• Birthday Guide: Full Theme Ahead

    Where to sing, jump, build, and boogie your way to your kid’s next party

    By Whitney C. Harris

    Shop for adorable party picks HERE!

    NYC offers such an incredible menu of birthday party options that there is a venue and theme for anything your child can imagine. You can give your child a party they will always remember and that guests are sure to enjoy as well. Not sure where to begin? Check out our guide here!

    Perform Like Pros

    A “Just Kidding” Theatre Party at Symphony Space for ages 3-6 includes a highly entertaining, kid-focused show (with a special birthday shout-out), plus food, music, cake, and goodies. A TADA! Youth Theater party is specially geared towards musical theater minis. Let your child choose a theme and the party entertainment and activities will be based upon that. So let the creative juices flow! Birthdays at apple seeds are much ado about music with a songs for seeds guitarist and themed musical performance. Plus, an age-appropriate art project gives kids an outlet for their own creativity. Book a party at The Chord Club and you’ll get access to a real recording studio. The offerings cater to all musical tastes with DJ spin sessions, “jam with the band” for instrumentalists, and “mini pop star” for vocalists.

    Sporty Stuff

    Sports enthusiasts don’t have to pick favorites with a Kids in Sports party that combines 2-3 of your kid’s chosen activities. Be it any combo of soccer, baseball, basketball, football, volleyball, or hockey, peewee partygoers will work up an appetite after an hour of play. Kiddos two years and older will run around to their heart’s content at Asphalt Green. The sporty offerings include gaga, soccer, basketball, and martial arts. A basic party package comes with one hour of active fun (with the help of two coaches) and a half hour for refreshments. Ask your kid their favorite sport and make that the birthday theme with a Chelsea Piers party. The extensive options include gymnastics, soccer, basketball, flag football, ninja warrior, rock climbing, baseball, dodgeball, golf, ice skating, bowling, and more. You can even combine two sports into one party experience. Pint-sized players can rally like ragamuffins at Gotham Tennis Academy‘s Stadium Tennis Center in the Bronx. In addition to bouncing around a giant tennis bubble, partygoers have access to a ping-pong room and plenty of snacks and refreshments. And if ping-pong is up your child’s alley, a party at SPiN is just the ticket. An optional pro can get the party started with demos and tricks before launching a kid-friendly tournament.

    Just Dance

    A party at Ballet Academy East will delight the teensiest twinkle toes ages 2-6. With pianist accompaniment and the guidance of two upbeat, highly trained instructors, tiny dancers will twirl and plie a ballet birthday story narrated by the teacher. The b-day child and guests will also receive a crown or wand for keeps. Children ages 2-12 can party at the JCC Manhattan with cool themes like hip-hop. Celebrations are on Sundays and include an hour rental of the party space, two (or more) instructors, and two (or more) party assistants. Equinox isn’t just for adults. A kids’ birthday party at the popular gym can be super sporty, but why not make it a movement and dance affair? The club will host activities and/or source entertainment.

    Strike A Pose

    Call in the “glam squad” at Cozy’s Cuts for Kids and party guests get professional up-dos at the Braid Bar and Blow Bar, mini art manicures, and sparkly makeup applications. Once they’re all dolled up, kids will enjoy dancing, runway shows, art projects, and more. Let the kids ham it up in front of the cam at Classic Kids Photography. After a fun hair and makeup session, a professional photographer will snap some amazing pics of the birthday boy or girl and friends doing what they do best—being themselves! After the celebration, your child will take home a custom album full of memories. Or saunter on over to the Upper East Side where Let’s Dress Up! offers themed and custom parties packed with beautiful dresses and accessories, framed photos of the birthday kid and friends, plus a tea party with cupcakes served on real china.

    ConstructionKids

    Let Them Create

    Hammers and wrenches and screwdrivers, oh my! A celebration at ConstructionKids is all about creating something special. With two hours to party, children ages 4-9 can safely build anything from airplanes to dragons at the Brooklyn Navy Yard location or any chosen offsite location. Got a kid who likes to sew? Pins & Needles offers signature sewing parties (hand and machine) with various beginner-friendly projects to choose from. Kids ages 7-14 will learn fun stitching and DIY techniques during a two-hour party. You’d be hard-pressed to find a kid who doesn’t flip for a Tie Dye Town make-your-own t-shirt party. The fun includes spin art, peace sign stencils, glitter tattoos, groovy seventies dress-up, and three staff members to help the good times roll. Whether you choose to decorate backpacks, flower pots, or picture frames, a party at Kids At Art will give everyone something special to take home. The party starts with painting a mural as a group and then kids get wrapped up in their own creative endeavors.

