Even though we might not be able to get together in-person to celebrate big life moments right now, there’s no reason we can’t celebrate virtually – and your child’s birthday is no exception!
We’ve put together this step-by-step guide to help make hosting a virtual party as fun and special as it would be if you had it in person.
• Pick a date - It’s a strange time, and for many of us, our schedules have never been more open. With the slow down of most extracurricular activities, know that you aren’t limited to hosting your virtual party on a weekend. If a Tuesday evening feels like the best fit for your family and guests, go for it!
• Send out invites - Don’t just send a calendar invite to parents with the attendance details. Make it special by designing an e-invite! Paperless Post, Minted, and Punchbowl are all great options for creating your e-invite for free or a small charge depending on your customizations.
• Order the dough - Play dough from the Dough Parlour provides an activity and party favour in one! We recommend ordering at least two different flavours for each guest, but if you’re looking for value, our gift pack sets of three or our party packs of 20 offer some great savings per dough pot. Place your order at least 10 days before your party to make sure you receive everything in time. You can have the dough delivered individually to each of your guests, or have them all shipped directly to you to handle the drop off yourself. If you are delivering the dough yourself, consider also including a snack or a cupcake that can be enjoyed during the party.
• Don’t forget decor - You certainly don’t need to decorate your whole house, but adding some balloons, streamers, or a birthday banner behind where the birthday boy or girl will be sitting will definitely help to level-up the festivities.
• Have some ice breakers ready - Kids can get a little camera shy from time to time. Have some icebreaker questions ready for the beginning of the party to get children warmed up and talking. You could ask, “If you could be an animal which one would you be?” or “What’s your favourite thing about winter?”, and have the guests take turns sharing their answers.
• Bring on the dough challenges - Now for the main event! Have the children open up their dough pots and bring out their creativity with some fun creation challenges. For example, the challenges could be to ‘make something that lives in the ocean,’ ‘make one of your family members,’ or ‘make a bracelet.’ We suggest keeping challenges to three minutes to add a fun ‘against the clock’ element to the activity and to keep the party moving. Allow everyone to show their creation on screen after each challenge and say a few words about their masterpiece.
• Give thanks for gifts - If gifts have been sent or dropped off ahead of time, spend some time opening them and thanking guests. If you’d like to cut down on drop-offs at your house, you may want to see if your child would like to pick a charity to ask his or her friends to donate to in place of presents or encourage parents to send gift cards that can be used at a later time for activities or toys.
• Make a wish - Have a cupcake, donut, or your child’s favourite treat brought out with candles and ask everyone at the party to help you sing happy birthday.
• A big thanks – Thank all guests for coming and be sure to send any pictures (or screenshots) you snapped during the party to the parents – they’ll also cherish this strange and special time for their children.
And there you have it – it might take a little creativity, but hosting a virtual birthday party for your child may turn out to be one of their most memorable birthdays yet.