Chocolate Factory -7yr- Wonka Golden Ticket
Katie in Pocatello,Idaho,U.S.A.
May 2008 Winner
For my daughter Corinn's 7th birthday we planned a Charlie and the Chocolate Factory party. My daughter loves the book and both movies. She and my husband helped me plan it, and we got some of our ideas from this site.
For the INVITATIONS I bought gold cardstock and downloaded the Willy Wonka font on my computer. I printed Wonka's Golden ticket and then Greetings to you, the lucky finder of this golden ticket from Mr. Wonka and Corinne _____! Tremendous things are in store for you. We invite you to come to the chocolate factory and be our guest for the afternoon. The day we have chosen for this visit is May 3, 2008. On this day, and no other, you must come to the factory gates (address) at 2:00 pm sharp! Do not be late and be certain to have this ticket with you. In your wildest dreams you cannot imagine the surprises that await you! I then wrapped each ticket around a Hershey bar (still in the wrapper) and then wrapped that in silver wrapping paper. Then, I made a new candy bar wrapper out of purple paper with the word WONKA on it. My daughter's teacher read the book to the class and on the day that they finished the book, I came to her class and talked to them about the book. I told them that Mr. Wonka had a new factory here in town and he was inviting some lucky kids to come and see it. Then, Corinne passed out the Wonka bars to her classmates. They tore them open and were so excited to have a golden ticket!
For DECORATIONS, I rented a large building and had purple, white, and yellow tablecloths on all of the tables. On the walls, I made giant candy by turning two small paper plates face to face and wrapping them in sparkly tissue paper. I tied each end with curling ribbon to look like hard candy. I did the same thing with large paper plates and I glued a dowel rod at the bottom of the plate and tied the ribbon around the bottom to look like a sucker. The suckers lined the sidewalk leading up to the door which had balloons and large W's (Wonka font) on it. I also made giant Wonka bars out of foam board, silver wrapping paper, and purple cellophane. I printed out the word WONKA and cut them out and glued them to the candy bar underneath the cellophane. I had bouquets of swirl balloons that looked like the ones from the Gene Wilder movie. I also had strands of gumdrop garland (they looked like real gumdrops on a string) and streamers that went from one end of the room to the other.
On the tables I had square plates with giant Hershey kisses in the middle and jelly bean candies all around it. (I bought the jelly beans for super cheap after Easter). I also had clear vases that I filled with jelly beans and stuck a windmill swirl in the vase to look like a flower. In one corner of the room, we had a 7 foot gumball machine that my husband had made out of plywood and I painted. We used it for a game but I will get to that in a minute. In another corner of the room, we brought in an outdoor pond that you would place in your yard. We lined the corner in green tablecloth to protect the floor and then we put silk plants and trees all around the pond with giant suckers and candy canes sticking out. My husband put a fountain in the pond and we filled it with cocoa water. It looked like a real chocolate river and it made the whole room smell like chocolate!! We also used this for a game. We had the music soundtracks from both of the movies playing in the background as well as the songs Sugar, Sugar and I want Candy
ACTIVITIES: As the children arrived, I had oompa loompas (my brother and 2 nieces) ready to take their golden tickets and give them a name tag (there were 26 children in all). They all played outside on the playground until it was time for Mr. Wonka to come. When all the guests were there, they lined up outside the door and we played the Willy Wonka song from the newer movie with Johnny Depp. All the kids were watching the door in anticipation when my husband, dressed as Willy Wonka, came zooming up from behind, honking his horn on a purple scooter with a large W on it. He talked to them for a minute and had them all laughing because he forgot that it was the day of the factory tour and he didn't know why they were there. Eventually, he led them inside where they all sat down at the tables we had in a U-shape in the center of the room. At each seat, I had made a two story, split-level chocolate factory out of chocolate graham crackers and royal icing. Each child had their own factory, a bag of icing, and a plate full of candy (sixlets, juju's, M&M's, gobstoppers, chiclets, lifesavers, etc) to decorate with. Mr. Wonka explained that he needed some ideas for other factories he was building around the world so he wanted them to each come up with a new design for him. As the kids were decorating their factories, the oompa loompas were walking around with trays of mini eclairs and cream puffs to serve to the adults. (We had seating set up for the adults around the perimeter of the room.) When the kids finished their factories, we put labels with their names on each one and moved them to another area to dry and be taken home later. Then, each child got an empty gift bag with their name on it to use for the games.
