Young or old, a visit to the circus can put a smile on anyone's face. Whether you are planning your child's next birthday party, or you are looking for a theme for your parent-teacher organization's next event, you can't go wrong with a circus theme. With the right decor, activities and entertainment, you can make a children's circus event one to remember.
Set up red and white striped open-air tents if the event is outdoors for games or performances. You can also cover any fences with brightly-colored sheets and tie colorful balloons to the fence posts. If the party is indoors, you can drape red and white crepe streamers from the corners of the room to the center to give it a circus tent look. You can also hang streamers from the doorways. Hang vintage circus posters around the room, or along the fence if outdoors. You should have a banner at the entrance that says "The Greatest Show on Earth," or "Welcome to Izzy's Circus," for example.
Plan to have snacks that are typically available at the circus. Serve popcorn out of an old-fashioned popcorn maker. Rent a cotton candy machine and serve a wide variety of flavors. You can also serve hot dogs, animal-shaped crackers and ice cream. You could have a cone-dipping station where the kids can dip their cones halfway in chocolate and sprinkles. Include healthy snacks, too, such as fruit kabobs, using brightly colored fruit and grilled veggie kabobs.
Plan games for the kids related to the circus, such as a race to put on a clown costume. Put the kids into teams, standing in one line. The first person has to run and get the suit, then run back to his team. The second person in line gets the shoes, and so forth. When team members have all the items, they must dress one person fully as a clown to win. For younger kids, bring out a rainbow-colored play parachute or a colorful sheet to play parachute games. Have everyone lift up the parachute and call out a color. The kids wearing that color must walk quickly underneath the parachute and find another spot before it falls back down.
Circus entertainment will really make your event stand out. Hire a clown that can do a wide variety of tricks, such as juggling, magic tricks and silly comedy that will have the kids laughing. You can also hire a balloon artist to make elaborate balloon animals for the kids as well. Other entertainers to have at the circus event include stilt walkers, unicyclists and mimes. Make sure you choose performers that will interact with the kids and encourage audience participation.