Summer is a big season for birthdays in my family and a few weeks ago my oldest, Asher, turned the big one-“O”! For his 10th birthday, Asher asked if we could host an archery-themed party. My husband has access to the gym equipment at the school he works for which includes a full archery set. The boys enjoyed practicing their archery skills this summer and Asher thought it would be fun to share that experience at his party. I was fully on board! Arrows are even still trending right now. 😛
If you’ve seen some of my previous birthday party posts, then you know my recent philosophy on birthdays. I like for my kids’ parties to be creative, fun, but not over-the-top. I want to be able to enjoy the party and celebrate the life of my loved one! So in recent years, I have toned it down and promised to give my kiddos’ the gift of a relaxed and happy mommy as well as a fun party. The elements of any birthday party that matter most to my kids are the games, the food, and the goody bags. I try to focus on these elements and keep the rest simple.
Archery Birthday Party Goodie Bags
My boys are just as excited to give out little gifts at their parties as they are to receive them! This warms a momma’s heart. To create the goodie bags, I used yellow polka-dot favor bags. (Click here for a similar version.) I placed a decorative strip of washi tape to close each bag and used a hole punch to create the opening for the arrow pencil. To create the arrow shaft and head, I simply cut scrapbook paper and secured to the pencil using washi tape and double-sided tape. My plan was to do s’mores on the beach in the evening, so each goodie bag contained a cute s’mores kit. I also lucked upon suction cup bow and arrow sets in Target’s dollar spot section and bought enough for each party goer.
The suction cup bows and arrows were a HUGE hit! Glass doors and windows work great as targets and all-the-better if you have some willing furry targets standing behind the glass!
Archery Themed Cake
My original plan was to make a bullseye cake using tinted marshmallow fondant and chocolate dipped pretzel rod arrows. It would have been cute and it would have taken me 10 hours to create. Our travel plans to my mom’s house (where we were celebrating) were delayed, and I just didn’t have the time to go all cake-boss for this party. I decided to free myself from that 10 hour cake labor of love and instead came up with an on the fly Plan B. Hooray for Plan B’s! Cake banners are a festive and easy peasy route to take when you are in a pinch. To create my cake banner, I first cut strips of scrapbook paper and secured them with washi tape to paper straws to create two arrows. Next, I tied a piece of dental floss between the two straws. I then stuck two wooden skewers into a chocolate cake and covered the skewers with the paper straw arrows. Lastly, to create the “TEN” I used scrapbook stickers and stuck them to the dental floss. Voila! Instacake. The end result was adorable, just as much appreciated by my 10 yr old, and took me minutes (as opposed to hours) to create!
The kids had a fantastic time honing their archery skills and practicing on a hay bale. The paper target was made from computer paper and the rings were colored in with colored pencils.
Popsicle Stick Bow with Q-tip Arrows
While dinner was being prepared, we had a fun craft and game for the kids to complete. This craft takes a bit of prep-work on the parents’ part, but the prep can easily done the night before. We modified a tutorial from The Brooding Hen. Take popsicle sticks and notch each end with a file, making four two small slits on each end of the stick. Next, soak the popsicle sticks in water for an hour, bend them into a bow shape, and tie them into place with string or floss until dry. Remove the dental floss.
For the game, the kids were given a pre-made popsicle stick bow, mini-rubber bands, washi tape, markers, and q-tip arrows. They first decorated their bows and then “strung” them with the mini-rubberbands. To play the game, set off a bubblemaker (or have someone blow bubbles) and allow the kids to try and pop the bubbles with their q-tip arrows. We had a LOT of q-tip collecting to do afterwards so keep that in mind if you try this! These mini-bows were adorable and everyone seemed to enjoy the activity.
That toothy smile says it all! We had a great time and kids and adults all seemed to enjoy themselves.
Here is a fun little story for you. Every year Asher receives a rainbow for his birthday! The morning of his birthday, Asher asked if I thought God would give him another. No rain was in the forecast, so I told him not to get his hopes up. God smiled down on him again that day and we have a gorgeous picture to prove it.
Thanks so much for visiting me. I hope this post inspires you to keep things simple when you feel like it and go all out when you don’t!