Helpful kids entertainment tips:
There is no shortage of kids entertainment in Melbourne, so where do you start? These handy kids entertainment tips will help you find the best option for your occasion.
When to start?
It is advisable to book entertainers at least four weeks prior to your event and even longer ahead if you have a specific date and time in mind and a larger event, especially during peak times. Entertainers who are high in demand are often booked 3 months or longer ahead.
Indoor or outdoor party?
Think about where you will be having the party and what the weather may be like during that time of the year. If you are planning an outdoor party, consider having a wet weather back-up plan. Make sure the entertainment you have in mind is suitable for the space available at your venue.
What are the ages of the children attending?
Kids entertainment for babies and toddlers will be different to that for pre-schoolers, primary school aged children and tweens, so look for options tailored specifically for the age range of those attending. If there will be a wide variety of ages, it is better to work with a professional kids entertainer who is trained to adjust and interact with all ages. This is even more so if you want to entertain both the adults and children.
Young children have shorter attention spans, so it is advisable to book entertainment that is interactive, offer variety and take physical development into account.
How many children?
Think about the number of children you will be inviting as some forms of kids entertainment can cater to larger groups and others are limited to a certain number of children. Some entertainment activities need an entertainer for every 10-15 kids depending on their age. It is also good to ask if siblings will come along as parents don’t always mention that they will.
What type of kids entertainment?
Entertainment mostly fall into 4 categories:
- Active entertainment such as a sports party or African drumming party or Medieval Sword-fighting Party where the children are actively playing most of the party.
- Interactive entertainment where there are short performances or demonstrations and the children participate in activities, such as a giant bubble party, circus party or hula hoop party.
- Performance shows where the children watch with some audience participation such as a music show or magician.
- Party entertainment equipment, where play equipment is dropped off and picked up again such as ride-on animals, jumping castles, etc. and you are more hands-on during the party.
How long do you want the entertainment to go for?
Kids entertainment normally runs in 30 minute blocks depending on the nature of the entertainment. Most parties run for between 2-3 hours, so make sure you allow enough time for everyone to arrive, for the children to enjoy some free play, for food to be enjoyed, the entertainment and cutting and eating birthday cake. Remember that activities such as face-painting and balloon twisting is one-on-one, so children will have to wait their turn as it takes between 2-5 minutes per child.
When do you want the entertainment to start?
It is good to allow 30 minutes for all the guests to arrive as there are bound to be a few late comers. It also allows for the children to get acquainted and enjoy something to eat and drink before the activities start. Consider if you want the entertainer there at the start of the party as your guests arrive, or if you want all your guests there before the entertainer arrives. Take set-up time in consideration too as most entertainment takes 10-30 minutes to set up and pack up.
What to budget for?
Entertainment package prices are based on the following:
- The number of guests to be entertained.
- Supplies needed.
- The skill level and experience of the entertainer (professional artist or hobby entertainer).
- Travel to and from the venue.
- Nature of the the event (a staged event performed to a large audience is more costly).
- Customising entertainment for your party.
When looking at prices, make sure whether travel, GST and transaction fees are included in the quoted price and for how many children that price is applicable to.
What is too much?
If you are investing in quality kids entertainment, try to not have too much going on as that can distract children. Having an entertainer and a jumping castle and a face painter and a balloon twister will result in children roaming and deciding to go from one to the other without engaging much. If you have a backyard filled with play equipment, be prepared that there will always be children that will decide to play on the equipment instead of taking part in the entertainment. If it is really cold or really hot outside, some children will seek comfort over taking part in activities. Some kids are shy and may not want to participate in the activities straight away or at all, so don’t be offended, rather expect that this is likely to happen, especially in a large group of kids that don’t know each other.
Looking for kids entertainment ideas?
Click here to browse a variety of kids entertainment options for all ages. You can also head over to our Pinterest page for boards full of kids party ideas! Like us on Facebook or follow us on Instagram to join the buzz of what we get up to at parties!
What about kids birthday party etiquette?
Birthday parties are a lovely opportunity for children to celebrate together, socialise meet new friends and for parents to catch up. Just because it is a children’s party, it doesn’t mean that social etiquette should go out of the window. Etiquette does of course not only refer to good manners and behaviour at the party, there are several elements to it. Read more about it here.