I have four children with spring birthdays, so parties and all that come with it can be overwhelming. Several kids ago I threw Pinterest Perfect Parties. These days I’m lucky to order a cake and invite the grandparents! My youngest turned five in March and he had never had a birthday party with his friends. So I was excited to partner with the Mundelein Parks & Recreation Department to throw a Dino-riffic Birthday Party for him and his classmates.
Our party was held at the new Dunbar Center. This building is BEAUTIFUL! It opened in April 2018 and has a kitchen, dance/fitness studio and two multipurpose rooms; you can read all about it and look inside here. Since our party was the only event happening at that time we took advantage of the whole space.
Our party at the Mundelein Park District was hands down the easiest party I have ever thrown/hosted. The party specialist handled everything for a Pinterest-perfect party without the hot glue burns!
Birthday Parties at the Mundelein Park District
Birthday Party Theme
The Mundelein Park District offers a variety of pre-set themes for birthday parties. We chose from:
- Mermaid Party
- Unicorn Party
- Doll Tea Party
- Puppy Pawty
- Donuts N’ PJs Party
- Arty Party
- Harry Potter Party
- All Sorts of Sports (ages 4+)
- Dino-Mite Party
- Nerf Battle (age 5+)
- Splash Bash (ages 7+)
You also have the option to work with the party coordinator and create your own theme party. We chose the Dino-Riffic party for our dinosaur-loving guy. Parties are 90 minutes long and come with a party specialist to run the party. They do everything to set-up, decorate, and run the party.
I have Pinterest dreams. I mean there are just so many cute ideas and companies making awesome things these days. But the reality is, I have about 30 minutes a day that is not packed with work, kids and life. Birthday party packages at the Mundelein Park District include all the themed party decorations and paper goods. And I’m not talking about printed plates and some streamers. We had full table decorations, balloons on the kids chairs, an age balloon, treat table and individual place settings.
From terrariums with dinosaurs and plants to fronds and helmets on the table, the decorations blew me away and were above and beyond anything I would have done. It was awesome. All of our guests were stunned!
Birthday Party Activities
Your party specialist will handle all the activities and entertainment so you can sit back and relax (or take pictures and wrangle siblings). The tables were set up with coloring pages and crayons and markers to entertain the kids as we waited for everyone to get there. We personally own a large, theater-style T-Rex head, so we brought that with (because what else do you do with it?) and used it as decoration and entertainment. Once all our guests were there we started playing!
Our Dinosaur Egg hunt took us all over the Dunbar Center, allowing for the kids to work out some energy as well as warm-up to each other and the host. Our host not only lead the hunt, she made sure that every child found at least one egg — no tears here!
After our egg hunt the kids grabbed the balloon off their chair and headed to the gym for some Dino Races! Our host split up the teams, ran the races and kept everyone engaged and playing. Which was great because these kids had energy to spare!
Back in the party room we took a break for drinks. We brought our own (because I didn’t read everything!) but the Park District also had lemonade and water on hand for the kids. Then it was craft time! I love having a craft at parties because it means everyone goes home with something! We were making fossils with air-dried clay. Our host lead the project and went around and helped all the kids get the project set-up.
Our last Activity was to adopt a dinosaur. This was part of the party favor add-on option ($3/per guest) and was totally worth it! Not only was it adorable, but it meant I didn’t have to come up with a goodie bag idea! Each child got to pick out a dinosaur from a bin of dinosaurs and choose a name for the adoption certificate. It was so cute and the names that the kids came up with us kept all the adults smiling.
Birthday Party Food
Food was the only thing I was responsible for and it turned out to be more than enough for me to handle! Parties at the Mundelein Park District are offered from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on weekends, which means all I really needed to provide were cupcakes. Not having any idea how awesome the decorations were going to be I was determined to make the cupcakes look great, without baking them myself. Turns out those little tiny dinos are harder to find then I thought! The park district has an option to provide cupcakes or cakes for your party for an additional $25.
After cake and singing the kids went back to the gym to run around and play freely until the parents came to pick them up. Parents staying? The building has wi-fi and a comfortable lounge area to sit and wait. There was also plenty of space to hang out in the room with us for extra parents.
From start to finish our birthday party experience was truly the easiest and most fun party we have ever thrown. Our party coordinator Kelli was energetic, upbeat and took care of everything, even when I wasn’t quick to answer her emails. She handled all the kids like a pro and her decorating style is truly Pinterest perfection. Best of all, the park district handles all of the clean-up.! Just grab your presents and go! Every detail of our party was taken care of and I couldn’t be happier, and my little guy is already talking about what theme he wants for next year!
Watch our whole party (in under 2 minutes) and see for yourself:
Disclosure: This story is part of a promotional trade with the Mundelein Park & Recreation District. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Want to work with Little Lake County? Contact us here.