Party On: The South Sound’s Best Spots for a Birthday Bash

No doubt, it seems our kids’ birthdays roll around faster than we can use up the leftover supplies from last year’s celebration and planning the next big partypalooza (sigh… already?) can put us into a frenzy to hunt down the perfect venue to match their latest craze. Whether your bambino prefers to party with animals, ride a carousel or scale to new heights, we’ve done a shakedown of all the best places in the South Sound to make your next bash a huge success.

photo: The Dance Academy of Puyallup

The Dancer’s Party
If your little twirler has got a tutu-rrific party in mind with dancing, costumes and fun activities, then Puyallup’s Dance Academy is an awesome choice for your big fling. Party packages include a visit from your child’s favorite character including Disney Princesses, Fairies, The Wizard of Oz, Circus Party, High School Musical and more. Your special guests will help make the day extraordinary by playing fun games, dancing and singing with partygoers. Dance parties start at $200 and include a fully decorated party room with all the essentials you need, from balloons and centerpieces to table settings, and even party bags. Additional character guests or a bounce house can be added for an extra $25 a piece.

Good to know: Reservations are available Saturdays only from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The Dance Academy
11206 62nd Ave. E.
Puyallup, Wa 98373
Plan it:

photo: Rachael Brandon

The Movie Critic’s Choice
Have a reel party at the historical Blue Mouse Theatre in Tacoma’s Proctor district. Kids can celebrate watching their favorite movie on the big screen, you just provide the DVD or Blue-ray and they set you up with private use of the theater. After the show, guests continue the celebration on the stage or in the lobby with cake and treats you provide. Rental fees are $175 for two hours, plus $50 for each additional hour. Make the experience reelly authentic by adding a small popcorn and small drink combo for an additional $4 per person.

Blue Mouse Theatre
2611 N. Proctor
Tacoma, Wa 98407
Plan it:

photo: Joshua Hunter via flickr

The Carousel Kid’s Party
Sure, the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium is an awesome party choice for pint-sized animal lovers, but we bet all that monkey business falls second-best to a kid who never saw carousel they didn’t want to ride. Parties cost $300 and include 15 admission tickets, 1.5 hours use of their party facility, a visit from a special animal friend, plus unlimited use of the carousel for the entire day. Bring all your party supplies, cake and decorations and they will provide you with tables, chairs and enough fun to go around and around the entire day.

Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium
5400 N. Pearl St.
Tacoma, Wa 98407
Plan it:

photo: Scott Ableman via flickr

The Artist’s Party
Craft an amazing celebration for your budding Michelangelo at Open Arts Studio in Tacoma. Whether your child loves to draw, paint, bead or play with clay, you can choose the featured project and they will provide your group of kids with a 1.5 to 2 hour lesson. Afterwards, your kiddo and their best buds can enjoy another hour in the studio for cake and presents. Their parties are suitable for ages 6 and older and cost $250 for 12 to 16 guests. All art supplies are provided, plus attendees can take home their works of art as a memento of their amazing day.

Open Arts Studio
109 N. Tacoma Ave.
Tacoma, Wa 98403
Plan it:

photo: Charles P. via Yelp

The Sports Fan’s Party
If your little tyke prefers Take Me Out to the Ball Game to a traditional birthday tune then make a Tacoma Rainiers game the place for their next big bash. Group packages start for a minimum of 20 guests and include watching America’s favorite pastime from reserved seats, a ballpark meal, a group shot on the video board and for a little extra everyone takes home a souvenir hat. Group packages start at $12.50 per guest or purchase individual tickets online or at the ballpark from $11.50 a ticket.

Good to know: Got Littles? Kids 3 and under can sit on a lap for free.

Cheney Stadium
2502 S. Tyler St.
Tacoma, Wa 9840
Plan it:

photo: Liz D. via Yelp

The Gamer’s Party
The kids gotta game! Nix the battle over the console at your birthday shindig for Tacoma’s Odessy 1 Fun Center. Birthday packages include use of their humongous jungle gym for the Littles, or a Laser Tag arena for the big kids. Both options include access to a large game room filled with all of their favorites to play and gamers can score tickets that can be turned in at the Redemption Center for fun prizes. Party packages start at $135 and includes use of a private party room for one hour, pizza and drinks, plus a party attendant to help take care of the details and clean-up.

Odyssey 1
2310 W. Mildred St., Ste., #110
Tacoma, Wa 98466
Plan it:

photo: Rachael Brandon

The Nature Lover’s Party
Take a walk on the wild side with a party at the Tacoma Nature Center! Four party packages are available to choose from that cater to kids ages 3 to 12, with both indoor and outdoor party spaces available. Your nature enthusiast and his or her friends can venture on a naturalist-led trek along the 2-mile Snake Lake walking trail, create a themed critter craft, and romp around a natural playground with a pond, rock climbing wall, and playhouse.

