Circus Party

Here is a list of what we put together for our little one’s “circus” party:
Cotton Candy
Bought a couple containers at Dollar Tree, put it in some snow cone holders I had from Cash & Carry- very cheap.  Cut some holes in a gift box to hold them, a wire cupcake stand would work well too.
Caramel Popcorn with Peanuts
Made homemade, put in a bowl with a scoop and served with some retro paper popcorn bags I had in the cupboard.  (Just google retro popcorn bags and you’ll find lots of options.)
Circus Peanuts
I found these at Dollar Tree, Walmart, and Winco.
Circus Napkins
Found at Target (They also had plates, cups, invites, etc.  I just hate spending $25 dollars on a bunch of paper stuff I’m going to throw away.)
Hot Dogs, Root Beer, and Potato Chips
I kept the food beyond simple, since it was our little one’s bday and that is her favorite treat.  I served lunch in some plastic food baskets we have with some checkered liners (again, a super cheap Cash & Carry find).
Bunting
I made these by cutting out triangles of felt and sewing into some double fold bias tape I’ve had for forever.  Took very little time, and I thought this would be a fun reusable birthday decoration.

The cake wasn’t what I originally intended, but worked out well.
You can make it using 3 layers of your favorite cake, and shaving off the top into a dome (or bake in one of those giant cupcake pans).
Frost with white frosting, then roll out different colors of marshmallow fondant and cut out details.
I did large triangles in red, green, blue, and yellow for the top.  Then added red strips around the sides, and the curtain is 2 rectangles of red, scrunched in the middle and “tied” with a rope of green and yellow twisted together. Ther banner was made using a mini alphabet cutter set and mini star cutter. I attatched it with a toothpick on each side.
I added a ruffle of purple around the bottom and where the top of the big top meets the sides.
Top flag is just made from construction paper and on a toothpick.
Elephant Pinata
Made using a large and medium balloon.  Mix equal parts flour and water.  Cut newspaper into 1 1/2″ strips, dip in paste and wipe off excess paste, then wrap around balloons, 2 layers deep, leaving a small opening around the knot.
After a day or two it should be dry, then remove balloons through small hole.  Using more newspaper and paste, attatch the balloons together at the “neck”.  When dry, cut a hole and fill with bags of goodies, then cut fringe on half of strips of crepe paper and glue all the way around.  Make features with foam paper or constuction paper and glue on.
Other Game Ideas
You can find all kinds of simple, easy circus or carnival type game ideas online. We had planned on putting a couple folding tables in the backyard and having a few:
“Ball Toss”- making a pyramid of big red plastic cups and letting the kids take turns tossing a ball to knock them down.
“Clothespin Drop”- The kids have to stand on a chair and drop clothespins, trying to hit the jar on the ground.
You could also do a face painting booth, or have tickets they win for prizes as well.  Since we had just finished finally assembling our play structure and I knew all the kids would want to play in that, I decided to not have the other games.  Nobody missed them. Favor Bags
I found these cute favor bags at Target and couldn’t pass them up. : )
I filled them with mini lollipops, clown noses (found super cheap on Amazon), chocolate “ringmaster mustaches” (made using a mold from Bake It Pretty), a “magic feather”, and some candy buttons.
I made the tags for the mustaches and feathers using a free Circus font on dafont.com, just printing on cardstock and cutting out into tags, tying on with some twine.
She makes a pretty cute ringmaster! : )  The mustaches were very popular.Invitations
I just printed on cardstock, using a few fonts, including the free Circus font I found on dafont.com, and an imageof Dumbo on the bottom, I just copied and pasted from the internet.  (Just google free dumbo clipart and choose the one you want.)
Thank You Cards
I found some free ones I printed off at bakesaleflyers.com
If you don’t want to make them, I saw lots of options for buying circus invites/thank you’s online, and Target had a pack for sale as well when I bought the napkins and favor bags.  There are also a couple of free printable circus invites online, but I hate filling in each invite.

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