18 Fun Carnival Birthday Party Ideas

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Carnival-themed birthday parties are extremely popular amongst kids, as they’re not only fun but also very engaging. There are plenty of activities that you can incorporate into a carnival birthday party and the options are almost endless. Another reason why they are great is because you can host them indoor or outdoors, with a small or a large guest list.

The best carnival birthday party ideas include carnival-themed cakes, candies, hosting a variety of games, clown and magic shows, photo booths, winnable prizes and much more. We have an awesome list for you today and you will definitely not run out of ideas. Let’s take a look at the best carnival party ideas for birthdays!

1. Create Awesome Carnival Party Invitations

Carnival Birthday Party Invitations (Pack of 20)
  • Carousel Carnival Fill-In Invitations
  • 20 Invitations & 20 White Envelopes
  • 40 pieces total

Party invitations or save-the-date cards are your guests’ first impression of the birthday. Therefore, you should aim to create and send out birthday invitations that will immediately capture their attention. More importantly, these invitations should relay the party’s carnival theme. So, how can you achieve this?

Firstly, think about the design. Which colors and shapes fit best into your carnival theme? Carnivals usually have a wide palette that feature many vibrant colors. You should definitely ensure that your invitations reflect that. What about pictures? It’s great to show some carnival images on the invitation, so that the guests can easily identify the theme. The content you write on these invites is just as important as the design. In addition to mentioning all the required details of the party, you should briefly mention that it’s going to be a carnival-themed party. 

If you don’t have time to custom-make the invitations, these Carnival Party Birthday Party Invitations are an excellent alternative. They’re made from high-quality card stock paper for maximum durability. Plus, they come in a set of 20 and also feature matching envelopes, allowing you to save time and money.

2. Bake a Carnival Themed Birthday Cake

Carnival Edible Birthday Cake Topper
Are you looking for a quick way to turn a regular birthday cake into a carnival-themed birthday cake? Look no further! This cake topper is edible and looks amazing. It’s gluten-free, soy-free, trans-fat free and contains no peanuts or allergens.

The majority of celebratory events wouldn’t feel complete without a cake. This is especially true for kids’ birthday parties. This tasty treat makes any occasion extra special. In fact, the cake-cutting session is the number one thing that guests tend to remember when they recall your party. 

Do you want your kid’s carnival party to stand out? If the answer is yes, why not bake a carnival-themed birthday cake? All you have to do is design your cake in the shape of an element associated with the carnival theme, such as a clown, carnival tent or anything that’s fun and exciting. If your baking skills aren’t great, you could always bake a simple cake and decorate it with features associated with the festival or an awesome cake topper.

The Carnival Edible Birthday Cake Topper is the perfect item for this idea. Not only does it emphasize your carnival theme but also makes your cake visually appealing. Moreover, it’s a very affordable cake decoration and easily transforms your regular birthday cake into a carnival themed birthday cake. You can also try and get creative with colored cake icing. There are many tutorials online on how to decorate your birthday cakes.

3. Use Carnival Party Supplies

Carnival Birthday Party Supply Kit (142 Items)
  • Boys and Girls head to the Big Top, the Circus is coming to you.
  • Our Circus Birthday Party Pack Kit provides tableware for 20 guests in 1 package.
  • Our Circus 142-Piece Celebration Pack contains the following - 20 - 9" plate, 20 - 7" plate, 20 - 9 oz cup, 20 - 6.5" x 6.5" napkin, 20 - forks, 20 - spoons, 20 - knives, 1 Table Cover 54"x108"and 1 Happy Birthday banner.

Whenever you are planning a party, you are going to need a ton of accessories and supplies. This includes items such as tables, chairs, utensils, decorations, banners, games and party favors just to mention a few. It’s important to ensure that all these items match the carnival party theme. 

While they might seem like a small piece of the over party plan, they’re extremely crucial as they help create the atmosphere of the event. The better the setting, the more immersive the party experience will be for the kids. Therefore, you want to choose party supplies that not only fit your carnival theme party but also have that wow factor. 

The Carnival Birthday Party Supply Kit is a set that takes care of all decorations. It contains a massive 142 items ranging from table covers to cups, plates and even utensils. The Carnival Birthday Party Supply Kit is designed to cater to 20 guests and you can always get multiple sets, depending on how many kids are attending your son’s or daughter’s birthday party.