Good to know: Time slots go fast, so be sure to book your event early.

Tacoma Nature Center
1919 S. Tyler St.
Tacoma, Wa 98405
Plan it:

photo: A Simple Wish via Yelp

The Princess’ Party
When your little princess wishes upon a star we bet she hopes her birthday will have fancy gowns, jewelry and a royal ball in her honor. A Simple Wish can help make your girly-girl’s dream come true with their selection of fairytale party packages complete with an elegant ballroom to host her and her guests. Options include a Glamour Party complete with a fashion show; a Spa Party with mani-pedis and facials; or a Royal Ball with all the princess sparkle provided including updos, a royal tea and lots of dancing. Prices start at $250 for two-hours use of their enchanted facilities for 8 guests.

A Simple Wish
418 W. Pioneer
Puyallup, Wa 98371
Plan it:

photo: Patrick via flickr

The Rock Star Party
Plan a rockin’ party at a climbing gym for your little monkey’s big birthday bash. Kids of any age and experience level can participate whether they’d like try bouldering or tackle top-rope climbing. Edgeworks of Tacoma offers 10,000 vertical space where kids can literally climb the walls at your party and they’ll hook you up with the equipment, a party lounge and instructors for a two-hour time slot starting for $200. Similarly, Warehouse Rock Gym in Olympia offers a huge bouldering cave plus 30 top-rope anchors for climbing starting at $130 for 9 or fewer guests. Also a good choice, Climb Tacoma is a bouldering only gym that offers party rentals on weekends for $15 per guest.

6102 N. 9th St. Ste. 200
Tacoma, Wa 98406
Plan it:

Warehouse Rock Gym
315 Jefferson St. N.E.
Olympia, Wa 98501
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Climb Tacoma
102 S. 24th St.
Tacoma, Wa 98402
Plan it:

photo: Evan Delshaw via flickr

The Swim Party
The Federal Way Community Center is home to one of the best indoor pools in the South Sound and is a cool place to go for a big celebration. Kids can plunge down a two-story water slide, float around the lazy river or splash around the play structure with small slides and water sprayers. There’s also a second 6-lane lap pool with a diving board for the older crew. Reservations start at $120 for residents or $135 for a non-residents and includes one hour use of a party room.

Federal Way Community Center
876 S. 333rd St.
Federal Way, Wa 98003
Plan it:

photo: Rachael Brandon

The Animal Lover’s Party
Party with animals? You bet! Get wild with Jozee Rooz Indoor Petting Zoo and host your kiddo’s big day in their Party Barn or the comforts of your own backyard. On-site events start at $100 and include unlimited access to miniature farm animals in an enclosed room, plus 1 hour and 45 minutes to use a separate party room for up to 15 guests. With their Zoo to You package they’ll set up a tent and a corral full of critters to cuddle including goats, piglets, lambs, rabbits and more. What about the ponies? They’ve got them, too! Hand led pony rides can be added for additional charges, or plan an exclusive Pony to You party. Their animal to you services start at $200 plus additional charges if you’d like them to dress up your pony as a Unicorn, My Little Pony, Seahawks Pony and more!

Jozee Rooz Indoor Petting Zoo
120 138th St. S., Ste C
Tacoma, Wa, 98444
Plan it:

photo: Pacific Sports & Events Center via Yelp

The Soccer Star Party
It’s raining. It’s sunny. It’s raining. It’s sunny. If planning your aspiring athlete’s dream soccer party in our erratic weather feels like your juggling too many balls at once, check out Pacific Sports & Events Center for an awesome indoor field to get their game on at. Party package starts at $120 and includes 50 minutes of playtime on the field followed by 40 minutes use of the party area. Score extra points with your all-star by adding an instructor to their game for an additional $25.

Pacific Sports & Events Center
2645 S. 80th St.
Tacoma, Wa 98409
Plan it:

photo: Gexydaf via flickr

The Cupcake Lover’s Party
Let them eat cake! Located adjacent to the UW Tacoma campus, Hello, Cupcake is the perfect birthday place for kids who think dessert is way more important than presents. This sweet spot offers a private party room accommodating approximately 20 guests and they allow outside decorations, food and beverages. Pricing starts at $60 for a two-hour reservation and includes one dozen cupcakes or two dozen minis. Make the day extra special and treat them to a cupcake decorating party and the whole crew gets two cupcakes to fix up, plus a beverage for $12 per person.

