Reptile fans will love this fun reptile birthday party! A cool DIY snake cake, a reptile obstacle course that led to a den of (stuffed snakes), and a hands-on snake and lizard experience were a few of the highlights from the party.
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Last weekend we celebrated my oldest son’s eight birthday with a reptile party. We had such a great time with friends– playing together outside, enjoying good food, and of course, getting to hold and touch some neat reptiles!
Keep reading to check out..
- The Set Up
- The Fun
- The Food
- Materials List
- More Party Ideas
Fun Reptile Birthday Party
The Set Up
This was the first year that I used our mantle for party decorations, but I loved it and I will likely do this again for future parties! With the exception of the balloon, everything I used were items I already had around the house.
The chalkboard is from Home Depot. You can get a large piece of chalkboard and get it cut to whatever sizes you want. I asked for mine to be cut into two pieces, one 2/3 the original size, and the other 1/3. The larger one is the one I used here.
The balloon is from Target, as is the wooden circle banner. To do the reptile banner, I printed a page of reptile silhouettes I found online, then just taped them to the banner because I want to keep it reusable.
The J is a a piece I pulled from the boys’ room, and then finally, I just put up different sized pictures of the birthday boy (also just found around the house).
The rest of the decorations were pretty minimal. I bought brown craft paper from the Dollar Store and crumpled them so they would look like trees, then hung green streamers to be vines. We tucked in a few rubber snakes here and there for effect.
The only other decor was something my son created and wanted to be used in the party. He painted the inside of a box to be a jungle, and used craft sticks and construction paper to complete it. The box became home to a brown snake.
The main activity I planned for the party was hiring a local reptile company (Top Notch Exotics) in our area to come and do a demonstration with several ball pythons and a gecko. There was a good variety of appearances and sizes of the reptiles, which helped to keep the kids’ interest during the demo.
Sierra, the owner, was so great at explaining different features of the snakes and answering the kids’ (and adults) questions. Her snakes are very people/kid friendly so the kids were able to touch and hold several different snakes.
Overall I was really impressed with the demonstration and so happy at how well the kids did! Many of the kids had never held snakes before, but were willing to try something new. Everyone was calm and interested. My kids especially were eager to hold every snake they could!
SNAKE HUNT OBSTACLE COURSE
This was the only “organized” game at the party. And I use the term organized loosely. I had an idea to do an obstacle course that would end with the kids finding a stuffed snake to take home. I ran out of time to put together any kinds of signs or whatnot, but what we did ended up being just fine.
A friend helped me to set up a short obstacle course in the backyard. We used a black hose and told the kids they had to “follow the snake” to get the prize. The course went under the hammock, through the tire swing, through a box, and then the kids had to crawl like a lizard and then chomp like a crocodile until they reached the play set.
I always try to make a party favor that guests can take home and enjoy after the party. We’ve had tool belts, dinosaur tails, wall decor, gem cards, dart belt pouches, art easels, and now stuffed snakes.
I used the pattern for these DIY travel buddies to make the snakes, except that I made them about half as long (but just as wide). Since I was able to use fabric that I already had on hand, it only cost about $5 worth of stuffing to make the snakes.
When the kids weren’t holding snakes or running through the obstacle course, they were simply playing together in the yard. We are fortunate to have a big backyard which is mostly shaded. Over the years we have added more things for the kids to do so there is a lot for everyone. The tire swing was added the day before the party so it was a big hit.
Also, with so many older kids who love my littles, I had plenty of hands-free time to coordinate the party, make sure everyone had what they needed, and chat with the adults. It was so lovely!
Since the party started at 4pm, we planned on grilling hot dogs to keep things simple. I picked up a LOT of beef hot dogs from Costco and found buns at Aldi (marked down to $0.25 a bag!). I made baked beans and super cheesy macaroni and cheese in my Instant Pots.
In addition to the hot food, we had fruit, chips, and veggie straws set out for everyone to snack on as they liked. I told the guests they could contribute sides if they wanted, so we also had potato salad and jello.
I set up the usual drink station with barely sweet Instant Pot tea, lemonade, and water. Easy.
I went with a Costco cake again this year, but ordered it undecorated so I could decorate it myself. My plan was to use colored M&M’s like this dinosaur cake, however the local store no longer had the individual dispenser of M&M’s so I had to devise a Plan B.
Instead of M&M’s, I bought chocolate “rocks” and smaller candy coated chocolates from 5 Below. My kids were thrilled because they absolutely love this store.
(You can tell how hot it was outside the day we picked up the cake, because the icing melted off one side of the cake. I just covered the wonky area with rocks…)
TREAT BAGS ::
Besides the stuffed snakes, we also put together small treat bags for our friends. We used inexpensive clear treat bags from Target, then filled them with:
- Reptile Tattoos (Amazon)
- Snake Tattoos (Amazon)
- Colored Snakes (Dollar Store)
- Snake “Fireworks” (Dollar Store)
- Sticky Lizards (Amazon)
- Gummy Snakes (Dollar Store)
OTHER PARTY SUPPLIES ::
- 5 27″ Rubber Snakes (Amazon)
- Brown craft paper (Dollar Store)
- green streamers (Dollar Store)
- gray plates & plastic forks (Target)
- black vinyl tablecloth (Target)
- grass tablecloth (Target)
- gray balloons (Target)
- gold “8” balloon (Target)
And that’s it!
We had a great time and I am so thankful for our friends who came out to celebrate with us! I always enjoy seeing what my kids are interested in over the years, and what themes they want for their parties. Before too long, I’m going to have to give in and try to figure out how to do a Lord of the Rings party…
Thanks again to Sierra from Top Notch Exotics. All the kids LOVED the demo! If you’re in the Triangle/Triad area and are interested in hosting your own reptile party or are looking for a good breeder for a new pet, you should check them out!
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