    A Sweet Celebration

    Kids can capture their creativity in sweets at a CuRious Candy party that gives them delicious materials to make an edible work of art. Glitter tattoos, a variety of entertainers, custom piñatas, and candy cloud centerpieces add to the festive confections. A popular party theme at the Craft Studio is (prepare to drool) Chocolate House. Imagine all the candy, edible pop-ons, gumdrops, marshmallows, and more to build a bite-worthy abode. Arty Parties at HiArt! take on so many forms, but one particularly sweet offering is Candy Sculpture. Kids can work on any artistic edible from Times Square to a sugar-capped tsunami in the venue’s light-filled studio. And it’s probably no surprise that Dylan’s Candy Bar throws an epically sweet soiree with candy-themed games in a colorful party room with gumball tables, peppermint stools, and lollipop chandeliers.

    First Birthday Fun

    Babies will bend backwards for a first birthday celebration at Karma Kids Yoga. After a 30-minute yoga class with age-appropriate poses, songs, and stretches, partiers enjoy another 30 minutes of free play with tunnels, toys, pillows, balls, musical instruments, and more. The birthday baby’s favorite book is then read before a group picnic. Ideal for infants and toddlers, Little Maestros will bring Broadway-level entertainers into your home, playroom, or favorite restaurant or venue. Plenty of instruments, puppets, bubbles, and a parachute will entertain first-birthday babes. Little ones will love the unstructured, open play at the Playroom NYC where a climbing jungle gym, Broadway dress-up room, doll house, and ride-on cars await party-goers ages 1-5. There’s even a light switch wall that illuminates an NYC skyline for curious little hands. A staff of expert party planners will help you throw a fun, 90-minute fete at Citibabes in SoHo. Kids up to age six will have a ball in the 1,500-square-ft indoor playground, dive into age-appropriate art projects, and flip for the bouncy castle before digging into cake or cupcakes. The littlest Gymboree devotee will get a kick out of a birthday party in addition to their usual weekly gym class. Feel free to choose a fun theme and then create a personalized party for your soon-to-be-1-year-old.

    Lucky Strike Lanes; Photo courtesy of Lucky Strike Entertainment

    Superhero Soiree

    Let the little ones ages 1-9 run, jump, and fly for 90 heart-pumping minutes at a Kidville Superhero Birthday Bash. After a mask-making art table activity, a state-of-the-art gym awaits with an obstacle course, a jumpy castle, freeze dance, and a zip-line mission before refreshments. The NY Kids Club transforms its state-of-the-art gym to fit just about any birthday theme, including a superhero command center for kids with an awesome imagination. Parties are made to entertain ages 1-12 and feature active fun like adventure obstacle courses. Gymtime Rhythm & Glues does customized celebrations for ages 1-12 with themes like Superman, Spiderman, Batman, and more. Activities offered include gymnastics, sports, cooking, art, music, and tae kwon do!

    STE[A]M Celebrations

    Kids who code will love a LAUNCH Math & Science Centers‘ birthday bash. A 90-minute party can involve anything from rocket science and electronics projects to chemistry and physics experiments to coding with Scratch and Python. The new SciTech Kids STE[A]M Maker Lab on East 81st Street is a wonderful space for kids 4-15 to tap into their problem-solving selves. Themes and projects vary but can include CSI & Fingerprinting, Minecraft MODS, and Design Your Own Video Game. If Minecraft is your kid’s jam, check out Pixel Academy where boys and girls ages 7-14 can build and game on custom servers, experience Minecraft in virtual reality, and play around with 3D scans in an amazing tech makerspace. Animal enthusiasts will crow for a Mad Science Party at the Art Farm in the City. After spending quality time at the award-winning petting zoo, children settle down to see an interactive show and science experiment. And little LEGO lovers can take their obsession to a new level at a RoboFun party where kids construct LEGO.

    Have A Ball

    Score a winning party for ages 2-12 at any Super Soccer Stars indoor/outdoor location throughout the five boroughs. A team of energetic and enthusiastic coaches leads kiddos through age-appropriate activities before breaking for food and cake. Bumpers, rolling ramps, kid-sized shoes, and low-weight balls make a birthday at Lucky Strike Lanes all about the kiddos. Ask the event specialists to help you plan the perfect party, including a variety of delicious bites to cater to kid tastes. Yorkville Youth Athletic Association hosts parties on Sundays from September to June. Select a ball-themed sport or any combination of baseball, basketball, flag-football, and extreme bubble-ball soccer. You don’t need to be a little Serena or Roger to have your birthday at Advantage Tennis Clubs. No experience needed—just a pair of sneakers and readiness to run! The same goes for Tennis Innovators, where kids ages 10 and younger can dash around the court while working on their skills.

