These days, there are so many different options for birthday parties for kids. It can be overwhelming, but it doesn't have to be. Planning a fun birthday party for your kids can be easy and enjoyable.

Kira Brant, owner of The Art of Kira Studios, offers a few easy tips to help!

Plan your budget: There is no right or wrong answer for this. You can plan a wonderful party on any kind of budget!

Decide on a theme: Get your child’s input. Maybe your child likes a movie or book character. Maybe your child likes outer space or monkeys. Once you decide, you can base your decorations, food, and activities around that theme.

Plan fun activities: Think outside the box. Does your child love art? Have an art party where the kids paint a canvas to go along with the theme. Maybe your child likes music. Have a fun karaoke party. How about cooking? Have the kids make an easy meal.

There are so many ideas out there; the sky’s the limit! Visit your local library and search the Internet for more options.

Don’t want the party at your house? Here are some other options:

The Art of Kira Studios
Build-a-Bear Workshop
Chuck E. Cheese
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
Franklin Skate Club
Indianapolis Zoo
Local Parks
Monkey Joe’s
Rascal’s Fun Zone
Book a Community Room at any of our four JCPL branches
Swimming Pools
That Fun Place

Make an invitation list: Ask your child whom they would like to invite. Keep in mind that some schools do not allow you to bring in invitations unless you invite the entire class, so talk to your child's teacher about their policies.

Plan the menu: It doesn’t have to be elaborate. Maybe something easy like pizza, or just stick to cake and ice cream. Choose foods that go along with your theme, for example, hot dogs and Cracker Jacks for a baseball theme.

Choose the decorations: Purchase or make decorations based on your theme. I love decorations that are different than the norm. Maybe your kids can make a Happy Birthday banner out of an old sheet and finger paint! These always turn out cute! I also love to get plastic tablecloths so the kids can draw on them with permanent markers. Let your guests be creative. Use your library and the Internet as your go-to source for ideas.

HAVE FUN! Do not stress: Your child’s birthday should be fun. If things don't go exactly as planned, its ok. Go with the flow and enjoy this birthday with your child.

Sharon C., Children’s Librarian at our White River Branch, recently hosted a fantastic Frozen party for about 40 patrons. Here are some of her suggestions:

1. Pinterest! There are so many fun ideas on Pinterest, but don't feel like you have to plan your party exactly as the pinner did it or that it has to be Pinterest-perfect. Adapt according to your needs, creativity, and supplies.

2. Make lists of what you need to do, buy, and prepare. This will break down the tasks so it is not so overwhelming. Create lists for decorations, invitations, food, cake/dessert, activities, and party favors for guests, etc.

4. Make a schedule for the party's events, as to how long each activity will take. This will help you to not over-plan or under-plan. It’s okay if you don't stick to the exact schedule. It is more of a guide for you.

No matter what you choose, remember to have fun,

The Johnson County Public Library Children's Staff