Birthday Planning Guide While Social Distancing

It’s someone’s birthday! Whether it’s you, your kids, the neighbors, or their kids– someone out there needs to be celebrated. Just because the world seems to have temporarily stopped doesn’t mean the celebration should too! There are plenty of ways to celebrate at home and also include your family and friends in important key milestones like birthday parties. Our team here at Detroit Mom has assembled a list of at-home, socially distant, and virtual activities with unique ways of involving your family and friends for the special occasion.

15 Creative In-Home Ideas

  1. Make party hats and other decorations together as an activity.
  2. Decorate your windows and other unexpected places to add to the magic!
  3. Chalk the sidewalks with special personalized birthday greetings so they think it’s all about them every step of the way.
  4. Go over the top with their favorite decorations, food, activities, and desserts.
  5. Call the local police and fire department to see if they can help!
  6. Make a special “honk for my birthday party” sign and stand on the sidewalk– count how many honks you get!
  7. Plan a drive-by parade where family and friends drive by with festive music, honking, and holding signs, celebrating from a safe social distance and at a slower-paced driving speed. (Once travel restrictions are eased, of course.)
  8. On that note, drive-by dance parties are totally in style.
  9. Get dressed up! Pick a theme or get fancy. Just because you’re not going anywhere doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dress for the occasion.
  10. Get free delivery on a number of takeout restaurants if you’re missing that “out to eat” feeling while celebrating birthdays at home.
  11. Make a movie theater in your living room or bring the TV out in the backyard! Don’t forget the popcorn and movie theater candy.
  12. Camp out in the living room. Pop that tent up and assemble those stove-top s’mores or maybe enjoy a backyard bonfire.
  13. Set up snail mail and porch drops-offs for people who still want to to deliver gifts. With proper sanitation and handling, this should be fun for everyone involved.
  14. Plan a neighborhood scavenger hunt. If you live in a neighborhood that could get involved, be sure to include them! For a great example of how to do this, see the Detroit Mom Easter Egg Hunt.
  15. The next day, spend time planning a party for the future to celebrate with family and friends in person. Use this time to look for future deals and plan the best party yet.

10 Virtual Parties

  1. Host a structured Zoom party with friends (or other meet-up applications)– be prepared to sing, blow out candles, and maybe play a game or two. It’s likely your kid will hijack the laptop and broadcast a spontaneous house tour, be prepared for that. Drop off sanitized treat bags, games, or other party supplies beforehand to enjoy while interacting online.
  2. Set one-on-one virtual meetings with grandparents and special friends to open gifts or enjoy dinner together. (Maybe…help Grammy and Grandpa get set up in advance!)
  3. Host a Facebook party– invite friends and family to a party online where you can host live videos, games, and more. Prizes that could be exchanged via snail mail.
  4. Help plan TikTok birthday challenges with friends. Or rather, your child can help *you*!
  5. Host a Facebook fundraiser. Teach your children about giving back to others on their birthday with Facebook birthday fundraisers that your whole network can participate in.
  6. Encourage loved ones to send an abundance of personalized birthday videos, phone calls, snap chats, and messages.
  7. Head to the Nick Jr. Birthday Club for free printable coloring pages, and personalized birthday calls from your favorite characters!
  8. Attend virtual tour online to places like the zoo, museum, or other cool places offering virtual tours free of charge. Make a whole theme out of it as if you were going to the zoo!
  9. Utilize those video games. Help plan a group-play for online video games like Mario party, Pokemon Go and Animal Crossing with friends at a specific time.
  10. Reach out to Fairytale Entertainment and host a virtual party with your favorite characters. Princess party, check. Superhero party, check. Frozen party, check.

Open Bakeries

Detroit Cookie Company & Cafe: This birthday is already pretty nontraditional, let’s sans the cake! The Detroit Cookie Company & Cafe Ferndale storefront is closed currently but is shipping their beloved cookie orders nationwide M-F. No shipments going out on weekends.

For The Love of Sugar: For the Love of Sugar offers personalized cakes, and claims “when you order something sweet at For the Love of Sugar, it’s not just dessert you’re getting, you’re getting a product that’s created with love and years of experimenting, in hopes of creating the most delectable treats you will come across.”

Good Cakes and Bakes: Good Cakes and Bakes, LLC’s mission is to provide quality baked goods that are wholesome and organic in nature. To serve you at this time, Good Cakes and Bakes offers curbside pickup and “no-contact” home delivery (purchases will be dropped off at your door). They continue to follow high standards for sanitation.

Just Baked Cupcakes: The Just Baked Cafe in Southfield is currently open and complying with Governor Whitmer’s order to close all dine-in services. This location is fully sanitized and ready to greet customers’ carryout needs. Just Baked Cupcakes are also available through carryout and drivethru at select Tubby’s Sub Shops locations.

M Street Baking Co: All orders are are personally delivered by M Street Baking Co. and left on your porch for a totally contact-free transaction! M Street Baking Company specializes in custom cakes and cupcakes that can be created for any occasion.

Nothing Bundt Cakes: Nothing Bundt Cakes is offering delivery and curbside pick up. Call ahead or order online.

Zingerman’s: Zingerman’s signature decorated cakes are great for all occasions. Call to order at least two days ahead by noon.

Yard Signs, Balloons, and More

Acme Partyworks: Located in Novi, Acme Partyworks offers professionally designed, brightly colored yard signs for your loved ones, for all occasions– even a birthday apocalypse.

Balloonjoymi: You might not be there with them, but you can let them know you are celebrating their special day with them from a distance with a beautiful balloon arrangement, made under sanitary conditions and contact-free delivery to their door.

Flamingos By The Yard: Flamingos by the Yard is known as America’s largest and oldest yard sign company. Serving Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe, SE Livingston, and NE Washtenaw Counties. In the middle of the night, their staff will fill your loved one’s front yard with any of over nearly 100 unique lawn displays or giant inflatable balloons. Surprise them first thing in the morning and brighten their whole day! The entire display will magically disappear overnight (after 7 p.m.).

KBE Yard Designs: For over seven years, KBE has been bringing Detroit unforgettable fun! No one likes attending a boring party, especially a socially distant one with no friends. At KBE Yard Designs, their mission is to turn every special event into an incredible experience, especially during times like now!


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