Whether you’ve got a child who’s a live wire or more of a quiet explorer, we’ve rounded up 12 cool birthday destinations sure to please every birthday type.
THE ACTIVE CHILD
If you’ve got a kid with energy to burn, why not check out birthday parties at Get Air? Jumping on trampolines is a great way to get the wiggles out. In addition, this new facility in Collierville offers Kiddy Court, where children under 46 inches tall can jump separately and play in a foam pit.
Parties are easy at River City Gymnastics, where an instructor works with kids to do tumbling, trampoline, and floor exercise fun. They’ll even coordinate party room activities.
Roller skating at area roller rinks is surprisingly retro-cool, and a great way for kids to exercise. Skating rinks have party rooms, and party cost includes admission and skate rental.
Getairmemphis.com • $250/10 guests for two-hour party, includes jump socks and table with paper products. $300/includes pizza and soda. Children under 46 inches tall pay less. 203-0392
Rivercitygymnastics.com • $250/15 guests includes one hour of gym play with an instructor, 30 minutes in party room, paper products, and T-shirt. 388-3737
Memphisskating.com • $119+tax/10 guests includes admission, pizza, and skate rental. 755-0221
THE CURIOUS CHILD
What little boy hasn’t dreamed of becoming a firefighter? At the newly refurbished Fire Museum of Memphis, kids can climb on fire trucks, experience the fire room, and try interesting, hands-on exhibits that teach fire safety. For extra pizzazz, have Memphis Firedogs Astro or Izzy pay a visit.
The Lichterman Nature Center gives children a glimpse into the natural world. In a park-like setting, your naturalist guides children on a nature walk, introduces an animal, and finishes with a craft activity. Perfect for 6 and under.
Another beautiful place children can experience animals is Maple Grove Farm. Here, you can feed a goat, pet a bunny, even ride a horse. For more active fun, a climbing wall and bounce house is available. Party activities are led by farm staff.
Mad Science of the Mid-South brings the party to your place with cool, hands-on science experiments kids can do. Each instructor has his own specialty, be it tricks with electricity or hydrophobic sand. What’s best, the party closes with everyone making slime. Great for ages 7 to 10.
Lichterman Nature Center - memphismuseums.org • $220/15 guests; $5/per child for extras up to 25. This one-hour party includes a naturalist, crafts, and indoor or outdoor party room. 636-2221
Maplegrovefarm.net • $295/20 guests. $10/per additional child. Two-hour party led by staff, includes petting farm. 861-7422
Madscience.org • $200/15 guests for one-hour show. Extras include rocket launch, dry ice, or cotton candy making. $35 per activity. 213-3555 or email Stacey@madsciencemidsouth.com
THE CREATIVE CHILD
Let kids tap their inner artist with a party at The Art Project in Overton Square. This cool space has all the materials you need to paint, sculpt clay, or make a collage that partiers take home.
Pitter Potter has a tough time keeping its superhero figurines on the shelves, as young painters love them. Your crew can build a pot, paint a ceramic piece, or do an activity tailored to your theme.
Artprojectmemphis.com • $245/12 guests in the Scribble Space, includes materials and staff instruction. – 425-3434
Pitterpotterstudio.com • $16/8 guests. Two-hour party includes instruction and materials for coil pots or ceramic painting. - 443-7718
THE ADVENTUROUS CHILD
At the Kroc Center, parties get wet and wild when you throw a Splash Bash. Kids can swim or float in the lazy river and dance on the outdoor splash pad. For older kids, conspire with the Challenge Coach and try Rescue Training. Parties can include competitions like dodgeball, obstacle courses, or matching wits on the three-level maze.
For driving fun, rev up your engine at the Autobahn Indoor Speedway. Parties here will get hearts thumping as kids take laps around this new, indoor go-kart track. Safety harnesses and helmets help the good times roll.
Krocmemphis.org • Splash Bash Pool Party: $360/15 guests for indoor pool and lazy river. Outdoor splash pad open Memorial Day to Labor Day. Party includes 1.5 hours of swimming, one hour in party room, and goody bags. Corefire Commando: $329/15 guests for 1.5 hours of activity and one hour in party room. 729.8031
Autobahnspeed.com • Mini Grand Prix: 2 races, $40/weekdays; $50/weekends. Includes 1.5-hour use of party room and helmets. NOTE: Junior kart racers must be 48 inches tall and 8 years of age.
Backyard Summer Fun
Celebrate with a field day. Put together challenges kids can tackle, like an obstacle course, a treasure hunt, jarts, an egg roll, and sack race.
Host a movie night. Hoist a sheet for a screen in the backyard and stream your favorite Disney movie from your computer. Be sure to have popcorn ready when guests arrive.
Have a campout. Pitch a tent in the backyard, roast hot dogs and marshmallows over a fire pit, and use a telescope to scan the night sky.