was almost a disaster. It split in half as we assembled it. My brilliant husband came up with a great idea to keep the pieces together and secure. We had root beer barrels on the ship and malted milk ball cannons. We wanted to add more to the cake, but we ran out of time and decided to keep it simple.
Which cake is your favorite?
Several children dressed up for the party this year. My friends who own the party site (Canyon Lake Event Center) dressed as pirates too. They were so sweet, nice, and helpful. Raina drove home and brought back a pirate costume for Jeff.
My daughter also wore the same costume for Halloween.
Don't tell him, but I was particularly attracted to him on this day. Must have been that bad boy look! He's so handsome!
|Raina, Billie Kay, and Alyssa|
Food and Beverages
I had a lot of fun creating the food labels and deciding which snacks to serve. The labels were printed on cardstock, tent-folded, and the edges were inked.
|Chocolate Wafer Cookie Planks|
Cantaloupe and Watermelon Pirate Ships
Cheese Ball Cannon Balls (can't see on left)
|Goldfish Crackers and Gummy Fish|
Our oranges were too big and we didn't realize it until it was too late.
|Polly's Want an Oyster Cracker|
Fruit Swords (cute sword picks)
|Black Light Dance Room|
|One of the Bouncers|
|My beautiful niece (Haydn)|
|Birthday Girl Pirate!|
I will link this post up at Ben and Me's Blogging Through the Alphabet for Letter T. I will try to come back and add store and party idea links where possible at a later time.