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To not hire an entertainer for 5yo’s birthday?

(21 Posts)
Bubbinsmakesthree Thu 14-Mar-19 08:37:11

DS’s 5th birthday coming up in late May, will be inviting whole class, which normally amounts to 15 kids attending.

DM has a huge ‘wild’ garden and massive summer house we can use for the party.

Every other class party we’ve been to has had a children’s entertainer who have generally been very average - played some music, led them through a few party games and that’s about it. The kids always seem to be happy to run about and play without the entertainer.

I’ve been quoted £200 for an entertainer - we can find the money but I can’t help thinking rhey’ll be happy to just run round the garden, and I can organise a couple of basic party games and a scavenger hunt myself (then spend the £200 on a spa break to get over the trauma wink )


PettyLaBelle Thu 14-Mar-19 08:40:04

It's DS's 4th soon and I'm not having one. I'd definitely spend the £200 on a spa day!

BejamNostalgia Thu 14-Mar-19 08:40:39

YANBU that’s fine. You can get a piñata fairly cheap and fill it with penny sweets, that always goes down a storm

Funkyslippers Thu 14-Mar-19 08:40:46

Oh goodness, go for it! I usually do all the games myself and the kids tend to be happy just 'hanging out'

Bear2014 Thu 14-Mar-19 08:41:28

YANBU at all but i would strongly urge you to have a wet weather plan in place grin

Ragwort Thu 14-Mar-19 08:44:22

About the only thing I miss about my DS growing up is organising the birthday parties, I loved doing that. Have you got a DP/couple of friends who can help organise the games. It will be great, lots of children love ‘unstructured’ parties, just have fun running around the garden, old fashioned party games and a birthday tea - what could be nicer smile?

Make it clear whether or not you want parents to stay, they can be a pain if they don’t muck in to help.

Piffle11 Thu 14-Mar-19 08:45:49

I think so long as you have ideas to keep them entertained, then you should be ok. We hired a hall for DS's 6th as his birthday is in winter. We hired an entertainer and she was great. She stayed for the whole 2 hours: party games for an hour, then she stayed to do face painting. I was very glad to have her there (£165). We've been to other parties that have descended into chaos purely because the DC were left to their own devices after a couple of rounds of musical statues.

SnuggyBuggy Thu 14-Mar-19 08:47:23

I don't think you need one.

blackteasplease Thu 14-Mar-19 08:52:05

Yanbu of course! Other parents probably have them to avoid having to do the entertaining themselves. But be prepared to be quite hands on if so.

Beamur Thu 14-Mar-19 08:52:32

Sounds perfect!
Even if the weather is iffy, you could rig up a tarp for some shelter and get guests to wear waterproofs.

VelvetPineapple Thu 14-Mar-19 08:54:53

I don’t think you need an entertainer but you do need to prepare activities and games to keep the kids occupied. Basically you’re doing the entertainer’s job yourself.

Ragwort Thu 14-Mar-19 08:57:16

I’d also add that you need to be fairly happy at being assertive when organising the games etc, DH & I were both leaders in Scouting so used to organising large groups of children and not worried at all if we come over as ‘bossy’ grin.

IceRebel Thu 14-Mar-19 08:58:33

Basically you’re doing the entertainer’s job yourself.

/\/\ This

You don't need an entertainer, but you do need someone to entertain the children.

If you think you can then that's great, but personally I think £200 on an entertainer is a great spend as it takes away most of the stress.

Hotterthanahotthing Thu 14-Mar-19 09:02:00

We had old fashioned parties ,the kids loved them.Used to do a very easy treasure hunt to get them all in the garden.Leave them to play then call them in if they looked at all tetchy for food.Let them loose again for a short time then games(dead ants being their favourite).Parents would start arriving just then ,party bags,home.
Our house was all hard floors so if it was wet they just ran in and out between showers.

Tawdrylocalbrouhaha Thu 14-Mar-19 09:08:45

I've never had one (DS is now 4), but for the last 2 years I've thought afterwards that I must get one next time.

I found it more difficult than anticipated to get a swarm of kids to actually pass the parcel on to the next person, let alone hit the floor when the music stopped. Luckily at a soft play party it doesn't matter so much, but at a home party you will at least need a whistle and an authoritative voice.

Damntheman Thu 14-Mar-19 10:07:12

Treasure hunt is great! Or a scavenger hunt. Some toys for the kids to go mad with. Maybe organise a super-soaker war (tell parents to pack a change of clothing and a towel). So many options!

My parents never paid for entertaininers and I have yet to do so. It's really not necessary with a bit of forward planning.

Hope the party is amazeballs!

Beamur Thu 14-Mar-19 10:27:00

One party DD went to had a treasure hunt type thing, parents had hidden lots of tiny plastic cat toys - if you found them, you kept them, this was most popular.
Personally I don't like pass the parcel, it is traditional but disappointing for almost everyone!

widgetbeana Thu 14-Mar-19 10:39:20

I am a parent with 2 young children, a rainbow guide leader and a teacher so here's my input!

You have the best resource ever your fingertips. So I would get some big cardboard boxes,let the children, build, decorate make dens, play houses, make fairy trails etc. Free play with some helpful props around. (Tea sets, saucepans, bits of fabric, etc)

Then do some food halfway through. While they are eating get someone to hide some type of treasure hunt type thing (could be any theme really, pictures of favourite tv characters, chocolate coins, letters to spell something out). Then when they finish it they can claim their prize (party bag or gift).

That could easily take an hour for the first section, 30 ish mins for food, then 20 minutes hunting?

Bubbinsmakesthree Thu 14-Mar-19 12:45:34

Thanks I am feeling a bit more confident now! Some brilliant ideas for activities and structuring the party too.

I’m thinking of having some kind of ‘explorers’ theme and the idea of den building with boxes and tarp etc sounds really good. My plan would be to ask people to dress for the weather but if it is torrential rain we’d need a plan B...

PBo83 Thu 14-Mar-19 12:48:49

That sounds like a great party personally. Kids have great imaginations and with the tools (and space) they can make endless entertainment for themselves. Maybe get a football a backup.

Damntheman Thu 14-Mar-19 13:17:34

That sounds really fun OP! You could make it an Indiana Jones theme and have other related games? Like maybe they need to use some things to build a 'raft' to cross a 'river'. You can use a pathway to be the river, the items could be kitchen trays and string and other such stuff.

my mum put on a party like this for us when we were kids in the forest. Her cousin put on my (child sized) hula skirt and a scary mask and captured some of us as a canibal. Then we had to throw apples into his cooking pot to release our friends, it was hella fun :D

Do you have any trees you can set up to be a swing over a canyon type of game?

And of course the treasure hunt could run all the way through this theme as hidden treasures if each part of your garden is a different area of the 'world'; the forgotten temple, the jungle ruins, the hippo infested river crossing!

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