My oldest turned 10 (!) earlier this month. He really wanted a Laser Tag party. But his mom is cheap and weird, and decided we could totally just do it all ourselves. No need to rent a Laser Tag facility when you can just use the church gym for free!
I don’t know that any of this would fly for most kids over the age of, well, ten. But the party was totally perfect for my son, his brothers, friends and cousins.
As with most amazing parties, we set the tone for awesomeness with the invitations.
I got the glow-stick/gun idea from a Pin linked to MumfordsAmaze, but I never could find the actual post. Still, the Pin was linked to that blog, so they get the credit. We’re out of printer ink, and I’m cheap, so I decided to just draw my own guns. I looked at THIS image I found via Google, and just eyeballed it as best I could with a silver Sharpie on black cardstock, over and over again. The resulting size-range of our stack of invitations ended up being pretty funny, but I was otherwise happy with them. And my son thought they were totally cool. I wrote all the party info on the back, and got all clever by throwing “It’s going to be a BLAST” on them. I know, right?!
We ordered three sets of THESE laser tag systems, giving us six guns/receivers. Buying three sets was still cheaper than doing a professional laser tag party, and this way we get to keep them for future lasering. Then my mom and I went a little crazy and bought pretty much any and every glow-in-the-dark novelty we could find at Target to decorate with and fill the goodie-bags. Plus, Laffy Taffy.
We had 5.4 million glow sticks, regular and LED-filled balloons, a strobe light, a couple of black lights
And, my favorite
A fog machine!
I’d been planning on buying a fog machine for our upcoming Science Camp this summer, and had already picked up the black- and strobe lights for the camp. So it was an easy purchase to justify. And, really, who doesn’t need their own DJ-quality fog machine!?
I even brought our color-change iPod dock, with Best O’ Boingo on repeat. Hardcore.
His cousins couldn’t make it until later, so we basically did two parties. His friends came over for the afternoon, and then family in the evening. Seriously, all I did with his friends was show them where the guns were laid out and let them have at it.
I helped them get set up, turned on the music, turned off the lights, and then shut the door to the gym behind me as I walked out. My mom and I sat on the sofa outside chatting for a solid 45 minutes with no complaints or issues from the kids.
They probably could have gone longer, but we needed to do cake and gifts. After that, we played a bunch of silly games with the glow sticks in the dark. We played Tag, Red Rover, Duck-Duck-Goose. It was amazing how fun those otherwise “baby” games became when played in the dark.
And then we did the exact same thing again a couple of hours later with his cousins, only that time we also ate pizza.
So if you have access to a large, open, indoor area, a metric ton of glow-in-the-dark items, and a kid with low expectations, I highly recommend going for the homemade laser tag party.
It was a BLAST!