2020 was a long year. Fortunately, 2021 has been looking better. But we aren’t out of the pandemic just yet. From the looks of it, social distancing will be part of our reality for the foreseeable future, which means we’ll need to get creative when it comes time to celebrate.
Check out the virtual birthday party ideas for kids listed below. We’ve put together a helpful guide to help parents navigate this special time of year in the age of social distancing.
Moving things online may take a little getting used to, but it also opens the door to tons of fun, new experiences.
Planning For Your Virtual Birthday Party
Planning a virtual birthday party means getting a little creative, so planning ahead is a must. Check out the tips below to get started.
1 . Talk to the kids about what they want
Any birthday boy or birthday girl will want a say in what kind of party they’re going to have. Preferences change year to year, so it’s important to revisit these kinds of conversations. You want to plan something that everyone can enjoy, especially the guest of honor.
2. Put together a list of party guests
Once you’ve decided on party preferences, you’ll need to start thinking about how many guests should be invited. You probably don’t want to ask too many people to attend, with it being a virtual event. After all, kids can be shy, and some may have a hard time interacting with everyone else on the call.
Keep it simple. Create your guest list with close family members, friends, and classmates in mind.
3. Put together a theme
There’s a lot more to a kid’s birthday party than cake and candles. Put together a theme to keep the kids entertained throughout the day. Think of things that can be incorporated into a virtual event and won’t be too difficult for your party guests to organize on their end.
Themes will vary by age, but we suggest a dance party, a tea party, a dessert party, or even a game night!
4. Prepare for the challenges
Don’t overthink things. Think about the logistics, and start eliminating the ideas that will be too difficult to organize online. Try to stick to themes that allow everyone to participate from their respective locations. Remember, this isn’t a show – it’s a party. Get your guests involved!
5. Decide your virtual birthday party platform
Businesses have been relying on virtual meeting platforms throughout the pandemic. Fortunately, most options are also available to use for recreational purposes as well.
Zoom is a popular favorite because it allows you to change the virtual background for free and has a list of incorporated games kids can play during the call. Skype is another option, as is Google Hangouts, which is notoriously easy to use.
6. Send out the invitations
Curious about how you should send invitations for a virtual birthday party? Don’t worry; it’s a lot easier than writing them out, one by one, and delivering the stack yourself.
Create an email list of everyone you plan to invite. That way, you can send out a blast invite to everyone on the list in one simple click. Be sure to let your guests know which platform you plan on using for the party so that they can download the app beforehand.
14 Best Virtual Birthday Party Ideas
With the theme for the party already decided, invitations sent out to friends and family, and a video chat platform approved, you’re almost there! All that’s left to do is think up a few games to play during the party. Check out the list below for some virtual birthday party ideas.
1. A masquerade party
Kids love dressing up! And a masquerade party will make things even more fun by introducing the element of disguise. You’ll have a blast watching the kids bopping around the chat room, trying to guess who is who. Plus, it’s a great way to engage guests who may be feeling a little shy.
2. A tea party with dolls and teddy bears
A tea party with some special toys is a great way to keep the kids entertained during a virtual event. Everyone can take turns showing off their setup and introducing their favorite dolls!
It also provides kids a way to engage in the activity within their own physical environment. Plus, it helps ensure everyone has access to something yummy to eat during the big event.
3. A virtual scavenger hunt
We love this idea for socially distanced events! Virtual scavenger hunts open up tons of opportunities. You can ask the kids to find easy items around the house and reward them based on how fast they accomplished the task. You can also incorporate different activities into the scavenger hunt list, like doing a TikTok dance, taking a selfie with a pet, or showing everyone the view from your window!
You can even break the party up into teams to foster a little more communication among the guests. Think of different ways you can reward the winning team!
4. A virtual escape room
This activity has become a popular team-building activity for businesses during the pandemic, so why not consider it for your next virtual event? Today, there are tons of virtual escape rooms for people of all ages – even young kids! These platforms provide private experiences for up to eight remote guests. Just be sure to share the invite with your guests before the scheduled event.
5. A baking class event
Pandemics may come and go, but birthday cake is forever. Organize a baking class for your virtual event so that everyone can enjoy some dessert before it’s time to say goodbye.
Pick out the type of cake you want to bake (make sure it’s not too difficult or that it doesn’t require obscure baking instruments). Be sure to note on your invite that all attendees will need some help from mom or dad during the party.
6. A TikTok virtual party
We all know how popular TikTok is these days. The app has introduced a ton of viral sensations over the past year. Choreography is one area that remains particularly popular among users.
Check out some of the latest TikTok dance trends. You can discuss dances the kids might want to learn with the other parents and what kinds of moves they’ll be comfortable with the kids performing.
Make sure everyone knows to have a phone nearby and the app installed before the party. You can even film the event and play it back for the kids to watch as a group. Or, if you want to take things one step further, you can create a TikTok account for the party and upload highlights onto the channel!
7. A Netflix watch party
Still looking for Virtual party ideas? How about a movie theme? Netflix has come out with a cool new feature that allows people to play a movie at the same site on different accounts.
All you have to do is confirm that all guests have Netflix and ask them to join your Netflix party. You can also get some good movie suggestions from Netflix. You can even send out a shared list of movie ideas and let everyone vote on which one they want to watch.
