Bethany Roberts' 
Birthday Fun for Kids

cowboy birthday parties

Have a Rootin Tootin Round-Up 
with Your Friends!

Fun and Games

Invitations: Round up your friends for a hoedown!  Here are some sample invitations:

  • Howdy, Partners!  (Your Name) is celebrating a birthday, so  we are rounding up all our favorite cowpokes.  Y'all come on over for the hoedown, y'hear? 
    Roundup is at the (Your Family Name) corral on (party date) at (party time) at (party address.)  Give us a holler at (phone number.)                                                                       Saddle up and come on over for a stompin' good time!  Hee-haw!

  • (wanted poster invitation with your photo and name):
    Do you know this outlaw?
    Then we want YOU to come to our Wild West Party!

  • (horseshoe shaped invitation):
    Yee-haw!   (Your Name) is celebrating a birthday.  Y'all come on down for playing, dancing, and good old western grub!

  • Wanted: All buckaroos, for (Your Name)'s Birthday! 
    Saddle up and head West to (your address) on (date) at (time).  Wear jeans or Western duds.


Start by decorating your friends!  
Have them come dressed as cowboys and cowgirls.  Or have them wear jeans and plaid shirts and provide hats, bandanas, and badges at the door.  Vests can be made for each cowpoke out of grocery bags.

Directions for vests:
To make the front opening, start at the open end of a paper grocery bag.  Cut up the center of one side, and halfway across the bottom.  
2.At the bottom of the bag, cut out a circle opening for the neck. 
3. If desired, taper the neckline i
nto a v shape.
3.At both sides, cut arm holes, an inch or two below the neck opening.
4. Cut fringe at the top of the bag (the bottom of the vest).
5. As they arrive, guests can decorate their vests with markers, stickers, stamps, and paper badges.

Give your party room a Western theme.  Here are some ideas:

  • Decorate with bales of hay, ropes, bandanas, horseshoes.
  • Put up wanted posters with pictures of your friends.
  • Make a sawhorse into a horse by attaching a cardboard head and a rope tail and  making a fabric "saddle."
  • Make large cut-outs from green posterboard of cactus plants.

Ideas for table decorations: 

  • Use a red and white checked tablecloth.
  • Make a centerpiece with a balloon bouquet attacked to a toy horse.        
Favors: for goodie bags and prizes.  Goodie bags can be decorated brown paper lunch bags (labeled with child's name), or bundle up favors in bandanas and tie up with jute.  Here are some ideas:

Plastic cowboys and Indians, toy horses, small harmonicas, squirt guns, gold foil candy coins, licorice ropes, western stickers, toy badges, rubber snakes.

Chow: Fill the chuck wagon with lots of Western-style grub.  Serve in pie tins (disposable ones are fine.)  Here are some ideas:

  • Hot dogs, baked beans, and cornbread.

  • Fried chicken, corn on the cob, and biscuits.

  • Sloppy Joes and chips.

  • Root beer.

  • Star cookies, decorated to look like Sheriff badges.

Outdoor Chow: If you can have a campfire outside, roast hot dogs and marshmallows and have S'mores.  Yum!
Recipe for S'mores:
Toast marshmallow on a stick.
Place toasted marshmallow on a graham cracker.
Top with a square of chocolate.
Put another graham cracker on top to make a "sandwich."

  • Decorate cake with plastic cowboy or horse figures.
  • Decorate cupcakes with chocolate cowboy candies. (Melt chocolate, pour into a plastic candy mold, cool in refrigerator, and pop out of the mold.)
  • Cut a sheet cake into the shape of a boot and decorate.
  • Cowboy hat cake.  Use a round baking bowl for the top part, and cut a brim for the hat out of a sheet cake. 
  • Horse cake directions at Family Fun web site, (as well as other good cowboy party ideas.)
Fun and Games: Here are lots of ideas for a boot-'stompin' good time!
  • Face painting (mustaches)
  • Take Polaroid photos of guests on a sawhorse, rocking horse, -or a real pony.  These can be framed in cardboard frames and displayed as "America's Most Wanted!"
  • Set out several play stations.  At one, guests can add gold glitter to Sheriff badges.  At another, they can color horse or cowboy coloring pages.  At another they can decorate sugar cookies (cut out as sheriff badges, cowboy hats, horses, or boots.)
  • Have a square dance.
  • Have a sing-along with cowboy songs.
  • Stick horse relay races or obstacle races( race around obstacles, like bales of hay.)
  • Pinata in the shape of a horse or a boot, and filled with plastic cowboys, Indians, and horses, as well as candy.
  • Play pin the tail on the horse, or pin the badge on the Sheriff, or pin the cowboy hat on the cowboy (for this, an enlarged photo of the birthday cowboy can be used.)
  • Have a rope tying contest with licorice or real ropes.
  • Tin can shoot with tin cans and a squirt gun. (Place 3 cans on a bench, and take turns shooting at them with a water gun.)
  • Pan for gold: Pennies hidden in sandbox, (or sand in a wading pool.)  Use aluminum pie tins with holes punched in them as the pans, or use strainers.  Give a time limit, around 1 minute, to see who can find the most.  
  • Gold Rush: Hide pennies or gold-wrapped candy around the room.  (For shiny pennies, clean up pennies in a solution of 1/2 Cup salt and 4 Tablespoons vinegar.)  Collect the "gold" in goodie bags.  
  • Lassoing: Run on stick horses and try to lasso a "calf" (a barrel or other object) with rope, or throw hula hoops at a rocking horse.
  • Horseshoe Toss or Ring Toss.
  • Rattlesnake Ruckus (Play like Hot Potato Game):  Use a plastic snake, or make a rattlesnake by filling a tube sock with newspapers.  Add a rattler to the end of the sock made from a small plastic container (such as a film canister) and dried beans. 
    Plastic google eyes are fun!  Seat guests in a circle.  As music plays (use cowboy music), the rattlesnake is passed around the circle.  When the music stops, the one holding the snake (bitten by the rattlesnake), is out of the game.  Continue game until one player is left.
  • Read Birthday Mice! by Bethany Roberts!
  • Click this link for more good cowboy party games and other hoedown party ideas.
  • Hewlett Packard web site has many printable ideas for a Wild West Party, from wanted posters and invitations to mustaches, badges, and games.  Acrobat Reader required.
  • Happy Birthday Pony- printable coloring page 


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                                               Happy birthday!

Happy birthday!




Happy birthday!