4. Create a Carnival Theme with Decorations

Carnival Party Swirl Decorations (15 Pieces)
  • Include: 15 different double-printed cutouts and 15 assorted colors of red, white foil whirls decoration, extend to 37’’ long. Each decoration is made from 350 gsm cardstock and PVC plastic.
  • Easy to hang for ceiling, window, mantel, overhangs, doorway, archway, branches in trees, verandah, etc. Each swirl comes with a plastic loop at top. Perfect for indoor or outdoor use.
  • This set of carnival-themed party decoration for boy/girl bday, baby shower

When one mentions party decorations, what lingers in the minds of many is color. But decorations are so much more than that. There are many other things that you should think about such as lighting, table design, chair coverings, special effects, flower arrangements, signages and much more. They should all be essential elements to your carnival birthday party decor. 

Like party accessories, they aid in setting the atmosphere for your kid’s birthday party. This means that for a carnival-themed event, you should choose decorations that fit this theme. Ensure that you place all of these decorations at visible locations and also make sure that you have plenty of variety.

These Carnival Party Swirl Decorations are a great choice! This pack consists of 15 double-printed cutouts and 15 foil whirls of varying colors. What we like most about these decorations is that they’re versatile; you can hang them on doorways, pillars, ceilings, windows and more. They can even be used on outdoor booths, if you plan to have an outdoor carnival birthday party.

5. Hang Carnival Signs At Booths

Carnival Booth Signs (10 Pieces)
A great set of 10 carnival signs that can be hung at booths or against any solid surface as directional indicators. Each of these signs are 11.81 x 9.84 inches and come with a rope for easy hanging!

Throughout this list of the best carnival birthday party ideas, you’ll notice many types of different activities. What you could think about is organizing various different booths for the party, where each booth features a specific activity. For example, you could have a different booth for snacks, games, photos and more. It’s a great idea to hang carnival signs at each both so that the kids can easily identify all the activities. 

Therefore, you should hang these signs in areas where they’ll be visible. The great thing about these signs is that they can either indicate the location of a booth or the direction to them. You’ll be able to make use of these signs indoors and even outdoors. Great locations to hang these signs are on walls, pillars, poles, stands or even the booth itself.

You can either make these banners yourself, or you can save time and get Carnival Booth Signs. They are the perfect signages for your carnival-themed birthday party. The set consists of various thick paper cards with vibrant colors and text, helping to set a happy atmosphere at your party.

6. Hand Out Carnival Goodie Bags

Carnival Goodie Bags (Pack of 12)
  • Comes with 12 pc carnival themed paper treat boxes
  • Approx. measures 6.2 x 3.5 x 3.5 inches (inside)
  • Perfect for birthday parties, holidays, or gifts. Great party favor for both adults and children

Kids absolutely love goodie bags! They’re fun, exciting and kids view them as small gifts. The great thing about goodie bags is that they’re extremely versatile. This means that you can either hand them out during the birthday party or pass them out towards the end so the kids can take these home. 

When it comes to the contents of the goodie bags, you can get really creative. We suggest getting Carnival Goodie Bags, as they perfectly match the theme and are also large enough to include anything you like. These party bags come in a pack of 12 and also feature suitable stickers to seal them after you’ve filled them with all the goodies.

Having a hard time thinking of what items you can put inside these goodie bags? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here is a list of some popular items that you can place into these carnival goodie bags:

  • Candy
  • Toys
  • Game tokens
  • Prize vouchers
  • Booth tickets
  • Thank you card
  • Party favors

7. Bake Carnival Cupcakes

Carnival Cupcake Toppers (Set of 45)
  • ❤Package including 45 packs circus animals cupcake toppers which includes 8 different patterns,lion,clown,elephant,dog,bear.
  • ❤ High quality cupcake topper,made of safe and reliable card stock.
  • ❤ Perfect for cupcake topper for circus birthday party,circus baby shower party,Carnival bridal shower,circus wedding party,carnival themed party and many more.

Cupcakes are one of the best party-ready treats, especially for kids. They’re flavorful and very easy to bake for a large group. Additionally, they can be decorated and served in countless ways. The more colorful they are, the more attention they will get!

You can either bake your own cupcakes or get them customized by your favorite bakery. Don’t forget to finish them off with some of these great Carnival Cupcake Toppers. They are a nice addition to your cupcakes and help to emphasize the theme. They’re made of safe card stock and come in fun animal shapes such as lions, bears, elephants and various others. 

Just remember, you can never go wrong with cupcakes at a birthday party. Even if you decide to go for store-bought cupcakes, don’t forget to decorate them with carnival-themed toppers and display them on a suitable cupcake stand.

8. Offer Some Carnival Snacks and Candy

Cotton Candy (2 Tubs - 2 oz Each)
Twist Lollipops (12 Pieces)
Carnival Popcorn Bags (100 Pieces)

There is no denying that kids and candy go well together, especially at birthday parties. Having an endless supply of fun and tasty candies is very important. They are usually the first thing to go, so it’s always best to get a little extra. For a carnival themed birthday party, try to get a variety of snacks and candy for the kids. 

