Winter birthday parties can be a challenge to plan. Rather than letting kids run around and play outside for a few hours, you’re often limited to the indoors and have to come up with entertaining ways to keep the fun going. We’ve put together a list of winter birthday ideas to help you plan, whether your little one is a toddler or a tween.
This guide will help you throw a memorable birthday celebration even in the bad-weather months. We offer suggestions for winter party themes, birthday invitations, food options, kid’s birthday decorations, and engaging games. Keep reading for all of our best tips to throw a playful winter birthday party for kids of all ages.
Where To Have a Birthday Party in the Winter
You’ll likely need to find indoor activities to keep the kids busy during cold-month birthday parties. Many of the ideas on our list can be done at home, though a few are field trips that require transportation.
Birthday parties at home are great because you don’t have to worry about confirming reliable transportation for all of your guests (and yourselves!). Parents can stay at the celebration or drop children off, depending on their age. Plus, there are lots of outdoor Christmas games that can be used for birthday entertainment.
But if a special outing seems more fitting for your celebration, the best places to have a winter party will cater to large groups of children and provide hours of entertainment in one place. Along with our winter-themed suggestions, you could also consider arcades, bowling alleys, skating rinks, or laser tag centers.
Winter Birthday Party Ideas for Toddlers
If you’re throwing a bash for kids 5 years old and under, here are some winter-themed party ideas fit for toddlers and preschoolers.
Frozen Birthday Party Theme
If your toddler shouts all the lyrics from “Let It Go” from the rooftops every chance they get, use it to your advantage and throw a Frozen-themed birthday party. It’s perfect for the colder months and most winter-themed party supplies will work. Plus, party stores and online retailers are stocked with Frozen party necessities because it’s a very popular theme for kids.
For Frozen decorations, stick to a blue, purple, silver, and white color scheme. You can also accent with silver glitter and sparkles. Hang blue and white streamers and twinkle lights for a beautiful photo backdrop on a bare wall.
A white-tiered cake with an Olaf face would make a fun addition to the food table. You could also serve snowflake iced sugar cookies as favors that guests can take home.
To keep the kids entertained, try hosting some Frozen trivia for older toddlers or have Frozen playing on the TV in the background. You could also pin the tail on Sven or pin the nose on Olaf! If the kids are okay with bundling up to play outside, you could build a snowman or get crafty with this Frozen-inspired ice chalk.
Winter Wonderland Birthday Theme
Go glam for your little one with a winter wonderland theme. Glittery accents, glowing lights, and whimsical decor give a beautiful touch to a toddler’s winter-themed birthday. Select pretty winter flower invitations to share the theme with guests so they know what to expect.
Stick to a neutral color palette with white, silver, gold, and pops of light blue. The advantage of this theme is that it can be as fancy or casual as you choose. Decorate with balloons, faux snow, glittery snowflakes, and battery-powered twinkle lights for a warm kid-friendly tone.
Consider a build-your-own sundae bar with wintery treats like candy canes, snowflake sprinkles, and lots and lots of whipped cream. And to keep guests busy, try this printable snowman number game where kids can roll dice and cover their snowman with fun baubles like erasers or pom-poms.
Winter Animal Birthday Party Theme
If your little one is an animal lover, you could throw a birthday full of polar bears, penguins, reindeer, and arctic foxes for an arctic animal theme. Choose a winter woodland animal invitation and have that help guide your winter birthday ideas.
Opt for rustic-themed decor in this theme. For things like tablecloths or napkins, try a red buffalo check pattern or plaid. You could also use burlap or wood decor in your table settings. Get some extra use out of any miniature Christmas trees you have. Use them as pine tree accent decor throughout your party. They can be completely bare and undecorated or you could adorn them with some faux snow or rustic garlands.
Have the kids build an igloo—or build one before they arrive—using couch cushions and a white sheet and let them snuggle up with snacks and a cartoon movie. For a quick and easy snack idea, try this reindeer chow snack mix.
For a fun game, try hiding animal crackers in large bowls of whipped cream that looks like snow. Have the kids use spoons to dig out the animals and eat any of their found treasures!
Snow Much Fun
Kids will have snow much fun with a snowman-themed party! This can be a simple theme that focuses on snowmen, snow, and ice. You can add your child’s age to the kids’ party invitations or the decor by saying, “It’s snow much fun to be 4!”
To decorate, keep things simple with white and blue, and silver. You can use snowman decor to keep it playful and fun. Decorate with fake snowballs that can either be for looks only or can be used in a friendly indoor snowball fight during the winter birthday party.
Stay warm and play snowman games indoors, or bundle everyone up and get creative by building snowmen outside. If you opt for indoor play, wrap several different-sized shipping boxes (you probably have some from your holiday shopping) in a plain white paper. Provide cut-out paper carrot noses, coal eyes, and buttons, and use pipe cleaners for arms. Kids can build easy and crafty indoor snowmen.
Serve snow cones with different flavor syrup options. You can easily find a snow cone maker or shaved ice machine online to purchase. Or ask a local party supply store if they have one available to rent. Bottles of flavors are also sold online and are easy to find for this chilly indoor idea.
Hot Chocolate Party
Let kids enjoy a little sugar rush with a hot chocolate party. For decor, a red and aqua color palette goes well with the brown and white of hot chocolate and marshmallows. Keep things fun, bright, and cheery to go with this sweet theme.
