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Birthday Party Planning Guide

Exclusively at BirthdayExpress.com


Splish splash, get ready for a birthday bash! Discover enchantment under the sea with the Mermaids theme! Our party planning guide will bring waves of excitement, helping you serve up satisfying seaside snacks and oceanic activities. All that's left to do is make a birthday wish with a guest of honor that's part girl, part fish!

Party Checklist

4-6 Weeks Before the Party

  • Select Date:



    Plan a safe, inviting place for kids to have fun. Set time to 2-3 hours for young children, and 3-4 hours for older kids.

  • Create Guest List

    Just fill out the handy list in this guide!

  • Order Mermaids Party Supplies, 
Mermaid Party Favors

    BirthdayExpress.com is the place! You'll find over 150 party themes, with party pack options for all of them. Expecting more guests? Choose our Pack Add-On option

  • Order Birthday Costume/Outfit & Gifts

    BirthdayExpress.com has lots of fun choices. Look for our costumes, T-shirts, hats and special birthday gifts designed to match our party themes.

  • Book Entertainment (optional)

2 Weeks Before the Party

  • Order Cake

    Schedule to pick it up one day before the party.

  • Mail Mermaids Invitations

    Let the birthday child help by adhering the stamps and putting the invitations in the mailbox.

  • Create List of Parent Phone Numbers

    Keep on hand in case of emergency.

  • Plan Party Menu

    Check out the recipes in this guide. Ask parents if kids have any food allergies.

  • Choose Party Games & Collect Party Supplies

    This guide has ideas that match your party theme!

2-3 Days Before the Party

  • Prepare Cameras

    Check batteries. Charge video camera. Buy film or video cards. Get Birthday Message Cameras for the kids to use.

1 Day Before the Party

  • Make Food & Drinks, Bake/Get Cake, Buy Ice

    Set out chilled/heated foods just before kids eat.

  • Childproof & Decorate Party Area

    Remove breakable items and objects that could prevent guests from moving freely. Decorate with balloons, crepe paper, and other items included in your party pack.

  • Set Up Party Games, Fill Favor Boxes & Piñatas

    Invite your party child to help!

Party Day!

  • Fill Birthday Balloons with Helium

After the Party

  • Send Birthday Thank-You Notes

    Include party photos!


Crustacean Crawl


  • Rope or string

Before your guests arrive, make a starting line and a finishing line that are approximately 15 feet apart. To play the game, divide your crabby crew into two even teams. The first player on each team will get into the crab position. Ready, set, GO! The crabs will make their way to the finish line, and then back to the starting line, which is when the next crustacean will crawl. Play continues until the last person on each team crosses over the starting line. The fastest wins!

Sand Dollar Photo Booth


  • Beach Towels
  • Clotes Line
  • Sand Box (optional)
  • Turquoise Balloons
  • Balloon Weights
  • Mermaid Costumes and Accessories
  • Ocean Props
  • Camera

Begin setting up an outdoor photo area before the party. Hang beach towels from a clothes line to set the backdrop. (Pro-Planner Tip: To add even more ambiance, use a sandbox to create the illusion of an "ocean floor"). Tie together two chains of turquoise balloons (the "bubbles") and place them on either side of the towel backdrop (remember to anchor them with balloon weights). Once the little sea princesses arrive, let them select their favorite mermaid props, costumes and accessories. Take a few snapshots of each guest and send the best one in their thank-you note!

Fishing for Favors


  • 1 - 36" dowel (3/4" diameter)
  • Fishing line
  • Glue
  • Paper clips
  • Fish-shaped stencil
  • Card stock
  • Magnetic washer
  • Scissors
  • Kiddie pool
  • Prizes/bags

Before your Mermaids party, use the stencil to create fish shapes on pieces of cardstock. Cut out each fish, write a number on the back and glue a paper clip near the mouth. To make the fishing pole, tie a piece of fishing line from the wooden dowel, adding the magnetic washer to the opposite end of the string. Put together a prize bag to coordinate with each number on the back of the fish. Upon the arrival of your party fin-atics, fill the kiddie pool with the fish and give each child a chance to catch one! Present the coordinating prize bag as their take-home favor!

Treasure Hunt


Toss pool toys into the shallow end of the pool, allowing them to sink to the bottom. Let your mermaids loose in an attempt to recover the "ocean treasures". Award each girl a whale squirter party favor in exchange for their found pool toys (Pro-planner Tip: Have another adult supervise additional pool playtime, allowing you to either set up the next activity or put out the food).


Ocean Cake


  • 2 boxes of your favorite cake mix
  • 2 containers of vanilla frosting
  • Blue food coloring


Bake each cake mix, as directed on the box, in round cake pans. Cool completely before removing the cakes from the pans. In another bowl, empty the containers of vanilla frosting and add blue food coloring. Mix until frosting reaches the perfect ocean blue! Frost the top of the first cake and place the other cake on top. Frost the entire cake, leaving little peaks with your knife (to make it look like the sea!). Add plastic fish to the top of the cake to create an unforgettable buffet table centerpiece!

Fish Food


  • 2 cups cinnamon squares cereal
  • 2 cups toasted oats cereal
  • 2 cups honey nut toasted oats cereal
  • 1 1/2 cups pretzel twists
  • 2 cups fish-shaped cheese crackers
  • 16 ounce bag of Swedish Fish

Combine all of the listed ingredients together in a large storage bag. Shake the mixture until well blended. Pour the contents into a bowl and serve. Perfect for poolside snacking!



  • Tortillas
  • Monterrey Jack Cheese, shredded and sliced
  • Chili Powder


  • Star Cookie Cutters (1 large, 1 small)

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Using the large star-shaped cookie cutter, punch out the shape in the tortillas, allowing 2 tortillas for each quesadilla. Use the small star-shaped cookie cutter to punch out the shape from the sliced cheese (1 for each quesadilla), and set aside. Add shredded cheese to half of the cut tortillas and add a plain star-shaped tortilla on top. Bake for 5 minutes. Remove the quesadillas from the oven and place a small cheese star on top of each quesadilla. Bake for an additional 2 minutes, or until the cheese on top is just melted. Sprinkle the cheesy starfish with chili powder and serve!

Sushi Sammies


  • 1 – 8 oz. tub of whipped cream cheese
  • White bread
  • Mozzarella cheese slices
  • Sliced turkey deli meat
  • Cucumbers, de-seeded

To prep your work station, place the ingredients in the order they will be used (bread, cream cheese, meat, mozzarella and cucumbers). Your de-seeded cucumbers will need to be cut into 3" long matchsticks, and each slice of mozzarella should be split into 6 even strips. Remove the crusts of each slice of bread, creating a square shape. Spread the whipped cream cheese over each piece of bread and begin to assemble the sushi pieces. To the cream-cheese side of the bread, add a piece of turkey, a strip of mozzarella and a cucumber matchstick. Roll up the bread, securing the ingredients inside (using more cream cheese at the seal to help it stick, if needed). Slice each roll into bite-size pieces and place on a pretty serving tray. This kid-friendly snack is sure to be a hit with mermaids and mermen of all ages!

Glance through the list below to see if you're missing any important items. Many can be found on the party theme page.

Print This Party Planning Guide Now

Open this free party planning guide as a PDF document for printing. Keep it handy to help make your party planning easy!

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