Early this year, most of us probably thought we could escape from celebrating a Quarantine Birthday. Some
of us even had plans in mind already! But after a few months have passed, it
was pretty clear we were in this for the long haul..
Going digital was the obvious answer to this challenge. And
eventually, just as many different trends have been birthed in this time of
isolation—Ube cheese pandesal, Baked sushi, and At-home gym, to name a few—Virtual
birthday parties (via video conference calls) came to be.
"Since parties are done at home, they are simpler and less
expensive. Having virtual guests can be a very challenging part since kids
interact so much at actual parties. But we can also see that the situation has
become a bridge for kids to get closer to their families," says Jo Anne Buera, owner, event planner,
and host of Whatever Trends Events Management
So if you're considering taking on this task for your little
ones, we've gathered some tips from the pros to help you out! Scroll below to
see what the experts have to say.
Prep and Plan
Prepare everything that you can before the big day. It will be
harder to troubleshoot things to the last minute since we have limited access
to certain things and places. "If it’s a Kiddie party, the best time to
prepare is three months before. Because unlike before when you can make an
event happen with limited time or instantly, materials or props are harder to
find given all the restrictions these days and some suppliers might need extra
time," says Jo Anne.
Just like with an actual birthday party, planning is still
vital. Only this time, most of it will be done virtually and at home. Anika A. Ofiana, marketing and brand
development assistant head of Eventique
Manila, suggests to "pick a theme that you want and get creative with
it. You can relate your activities and e-decorations with your theme,
"Make sure to schedule and invite early to secure the
participants’ commitment. Since most of the activities are done virtually, most
of the schedules are already taken. Don't forget to also explain to your
children that it’s going to be a different set-up right now," says Jo
Anne. So even if everyone is just at
home during this time, send those e-vites, asap!
Re-create party elements
For it to feel like an actual party, a little more effort is
needed. Anika recounts their first Zoom party and how the little things ended
up being the most special. "The first party we organized during [the]
pandemic was memorable for us since it was somewhat experimental. We provided
fun things like e-vites and Zoom backgrounds for the celebrant and
participants. We also had e-games, personalized gifts, giveaways, and prizes.
Since they're kids, they wanna play around and feel like they are all
together,” she says. “So what we did with the giveaways was we made sure that
we delivered them to the other guests in real life and in real-time. So during
the party, the giveaways were already with them so they could feel like they’re
really included, even if it's just through Zoom."
This sentiment is also echoed by Karen Madrigal, an artist who makes event cake toppers and other
event designing collaterals. "Any little token is very much appreciated in
these situations. You can pre-order cakes or personalized items to be sent to
the celebrant or vice versa."
Keep it simple
One of the most important things to consider when doing a
virtual event is the internet connection. A lot of the party’s success depends
on whether or not everyone can see and hear each other properly. So, practice
practicality and try to keep things simple. "Not everyone has the same
internet speed so it'd be best to stick to a basic program and keep the
activities short and sweet," advises Karen.
Get all the help you can
Children's birthday parties are supposed to be a special
occasion. And, if you feel like this is too overwhelming of an endeavor for
you, you can always seek help from the pros. They are there to help you iron
out details like scouting for suppliers for your party decor and giveaways,
organizing the program flow, and fixing other important details that you might
need to set-up and finalize.
"There is no proper formula in planning a Zoom birthday
party. Don't be scared to do something different as there are actually endless
possibilities,” says Janna Pablo,
the mastermind behind the company Pabys
Creates Events. “If you really don't know what to do, you can hire our
services because that's what we do—we create your party. It’s a common idea
that having a party automatically means grand decors. But for us, the
decoration is only one part of making an entire party. Especially in our
situation now, we want to remind clients that throwing a party isn’t limited to
an elaborate set-up but the whole of the party experience. As we always say,
leave the stress to us!"
Host a successful DIY virtual party with these items from The Nest