How to Plan a “Socially Distant” Birthday Party

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Every year, we celebrate birthdays, but social distancing has become part of the new norm. While it may just not seem the same or might even feel uneventful as the day approaches, it doesn’t have to be! In fact, there are many advantages to hosting a socially distant birthday party.

Many of us have been forced to get pretty creative, celebrating birthdays of loved ones, family, and friends for the entire day to make the most of the special occasion. So, if you’re wondering how to pull off a celebration for someone special (or even yourself!), here’s how to plan a socially distant birthday party to make the most of the day.

Schedule Birthday Gift Drop-Off Times

Create an Evite with an online signup form with time slots for guests to choose when to stop by with their gift, limiting the number of people together at once. Space out the time slots evenly enough throughout the day, allowing guests to simply drop off their gifts on a table by the front door and wave to say hello! You can even get creative by setting up a camera that allows guests to say a few words or hold up a sign they made!

As far as birthday gifts go, consider making a wish list that gives guests some clever idea of items that are better suited to help pass the time indoors or offer socially distant activities. Such items could be decorative home treasures or cozy jumpsuits and rompers they can wear around the house.

Invite Everyone: the More, the Merrier

The beauty of planning a socially distant birthday party is that you can invite as many guests as you want! While that seems contradictory, going virtual or having neighbors and friends drive by means you don’t really have to worry about providing food and drinks, which keeps it quite affordable. And, if you live in a smaller home, it may be the only time you can physically pull off this many guests at once!

Go All-Out with Themed Decorations

Start the day off right and go all-out with themed decorations! Dress up the living room where you’ll hold your virtual celebrations and drape a banner behind the sofa as a backdrop. You can even add some balloons to the mailbox for neighbors to see or lanterns along the driveway at night. Be sure to decorate the front porch or backyard area where guests will swing by to say “Happy Birthday.”

Ask for Help from Friends and Neighbors

Make friends and neighbors aware of the special day and have them come celebrate too! For a child’s birthday, drop off some colored chalk on the doorstep and ask them to put their artistic skills to work with a sidewalk birthday greeting. It makes a wonderful surprise!

One wonderful way both friends and neighbors can participate in a socially distant birthday party is to plan a drive-by parade. All you have to do is designate a time and have everyone decorate their cars and honk as they drive down your street. You could even have them dress up in silly costumes to go along with the theme.

Add Virtual Activities

It’s hard to invite friends over to the house to play video games or attend a sleepover, but that doesn’t mean you can’t spend time and have fun with them! Hold a Netflix Party or host a virtual game night. There are endless ideas!

It’s a good thing people have gotten pretty creative when it comes to going virtual. Today, you can find virtual activities such as games and simply throw a video chat party with friends and family using Zoom, House Party, Facetime, or Google Hangouts. For Zoom, you can even decorate with themed background templates.

You can even live stream a concert or performance of a favorite musician or band. For smaller kids, you can hire actors to portray Disney princesses or superheroes to send a message to wish them a happy birthday. How fun is that?

Order Your Favorite Takeout

These days, practically every restaurant offers takeout. So, why not make it an extra special birthday for someone by treating them to their favorite foods? Whether it’s a classic cheese pie from a local pizza joint or a fancy, fresh sushi spread from the Japanese restaurant, let them choose whatever strikes their fancy. Grab some refreshments for the immediate family to enjoy and settle in to watch a movie or stream a virtual concert as you chow down.

Get Creative with the Cake

It’s not a birthday party without cake. But, instead of sharing the same cake, you can socially distance by making individual cakes, or buying pre-wrapped goodies for everyone to enjoy! This works especially well for the drive-by parade, allowing everyone to pick up a perfectly portioned Little Debbie cake. Just be sure to wear gloves and a mask as you pass them out. Maintaining a safe distance, you could even toss them to guests. Later in the evening, the immediate family can share in a smaller birthday cake of the birthday person’s choosing.

The Best Socially Distant Birthday Party

As you plan a socially distant birthday party, the most important piece of advice is to redirect the focus on fun activities that you can do, instead of focusing on the things you can’t do. Yes, laser tag may be out of the question, as well as heading to the movies with the family. But, by focusing on the positive, only then will you be able to make wonderful memories on this special occasion.

Keeping that in mind and with the above socially distant birthday party tips, you’re guaranteed to pull off an amazing birthday celebration for that special someone. Better still, all of these clever ideas can be applied to various other occasions, such as anniversaries, weddings, or holidays when the weather is uncooperative or if someone is feeling under the weather. Even in times of social distancing or unexpected circumstances, you have to keep the party going!