I always had a thing for cowboys, so something up above answered my prayers, gifting me sons who look damn cute in boots.
My middle child, “Zaza,” is obsessed with two things: trains and horses. He walks around choo-choo’ing and can neigh like no other. That’s why we threw him a “boot-scootin’-boogie” 4thbirthday bash at MacDonald’s Ranch in North Scottsdale.
Here are my 5 tips for throwing a western-themed party for young kiddos.
- Location, location, location
I don’t plan on hosting a birthday party at my house, …ever. I’m a germaphobe, and the thought of cleaning afterwards irks me. I like choosing a place that’s out of the norm, and something party goers will remember. For us, it was Macdonald’s Ranch. The property boasts the scene of a western movie, offering horse rides, a train (or hayride), petting zoo, and plenty of photo opps. We had a designated area of picnic tables topped with an optional campfire. Any cowboy would approve.
I’m all for a party agenda. Once our guests arrived, every kid got a professional-led pony ride. Then, we had a pizza lunch, followed by a train ride throughout the desert-infused property. Following the train, we did cake, and before the party ended, guests had a chance to visit the petting zoo.
- Dress the part
Two words: Ariat Boots. You guys- this company is legit and sells real deal styles to perfect a cowboy/cowgirl ensemble. Ariat makes the highest quality footwear and apparel for the world’s top equestrian athletes, so wearing these babies will make you feel like a million bucks. With so many options to choose from for men, women, and kids, you’ll surely rock that western look to perfection.
My picks include:
- Hire a Photographer
…Or designate one. Our photographer was worth her weight in gold. More so, if you’re picture crazy like me, designating someone to snap away will take a big weight off your shoulders…I didn’t have to worry about capturing every single moment; in fact, I put my phone down and ENJOYED the party. If your budget doesn’t allow, designate a friend or family member to be the unofficial picture taker. And make sure to get in some photos too, mama! Want to snag my phototog??? Check out Orchid Bloom Photography.
- Explore Perks
It’s awesome to give your guests an experience they might not know about. Many of our guests didn’t realize MacDonald’s Ranch held parties, so now it’s on their radar. Also, many properties have cool perks; for example, MacDonald’s Ranch offers a free hour horseback ride for every kid’s 5th birthday. They also hold pony rides all year round, only kindly seeking tips. Make sure to ask your event manager about property perks.
Written by: Nadine Bubeck
Nadine Bubeck is a TV Personality, author, lifestyle blogger, and fashion designer, having founded Mama B. Designs: boutique apparel that benefits March of Dimes. The Valley-based parenting contributor is a blessed boy mom times three. (nadinebubeck.com)