How to have a bowling theme birthday party for kids
Strike a match and light the birthday candles, it's time to bowl them over with a
bowling party the kids won't soon forget. Kids bowling parties are easy to plan. Just
find your venue, bowl, then eat. The hardest part of planning a bowling party is where
to find the bowling party favors and how to decorate the birthday cake. Here are ideas
to help you plan a bowling themed birthday you'll remember for years to come.
- No time to spare? Let the good times roll and find an AMF bowling alley near
you. For bowling parties of around eight or more, AMF will provide the birthday
kid with a bowling pin that everyone at your party can sign. They also provide
invitations, thank you cards, plates and napkins for every guest when you order
food, like Pizza or hot dogs. Just add cake! This spares you from most of the
work of planning a bowling party, and prices are reasonable considering it
includes the keepsake pin, party supplies, food, shoes and bowling fun. And AMF
does kids bowling well because they provide bumpers and bowling ball gliders
to make it easy for even the littlest bowlers to have fun.
- No alleys? No worries! Why not host a Wii bowling tournament at home? Below
you'll learn how to make a paper mock-up of the Wii remote for the favor boxes,
and see some real Wii bowling parties. Even if you decide to have a real bowling
party, the birthday kid will certainly appreciate receiving a Wii bowling ball and
Wii bowling game, left.
You won't find much in the way of bowling party favors at the local party supply, and
even local bowling alleys don't seem to stock much in terms of themed goodies for
kids. So what's a mom to do? You have two options for finding bowling favors:
- Time to spare? Shop early for your bowling party supplies. You'll find bowling pin
drink cups, bowling pin rubber duck favors and hard to find bowling candles for
the birthday cake online. If you visit the dollar stores often, check for miniature
bowling ball and pin sets. They go fast, so snag more than you think you may
need! You can always use the extras for the cake or siblings.
- No time to spare? If you've been procrastinating on your bowling party planning,
then head to your local party supply to get Olympic style medals and plastic
trophies. Fill trophies with candies and make them feel like they won the
tournament. Kids will also appreciate simple favors, such as wrist warmers. And
if you're handy with a computer, you can craft a label for Whoppers candy boxes
(because Whoppers look like little bowling balls). See also our Big Batch Sugar
Cookie recipe and make simple bowling ball cookie favors by using a glass as
your cookie cutter and piping black icing for the finger slots.
Bowling Party Thank You Cards and Invitations
- Bowling party invitation and wording ideas: Invitations are included in the package
if you're having your party at AMF Bowling with ten or more guests. Still, you can
embellish the envelope with stickers or make a card of your own.
- Here's something just up your alley...Michael's bowling birthday!
- Spare the date for pizza and fun: Saturday, August 22 at noon
- Alley: AMF Bowling, Petaluma
- RSVP: King Pin James or League Leader Sally at 867-5309
- Thank you card ideas: "Thank you, I was bowled over by your generosity."
Setting the Scene for a Bowling Party
If you can't find an AMF near you, don't de-spare! Your little king pin will love a bowling
party at just about any alley. Ask in advance for a bowling pin the kids can sign or
order one on eBay. The great thing about throwing a bowling party for kids is that you
don't need much decoration as the decor is the bowling alley itself. And that means
you don't need to clean up after the party either.
Bowling cakes and sweets and party food
Cupcakes are probably the easiest to serve at a bowling alley: just plop a bowling pin
cupcake topper in each cupcake and you're done. Here's more:
- Bowling cakes: Strike out another year and bake Time to spare cake, pictured
right, by Wilton. While Wilton's candles are no longer available, there are plenty
of other brands of bowling pin candles. You don't need a special pan to bowl
them over with a fun birthday cake. Here's how to make a bowling pin cake,
Family Fun style.
- Sweet bowling treats: Wilton bowling pin sucker molds are easy to use with
Wilton Candy melts. Use white candy melts, colorful sticks and Wilton's red gel
to create stripes for the bowling pin accent. Wrap it up with and a pretty curling
ribbon for a sweet party favor.