8. An arts and crafts theme
Make sure everyone knows to grab some glitter, colored pencils, and crayons before the party. They’ll need these materials to perform all the crafts you have planned for the big day!
Set up a station where the kids can perform some arts and crafts together. Ask them to focus these activities on celebrating the day and making birthday cards.
Family members are welcome to join and help their kids draw the cards and write personalized messages. Once finished, the guests can take a picture of themselves holding their finished cards or record a video with a special birthday message.
For more arts, crafts, and activities, check out the suggestions below:
9. A Karaoke and dance party
A dance party is a great way to keep the kids active and entertained during a birthday. It’s also an easy activity to perform remotely. Decide on what video-sharing platform you want to use for the party. Create a space for the kids to participate and set up the camera accordingly.
Be sure to ask the birthday boy or birthday girl what songs they want on the playlist! The kids will have a blast showing off their moves. You can even set up some challenges along the way. When you can sense that everyone needs a break, you can switch gears and start setting up for karaoke.
10. A magic party
Magicians and clowns are common birthday party staples. Unfortunately, live entertainment has become one of the most significant casualties of the pandemic, with performers looking for creative ways to continue their craft.
Today, you can find magicians, clowns, and costumed performers offering their services online. Invite them to join the birthday party chat. There are control options that will mute everyone on the call so that they can take center stage.
Listed below are some well-known performers that will deliver a fantastic magic show, even from home:
11. A royal birthday party
Here’s another fun craft project to do during a virtual birthday party: tell everyone to get some cardstock, crayons, and colored pencils to decorate their own crowns during the event. You should probably note that mom or dad will need to help out with cutting things into shape.
12. A Pictionary party
This one is an oldie but a goodie. Next up on our list of virtual birthday party ideas is Pictionary, “the game of the quick draw.”
Grab some pen and paper and set the kids up in front of the camera before the party starts. That way, they’ll be able to share what they draw during the challenges with the whole group. You can either buy the game or create one of your own, inspired by its thematic and challenges.
13. A virtual sports party
Exercise is important, even during a birthday party. Finding an activity that gets the kids up and moving can keep them from getting bored, distracted, or breaking down into a tantrum.
It also carries many other benefits, including helping improve the immune system, balance, bone health, and pain prevention. Of course, there are lots of different ways to introduce a little exercise into a kid’s party. We’ve narrowed things down to our four favorite activities. Check out the list below to learn more:
Hope the kids are ready to test their leg strength! The game is simple: everyone must position their lower back against the wall, assume a seated position, and hang tight. Whoever can wait it out the longest wins!
This one requires some help from mom or dad. Each duo must stand about 10 feet apart. Pass the ball back and forth. Make sure to bend your knees and only use your fingertips when making contact with the ball. If you don’t have a proper volleyball, or you’re not confident in your passing skills just yet, you can use a soft plastic ball instead.
Each group can take turns while the rest of the party roots them on remotely. The team to achieve the most uninterrupted passes wins!
Ping Pong Game
If you’ve ever played a game of beer pong, then you already know the rules. Grab a table to play on, arrange ten cups on either side and grab a handful of ping pong balls. Once everyone has set up, put a timer and see who can land the most balls inside the cups.
Make sure all players stand about 3 feet away from the table and only throw one ball at a time. Once the timer goes off, the kids can take turns counting their balls – whoever has the most wins!
This is a great one to incorporate into a virtual obstacle course! Get everyone jumping with a simple rope exercise. You don’t need to assign a goal or introduce the activity in terms of competition. The kids can simply jump around and enjoy themselves. Besides, it’s a great excuse to take a few photos of everyone up in the air looking silly!
14. A virtual video game party
Here’s a truth we hold to be self-evident: kids like video games. Like, a lot. Fortunately, you can now combine that affinity with another favorite: their birthdays.
The best part is that these activities were designed to connect players from afar, meaning you don’t need to make any major adjustments for a virtual birthday party.
Fortnite is a free-to-play Battle Royale game with multiple game modes for every type of player. It’s one of the most played and successful video games around.
The primary purpose of Fortnite is to stay alive for as long as possible. The kids can play as a team or individually. They have to collect building materials to construct different things, like protective covers, bridges, ramps, etc.
The best part? It’s cross-platform compatible! That means party guests can use an Xbox, computer, Playstation, or even a smartphone to play.
Roblox is an online platform where users can organize their own game or set up another world with friends or virtual explorers. The kids will be able to discuss and strategize along the way. They can choose what kind of buildings they can discuss or simply explore existing creations as a group. The possibilities are endless!
The purpose of the game is to build, explore, and most importantly, survive. Users must obtain resources and defeat a series of dangerous creatures along the way. You can even save time for them to discuss their favorite parts of the game before the party comes to an end! Minecraft introduces a magical world where kids are sure to put their imaginations to use.
More From Great Wolf Lodge
We hope you enjoyed our list of virtual birthday party ideas! Be sure to check out our blog for even more remote activities and fun things to do at home. If you are interested in celebrating in person, you can always join us at the lodge! Let us take care of the details while you enjoy the day. Our birthday party package includes:
- Birthday cake
- Pizza and drinks
- Water park passes for the day
As stated in our Paw Pledge, we are committed to keeping your family safe while you play. Social distancing and facemask guidelines are enforced according to local guidelines.