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How I Threw a Pirate-Themed Kids Party in 4 Easy Steps

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Being a mother is tough. I was prepared for all the usual things people tell you about motherhood, but one thing I wasn’t prepared for were all the parties we had to host.

Don’t get me wrong – I love parties.

Birthday parties play a key role in the natural development of children. They make them feel special and help them learn to socialize with other kids. Plus, I enjoy the time I get to spend with other parents.

The challenging part is in the planning. I recently threw a pirate themed party for my 8-year old son, and while it was a blast, it took some work to make it happen.

I wanted to make things easier on the next person by sharing a step-by-step guide to throwing your own pirate themed kids party. Let’s jump in.

Step 1: The Invitations

My husband and I decided to go with a treasure map theme, which we found from Google, for the invitations. Y

ou can get creative with construction paper, or you can find a nice template to use online – whatever works for your busy life.

Include the location, date (time to set sail), and dress-attire (like a pirate, obviously). For the location, be sure to do it up with a dotted line leading to an ‘X’.

Step 2: The Decorations

There are no bounds on how you choose to do the decorating. Again, we got a ton of really good ideas from Google and Pinterest.

Some examples include perched stuff animal parrots, make-shift barrels of rum, and buried treasure with “jewels” – aka M&Ms, jelly beans, etc.

One thing that every pirate themed party needs is a pirate ship. We built ours out of an empty refrigerator box (since we don’t happen to have any extra boats laying around), and we got creative in adding a mast with sails, a flag, anchor, and steering wheel.

Try to leave enough room inside for at least 2 or 3 children to “sail the open seas”. And of course, supervise those children taking turns.

Step 3: The Activities

Highlighting the list of activities you can include is the old-fashioned pirate treasure hunt. Give the kids each a starting map with a clue to the next location. At each stop, be sure to place a map with the next steps and a small reward for figuring it out.

At the end, use a chest or something similar to use as the buried treasure. You can fill it with all sorts of goodies, such as gold-wrapped chocolate shaped like coins, and the kids will love it.

Other fun ideas we used were the pirate ship from step 2, our own version of a “walk the plank” type game – we used a large board, blue tarp, and blindfold – and pirate-pirate-parrot (our spin on duck-duck-goose).

Step 4: The Food

Pirate food is somewhat tricky since there’s not really a go-to we could think of. What we ended up doing was having a spread of fried fish, fruit and oranges to battle scurvy, and a pirate themed cake, which we made ourselves.


At the end of the day, party planning is a chore, but it doesn’t have to be too daunting. Hopefully this guide helps at least one other mother or parent in planning their child’s pirate themed party.

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