- Pizza is a must have for a bowling party and kids favorite is cheese pizza,
so order a cheese pizza and top it with three pieces of salami or
pepperoni to make it look like a bowling ball.
- As an appetizer for the adults, serve a cheese ball and scoop three holes
from the top to simulate a bowling ball.
- Have an hour glass wine carafe? Fill it with milk and use red tape to craft
three bowling pin stripes to give it a bowling pin look.
More fun ideas for your bowling party
Kids will be pinned to their seats with these crafty ideas for a bowling party:
- Put kids in a league of their own. Craft your own bowling T-shirts inexpensively
with your handy work on the computer. It's a great way to make the kids feel
instantly welcome. You'll also score with kids of you tattoo them upon arrival.
- Combine your bowling theme with a sock hop party. Have kids dress retro cool
rockabilly, poodle skirts, beauty school dropout, etc. Instead of cake, move the
party from the bowling alley to a soda fountain. See also our ice cream social
Bowling games and activities
A bowling alley is all the activity the kids really need. The party is rather short, so to
extend your day, have guests arrive early and provide tokens for the arcade games.
Having the kids arrive early for this ensures time for guests to arrive before the
scheduled lane time. Here are some other ideas that may be right up your alley:
- Rock 'n Bowl: Ask the bowling alley if they will play special music on request.
Perhaps your child has a favorite rock song that you can play and announce a
birthday dedication on the loud speaker. Many alleys will also let kids bowl in
- Have kids bowl between their legs, sideways, backwards, two kids pushing one
ball, etc. Bring video camera: the kids will invent funny faces and hilarious moves.
- A token of appreciation for your guests: Most alleys have arcade games, so
anticipate their requests and provide each kid with a few tokens of fun.
- Provide a bowling pin Piñata. You may be able to club the pinata with a bowling
pin. Stuff it with circular treats.
Surprisingly, it's not easy at all to find favors for a bowling party, so you'll do most of
your shopping online. Here are some other ideas that may be just up your alley:
- Make them all a winner. Search your local party supple stores to award them
with mini trophies. (Look in the sports section of your local party supply.) You'll
also find award medals that look super around a sports drink when you remove
- Find a spheres. Party America has candy ball spheres in some of their stores that
opens like a huge Easter egg. Any sphere shaped candy will be wonderful from
gumballs to jawbreakers to malt balls. Whoppers are sphere shaped and look a
bit like mini bowling balls.
- Don't spare the candy. Since there isn't much in terms of bowling party favors,
you'll need filler candy. Try gummy candies that look like little hamburgers, pizza,
hot dogs, ice creams or whatever they might serve at the bowling alley. You can
also make your own bowling ball candy. Use edible markers to make bowling
balls. You may also find edible markers online, which will come in handy to mark
three little circles onto gum balls, circular cookies, and more.
- Crepe paper bowling balls. Start with a small toy favor and scrunch a wad of
construction paper around it and secure with a bit of tape. Then wrap it with
black crepe paper along with a few other little toys or candy. Secure the end of
the roll with a sticker, then add two more stickers to make it look like a bowling
More resources for your Bowling Party
Real bowling parties...
- Wii had a ball! Wii were bowled over by this Wii bowling party. Wii bowling
tournament party goers received lanyards bearing their Wii likeness. In this
clever party for a ten year old, guests received favors that looked like a real Wii
remote. Templates for these terrific Wii remote bowling favor boxes are free.
Use them for any Wii sports party.
Tell us about your bowling party and share party ideas with us on Twitter.
All about kids bowling parties...
(C) Copyright 2009-2012 by M.C. Nygard. All rights reserved. Updated 10/4/12.
Linking to this party planning site is permitted. HOWEVER, no part of this content may be reproduced, or stored in any
retrieval system, or transmitted in any other form or by any means including but not limited to electronic, mechanical,
photocopy, recording or otherwise, without the written consent of the author. The author makes no warranties
express or implied. Works are protected by copyscape. We love to link to quality sites! Write us at Twitter.
See our other kids parties and pony parties.
Search KIDS PARTIES now: