Celebrating your child’s birthday during stay at home orders or having a birthday during social distancing can be a big disappointment for children of all ages. We’ve come up with a list of 25 ways to celebrate the little ones in your life when they hit milestones. In our current world of “social distancing” and isolation you can still celebrate birthdays in big ways and even get your family and friends involved.
COVID 19 Birthday Party Celebration Ideas
It’s time to get creative and know that your kids will remember the fun, no matter what you end up doing. Someday soon we’ll be back to having family and friends over for cake or celebrating with fun birthday parties in public spaces. For now, here are our favorite ways to celebrate birthdays at home.
Decorate Your Front Yard
“We rented a HUGE sign for our daughter’s 4th birthday and after seeing how special she felt, we already booked signs for the next few birthdays in our house.” Katy Mann says. “As people from the neighborhood drove by, they would honk and wave, it was a very special day.”
Check out Indy with Kids favorite pick, Sign Dreamers. Owner, Gina will take good care of you. But don’t wait to reserve a spot on her calendar, this birthday treat is growing in popularity.
Silly Safaris Birthday Animal Grams
Silly Safaris is offering personalized “Animal Grams”. Your recipient can receive a cute video from the animal of your choice “saying” whatever message you’d like.
Covid 19 Birthday in a Box
Local companies near you may have birthday in a box celebration services available for hire. Schedule a delivery of a “Birthday in a Box” package with custom surprises catered to your child. Some services even offer birthday boxes for adults that include wine or liquor. No need to miss out on the fun.
Host a Drive By Birthday Party Parade
Ask friends and family to drive by your home waving, honking, blowing bubbles. They can even toss birthday gifts onto the lawn. Coordinate a time with friends and family locally to parade by and celebrate from a safe distance. Make certain the birthday child is outside to see everyone and wave back.
Decorations All Over the House
Make huge poster board signs (or use cardboard boxes), banners, streamers, balloons, whatever you have on hand that’s festive. Leave everything up for a couple of days to keep the party going.
Host a Zoom Birthday Party
Gather your friends and family on one of the video conferencing sites like Zoom, Google Hangout or Jitsi. Make sure everyone has a dessert of some sort; a cake, cupcake, cookies, donuts, pie… then everyone can sing to the birthday girl and eat their “cake” with her. You can even play games during video calls.
Virtual Scavenger Hunt
If you’re hosting a Zoom style party with friends and family this is a fun and interactive way to play games with your guests. List items, like a hat, an apple, an old birthday card… and the first person to come back to the screen with said item gets a point.
Birthday Balloon Banner
There’s nothing like waking up to a beautiful arrangement of balloons and decor. Set up these DIY kits from Krazy Kitten Krafts on your patio or inside your home!
Have a Baking Competition
Bake and decorate your own cake or cupcakes and have a “Nailed It” competition to see who “Nailed It” best. Have family and friends judge from afar. Obviously the winner is the Birthday child.
Chalk the Driveway
This is super easy for neighborhood friends. Have people write birthday wishes and messages all over your driveway and sidewalk with sidewalk chalk. We did this to our neighbor and other people walking by during the day added messages. Even strangers participated.
Neighborhood Scavenger Hunt
If your child has friends in the area, give clues and take a walk to hunt for greetings or gifts left out in driveways. Clues like, “we carpooled to kindergarten together” or “he was on your soccer team last year” can spark wonderful memories and give you something to chat about along your hunt.
Ask friends and family to send video wishes to the birthday kiddo. If you are tech savvy you can compile them into a fun “movie” or just play them individually for the recipient while you’re celebrating. Seeing and hearing their loved ones well wishes may just make their day.
Pitch a tent in the living room or in the back yard. If you’re indoors light a few candles and tell stories with flashlights while eating microwaved s’more’s. If the weather is nice and you are outside, build a fire and roast marshmallows. Reminisce about favorite birthday memories and talk about future memories you want to make together as a family. Too cold to sleep outside? Too dark? That’s okay! One of our favorite finds during the pandemic is Twilight Slumber Parties. You pickup a DIY kit to set up whimsically decorated and furnished sleepover tents inside your home!
Host a Fancy Dinner at Home
Send invitations to everyone in your family, inviting them to get really dressed up. Set the table with candles, play music, use proper manners and cloth napkins. Even if you are eating pizza it’ll feel fancy and special.
Old School Games
When I was a kid we played “pin the tail on the donkey”, Clothes pin drop, Bobbing for apples, balloon bust, and the Bozo bucket toss. I’m guessing you have supplies around the house to set up a few if not all of these retro party games. I’m willing to bet the kids (and adults) will have such a great time you’ll play these games again someday.