    Two Words: Bounce House

    Symphony Space; Photo by Saskia Kahn

    Get as hands on or stay as laidback as you like planning a party with MAGIC Activity Center. Choose a theme and DIY to your heart’s delight or let MAC take care of the details. Children ages 1-5 will run roughshod around the gym space with coaches to entertain and guide them, including time on a zip line and bounce house. For kids 1 and up who need space, Jodi’s Gym has a whopping 6,000 square feet for big, action-packed birthdays. For 90 minutes, party peeps will balance, swing, tumble, climb, jump, stretch, and let loose in a bounce house under close staff supervision.

    Make It Your Own

    If your apartment is short on space then rent a party room at the 14th Street Y with any activity or entertainment that will excite the birthday boy or girl. There’s even an outdoor roof for warm-weather b-days. Likewise, Pine Street School in the Financial District has space for hosting a number of NYC kids programming to please partygoers. Think ConstructionKids, Super Soccer Stars, and TADA! to get some ideas generating. Venture to Coney Island for a party at Luna Park! Their party packages offer access to a party room that you can personalize with decorations, as well as access to the park’s thrill rides, carousel, and arcade.

     

    New York City’s Best Party Places: 

    A Selective List Of Birthday Party Venues To Help You Get The Party Started!

    16 Handles

    14th Street Y

    92Y

    ACT Programs

    Advantage Tennis Clubs

    American Museum of Natural History

    apple seeds

    The Art Farm in the City

    Asphalt Green

    Ballet Academy East

    Billy Beez

    Bounce!

    Bowlmor

    Broadway Birthday Bashes at the PIT

    Brooklyn Children’s Museum

    Carnegie Hall

    Chelsea Piers

    Children’s Museum of the Arts (CMA)

    Children’s Museum of Manhattan

    The Chord Club

    Citibabes

    Classic Kids Photography

    Columbus Gym

    ConstructionKids

    CoolMess

    Corbin’s Crusaders

    Cozy’s Cuts for Kids

    The Craft Studio

    CuRious Candy

    Dave & Buster’s

    DiMenna Children’s History Museum at the New-York Historical Society

    Discovery Programs

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    Dylan’s Candy Bar

    The Fashion Class

    Fastbreak Sports

    For Kids Only at Equinox Sports

    French Institute Alliance Francais

    The Gaga Center

    Galli Theater

    Gazillion Bubble Show

    GetCoiffed

    Gotham Tennis Academy

    The Green School

    Gymboree Play & Music

    Gymtime Rhythm & Glues

    HiArt!

    Hiho Batik

    The Horticulture Society (The Hort)

    The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

    JCC Manhattan

    Jodi’s Gym

    Karma Kids Yoga

    Kate Tempesta’s Urban Golf Academy

    Kids at Art

    Kids at Work

    Kids in Sports

    Kids of Summer

    Kidville

    LAUNCH Math & Science

    LEGOLAND Discovery Westchester

    Let’s Dress Up!

    Liberty Science Center

    Little Maestros

    Loop of the Loom

    Lucky Strike Lanes

    Luna Park

    Madame Tussauds

    Mad Science of New York City & Westchester

    MAGIC Activity Center

    Manhattan Movement & Arts Center

    Mo’ Motion

    Museum of the City of New York

    My Gym

    Mystery & Mayhem

    New York Hall of Science

    New York Transit Museum

    NY Kids Club

    Peridance Capezio Center

    Pine Street School

    Pins & Needles

    Pixel Academy

    Playgarden

    The Playroom NYC

    Queens County Farm Museum

    RoboFun

    SciTech Kids

    Simply Sports

    Soccer by Coach Fher

    SPiN

    SPORTIME Randall’s Island

    Super Soccer Stars

    Symphony Space

    TADA! Youth Theater

    Tie Dye Town

    TLB Music

    Twinkle Party

    Victorian Gardens

    Voila Chocolat

    West Side Taekwondo

    Wildlife Conservation Society

    YMCA

    Yogi Beans

    Yorkville Youth Athletic Association

    Zaniac Learning

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