My daughter’s recent birthday was based on the mermaid theme so we needed ocean-related activities to keep the young party guests entertained. I connected all of the activities to either mermaids or ocean life with some pirate references thrown in to get the boys excited.
Pin the Tail on the Mermaid
Pin the Tail on the Mermaid puts a twist on the classic party game Pin the Tail on the Donkey. You don’t have to be an artist to sketch a quick mermaid for this game. Start with a poster board or large piece of cardboard. Draw a basic mermaid shape but without the tail. Paint the mermaid to make her colorful. Draw mermaid tails on separate pieces of paper: one for each guest. Make each tail a different color and let the kids write their names on their tails. Stick a piece of tape on the back of each tail. While blindfolded, the guests take turns sticking the tails on the mermaid picture.
Treasure Hunt or Treasure Dig
Treasure ties into the pirate theme and loosely relates to the general mermaid concept. One option is a treasure hunt. In this activity, you’ll hide a treasure box full of treats for the kids like bead necklaces, gemstones and candy coins. Write out a set of sequential clues to lead the party guests to the treasure chest.
A variation is to bury treasures in a sandbox or tub of sand. Gemstones, necklaces, sand molds, plastic coins and plastic sea animals work well as the buried treasure. The kids dig through the sand and gather the treasure they find. A sand bucket to collect the treasure doubles as a favor for each child.
A similar option without the sand involves hiding mermaid-related pictures or stickers around the house. The kids search for the images and collect as many as possible. Offer a special prize to the child who finds the most pictures or locates a specially marked mermaid picture.
A quiet craft with an ocean theme is an alternative to active games at a mermaid birthday party. Painting seashells is a simple craft. Look for a bundle of seashells at dollar stores or craft stores. Colored sand is a simple craft supply related to the theme. Let kids pour the sand through funnels into clear containers for layered sand art. An alternative is to spread glue onto paper and sprinkle the colored sand on top. Other options include collage beach scenes with paper, decorated cardboard fish and an octopus craft made from an upside down paper bowel with streamers or ribbons for the tentacles.
If the mermaid party takes place during warm weather, water play is a way to keep the kids cool and entertained. Set up kiddie pools outdoors and invite guests to bring their swimming suits. Other water play options include sprinklers, water tables, water guns and water balloons.