I asked Evan want kind of party he wanted for his 3rd birthday and he said “Dinosaurs”. I told him he could have anything he wanted – trucks, trains, pirates, diggers, ANYTHING – and he said “Dinosaurs”. So we went with dinosaurs. It ended up being an excellent and fun birthday theme.
It seems that no matter how much I try to stick to a color scheme I always end up with ALL THE COLORS. But since according to Dino Dan the dinosaurs WERE all the colors I figured I was safe as long as I toned it down with some natural accents. I got lots of moss, fake leaves, and branches from places like the craft store and the dollar store. All the tablecloths are cut from one big roll of burlap I bought in the garden department at Lowes. I made a zillion dinosaur “terrariums” (an idea I got from Mandy) with a bag of garden rocks (also from Lowes – $5 and I barely used 1/10th of them!) moss and tiny dinos left over from the favor boxes. The backdrop to the food table is two rolls of cork I bought at JoAnn’s. I cut every triangle pennant by hand with pinking sheers and printed the banners on my little printer.
For food, I had three sections: carnivores, herbivores and dessertivores. I thought I was pretty cute and clever, until I started looking at dino party supplies on Etsy and saw I was DEFINITELY not the first person to come up with “dessertivores”. It was still cute.
Dinosaur shaped sandwiches (PB&J and cucumber)
Dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets
Mini hot dogs
Individual hummus and veggie cups
Ice Age punch (blue punch with tiny dinos frozen into ice cubes floating in it)
Juice for the kiddos
Fossil cookies (I made mine with almonds)
Cereal bar “bones”
No-bake nest cookies (I did peanut butter & chocolate)
Dirt pudding cups (chocolate pudding & crushes Oreos)
Dinosaur shortbread cookies with royal icing
White wedding cupcakes with cream cheese cake batter frosting
Dino fruit snacks and candy eggs
And an AMAZING cake made by my friend Heather (I HIGHLY recommend her if you’re in the Eastern CT area and would be happy to put you in touch with her)
Since Evan and his friends are all old enough now for games and activities but the thought of trying to wrangle 25 kids into organized activities makes me break out in hives I planned lots of free-play fun.
We filled our old kiddie pool with sand for a fossil dig and hid tons of green eggs filled with stickers and candy for a dinosaur egg hunt. I also ordered a couple of inexpensive dinosaur coloring books from Amazon and dinosaur shaped crayons for a quiet, inside activity.
A few more details:
I saw dino party hats on Pinterest but didn’t really have enough ambition to make them from scratch. Just a few days before the party Evan said he NEEDED party hats so I dragged last year’s 2nd birthday party hats from Target out of my paper goods storage box and turned them into dino hats. It was really easy – they’re folded together with a tab, not glue or tape, so I just opened them flat, cut a piece of colored paper into a “spine”, cut a slot in the spine for the tab and reassembled with a little tape to reinforce it. I did a terrible job of explaining that, but trust me – if you take a look at a store-bought party hat you will definitely see how easy this is.
Between the hats and the masks we had quite a few tiny dinosaurs terrorizing the party.
My friend Amanda mailed me these leggings 2 seconds after I said we were doing a dinosaur party. So perfect!
Brilliant idea I stole from my friend Cheri – Take’n’toss cups for all the kids. No worries about juice or punch spills on my floors and they’re cheap enough to toss out if they get ruined.
I think that’s everything! Scroll to the bottom of this post for links to where I got stuff and as always let me know if you have any questions. I’m more than happy to share and info!
OK, just a few more pictures (the not awesome ones were taken by me)…
Resources and Sources:
Pinterest party board for inspiration
Template for straw flags
Custom stamp from Tickled Pink Paper + Ink
Paper straws & favor supplies from In The Clear
Evan’s dino shirt – Gymboree
Photography by Open Shutter (Website)
Dinosaur stickers – Amazon
Dinosaur cookie cutters – Amazon
Dinosaur sandwich cutter – Amazon
Dinosaur coloring books – Amazon
Melissa & Doug dinosaur stamps – Amazon
Dinosaur cupcake wrappers & toppers – Amazon
Dinosaur banner (I disassembled half to put on my cork backdrop) – Amazon
Dinosaur skeletons for fossil dig – Amazon and Oriental Trading (cheaper from Amazon)
Dinosaur masks – Oriental Trading Company
Dinosaur crayons – Oriental Trading Company
Dinosaur candies – Oriental Trading Company
Inflatable dinosaurs – Oriental Trading Company
Giant inflatable T-Rex – Amazon
Brown paper bags – Oriental Trading Company
Let me know if you see anything I missed or forgot to link!
(Oh and in case you are confused compared to previous party set-ups, we rearranged the house a few weeks ago and flipped the dining/family rooms. I was worried it wouldn’t be a good for the party but it was great! With the new set-up – and the patio – I have tons of space to invite even more people next time.)