Have family and friends mail cards and/or gifts ahead of time
Collect everything and present them to the birthday child at some point during their festivities all at once (like they’d receive at a party) or spread them out throughout the day. You could also make a game of it and hide cards and gifts around the house for a Scavenger Hunt.
Host a Video Game Party
Older kids are having fantastic Birthday parties online via their video games. Games like Minecraft and Fortnite are hot spots for social interaction and friend and party features are perfect for celebration with those they surely miss most.
If your neighborhood has a Facebook page or is on the Nextdoor app, ask neighbors to hang signs or balloons so when you take a walk your child will be greeted with birthday well-wishes at every house. Also, have the birthday child dress up in a crown or tiara and wear a sash or hold an “it’s my Birthday” flag. That’ll get them some extra waves and car honks from passersby.
Change your routine
Make the birthday a little different by just changing a few things up. Breakfast in bed is always a treat, then how about a picnic lunch in the living room? Dinner could be outside in a tent, around a campfire, or sitting in the trunk of the SUV (my kids LOVE eating here). The slightest difference will seem special and help make this challenging time more memorable, in a good way.
Did you know you can host a Netflix Party with your friends? Download the app. It synchronizes video playback and adds group chatting making binge watching so much more social. Pop some popcorn and host a Netflix movie night.
No matter the age from 2 to 99 everyone likes a little pampering. We did this with my 3 year old and 7 year old. Make facial masks, give massages, do their nails, curl or style their hair and maybe even a touch of makeup to feel extra special. Listen to relaxing music and sip on fun drinks. My girls have already asked to have another spa day so I’ll take that as a win.
Let the Birthday Child take the Lead
This may be scary and you’ll definitely need to use your creative side. If we’re still practicing social distancing when my little turns four, I’ll have her pick four things she wants to do for her birthday. If one of them is to go to the beach, then I will somehow make a beach in the backyard with a kiddie pool and sand. If she wants a movie night we’ll have a movie night. You might be surprised by what they ask for.
Quarantined Themed Party
Older kids could totally get into a party theme reflective of the current situation. “Twilight Zone”, “Zombie Apocalypse”, or maybe just being alone (my 7 year old would LOVE a day alone, away, from her little sister).
Maybe you’re trying to be more grateful and giving in 2020. If your child is turning ten have him write ten cards or letters to people that mean the most to him in his life. Have him express his gratitude and why he values the receiver. It’ll make him feel good and brighten the recipient’s day. Or, use this time to work together making masks for people who need them, or writing letters of thanks to first responders.
Paint and Sip Party
Get back on the virtual conferencing website (Zoom, Google Hangouts, ect…) and host a “juice and canvas” or “tea and ceramics” party. Guests can follow along with the host and create beautiful art. Dollar store plates are easy to color with Sharpies, plain paper can be painted or get fancy with take and make ceramics from Kiln Creations.
Visit with a princess or Super Hero
Once Upon a Princess is offering personal video calls with characters ranging from princesses to Marvel Heroes. Maybe your little one would like the Snow Queen to read her a bedtime story or maybe she has endless questions for Thor. These are extra special ways to add some flare to their birthday celebrations.
Keep it simple
Small family? Only child? Single parent? Working parents?? Keep it super simple. Turn off the electronics, gather around the table for dinner, sing “Happy Birthday”, gift a homemade card or present. Just be together. Take solace in the simple things right now. Sit back and see your kid. Realize how much has changed since their last birthday. See their habits, their mannerisms, the way they talk… take this time during social distancing to reconnect with your kids and really see who they are becoming.
Go in with a positive attitude (even though you may be heartbroken as well) and we’re sure everyone will make some good memories during this unprecedented time. Use this list for other milestones that may come up during our social distancing phase of life. Graduations, births, anniversaries and birthdays for young and old deserve to be celebrated. You are doing a great job and we will get through this together; while apart.
50 thoughts on “26 Ways to Celebrate Birthdays with Kids During Covid 19”
I think the part where friends and other family members can drop by and toss birthday gifts on our lawn is definitely a good idea to make my kid feel loved. We were all sad since we can’t throw a birthday party for his 7th birthday because of the current quarantine period. I’ll definitely message all our nearby friends and see if they could drop by.
OMG, same here! Everyday he is counting down to his 7th birthday and we are scrambling just to find things to make it fun. #prayingforourkids 🙁
I LOVE THAT!!! YASSSS. It could a mixture of the Happy Bday sign in the yard AND have the presents all ready in the yard as well. Thank you!!!
My daughter is turning 10 in a few days, and all of these ideas are all kinda pre-planned, so does anyone have any other ideas? These were all very good ideas, and thank you! She’s really worried that she is not going to have a good birthday, but I know she’s wrong. She is an only child and no family around her.
What did you end up doing? My soon to be 10 year old is in the same boat. Only child. No family around. Online school.
