One of the best places to hold a child’s birthday party is in the backyard. Here are 6 backyard birthday party ideas that kids, and parents, will love!

Birthdays are the highlight of your year, especially if you’re a kid! You get to have friends over, have a party, eat cake, get gifts- what’s not to love?

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But for parents, planning a birthday party can be a stressful and expensive endeavor. But it doesn’t have to be that way!

You have a great party location right outside your back door- in your backyard!

Here are 6 different backyard birthday party ideas that can be used for kids of any age. These ideas are low-budget and fun, making them a great option for parents and kids. 


6 fun and easy backyard birthday party ideas for kids


6 Backyard Birthday Party Ideas for Kids (of Any Age!)


Mini Olympics or Mini Sports Day Party

Do you have a kid who loves sports or athletics? Get sporty on the child’s birthday!

All you need to do is plan a few small sporting events to get things going. Think of it sort of like a Field Day that schools hold in the spring for kids. 

Here are some activities you might include in this backyard party:

  • Soccer- either as teams or have a goal competition
  • Mini obstacle races- set up a small course using items from around the house and yard
  • Got a basketball goal? Have a hoops contest!
  • Have a relay race. Eggs on spoons,balloons between legs, a simple race, etc

If there are lots of guests, organize everyone into teams and play a real game of basket ball, kickball, soccer, or even baseball.

Older guests or parents can be judges or referees.

Don’t forget to ask everyone to dress up in sportswear and appropriate footwear!


soccer themed birthday cake


Mini Carnival Party

A mini carnival is one of my favorite birthday parties to have in the backyard!

This is an easy DIY party, with tons of options. Here are some of the things you can do for a backyard carnival party:

  • Carnival foods such as popcorn, cotton candy, hotdogs, and snowcones
  • Carnival games such as balloon pop, knock down the bottle, or a ball toss
  • Carnival themed cakes
  • Carnival decorations such as streamers, balloons, and banners
  • Tickets and prizes for the games

If money isn’t an issue, you can also put up a bounce or jumping castle for the kids to play in or hire a clown, magician, or balloon animal maker for great entertainment too.

Other fun activities that can be included are face painting, basketball shooting, and goal scoring. And oh, don’t forget to set up a pretend ticket booth or offer tickets for winning the games to earn prizes!

Here’s more on How to Throw an Amazing Backyard Carnival Party.


diy carnival games for a kids birthday party


Backyard Barbecue Party

This is a super easy and fun birthday party to plan. I know my kids love it because it’s all about the FOOD!

If you have a low-key kid or teen who just wants to hang out with friends and eat and talk, this is a great backyard party option. 

Somethings to add to your backyard barbecue party:

  • A grill for cooking hamburgers and hot dogs
  • A fire pit for roasting hot dogs and S’mores
  • Lots of seating- chairs, tables, or blankets
  • A cooler of ice and drinks
  • Chips- lots of chips!

Of course you always decorate however you wish with streamers and balloons. Maybe even add some fairy lights or white Christmas lights if the party is in the evening.

If you have space you can add in some lawn games for activities- we like badminton or croquet!


kids roasting marshmallows over fire and a waterfall camping themed cake


Stargazing Party

Got a kid who loves space and the stars? How about a stargazing party?

This is a sleepover party in the backyard for older children, preferably during summer. If your child has a late July or August birthday there is a meteor shower that peaks each year around August 12. This would be a great time to plan a backyard party!

Make it educational and fun. Of course, if you are no stargazer yourself, you may need to give yourself a crash course first. The local library or Internet will be able to give you lots of information about space, the solar system, constellations, and the universe. There are also some great apps you can download onto your phone or tablet that will tell you the name of what you are looking at. 

Since it will be held in the backyard overnight, make sure the guests bring their own sleeping bags and insect repellents. Here are some other ideas to pull off this party:

  • Provide star maps for all the guests
  • Have a telescope to gaze at the stars
  • Make sure there’s not a lot of light pollution. Choose as dark a spot as possible for the best viewing
  • Don’t forget fun stuff like snacks, drinks, and music!

You can also put up a few tents in case kids don’t want to sleep completely outdoors!


kids spraying each other with hoses at a water party


Water World Party

Turn the backyard into a water world. This is a great party option for hot days in the summer.

Don’t worry if there isn’t a swimming pool in the backyard. There are plenty of other options to get wet! Such as:

  • Garden hoses
  • Sprinklers
  • Buckets of water and sponges
  • Water guns
  • Wading pools
  • Slip n’ Slide


The kids can splash around and make a big watery mess in the backyard without care! Older kids will love having water gun fights or spraying fights.

Make sure everyone brings their own towel and swim suit- and maybe a change of clothes in case the party moves indoors at any point.

Provide fun, cool foods like ice cream, watermelon, or snow cones!


2 girls of backyard swing with birthday balloons


Budget Adventure Playground Party

Do you have a swing set or trampoline in the backyard? Younger children and toddlers especially will enjoy a little adventure playground with their friends in the backyard.

Set up an obstacle course using items from around the house or recycled boxes.

You can get large cardboard boxes of various sizes from the local grocer or supermarket. Color them to give them a lively look if you have time before the birthday party- or provide a bunch of markers, paints, or crayons and let the kids decorate them themselves!

Then get creative and arrange the boxes in different ways- build forts, houses, or tower with them for the kids to play in. 

You can add in lots of fun elements such as:

  • Hang a pinata from a tree or swing set
  • Set up a small wading pool
  • Bring a few large balls for games 
  • Get a parachute for games


Parties don’t have to be extravagant or expensive. There is a lot of fun potential in the backyard. So use it for children’s birthday parties whenever possible. Whatever kind of backyard party you choose, the kids will have a blast!


balloons and streamers decorating a backyard for a birthday party


Tips for Holding a Backyard Birthday Party

Since all of these party ideas take place outdoors, there is a few things you need to think about when planning a backyard party. 


Weather: Because the party will take place entirely outdoors be sure to take into account the weather. 

You should have a rain plan in place. Either a rain check date or a plan to move the party indoors if needed. 


Space: Space is another thing you have to take into consideration. When planning your party, make sure you have enough space for the kind of party you wish to throw. 

Most of these party ideas don’t need a ton of space and can be created on as small a scale as you need. 

And don’t forget the front yard! We held our carnival party in the front because it has a larger open area!


Timeline: Plan a timeline for the party ahead of time. If your party requires a lot of set up, don’t schedule the party for early in the morning. If it includes a meal, like the barbecue party, be sure to schedule it around lunch or dinner.  

A good timeline or schedule will also help you keep the party flow going without any slow periods. 


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