While searching online I found a host of unique places that just never come to mind when I'm trying to figure what to do for the kids. These are in no particular order but I went ahead and compiled a list of my top 10 favorites within the DC, MD and VA (DMV) area. Feel free to add your own in the comments section below:
- Backyard Parties: If you don't want to spend the cash to rent a venue and you have the space in your backyard, I recommend GigMasters. With GigMasters you can book the services of a clown or magician, rent chairs, tables or even a bounce house. You tell them the time and location and receive bids from vendors who are available to provide the service. They are available nationwide and I have personally used this service so I highly recommend them.
- Laser Tag: This one is a great option for the older kids and even adults. Guests can spend their time running and ducking through a twisted maze of hallways and scream as loud as they want. One I've personally used is Caste Laser Tag but their are a few others such as Shadowland and Ultra Laser Tag to name a few.
- Pool Party: It may be easy to set up a pool party with any local pool during the warm summer months but what if you have children whose birthdays don't fall within that time frame? Bring the party indoors with an indoor pool party. There are several locations within the DMV that will host an indoor pool party. But, from my experience, you have to book your spot early because these places fill fast! Prince George's County Sports and Learning Center has a great indoor party room with pool access. Another location is Montgomery County Recreation.
- Pirate Ship Adventures: Take the kids out on a fun filled boat ride such as one of our favorites, Pirate Adventures. The sea rovers will get dressed up including capes and face painting and will enjoy a treasure hunt on the seas. They are sure to keep your young pirates occupied. Boomerang Pirate Ship and Urban Pirates provide a similar adventure filled experience.
- Roller Skating: One of my children's favorite, roller skating rinks. It is an easy way to keep the little ones occupied while you find a spot to chill out. Or, perhaps you want to join in on the fun, roller skating is an activity for all ages. Skate Zone offers several party packages to choose from where they can skate the night away. Lanham Skate Center is another great place to have that party. There are plenty of other rinks in the area which offer similar packages.
- Baseball Stadium: If your child is a baseball fan, a day at the ball park may be the way to go. Whether it's a hosted party or just a seat and snacks for each guest, the Washington Nationals stadium, Bowie Bay Sox stadium and also the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs stadium all have great facilities to make your little slugger's day the best!
- Movie Theater: Just Google "movie theater kid's party" to find your local theater with a kid's party room. Virtually all theaters have a birthday party package where your little munchkins can view the newest kid-friendly movie, while chomping on some popcorn. These facilities will have a party room in the back for the after party. A few of my favorites are Regal Cinemas, AMC and Bow Tie Cinemas.
- Trampoline Park: It's part of the hottest new craze but a trampoline park can be super fun. Think of a Pump it Up party but for the older kids. Not only will the little ones have a blast while jumping, diving and flipping, but they'll also get some exercise and hopefully be worn out for the rest of the evening. The trampoline park staff will keep them occupied with games like dodge ball or foam diving, or they can walk the tight rope like trapeze artists. These parks have been popping up in all areas. We like Sky Zone and Flight.
- Go Kart Track: Let the kids drive their own karts around the racetrack. Best for older kids or the younger ones can ride as a passenger in the double go karts. There are no official birthday party arrangements at these facilities so no reservations are necessary. Sketerama is a popular facility. Picnic tables are near by. The best part is that guests are free to bring their own food so there are no food restrictions. Another one we like is Crofton Go-Kart Raceway.
- Your Local Park: National parks are a great place to host a kids birthday party. Kids have plenty of room to run around and be kids! Most have a train, merry-go round, putt-putt golf, petting zoo, or some other form of entertainment to keep guests occupied. You can choose to make it informal and grab a picnic table to host your guests, or you can purchase a permit to rent a pavilion. Glen Echo Park has a kid's theater and Watkins Park has an outdoor birthday area that can be rented. Watkins Park also has an indoor Nature Center for days when the weather may not be ideal for outdoor activities. You can find more information on Birthday Party Packages at the PG Parks & Recreation website or the Montgomery Parks website. Just Google your local Parks & Planning Commision for information on birthday party rentals.
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