Celebrate a child’s birthday out in the sunshine this summer with a teddy bear’s picnic party. Ask classmates and friends to bring their favourite teddy along to the spread on blankets in your garden or in the dappled shade of a tree in a local park. With colourful party food, classic games and pretty decorations to boot, they’ll all be sure of a big surprise.
Make sure that you bring plenty of picnic blankets for the guests – and their teddy companions – to sit on, and perhaps a few cushions. You can use these cushions later for an outdoor version of musical chairs during the fun and games. Hang balloons from branches of nearby trees or use a banner or streamers to delineate the party zone so that everyone knows how to find it!
For kids, one of the most exciting elements of a picnic is the fun of eating in an unusual setting, so stick to their classic party foods and sandwich fillings, such as honey – a rather famous bear’s favourite – or cheese and ham. Vegetable sticks are easily portable to the party site and will go down a treat with a yogurt dip. Mini sausages can be cooked in advance and wrapped in foil to keep warm. If you want to offer fruit, bananas are the perfect portable food; they come with their own wrapping!
Instead of packing all the food into one large hamper as you would for a family picnic, pack each child’s party picnic into a bear-themed party box so that they can have fun discovering each delicious treat inside. Carton juice drinks are also ideal for a picnic party and will keep spillage to a minimum. Homemade flapjacks or rice crispie cakes are simple to make in advance and can be divided evenly. For the birthday cake, you may opt for individual cupcakes that you can stack on a colourful cake stand in the middle of the spread, thus avoiding the need for a knife.
As you are outside and you have space, make sure that the children have a chance to run around. Bringing a portable music player might be useful, to sing along to the Teddy Bears’ Picnic lyrics, plus for musical bumps and dancing games and to add to the party atmosphere. Play a version of the Teddy Bears’ Picnic song so that they can all join in before they sing Happy Birthday. As well as outdoor activities, a treasure hunt around the garden with clues for prizes will add to the sense of adventure for those who, like Pooh Bear, are rather fond of an expedition!
Fill their party bags with bear-themed party treats; perhaps a tiny soft toy, such as a finger puppet, or a bear sticker or stationery set. A tube of bubbles will be fun to blow into the evening air as they say goodbye, or a bear-themed helium balloon each, to tie to their teddy bear’s paw for safekeeping until they get it safely back home.
Do remember to get in touch and tell us what events you are planning and if you’re thinking of a Teddy Bears’ Picnic. We’d love to hear any of your own ideas and help you with any party advice or inspiration, and as ever we love to hear your feedback. Sign up to our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter or leave a comment for us below.