Activities

Throw a carnival party!

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, step right up to this fun-filled extravaganza.

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Welcome your guests to an old-fashioned carnival with balloons and games galore. No carnival is complete without a popcorn stand. To make yours, pick up rolls of tickets, washi tape, twine, plastic baggies, coloured construction paper and clothespins from your local dollar store. Start by creating the outline of your stand on a blank wall using washi tape. Hang lines of tickets from the stand’s “counter” using washi tape and cut out letters from construction paper to label your stand. Next, stuff plastic baggies with flavoured popcorn, then fold a rectangular piece of construction paper (decorated with polka-dot stickers) over the opening and staple shut. Tape the ends of two long pieces of twine to your wall, just under your sign. Clothespin baggies to the twine, creating two rows of hanging popcorn. Come game time, the kids will have a blast with activities like ball and spoon race, knock ’em down, “stilt” walking and poke-a-cup. To satisfy the hungry crowd, serve up nosh like hot dogs and hamburgers, corn on the cob and pink lemonade—with several sides of popcorn, of course.

HOW TO MAKE A POKE-A-CUP PRIZE BOARD

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1. You’ll need a foam board, glue gun, washi tape, tissue paper, plastic cups, elastic bands, shredded paper, small toys and trinkets.

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2. Decorate foam board with washi tape. Hot glue the base of cups to the board, placing them in straight lines.

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3. Fill each cup with shredded paper and a toy. Place tissue paper over each opening and secure with elastic. Have kids poke to reveal the prizes!

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4. Ta-da!

GAMES TO PLAY

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Knock ’em down

Roll patterned paper around empty tin cans and glue the edges. Stack them and use a plastic ball for tossing.

“Stilt” walking

Use a hammer and nail to poke holes into opposite sides of empty cans. Feed heavy string through both holes in each can and knot the ends. Let kids try walking on them while holding strings.

Ball & spoon race

Give each kid a small ball from the dollar store and a spoon to balance it on. Get the kids to race to the finish line without dropping their ball.

INVITATION

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Download and print our templates from todaysparent.com/printables on card stock (we like to use white, a bright colour and a pattern) and cut them out. Glue the party info on one side of the smallest rectangle, then layer, smallest to biggest.

A version of this article appeared in our April 2015 issue with the headline “Carnival party,” p. 20.