Hello, Cupcake
1740 Pacific Ave.,
Tacoma, Wa 98402
Plan it:

photo: Wynnae W. via Yelp

The Reptile Lover’s Party
If you’ve never been to one of the Reptile Man’s performances, they are worth every minute and more. See kid’s daringly race to pet a python or rattlesnake and to ride on a giant tortoise. With a popular zoo in Monroe and countless show performed each year in our area, the Reptile Man is the go-to guy for an amazing animal demonstration at your kiddos celebration. He and his animals will trek as far south as Olympia to your party location for a 40-minute presentation of 10 to 12 reptiles. Birthday parties start at $195, plus an additional 75 cents per mile fee round trip from Monroe, with the first 40 miles offered for free.

The Reptile Man
22715 State Route 2
Monroe Wa 98272
Plan it:

photo: Megan via flickr

Pottery Painting Party
Craft some fun with a pottery painting party for your little artist. At the Painted Plate in downtown Olympia each kiddo gets their own bisque pottery piece to paint plus a scoop of Olympia Mountain ice cream, while your honored guest gets a one of a kind Birthday Plate to take home. Similarly, Java & Clay Cafe in Gig Harbor offers partygoers plenty of room to paint in a large private suite, equipped with a refrigerator and freezer for outside food and drinks. The Art & Clay Studio in Lakewood has a large selection of kid-friendly bisque pieces to paint, plus they’ll serve pizza, drinks, and cupcakes for 8 to 12 guests. The birthday boy or girl also receives a balloon bouquet and a special hand print tile signed by their best buds to mark the occasion.

Java & Clay Cafe
3210 Harborview Dr.
Gig Harbor, Wa 98335
Plan it:

Painted Plate
412 Washington St. S.E.
Olympia, Wa 98501
Plan it:

Art and Clay Studio
8815 Bridgeport Way S.W.
Lakewood, Wa 98499
Plan it:

photo: Marcus Metropolis via flickr

The Skate Party
Maybe the days of wearing wrist bands and tube socks while demonstrating your superior Shoot the Duck skills have gone to pass, but skate parties are here to stay! Check out Pattison’s West in Federal Way or Skate Tiffany‘s in Puyallup where partygoers get to skate to live DJ music and enjoy games, then roll on into the party room for pizza and drinks. Both venues have party attendants to handle the set-up and clean-up, so you can relax and have fun. Plan a Glow Party at either center and the celebration suite is transformed into a luminescent wonderland, plus everyone gets their own glow to wear.

Pattison’s West Skate Center
34222 Pacific Highway S.
Federal Way, Wa 98003
Plan it:

Skate Tiffany’s
1113 N. Meridian
Puyallup, WA 98371
Plan it:

photo: BB via Yelp

The Bounce House Party
We’ve tracked it and found bounce house spots are almost as numerous as drive-thru latte stands in the South Sound (maybe there’s a relationship there), and all offer some amazing party experiences for high energy kids. Check out Pump it Up’s private party events that include the use of two different bounce rooms plus a private party room. They also offer some amazing themes for your big bash like glow, bubble or superhero parties that can be added on for an extra fee. Bounce it Up 360 in Kent and Black Diamond both offer a less expensive open play party option in addition to private events.

At Super Jump Party Zone of South Hill or Auburn their open jump party offers tons of run around room in a huge play area filled with super inflatables, plus a private party room. Not a bounce house, but kids can still get their jump on at Federal Way’s Trampoline Nation. Parties include two hours of big air time, plus two pizzas and water all around. Bounce E House of Tacoma hosts private shindigs where outside food and drinks are allowed for no extra fee, plus they offer a visit from one of three special characters of your choice. Lastly, Jumpin’ Jack & Jill of Sumner has private party events as well as outside bounce house rentals available for your big extravaganza. Party packages start at $125 and go up to $400 plus add-ons.

Pump it Up
3610 S. Pine St.
Tacoma, Wa 98409
Plan it:

Bounce it Up 360 – Kent
1404 Central Ave. S., #110
Kent, Wa 98032
Plan it:

Bounce it Up 360
30741 3rd Ave., Ste #183
Black Diamond, Wa. 98010
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Super Jump Party Zone – Auburn
1604 15th St. S.W.
Auburn, Wa 98001
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Super Jump Party Zone – South Hill
3500 S. Meridian
Puyallup, Wa 98373
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Trampoline Nation
35025 Enchanted Pkwy. S.
Federal Way, Wa 98003
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Bounce E House
11110 25th Ave. E., Ste D,
Tacoma, Wa 98445
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Jumpin Jack & Jill
15718 Main St. E
Sumner, Wa 98391
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Where is your favorite South Sound birthday party spot? Tell us in the Comments below!

— Rachael Brandon


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