The other activity that we had involved WONKA VISION. My husband, Willy Wonka, took the kids into the foyer. He had taken 2 broken TV's and hollowed them out for this activity. He talked about how the original Wonka Vision worked and how it wasn't practical to take a giant candy bar and have it come out a regular-sized candy bar from your TV. He was inventing something new where you put the ingredients into one TV and have the finished candy come out of the Wonka Channel on your TV at home. He started putting pieces of tin foil, sugar, and other ingredients into one of the TV's. Then he turned it on, and a giant W appeared on the screen. In his hand, he had a remote control. He had engineered the other TV with a fog machine and a conveyor belt with a bucket full of candy. He controlled the TV from across the room and it started smoking. The kids were all wondering what was happening when all of a sudden, Hershey kisses, tootsie rolls, and miniature candy bars started flying out of the VCR slot. It was like a mechanical pinata! The kids loved it! We had to do it in two groups because of the amount of kids.
GAMES: The children all started going to the different games we had set up around the room. The first game was the giant gumball machine I had mentioned earlier. We made 4 circle bean bags that looked like gumballs. We had cut out 3 holes in the gumball machine among the other gumballs that were painted on. The children had to do a bean bag toss and try to get the gumballs through the hole. My husband had engineered the machine so that when they made it through the hole, the bean bag returned to them out of the silver slot at the bottom of the gumball machine. It also had a giant knob on it so that after the kids had practiced, an oompa loompa turned the knob and told them to throw again. This time, my husband engineered it so that when they threw the bean bag into the hole, it actually released a giant jawbreaker (They each weighed 1/3 of a lb)! We told them they were everlasting gobstoppers. The next game was the Violet Beauregarde Blueberry Juicer. I took blue balloons and filled them with water so they were round like a blueberry. I had printed out a girls face, feet, and hands on blue cardstock and taped them onto the balloon so that it looked like Violet after she blows up into a blueberry. The kids had to help save Violet by pricking her with a pin and squeezing the juice out into a blue bowl. This game got wet, but the kids loved it!
Next, we had a game at the chocolate river. We had printed pictures of Augustus Gloop off the internet and taped them back to back with 3 metal washers in between the paper. We laminated it with packing tape and it looked like a bookmark with Augustus Gloop on each side. Then, my husband glued very strong magnets onto the hands of a large lego guy that we said was an oompa loompa. He tied string around his waist and then tied it to a large plastic candy cane. The kids had to help the oompa loompa fish Augustus out of the chocolate river. Outside, we had a game called gobstopper popper. We had a small parachute that had multiple colors on it. Each child grabbed a handle, and that is what color they were. Then we filled the parachute with colored balls. The kids popped the parachute up and down until all of the balls had flown off. The last ball to be popped off was the winning ball. Whatever color that ball was, the child holding that color on the parachute won. We kept playing until everyone had won.
At each game, the kids were winning Wonka bucks that I had made on my computer. These were used for the party favors at the Wonka store which I will explain later. For the last game, I had all of the kids get their gifts for the birthday girl and sit in a large circle. I had filled 4 golden eggs with a $5 Wonka buck. We played Pass the Golden Egg to the Wonka music. When the music stopped, whoever had the golden eggs, got to take the prize inside and then give their gift to the birthday girl. This really helped so that it wasn't so boring for the kids watching so many presents being opened.
COSTUMES: The Oompa Loompas had orange faces and green hair. Willy Wonka wore black pants and a black vest with a bright dress shirt. He also wore a very bright clown tie we had found at the Dollar store, as well as a top hat and crazy sunglasses.