For a hot cocoa bar, stock up on hot chocolate mix and keep a thermos of warm milk on standby. Or you could make a big pot of hot chocolate and keep it warm for hours in a large Crock-Pot. Stock a variety of mason jars with cocoa fixings like marshmallows, candy canes, whipped cream, and anything else you think your guests would enjoy.
Kids can get creative and compare cocoa flavors and can sit down around a big table lined with paper to color as they sip. The paper can protect your table from spills and make for a fun activity for kids while they drink. Send all the kids home with their own hot chocolate mix filled with their personal favorite mix-ins.
For a fun and simple game, have kids try to throw mini marshmallows into empty cocoa mugs and see who can get the most. Then they can use these marshmallows in their hot chocolate later for a sweet treat.
Winter Birthday Party Ideas for Older Kids
If you’ve got older kids and need some inspiration for fun winter birthday ideas, we’ve got a few more up our sleeve! Some of these party ideas can be created at home or are a fun holiday excursion to get everyone out of the house.
Ice Skating Party
If your town has a nearby ice skating rink, an ice skating party is a fun way to get kids active and out and about. We’ve also got a couple of ideas for you to host your own indoor ice skating party so everyone stays warm.
For decor, stick to blues and silvers to mimic the colors of ice. You can find ice skating decor at party supplies stores or online. If you can’t find as much ice skating decor, look for decor featuring cold-weather gear like mitten garlands or decor with hats and scarves. And for favors, you could send everyone home with these cute ice skating lollipops.
Check with your local skating rink to see if you can bring food and drinks with you. If so, bring easy-to-transport things like a thermos of hot chocolate and cupcakes in a travel container. Skip the ice cream if you’re unsure of how you’d keep it frozen.
If you’re hosting a skating party at your home, clear a large spot in your house where kids can “skate” in their socks wearing chunky scarves, gloves, and hats. Loop videos of ice skating competitions on your TV and have kids practice loops and jumps. Give them pads of paper with the numbers 1-10 written so they can rate each other’s skating tricks.
Sledding Birthday Party
Much like the ice skating theme, this allows you to get kids out of the house. Find a local sledding hill and get everyone together outdoors for toboggan races on a snowy afternoon. Or if you prefer to throw a sledding celebration at home, we’ve got some inspiration for you.
If you’ll be sledding at home, pick up a few extra sleds from the dollar store if guests can’t bring their own. For decor, you can choose from pretty much any winter-themed supplies! Since this is a fun and active party theme, try bold colors like blue, red, orange, and yellow, and don’t skimp on the cozy blankets and pillows to warm everyone up after they come inside.
A hot cocoa bar is a perfect idea to warm everyone up after a few hours out in the snow. You can also send your guests home with fun, homemade hot chocolate kits in a jar.
Winter Movie Slumber Party
A slumber party is a classic birthday theme. Give it a cold-weather twist by adding in some fun winter themes throughout the night.
Decorate with sparkling snow, and twinkly lights, and use blue and silver decorations. Create a cozy movie-watching area full of fluffy pillows and cozy blankets where kids can curl up and watch their favorite Christmas movies.
For food, stick to movie-style goodies. Lots of popcorn, and boxes of popular candy. For the main course, you can’t go wrong with a delicious (and easy) delivery pizza. Follow a few simple tips to throw a slumber party and you’ll have a bunch of tuckered-out teens ready to curl up and watch movies with a bowl of popcorn and some great snacks.
Christmas Crafts Party
Allow kids to get creative with a fun winter or Christmas crafts party. Decorate using some homemade crafts you or your kids have already made yourselves. Use them as inspiration for what your guests can create during your fun-filled craft day.
Serve easy finger foods for kids to enjoy while they create their masterpieces. Pigs in a blanket are a fun cozy treat. Chocolate-covered pretzels that the kids can decorate themselves as an additional (end edible!) craft are another great option.
Rather than games, have a few craft stations set up where kids can use their imaginations instead of a competition. Here are some fun and easy crafts to do with kids.
- Paint a wooden ornament for the Christmas tree
- Create homemade slime
- Mold clay into mugs, pots, and vases
- Tie-dye tee shirts
And one of the best parts about creating crafts as an activity at a birthday is that the child gets to take their creation home with them as a favor and to show off to their family.
Get cozy by the fire (or fireplace!) with this sweet and toasty theme. Invite guests with a bonfire invitation so they know you’ll be roasting up some tasty treats.
Decorate with rustic decorations using wood accents, burlap, and buffalo check. Utilize any campfire things you have at home to make it feel as authentic as possible. Unpack some sleeping bags to create a big, soft area for kids to play together during the party.
If you don’t have a fireplace, you can easily make s’mores in the oven. Keep the campfire theme going with the food by serving roasted hot dogs and hot cider. And for entertainment, everyone can play family-friendly board games for a fun indoor activity. Jenga, Candyland, Twister, and Pictionary are all great games that all ages can enjoy.
Celebrate a Joyful Winter Birthday With Friends and Family
Kids’ birthday parties should be fun and casual. Let the kids lead the way as you offer up ideas for what to do, but ultimately leave it up to them. While some of our ideas may sound great, your kids might put their own spin on the games or might request a different menu. Use our guide to get started and create a memorable winter birthday for your child this year.
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