22 of 2022’s Top Birthday Party Themes

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2022 is a brand new frontier. While we may not be able to go full-on indoor-ball-pit-pizza-party-parties, birthday parties are most definitely back, baby! From Encanto-themed sing-alongs (yep, just embrace it) to outdoor movie screenings, bring on the cupcakes, and let’s get these birthday parties started. Scroll on to get some inspiration.

Encanto

his might be the hottest birthday theme of the year, and you know, we're just going to have to talk about Bruno! Order up an entire array of Encanto-theme supplies right from Amazon including banners and cupcake toppers, add some additional bright balloons, and serve up an array of authentic Columbian party food and appetizers sure to be a hit with the kids. With the release of the Disney Encanto Sing-Along on March 18 the entertainment just took care of itself. 

Inspired by Alma via Etsy

Space-Themed Parties

Whether your space-loving kid knows all the facts or is a budding astronaut, 2022 is the year for out-of-this-world parties. Gear up with decor, space-themed activities, and cosmic cake to celebrate the big day. You can even go for a glow-in-the-dark-themed galactic bash

Active Parties

Booking some time at a ropes course, zipline or even a rock-climbing venue is definitely a theme we see taking off in 2022. Whether it's indoor during cooler months or an outdoor adventure park, kids are ready to burn off some of that pent-up steam from the last two years of constant restrictions and life in flux. While most of these courses tend to be for kids ages 8 and up, it can sometimes depend on kids' comfort levels. It's always good to let parents know in advance, usually a necessity because waivers need to be signed and to have some kind of activity alternative for kids who decide against it at the last minute (including the birthday kid) like a simple art or hands-on craft. Most places will have a party room for rent.  

Cowabunga! 

iStock

Outdoor Movie Night

A classic party theme that everyone loves! Kids missed out on many movie premiers and even if your comfort level is still not 100% for smooshing back into theaters, there is nothing quite as charming as an outdoor movie. This one takes warmer weather and the right equipment, but the good news is lots of movies went straight to streaming so there's plenty of new hits out there to theme your party around. Or do your own version of the Academy Awards for your tweens and let them vote between two or three. Check out our best ideas for outdoor movie nights here. 

Gabby Cullen

Harry Potter Birthday

Thanks to the Secrets of Dumbledore the wizarding world is on point once again (not that it ever got old). Dust off some witch hats before Halloween, have wands at the ready, make golden snitches from Ferrero Roche chocolates! Activities can include playing some Harry Potter bingo or trivia, making potions, and drinking delicious butterbeer

Amazon

Minecraft Party

Minecraft is still a popular theme for older kids who enjoy playing the game. You can DIY it with cool ideas like the ones we spotted over at Spaceships & Laser Beams, or buy supplies from Walmart or Amazon

Pink Cake Plate

Mermaids

Mermaids still reign birthday parties! The magical gals make for the perfect theme with ethereal decor and food. Need some inspo? Head to Pink Cake Plate for some adorable under-the-sea ideas, including Mermaid Muddy Buddies.

Adi Goldstein via Unsplash

Gender-Neutral Party Themes

Sonic, LEGO and Superheros––2022 will see tons of gender-neutral party themes. Ideas surrounding food, non-pink and blue colors and gender-inclusive activities all make for fun parties on the horizon. 

Tru Katsande via Unsplash

Bubbles and Brunch

We aren't referring to the bubbles you remember pre-kids, but a morning party with brunch items and kid-favorite bubbles is a winning combo. Offer up egg muffins, scones, fruit and other nibbly goodies, and let the kids go wild with a wand or two. See this two-year-old's sweet day for more ideas. Or, if you've got older kids, why not set up a bubble lab with experiments, instead. 

samaraagenstvo feeria via Pexels

Lateovers

Instead of a sleepover, why not a lateover? Perfect for younger kids or kids that aren't ready to make the jump to a whole night, invite friends over around dinner time, and plan fun "night time" activities like karaoke, a dance party, glow-in-the-dark games, outdoor games you can play in the dark or even crafts. 