PARTY SNACKS: I had the party from 2-4 pm so that I wouldn't have to worry about too much food. I did have the eclairs and cream puffs for the adults. I also had bowls of Jelly Bellys and pretzels sitting out to snack on. I had 2 different tables with chocolate fountains. I had trays of regular marshmallows, strawberry marshmallows, and toasted coconut marshmallows on bamboo skewers, as well as pretzel sticks to dip in the fountains. For drinks, I had clear punch bowls filled with chocolate milk, and fizzy lifting drinks which was Sprite poured into a punch bowl filled with colorful, cubed jello jigglers that they could slurp up through a fat straw. The kids loved this and it looked really neat served in clear plastic cups. I also had tiered dessert stands filled with chocolate cupcakes in gold cupcake liners with chocolate frosting and mini gold wrapped Wonka chocolate eggs (bought at Easter time) and gold curling ribbon on top. These were for the adults and extras in case there wasn't enough cake.
The CAKE was a large chocolate sheet cake. I frosted it green to look like grass. I unwrapped 6 Ding Dongs and piled them in a pyramid shape in the top corner of the cake, then I covered them in green frosting until it looked like a mountain and you couldn't see the Ding Dongs. I put chocolate covered candy that looked like rocks all over the mountain. I left an entrance to the mountain so that it looked like a cave, and coming out of the cave was the chocolate river where I hollowed out some of the cake and filled it with chocolate pudding. I made a path out of a Fruit by the Foot roll-up that led across a Ding Dong standing upright in the river for a rounded bridge. The path was lined with mini M&M's and the bridge had a mini candy cane at each corner. Then, I put candy rocks randomly throughout the cake as well as twisted and swirly lollipops at different heights for trees. I used a grass decorating tip to put grass patches throughout the cake. The bottom border of the cake was made up of Nerds Rope candy. I topped it off with a large number 7 when we sang Happy Birthday.
PARTY FAVORS: Finally, to end the party, each child had collected $9 Wonka bucks from the various games. I had a WONKA CANDY SHOP that I had hidden behind some sliding doors until the end of the party. As the parents arrived to pick up their kids, they got to spend their Wonka bucks. The Candy Shop was on a big Baker's rack stand. On each level, I had a sign that said 4/$1, 2/$1, $1, OR $5. On the bottom rack, the kids got to turn in a Wonka buck for a crazy straw and 3 assorted Wonka candies like Nerds, Sweet-tarts, or Laffy Taffy. On the next shelf, they got to turn in 2 Wonka bucks and pick 4 things from the shelves. They got to choose from big Wonka chocolate golden eggs, lollipops, Hubba Bubba bubble gum, marshmallow ropes, or Wonka chocolate-flavored purple candy canes(Christmas clearance). The shelf for $1 had assorted candy bars like Reese's, M&M's, Twix, Skittles, KitKats, and Sixlets. The top shelf was for the $5 Wonka buck they had earned during the Golden Egg pass game. It had King-sized Symphony or Hershey bars, or they could pick a Giant Hershey kiss (which I had also got on clearance for $1 after Valentine's Day). I also gave each child a silver toothbrush to add to their goody bags.
This party was a huge hit. The kids at Corinne's school are still talking about it. I started planning for this party in December after Corinne saw Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at a Reader's Theater and we decided it would be fun to really get a Golden ticket. Because of the amount of candy and kids, I watched for all the sales and clearance after Christmas, Valentine's Day, and Easter. I also waited for candy bars to go on sale 4/$1 at our grocery store and I ended up getting the giant candy bars 4/$3. The bubble gum I got in a 4-pack at the Dollar store. I also shopped at a local Discount Store where I paid less than a dollar for each of the tablecloths, plates, napkins, streamers, party trays, toothbrushes, goody bags, and assorted candy for the chocolate factories. If you have time to shop ahead, it can really save you money, especially if you are throwing a party with this many kids! My daughter had a great birthday and she is already thinking about next year's theme!