I think the one surprises me the most is Host a Zoom Birthday Party, Host a Video Game Party, and Host a Netflix Party.
i like the virtual zoom party idea.
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How do I have the zoom party I’m not sure I understand that for my three-year-old granddaughter
Basically a Zoom Party is when you start a zoom meeting and send the link to people you want to invite.
Hope this Helps,
We are doing a drive by bday at the parking lot of our church… well wishes for our daughter and also donate bag of food drive for Local school back pack program. Kids that drive by get party favors to include kids hand sanitizer, a mask and healthy snacks, and kids toy.
Where did you find the kids hand sanitizer?
I love these ideas. My son will be 9 this month and I just don’t feel comfortable having a party. Definitely think I will do the Zoom party.
Yeah, That was a good idea!
Thank you for this. I’ve been thinking of ways to celebrate my child’s birthday and couldn’t think of anything ! Great suggestions.
These are some great ideas! My son will be 5 in July, and I want him to have lots of fun, but safely. These ideas will definitely make him feel loved, even at a safe distance!!
Happy birthday! Enjoy!
Tomorrow July 20th my daughter is turning 6 years , she as been doing countdown since On the 10th… will be doing movie night with Cake, drinks ,snacks and popcorn. At home as a family of 4.. I hope she enjoys it.., happy birthday Miracle in advance ma baby
I’m doing the same. My eldest is going to be 7 and we already 4 at home, mee and his brother’s, but I might invite his best friend that’s the only thing he ask me bless him.
I guess we are all here for the same reasons,looking for ideas with everything else that are going on. My daughter’s bday is 12/31 she can’t wait for that day ” double digit” mommy, she’s turning 10. Omg, I’m stressed, I’m searching for ideas every day online. Zoom party is out cause she’s all day on the computer for school already, she’s an only child ( poor kid) She’s very much into tik tok these days. I need help lol lol
Totaly my daughter’s Bday is today and she is turning 10.I can tell these were really helpful. She really wanted to have a party and she on her computer all day.Hope your child has a happy birthday.
My daughter is turning 10 on 12/31 too!! That is so awesome! Im stressed too and trying to figure out ways to make it super special!
What did you end up doing?? I’m looking for ideas, my daughter’s turning ten too.
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My daughter is turning One and I have no clue what to do. I know she won’t remember it but I want pictures for her to remember and for the parents too. HELP!
my nephew just turned 1 and they did a small party in the backyard, had a kiddie pool, trampoline, swingset, lots of decorations, they decorated the high chair and had balloons with a big blue #1 and he had this adorable little birthday crown with a 1 on it. He had his own little smash cake in the high chair, the family & siblings had cake, then his older brother helped him open presents and it was super cute – lots of great photos and celebrated with immediate family.
My daughter will be 3yrs August 22nd,is just me,her & dad but with the social distancing,we want to make it memorable for her,please help with ideas
Tons of ideas above!
You have some great ideas! I want to share this in a party roundup on my site.
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Thank you for taking your time to share this resourceful information.
One thing I can add is the need to organize for photography to ensure the moments are captured well.
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Add the Among us game for teen and up. My 14 yr old arranged for her teen cousins , the fun aunt, and grandma to login to zoom together and also play among us. It was a blast!! The adults actually played a few times before the date to learn the game. We all logged on to zoom together to chat and get set up and played a little more than an hour.
Great idea! My kids LOVE this game!
I would also suggest using a Wish Fan to blow out the candles on the cake, instead of breath (yuck) or hands (ouch).
I love your suggestion about putting decorations all over the house and leaving them up for a couple of days to make the space feel festive for our child’s birthday. My two-year-old loves balloons, so I’ll get her plenty of balloons and balloon garland. Hopefully, I find a reputable balloon service that offers free delivery soon.
My son will be 4 on 12/27 and I have nothing! He attends a home day care with just one other child, and there’s only one kid in our neighborhood that he would play with before covid. I am scrambling! We were going to go somewhere and socially distance, but due to the rising numbers we had to change plans. Now I’m lost. UGH HELP PLEASE.
these are wonderful ideas! i love them i am looking on this website for some ideas for my baby sister!
yes I’m really wondering what you guys did. I have 2 daughters 4 days apart. one turns 9 and the other turns 6, they so desperately want a party. I feel so bad for them. I don’t know what we should do.
Thanks for sharing these amazing ideas for the birthday celebration. As it is difficult in these difficult times to give our children the same experience which they used to have before.
This year we went bowling. I rented a lane at a local bowling alley for two hours and then we had hot tasty pizza afterwards at a cafe in town for tea then we came home and had wine, ice cream or cupcakes and watched a nice old movie.
Really like the idea of having zoom party and hosting the online game for birthday party will be enjoyable by every child.