Little House on the Prairie Birthday

Old Fashioned Birthday Party : Little House on the Prairie Style

When my daughter was turning seven years old, my wife and I had a birthday party for her with a "Little House on the Prairie" theme.
We were able to purchase about 15-20 cloth bonnets similar to what the girls would wear during that time period.
Each of the girl guests were given a bonnet as a party favor, along with a small personal slate - chalkboard and some white chalk.
To decorate the backyard, we were able to get a hold of several haystacks from a local western store, which made a great backdrop to the party games, including the gunny sack races and hog-calling contest.

Old Fashioned Birthday Party Games : Sack Racing

For the gunny sack races, each guest got their own burlap sack, and raced across the backyard in several laps, whooping and laughing the whole time! We had several different kinds of sack races.
The first was a straight race from one side to the other with all the contestants lined up side by side. The other was a sack race obstacle course (which they loved). The obstacle course was set up with some of the haybales we had bought. They were placed every twenty feet or so with two on either side of the course. (spread wide enough apart to make it easy for the kids). They had to zig-zag through the course!

Old-Fashioned Birthday Games : Hog Calling

The hog calling contest was even more of a hit, with endless giggles and laughs as each of the children did their best "Suuuueeeyy!".
Once wasn't enough, even though we did the judging on the first hog call from each girl, they kept doing calls for a good twenty minutes!

Old Time Birthday Party Games : Butter Churning

Another of the old time birthday party games we did was a butter churning contest.
It was one of the biggest hits of all. All of the children were given small glass mason-type jars, no more than about 1/2 cup in size each.
The jars were filled with heavy whipping cream, and when the jars were sealed, each of the children were able to shake and shake their jar, and actually churn real butter! Not only is it a fun project for kids, as they all loved it, but educational as well.
This is how you do it:
  • Pour the heavy whipping cream into each jar.
  • Screw the lids on tight. (Help the kids with this part)
  • Shake, Shake, Shake! It takes a while, keep shaking!
  • The cream will start to form into a ball of butter
  • Scoop the butter balls out of the jars and drain on paper towels.
  • That's it! The kids made butter!
For the contest part, we had a panel of "butter churning experts" (adults) vote on whose butter ball was shaped the best. This was the surprise part of the party, because we voted everyone's butter a winner. Each "winner" got to take home a book from the Little House on the Prairie series.

An Old Time Birthday Party

One thing that helped set the mood was to have the "Little House on the Prairie" theme music playing on a boom box. Were were able to do this by simple tape recording the opening theme from a DVD that we have, and playing it back during the party.
We also had a few episodes of the tv show that the girls watched after they were tired from all the party games.
With just a few simple ideas and not a whole lot of money involved, this party was a smashing success. All the kids definitely had a fantastic time, and the parents loved it as well!

More Little House on the Prairie Kids Birthday Party Themes
Shared by Kelly, the Birthday Parade Moderator

I grew up watching reruns of Little House on the Prairie and when John sent in this idea for our kids birthday party themes I got really excited! I'd never thought of this theme before and it seems so nice to send our "modern day kids" back into the olden times for a birthday party.
Here are a few more ideas that popped into my head for an Old Time Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party:

Kids Birthday Party Themes : Old Time Dress Up Party

  • Have the girls come in dresses or long skirts
  • Have the girls braid each other's hair (for the classic Laura look
  • Have the boys come in jeans and white button down shirts
  • Hand out "paper" bonnets to the girls (if you can't find real ones like John did)
  • Hand out bandanas for the boys
  • Or have each child come as one of the characters

Kids Birthday Party Themes : Old Fashioned Birthday Party Decorations

  • Use Gingham Patterned Table Cloths and Napkins
  • Use Tin Cups and Metal Plates (from a camping store)
  • Or instead of Tin Cups use Mason Jars for Drinks
  • Make Invitations with a "Quilt Look"
  • Make Invitations with a log cabin on them
  • Lay quilts around the party room or hang them from the walls
  • Fill Glass Jars with Old Buttons and Twine
  • Make a Happy Birthday Banner using Twine to Connect each Letter
  • String Buttons through Twine and Hang them from the Banner

Kids Birthday Party Themes : Old Time Birthday Party Games

  • Guess How Many Buttons : Have kids guess the button count in the jars
  • Button Toss: Get a Metal Bucket (from a hardware store) Have kids toss the buttons at the bucket (ten feet away)
  • Clothes Pin Drop : Use Wooden Clothes Pins and have the kids try to drop them into an old-fashioned style milk bottle
  • Apple Bobbing : A classic country party game, bobbing for apples in a bucket of water
  • Paper Dolls Crafts : Have the kids color and cut out old fashioned paper dolls
  • Dance Contest : Put on Fiddle Music or BlueGrass Music and watch the kids dance
  • Corn Husk Dolls : Make dolls out of corn husks
  • Education Station : Set up a table with items that are modern conveniences next to items from back in Laura's day. Explain the differences between what life was like back then and how it is now. Examples: A light bulb next to a candle. A cellphone next to an addressed envelope. A picture of your thermostat next to a piece of wood, etc.

Kids Birthday Party Themes : Pioneer Birthday Party Favors

An old fashioned lending library: If it's in your budget a special party favor is to give each kid a copy of one of the 8 Little House on the Prairie books. Then as they finish reading them, all the kids can switch books.
This way all the birthday party guests get to read each of the books and it keeps the party memories in their minds. It also encourages them to read! Here are the titles of the kids books by Laura Ingalls Wilder.
  • Little House in the Big Woods
  • Farmer Boy
  • On the Banks of Plum Creek
  • Old Town in the Green Groves
  • By the Shores of Silver Lake
  • The Long Winter
  • These Happy Golden Years
  • The First Four Years

Kids Birthday Party Themes : Little House on the Prairie Birthday Cakes

  • Use a Holly Hobby Cake Pan to make a Laura Ingalls Cake
  • Make a Cake Shaped like a House
  • Make an Old Fashioned Cake
  • Make a Covered Wagon Cake
  • Make a log cabin cake