There are plenty of options that you can select from. The more common carnival candies are Cotton Candy and Twist Lollipops. Of course there are more options like Jelly Beans, gummy bears and chips. Mix it up a little and try to pick something colorful if you can. 

You should also never forget popcorn. They are a common snack for carnivals and kids love it! You can either rent a large popcorn machine and dedicate a booth to it or you can prepare it separately and put them in Carnival Popcorn Bags. The more candy you get, the more points you’ll score with the kids!

9. Create a Ring Tossing Game Stand 

Carnival Ring Tossing Game Set
  • Carnival games Combo Set Includes 12* Toss Rings, 12* Bean Bags, 6*Cones and 1* Toss banner. one color is for 1 cone, 2 toss rings, and 2 bean bags, so they will more active for your party
  • BIG carnival toss banner (31.5 x 55 inch) is made of fabric, Washable and reusable. installed 4 holes for hanging easily; It is larger size than traditional toss games, suitable for multi-team competition
  • 6 Carnival cones each measures 9 inches tall and 12 toss rings all made of nice colourful kids safe plastic

As far as carnival games are concerned, you should think about setting up various booths so that the kids can queue up and play their favorite carnival games. You can even create a point system, where kids are able to collect points the higher they score in games. The first fun game that you can introduce is ring tossing. It’s enjoyable and the rules are easy enough to understand for kids of all ages.

This Carnival Ring Toss Game is the perfect set for this. The kit, which includes 12 toss rings and 6 cones, is very easy to set up. Simply position the cones on the ground, a few feet away from you. Place them in such a way that there’s equal distance between the cones. Next, have players take turns trying to hook a ring on one of the cones. Don’t forget to create a table with points so that they can redeem them later for fun and exciting prizes.

10. Have a Bean Bag Tossing Booth

Carnival Bag Tossing Game
The perfect game for a carnival-themed birthday party. This set contains a 50-inch x 40-inch banner with holes, as well as 4 bean bags and a hanging rope. A great game for a great party!

As mentioned, you should be offering plenty of games for the kids at the carnival birthday party. Another game, popularly known as cornhole, is bean bag tossing. It’s a popular and classic carnival game that will fit perfectly in your carnival-themed event as it’s not only fun for all ages but you can also combine it with a point system. 

In this game, kids take turns throwing weighted bags at an elevated or upright banner that has holes in it. Different holes should correspond to a different amount of points that they can win. If you’re looking for an appropriate tossing game, you should consider the Carnival Tossing Game set. 

This set includes 4 bean bags, a 50 x 40-inch banner with 4 holes in it and a hanging rope. It’s best to hang this banner against two pillars, trees, walls or stands. Ensure that no kids are walking behind the banner and that you have a game master attending this booth to explain the rules and distribute the points.

11. Setup a Carnival Balloon Dart Game

Carnival Balloon Dart Game
  • 🎈 500 Pcs 6" Carnival balloons with 10 pcs metal tipped darts, The balloons popped perfectly.
  • 🎈 party balloons are a little more “touchy”, they popped easily and loudly, perfect game for family reunion, the kids will love it.
  • 🎈 balloon pop games is a thrilling kids’ outdoor party game, it improves hand-eye coordination and hones motor skills.

Looking for another carnival-themed game for your kid’s birthday party? What about a dart throwing game? There’s no doubt that kids will love playing dart games. It’s a classic and fun game that is designed to test how good a player’s aim is. If you’re looking for an appropriate kit for this, you should consider the Carnival Balloon Dart Game set. This set contains everything you’ll need for setting this game booth up. It comes with 500 quality balloons and 10 metal-tipped darts. Please be careful and get an adult to supervise this booth.

So, how do you go about setting up the dart throwing game booth? It’s relatively simple! Look for a plywood board and lean or nail it to a vertical surface. This could be a wall, a tree, a pillar, a stand or anything with a solid and firm surface. Next, carefully attach inflated balloons to the board. You can use push pins but be careful not to pop the balloons. 

To play the game, each kid takes turns aiming darts at the balloons. Points and prizes are awarded based on the number of balloons popped. You could also set it up in a way that each balloon color awards different amounts of points. Just to remind you again – since this game involves darts, please remind the kids to be careful and let an adult supervise this game booth.

12. Give Out Some Carnival Game Prizes

Since you’ll be organizing quite a number of games for your carnival-themed party, you should prepare some prizes that you can hand out to the kids. It’s important to get the right kind of prizes, as it gets the kids more interested in these games and in turn will enable them to have more fun. Great prizes will encourage children to put their best foot forward and truly immerse themselves in the gaming experience. 

