World Party -6yr- Pin Nose on the Sphinx
Jason in Kaysville, Utah, USA
For my daughter's 6th birthday party, we planned an "around the world" trip. Using the computer, we created tickets for "Jessica Air" airlines, listing the tour group as her Birthday Party #6.
The invite looked like a plane ticket, with Departure time as the start of the birthday party, return ETA as the end of the party, and departure location as our house as international airport. "Please call ahead to confirm seating" and we changed the answering machine to say "Thank you for calling Jessica Air. All operators are currently busy. Please leave any confirmations after the tone." We got a chuckle or two out of that from the parents. The comment section of the ticket indicated that in-flight meals would be served.
For the party, I answered the door "Welcome to Jessica air. What is your name, please" (even to the people I knew) and checked their name off the list. Then I would point to the gift and say "I see you have luggage. Skycap!" and my son would come running to take the gift. We gave each person a carry on suitcase (bag with handles), stickers and crayons to decorate it with, and took their picture for a passport (taken with a digital camera, printed out on labels and stuck to a prepared "passport" book). The "airport" was decorated with a sign listing flight times, departures, and status, as well as "Jessica Air" and the gate.
We then boarded flight 127 when I removed the baby gate from the kitchen and told them the flight was ready to board. I had a video projector set up and some pre-edited video that I had used from FlightLevel350.com (all cockpit videos). Since most of the kids had never been on a flight before, it was very exciting to them. During the flight, the video would cut to pictures of the flag for the next country (music relevant to the destination played), the sites, and the money used and I would tell them about all of it. I printed out the money and gave them each some of it. We would then land (in the video), and go down the plane's stairs to the family room. My son was the customs official and would stamp their passport, put in a sticker (the flag) and give them another sticker to put into their passport.
We visited 6 locations (7 planned, but ran out of time).
1-London, England. Pictures of Big Ben. Decorated with a big ben 3-d puzz and had them play freeze (like the british guards in the pictures). Compass given as the souvenir to help guide their way around the world.
2-Venice, Italy. Pictures of Leaning Tower. Brought out two duplo boxes and had all of them try to construct the tallest tower they could. Spirograph given as the souvenir (relating to Michelangelo paintings and Da Vinci paintings as shown in the presentation). The flight from Venice to Cairo had an in-flight meal of pizza and a cupcake with a foreign toothpick flag on it.
3-Cairo, Egypt. Played "Pin the Nose on the Sphinx". Gave out a puzzle (relating to the Riddle of the Sphinx of Giza". Pictures included the pyramids).
4-Antartica. Ice Fishing (standard fishing pole over a white blanket with somebody attaching toys behind it). No customs official. Pictures included penguins.
5-Beijing, China. At this point we were running out of time, so we didn't get off the plane. I explained that the communist in the country did not allow us to tour at this time, so we would practice picking up the gummy fish with chopsticks. The 6 year olds couldn't figure out the chopsticks, so I let them have at the fish however they could grab them.
6-Mazatlan, Mexico. Gave each of them little maracas and used them to play "Pato, Pato, Ganso" (duck, duck, goose) while my daughter opened the luggage (presents). Each flight was different. One in a twin engine plane, one in a single engine plane, a few in different commercial planes, one in snow, one in rain, one at night. We never made it back to the states on the 7th trip.
I thanked the parents for coming all the way to Mexico to pick up their children. \*LOL\* Got many a puzzled look from them. During the party, I had no idea if any of the kids were having fun. They were so overwhelmed by all of it, I thought it was bombing big time because they were just speechless.
But the next day, I had several parents tell me how their children just couldn't stop talking about it. While it was not an expensive party, it was very time consuming to prepare (spend about 1 1/2 weeks on the whole thing). Well worth it. The tour pictures are great and will make great thank you notes.