The Olympics are fun for everyone to watch - kids included - so why not have an Olympic-themed party this summer!
Thanks to Angie, a great mom & party planner, here's a great way to get your kids more involved during the Olympic Games with some outdoor activities and spirited fun!
Hosting a Kid-friendly Olympic Themed Party
When faced with choosing a theme for her son's birthday party, Angie thought it would be memorable to host an Olympic-themed party in a local park. The kids had a wonderful time and Angie graciously shared her photos & ideas below!
Whether you choose to have a formal celebration or just rally the family for a fun day, here are all the details you'll need to pull together your own Olympic-themed celebration this summer! We've also included affiliate links to some items that are sure to please & help in the planning too.
Decide on Your Events
Your first task is to choose which events will be included in your celebration. You can choose events that mirror the ones at the Olympic Games or come up with your own list of events.
Angie decided to combine some individual events and team events in her celebration and also made sure the events were very focused on the kids having fun!
- potato sack race (try this set of Burlap Potato Sacks which can be left plain or decorated)
- wheelbarrow race,
- hop on one foot,
- team tug-of-war (you can find various lengths for a Tug of War Rope to fit your group's size)
- three-legged race,
- a crab walk,
- dribbling a soccer ball around a small set of cones and
- a spider walk.
The final event at her celebration was a two team tug-of-war and she told me the kids just LOVED it!
And it doesn't all have to be sporting events either -- check our list of other Olympic-themed activities for kids if you want to add in some science, art or other fun ideas!
If your planning a Winter themed event, you could include sledding as a 'luge' race, have the kids make their own showshoes, set up a biathalon using nerf guns or take the kids ice skating.
Find a 'Host' Location
If you're planning to have track & field or outdoor events, look into reserving a local park or finding a large open area. Swimming events could be hosted at a friend's house or community pool.
In keeping with the Olympic theme, label your location as your "host site" if you're making invitations for the celebration.
Hydrate the Athletes
I just LOVE that Angie was so conscious to include healthy behaviors at her celebration. She supplied sports drinks (colorless and dye free) for the kids to drink during the competitions and printed lables with each child's name so they wouldn't get them mixed up.
If you just want to have water at your event, get a set of reusable Plastic Water Bottles that can easily be decorated and also a great party favor for kids to take home!
Other healthy behaviors you might also include at the event could be warm-up stretches, having fresh fruit available and reminding the athletes to get a good night's sleep to keep their bodies healthy.
Choose Your Countries & Represent!
Angie had a large group and decided to divide the boys into 5 teams. Each team had an assigned one of the colors from the five Olympic rings (red, blue, black, yellow and green). All team members were given sweatbands and a headband that color-coordinated with their team.
And I've received a slew of emails asking about the headbands the kids are wearing -- Amazon has great set of Terry Cloth Sports Headbands in more than a dozen different colors. If you're just looking for the wristbands, try this package of Multi Color Cotton Wristband with 12 colors in one pack!
Each team member also received a small flag from the country they represented -- if you're looking for something similar, try this set of International Flags kids to carry around as they move to different events (another great party favor to take home too!).
Remember to focus on team work and supporting one another in the games. In Angie's words, "We encouraged team spirit by giving each coach face paint markers and the teams had fun decorating their faces. Each boy was also given a flag of various countries."
Let the Games Begin
Decide how you would like to begin your celebration. You could go all out and have your own 'opening ceremony'.
And of most importance is the 'passing of the torch'. Since Angie was celebrating her son's birthday, the birthday boy led the way to the field with a fun torch (made from a piece of white cardstock and red, yellow and orange tissue paper tucked inside). Here's a great tutorial for making your own paper torch.
You might choose one child to be the torch bearer (maybe a younger sibling who isn't competing in the celebration) or you might have each child create & carrry their own torch to start the celebration.
As you hold the various events, make sure to emphasize the fun part of the games and focus on everyone doing their best. Remember the Olympic Creed states "the most important thing.. is not to win but to take part".
You can choose how you'd like to award the athletes and competing teams. And I just LOVE the idea for this party!
Angie made chocolate chip cookies and wrapped them in gold aluminum foil. She then attached red, white and blue ribbon with a hot glue gun and made labels that read, 'You're pure GOLD!'
"That way," said Angie, "every kid left with a gold medal".
And use these Gold Medal Party Awards as prizes for all participants and a great souvenir from the day!
At their closing awards ceremony, Angie and the parents handed out Honorable Mention ribbons, Fourth Place ribbons and then bronze, silver and gold medals - so each team received an award, plus their party favor cookies.
In the End, It's All For Fun
And what's a celebration without a fun way to gather in the end!
You might choose to have a cake with candy rings like Angie did for her party. Try using M&Ms or Skittles to decorate the cake. Or better yet, serve cupcakes with these Wold Flags Toothpick toppers.
Other fun food ideas include these great 'Olympic Torch' cake cones for kids, or this fun 'England's Flag' fruit pizza as a healthier option. You can also serve cultural dishes from each of the countries if you're planning lunch for the group!
On behalf of all of us who LOVE to host these types of fun events but just don't have the time to do all the planning - Thank You Angie!