The good thing is that youngsters aren’t too difficult to please. Thus, you have a lot of flexibility when it comes to picking game prizes. You can choose the simple route and offer the usual – candy, snacks, plushies, vouchers, gift certificates and even toys. Or, you can go all in and purchase more sophisticated items such as costumes, board games or art and craft materials.

There are two common ways to set this up. You can either display all of the prizes at each game booth individually or you can set up a separate prize redemption booth where the kids can turn in their points to redeem a prize. How you set this up is completely up to you and both ideas work well for any type of carnival party.

13. Organize a Magic Show

Party planners are always looking for new ways to make parties stand out. With so many talented magicians around, incorporating a magic show might just be the wow factor that your carnival party is missing. Kids usually love magic tricks and it will definitely be a highlight at your kid’s birthday party. 

That being said, there are a few things you should do to make the magic show a success. Firstly, plan ahead of time; don’t leave this for the eleventh hour. Secondly, book your magician early. This way they have ample time to plan their content and come up with tricks that fit the party’s theme and age group.

14. Organize a Clown Show

Another way to impress the kids at a carnival-themed party is to organize a clown show. With their bright-colored hair, eccentric makeup, and huge red noses, clowns are some of the best entertainers. They’ll surely make all the kids laugh as they are snacking on their favorite candy. 

We suggest that you organize an allocated time for the clown show, so that all the kids can watch and laugh together. You can simply book them by appointment, but you should ensure to explain the theme and the audience. This way the clown will be able to cater the most appropriate content and prepare for the party accordingly. 

15. Play Carnival Music 

In staying true to the carnival theme, another thing you can do is adapt your soundtrack to suit the event. Come up with a nice mix of tunes that all kids at the birthday party can enjoy. To keep things interesting, create a playlist with a good balance of the best carnival songs. 

Carnival music is very joyful with piano and accordion sounds throughout the songs. There are plenty of carnival songs that you can find online. This carnival soundtrack is one of our favorites and is perfect for carnival birthday parties. Make sure that you have speakers set up everywhere so that the music can be heard throughout the party.

16. Hang a Carnival Pinata for the Kids

Carnival Pull-String Pinata
  • A fun carnival decoration and activity for any carnival-themed party, school carnival, room parties and more.
  • Fill, then have partygoers take turns pulling the ribbons to release a shower of sweets!
  • Paper Mache

Pinatas are an excellent idea for any event; especially for a kids’ birthday party. The number one reason why kids absolutely love pinatas is because of the candy. Pinatas tie together fun and candy – an absolute party highlight for kids!

Pinatas come in an array of colors and shapes, so it’s easy to find one which blends well with a carnival theme. We suggest the Carnival Pull-String Pinata, because it’s safer for the kids. The pinata has multiple strings attached, but here is the trick: only one of the strings magically opens the door and releases all of the candy. 

There are several ways you can set this up. The best way is usually to get the kids to line up and each kid gets to pull one string. The person who guesses the right one and released all the candy can pick his rewards first!

17. Create an Awesome Carnival Photo Booth 

Carnival Birthday Backdrop & Props
This carnival-themed photo backdrop is the perfect set for creating a photobooth at birthday parties. It contains a large 71.6-inch x 54-inch banner, 11 photo props and 20 balloons. It's the perfect photo booth set for your carnival party!

Here is a thing that remains true for every birthday party: people love taking photos. At every birthday party, kids love to take pictures as they are having a fun time. This is why a photo booth is such a great carnival party idea and it’s also simple to set up. Simply choose a photo booth that has the same color palette as your party decorations and share some photo props with the kids – that’s it!

The Carnival Birthday Backdrop & Props set is the best for just that! It contains all the items you need for your photobooth, but of course you’ll just need to ensure that you have a camera and good lighting. Create the perfect carnival setting so that the pictures look more immersive and memorable!

18. Hand Out Thank You Cards

Carnival Birthday Thank You Cards (Pack of 25)
Thank your guests for attending your awesome carnival-themed birthday party in style. These thank you cards are high-quality and contain matching envelopes and stickers. All you need to do is write a personal note to your guests!

The idea of creating personalized thank you cards for the kids who attended the birthday party is not only a nice gesture but it’s a beautiful way to end an event. It’s important that your kid has a way of expressing his or her appreciation for the gifts, but more importantly for the guest’s time and company.

If you don’t want to handcraft them, these Carnival Birthday Thank You Cards are a great and easy-to-use option. They are printed on thick card stock, which features colorful designs on both sides. Better yet, the package also includes envelopes and sealing stickers. You can either have your son or daughter hand these out personally or opt to include these in the goodie bags, if you plan to hand them out at the end of the party.

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