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Snake Party -5yr- Snake Hunt




Karen in Stokesdale, NC  USA


May 2006



Two years ago for my son's 5th birthday, we had a snake themed party. 

We sent invitations which may sister in law had made  showing a  coiled snake (top view) with the invitation words spiraling over it:   "Snakes Alive Alexander's Turning 5!  Please join us for lunch, cake,  and slithery fun…date, time, etc. " I made envelopes using grass print  scrapbooking paper. 

The party was in June, so we borrowed a canopy from a friend where  the children could eat lunch and enjoy the surprise show (more on that  later).  Before the party started, we hid tiny rubber snakes around the  yard.  We decorated the canopy with large rubber snakes from my  son's collection, and posted a sign which said:  "Sidewinder Café,"   with a drawn picture of a snake. 

As each child arrived, he or she was provided with a small canvas bag  (oriental trading co.) which my son had previously  stamped with green paint and a snake stamp (which I had to make  from a potato, because I couldn't find any in the craft stores!).  They  were allowed to write their name with a paint pen, and then the bags  were left in the hot June sun to dry, while the children ate lunch in the  café. 

Lunch was sandwiches on cocktail bread, carrots, fruit salad, gummy  "snakes," and cheese doodles.   They were served on green paper  plates, as I could find no plates decorated with snake pictures. 

After  lunch, the children retrieved their snake bags and went on a snake  hunt.  They were told to find a certain number of snakes (however many  I had, divided by 12 children).  When each child "captured" his or her  snakes, they were given a badge I had made which said "Professional  Snake Handler." 

As the children were searching for their snakes the  surprise entertainment arrived:  the Snake Man\*!  For $40, a guy came  and shared his knowledge, 4 corn snakes, and the shed skin of a  python.  This guy was worth every penny!  For  about 45 minutes, he  talked about snakes, let the children pet the snakes, let me son hold  each of the snakes, and answered all the children's questions.  He  was great.  Additionally, having entertainment, allowed me time to  clean up lunch and get the cake ready. 

Once the children's interest  began to lag (they were 5 years old after all), the guy wrapped up.  We had cake and ice cream (I made a Martha Stewert receipe for a  chocolate sheet cake, which I ten cut into the shape of  a snake and  covered with green frosting).  Then the kids played pin the hood on the  cobra (homemade game). 

Afterwards, my son opened his presents,  and then it was time to give the kids their favors (their snake catching  bags, badges, the plastic snakes, snake stickers, and gummy snakes)  and send them home.  This party was a big hit with the kids, and the guy with the snakes was  a great surprise for my son.  I found the snake guy through a friend, but  you could probably find one by asking your local nature center, science  museum, or any locally owned pet shop which sells snakes.

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