Kids Party Venues: The Questions to Ask and Precautions to Take

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Kids love birthdays! But before their little heads spin off with excitement at the prospect of a party at their favourite restaurant, soft play area or activity centre, there are some important questions a parent should consider before committing to venue hire.

Creating a Brief
Essentially, a parent needs to establish what style of party they want, the size of the party, location, children’s age range, catering requirements, timing and – perhaps most importantly – budget! Once these questions are answered and a brief created, it’ll be far easier to pinpoint potential venues.

What Makes a Good Venue?
The average kid might WANT their birthday party to be held at a Disneyland resort, however it’s more than likely a few local venues will make the shortlist if they’re child-friendly, safe and FUN! The best kid’s party venues meet the needs of excitable children and their vigilant parents collectively.
Word of mouth is a great way to get a more realistic idea of what to expect. Venue hire website reviews are a great place to start if a parent is new to an area or looking for something a little different. Although it’s worth remembering that other people’s standards may not be applicable to every child.

A great venue should – above all else – be safe and adequately supervised. Whether it’s a restaurant or an outdoor sports centre, making sure EVERY child is monitored is essential. It’s worth remembering that some parents are more protective than others; perhaps some of a child’s closet friends wouldn’t be allowed to attend a water sports or indoor rock climbing wall birthday party? Again, a good chat with other parents could be indispensible in order to avoid tears and tantrums!

What to Ask a Venue
Some parents have about a thousand queries in the chamber before they take their first breath inside a potential venue. But, in the spirit of easy organisation and perfect party planning, here are a few things to consider running by potential party venues.
• What’s the capacity for children/adults/staff supervisors?
• How many staff will be on hand for the party?
• What’s the ratio of staff to kids?
• What experience do the staff have with children’s parties?
• Will the same staff be with the kids from beginning to end?

• Can extra staff be requested?
• What disability provisions are there?
• Will there be a qualified First Aid representative on hand throughout?
• Is there a secure area to lock away personal possessions?
• What catering provisions are available, and what about kids with allergies?
• Have there ever been any problems or safety issues with kid’s parties?
• What sort of references are available to check the experiences of other parents?
• No-one can anticipate EVERY eventuality – what are the exit strategies in case of an emergency?

The classic venues – soft play parks, restaurants etc – tend to be fairly easy to source information on, but it’s worth remembering that a unique birthday party – at the zoo, on a farm, in a rock climbing centre etc – can be a tremendous success with a little research, planning and – of course – the kids!

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