It was no surprise to anyone, that when Mac turned four he requested a "fishing" birthday party. Fishing has quickly become an obsession for him and it's his absolute favorite thing to do. He comes by this honestly, as it's also his dad's absolute favorite thing to do. It warms my heart to see the two of them share such an incredible love for fishing and bond over the shared experience they have fishing together. Ryan is such a patient teacher and I've been so surprised by how quickly Mac has picked up on the proper techniques and tricks of fishing, whether it's fly fishing or with a spinning rod. That kid's been casting for two years now and he's good! So, I was really excited to craft a party around his love of fishing and give him the opportunity to share that experience with his little friends.
We decided to have the party at a local park, close to our house that has a nice lake and a big pavilion with a dock next to the water. We drive by this park every day on the way to Mac's nursery school, so when I told him we were having his birthday party there, he got really excited about the lake and all the ducks and geese we always see. We had the party on a Wednesday evening, instead of a weekend, when the park would be less crowded. I was a bit concerned that no one would be able to make such a random time, but surprisingly, everyone loved the idea of a weekday evening party, which wouldn't take up a weekend and would fill those crazy hectic evening hours. We served giant hot dogs and sides, so no one would have to rush home for dinner and basically just let the kids run wild and burn all that energy kids have at the end of the day. I'm pretty sure everyone slept like a rock that night!
I ordered the cutest Gone Fishin invites from Minted, which turned out better than I could have imagined! I absolutely love the little fishing vest on the front and all the ways to personalize the invites on the back. I added a few photos of Mac fishing to the back with some info on the party and the fishing situation. We asked that everyone bring their own fishing poles and tackle, but we also brought a few extra rods and a giant bucket of worms for the kids to use. As for the decorations, we didn't need much, so we kept it pretty simple. I got some green and brown helium balloons, along with a giant fish balloon and a giant number 4. I put some bobbers around the cake, which the kids could use to fish if they needed one. I also ordered a camping sign from Minted's "Campsite" party decor suite and a pennant banner from the "Wooded" suite, which I customized to say "Happy Birthday." Both of these turned out super cute and I love that we'll be able to use them again in the future. For party favors, I wrapped boxes of Swedish Fish with baker's twine and added a bobber - easy as pie and they turned out super cute.
As for the fishing, it was a big hit! The kids and the parents (particularly the dads) absolutely loved fishing during the party! This was the first time that many of the kids had ever fished, so they were pretty excited about it. The lake at the park was full of little bluegill and sunfish, so a lot of the kids caught their very first fish ever! How cool is that?! Ryan stayed busy during the entire party, helping kids cast, baiting hooks, untangling knots and keeping everyone from hooking each other in the face. The lawyer in me was a little concerned about this and I considered having everyone sign a liability waiver upon arrival, but decided to chill the hell out and just have a beer and not watch instead.
I wasn't sure if all the kids would want to fish, so we also set up some tents in the lawn next to the pavilion and let the kids play in them during the party. Ryan was pretty skeptical about the tents, but they turned out to be big hits and the kids loved playing in them! Although, some kids thought they were broken bounce houses and a few times the tents turned into preschool wrestling pits with all the kids tackling each other and bouncing off the walls. We also set up the bubble machine and put out a bunch of those bubble tubes for the kids to play with. And if all else failed, there were a couple dozen geese and ducks around that the kids could chase! The ducks actually invaded the pavilion and attempted to help themselves to dinner, much to the delight of the kids.
The final thing Mac requested for his party was a pinata. He went to a birthday party a few weeks ago where they had a pinata and he hasn't stopped talking about it. He ended up being the one to bust it open at that party, so I think he felt a little like the party hero and wanted to do that again. I was a bit worried about what would happen if he wasn't the one to break the pinata as his party, but it all worked out and he once again broke it open and he stood there with pride as the candy rained down on his people. It was hilarious watching all the kids try to bust this thing, which was nearly impossible with the wimpy little plastic bat I brought to hit it with (my fault).
But I think Mac's favorite part of the party was the cake, which was adorable and delicious! Mac loved everyone singing Happy Birthday to him and the big smile on his face made it all worth it. I've never seen him turn that shade of red, but you could tell he loved every second of the attention! Ryan got a great video of him beaming from ear to ear while all his friends surrounded him and sang. It's the cutest thing ever.
And in honor of Mac's birthday, I'm hosting a little giveaway with Minted for a $150 gift certificate to their site! Woo hoo! That way you can get your own adorable party invites, decorations, art work or whatever floats your boat! Just think of all the cute things you could get for a kid's room or maybe it might inspire you to throw yourself a pool party this summer? Or you could get those family photos printed or get an amazing piece of art for your dining room! The options are endless! CLICK HERE to go to the Minted website and register to win!
Happy birthday, Mac!
*I was provided with invitations and party decor from Minted in exchange for my honest review and feedback. All opinions and love for Minted is entirely my own. Giveaway sponsored by Minted.