View Full Version : Birthday party for 2 year old at a park?

05-07-2007, 06:21 PM
I feel silly asking this. I have never thrown any kind of party at a park before. I'm thinking of having DS' second birthday at a park near my house since we don't have the space at our apartment. Plus we're getting him a balance bike.

What do I need to account for? It will be the first Saturday in June. I'm worried the park might be crowded since it's almost summer.


http://www.gynosaur.com/assets/ribbons/ribbon_emerald_18m.gif 23 months

05-07-2007, 06:49 PM
Don't forget a permit if you need one! Also bring lots of ice to put cold foods on to keep 'em cold.

Mom to Will


05-07-2007, 07:04 PM
We've done parties at parks before (not b-day but other big parties). If there is a pavillion or grills, contact your city hall or the parks and rec department to see if you can reserve the space. If it is a reservation system, you might not be able to get the space you want for the date you need. If it's not a reservation system, you might need to get there early to claim a spot/tables/grill/etc.

If you're having food, be sure to bring LOTS of ice. My mom found baby wading pools (about 2 feet across and 6-12 inches deep) at a dollar store. She filled them with ice and put the food in them. Kept the food cold for a long time and contained the melting ice really well. If you're grilling meat, freeze it first if it's going to be in ice or a cooler for any length of time (i.e. party starts at 3 but dinner's served at 5). It'll stay safe for longer, and doesn't take that much more time on the grill (assuming it's partially thawed when you throw it on). Cake can also be frozen (assuming you have a big enough freezer) so it'll stay fresh during the party.

If you drink or have guest who might, be sure to ask about the alcohol policy at the park. Here, we have some parks with a strict no alcohol policy and others where you have to get a special permit to have it (read: spend more $$).

Also, be sure that there are enough trash cans for clean up. If there are only a couple, you might want to bring trash bags. Usually you can tie them up and leave them by the trash cans in the park.

Mom to Alex (3/2002) and Catherine (8/2003)

05-07-2007, 10:36 PM
We did DS's birthday at the park last year. The reseravation was going to be very expensive, so we just turned up early. DH had to haul 2 fold up tables and several chairs plus cooler, food etc to the park. I was at home with DS. Next time we're getting friends to help set up and most importantly to take everything home. Most people leave in spurts and all of a sudden you're alone with a toddler that you can't leave and you have a ton of stuff to get back home and it's getting late. We were exhausted. So enlist helpers NOW.

As for food - our hits were cut up watermelon, frozen grapes and blueberries. The cake icing started to melt - it was a VERY hot day, so we left it in the car with the engine and a/c on. Next time I won't use buttercream icing!

It was fun, but setting up and taking it all away was a PITA. Next time it's byo chair.

05-07-2007, 11:01 PM
We had DS' first bday at our community park. We were able to reserve a ramada with 6 picnic tables. It was nice not having to bring in tables and chairs. We brought lots and lots of bottled water (and kept it cool in huge buckets of ice). We only used balloons for decorations - the ceilings were too high and it was too windy for streamers. The balloons made it very festive. We brought lots of old bread to feed the ducks. We chose to order a couple of 6 foot subs rather than bbq so we didn't have to worry about the smoke, a hot bbq with little ones around, or DH having to cook. Our ramada was near the playground, so that was our "entertainment" for the kids plus we all went on a train ride around the park. We could have had one of those jumpy things, but because DS was only turning 1 and we had the playground, we didn't need one. However, if you get one, see if the picnic area has electricity or if you need to rent a generator (maybe you have to have a generator even if there is electricity, I'm not sure). Bring lots of baby wipes to clean off hands and faces. Are you planning on opening gifts there? If so, have a paper and pen available to write the gift list for thank yous. Bring extra trash bags. You might want to bring some sunscreen in case someone forgets to put some on (this happened at our playgroup today). Have a back up plan just in case of bad weather. I'm a huge list maker. For a few weeks prior to the party, I made a list of everything I needed to remember to bring with us. It made it so much easier. I could just check things off as we packed them in the car.

That's all I can think of right now. I hope it helps. Have a great time!!