Alice's Table

Make a Craft Birthday Party

Crafty birthday parties are still very much a thing. From Alice's Table, which provides custom floral arranging parties for kids' birthday parties (Each attendee learns how to create a professional floral arrangement and bring it home in a stylish vase or a beautiful flower crown fit for a queen, and they come to you if you're hosting a private event) to services like Camp Crafty Parties, which brings everything kids will need to make a fun craft, you'll be seeing a lot of these themes in the new year. 

 

Mint Event Design

Next-Level Princess Parties

There are three secret ingredients to pulling this party off: tulle, gold glitter and a princess kit cake from Cakest. Skip on over to Mint Event Design to see more inspiring pictures. And check out our review of Cakest and other DIY baking kits here

iStock

Spa Party

Who wouldn't want to celebrate their birthday with a full spa treatment? Drop cucumber slices in water, offer soft and cozy robes and slippers and twirl their hair up in a towel for a day of pampering that includes manicures, pedicures, and facial masks.

indoor playspace, trampoline park, indoor playground
Sky Zone Trampoline Park via yelp

Trampoline Park Party

Don't tell us you haven't spend a Saturday at a trampoline park recently. This is one of the hottest places to host a kid's birthday these days. The best part? There are plenty of opportunities for your guests to get their wiggles out all at once!

Gabby Cullen

Superhero Party

Whether it's Justice League or Marvel, a superhero birthday is always a blast. Set out different superhero costumes, and let your guests choose their powerful persona upon arrival or have them come dressed as their favorite superhero! Get inspired by this awesome superhero bash

Annie Spratt via Unsplash

Baking Party

Decorate cupcakes, cookies, you name it! Set out different colored icings and sprinkles and watch what crafty creations they cook up! Let them decorate their own aprons and even wear chef hats! For more sweet-themed fun, watch Willy Wonka or Ratatouille

Jen via Mamma Papa Bubba

Mad Scientist

Kids will love being hands-on in this science-themed bash! Hand out lab coats and safety goggles, drink from beakers and put together experiments like bottle rockets (outside, of course!) made by dropping Mentos into a liter of cola. For more ideas, be sure to try these Pretend Magic Potions for Kids!

Spaceships and Laser Beams

LEGO Party

Once upon a time, there were LEGO parties or Ninja parties. Look for this season’s birthdays to be taken over by LEGO NINJAGO parties! Spaceships and Laser Beams is on the case with DIY LEGO NINJAGO Movie Character Masks, which make both a great craft for your battling guests and a creative head start on Halloween costumes.

Sweet Pea Parties

Star Wars

aThe Star Wars franchise may be decades old, but the force is still going strong thanks to The Mandalorian, and the new Star Wars areas at Disney parks, many new generations adore the characters. Young Jedi will love this party plan that includes DIY lightsabers, a droid-decorating station, and a Death Star piñata. Spaceships and Laser Beams has all the details.

Want something girl-centric for your budding Rey? This Millennium Falcon party from Kara's Party Ideas will get your little girls ready for action.

Catch My Party

Luau / Moana Party

You can expect to see Disney's Moana making the rounds on the birthday circuit again this year. With its tropical, floral setting, a Moana party is a gorgeous one, especially if you use some of these fun ideas from Catch My Party founder Jillian Tobher Leslie. Her Moana party recommendations include a layered hibiscus flower cake, frosted flower cookies, and adorable crab-shaped croissants. If you're looking for activities, check out these fun (and free!) printables from Virtually Yours.

Kara's Party Ideas

Unicorns

Unicorns might not be getting the love that llamas are at the moment, but they still have immortality when it comes to popular birthday trends. Get some ethereal inspiration from San Diego's Starry Eyed Events' gorgeous Elegant Pastel Unicorn Soiree gallery (because, you know, unicorns don't do parties. They do soirees, of course).

Want to keep young unicorn lovers busy? Try this DIY unicorn horn headband that is an absolute must for your little guests.

Shutterstock

Art Party

Ditch the nice clothes and let your kids get messy! Our original messy art party uses things like squirt guns, mega-canvases, shaving cream and paint-filled eggs, to get kids' creative juices flowing. Click here to find out more. 

—Melissa Heckscher, Jennifer Massoni Pardini, Kaitlyn Kirby & Karly Wood

Feature photo: iStock 

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