Birthday Party Ideas: No noisemakers

Working as a magician in Dublin for over a decade, I often get Mums coming up and asking me about how to make a great birthday party. Well, here’s a really easy tip. Whether you are having an entertainer or not, skip the noisemakers.

When I look back on my own childhood, I seem to have some vague, happy memory, of noise makers at my birthday party. Having grown up in the 20th century, these crude wind blown contraptions were the height of kid technology. Let’s face it, we were happy to get anything. It was an era where running around with a stick was Call of Duty  and bouncing two balls off the wall was Tetris.

However, that’s where the happy memory ends. Getting a “toy”.

I have no recollection of blowing it with my friends or blasting it into my brothers ear, but, that’s what must have happened. I know. I see it at every party where they are passed out.

Today, as a mostly grown up adult, I can tell you noise makers are a terrible birthday party idea. Picture 20 kids running around your house, trumpeting like extroverted elephants on a sugar high. Why? Because you let them.


Once the noisemakers are passed out, there’s no easy way to get them back. The options are all ghastly. There’s the ever popular game of chase. The game ends when either the child breaks something or the panting and exasperated parent lets rip with a string of profanities. Neither one looks great on Youtube.

The second choice, is when the parents pretend to go along with the pandemonium, smiling and shrugging, while all the time mumbling, “Kids will be kids”. This approach goes on until the children themselves attempt to pry the noisemakers from the worst offenders. This results in a melee not dissimilar to a WWE  royal rumble, which of course ends with a bang, a scream and lots of tears.

All of this is going on instead of or around the magic show.

Keep in mind, that you’ve hired a professional entertainer to avoid chaos. A magic show gives your party a focus. The kids engage in the show, interact with the magician, and get lost in a wonderful world of imagination. All while sitting down.

Unless of course, HONK, no one can, HOOT,  hear the magician. Honk! Honk! Hoooooot!

While letting off some steam can be fun, the novelty of a continuous cacophony wears off pretty quickly.

Now, don’t get me wrong, controlled noise can be fun. Kids bring a lot of energy to a birthday party . This can not be ignored. If I sense the kids are bursting with energy, I usually have a “Who’s the loudest kid” contest. This burns off the excess energy and is a lot of fun too. But, once that’s over, the kids are darn quiet.

In that quiet, children can then hear the jokes, help with tricks, and laugh their heads off. A show may get noisy, but it’s all under control. So, take it from me, less is more. The kids will have more fun and you will have less stress, without the headache of noisemakers.

— Jack Flash is a professional magician, Clown College Graduate, and has performed to over 11 million people. Jack lives and works in Ireland, has a wife and two kids. Check back for more blogs about Birthday Party Ideas.  

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