Should You Hire a Character for your Child’s Birthday Party? Confessions of a Party Princess

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The weather is getting warmer, and here that can only mean one thing: birthday party season is fast upon us. For years this time of year has meant something very different to me. I often spend hours making sure my make up looks perfect and my hair lays just right. On any given weekend you can see me in a petticoat or two filling kids dreams one verse of “Let it Go” at a time.

Oh hey, it’s me!

Now that I’m a mom, I see these parties very differently. Lots of moms have never hired a character performer and people tend to have a lot of questions. I’m here to demystify the process and show why hiring any sort of entertainer for a party can be a really fun addition!

What is it exactly?

There are lots of different ways you can spice up a birthday party or other celebration with an entertainer but what I do is what we refer to in the biz as “Party Princessing.” Now this can be a lot of things, but in general, it usually just means that someone comes to your house or party place, dressed as a requested character and for the duration of their time there, lives as that character. This means they will be IN CHARACTER, so don’t go asking them where they go to school and be surprised if they tell you that an owl taught them how to dance. Lots of companies and individuals do lot of other activities and packages, but that is just a baseline of what you are getting.

It’s a real job!

Yes, being a children’s entertainer is a lot of fun, but please don’t mistake it for anything other than a job. For any length of appearance, it often takes me around two to three hours to get ready, and once I am, I am focused. I need to make the birthday child happy #1 but then also make sure that I spend enough time with the other guest so they also feel special, keep an eye on whoever is hosting the party, and that they are happy, make sure all the activities that have been paid for stay on track and happen, and that I am there for the whole allotted time and don’t run short or over. It’s a lot to keep track of in your head and can be very exhausting.

Even a Queen’s gotta get a bite after work

Is it right for your kid?

Hiring an entertainer of any kind for your child’s birthday party can be expensive, but in my totally biased opinion it is worth it! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve experienced the utter and sheer joy that a birthday girl or boy has had when a princess, fairy, or superhero enters the room. And the long almost never ending hugs are something that I live for. I’d say for the most worth it experience, make sure you talk thoroughly with whoever you are hiring about whatever package you are looking at. Different ages are better for different activities and a professional can help you figure out the best package for you. They have been to dozens to hundreds of parties and events for all different ages and typically knows what will work best. In my honest opinion, the younger the child, the shorter amount of time I would have a character there, as it can be overwhelming.

Planning a child’s birthday party can be a lot and I know, for a lot of moms (I’m one of them!), that the pressure to throw the biggest, best party in the neighborhood is high. The important thing is that you have fun, whatever that looks like!

What about you? Have you ever hired any sort of party entertainment for your child? What was your experience?

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