15 Unique Eco-Friendly Birthday Party Ideas for Kids

Last updated on July 13th, 2022 at 10:29 am

Seems like everyone is going green these days but what about for birthday parties? Ever imagine a birthday party without colorful streamers and pre-printed party ware? Why not? Here are some practical, eco-friendly party ideas to help plan your own environmentally friendly party without sacrificing fun!

eco friendly birthday ideas

Eco-Friendly Party Plan

Eco-Friendly Party Invitations

  • Electronic invitations. Use ecards to save on paper or use email to invite your guests.  Although not as pretty or personal, for informal parties this is considered acceptable.  For formal occasions like weddings and black tie events, stick to paper invitations.
  • Recycled Paper Invitations. Purchase recycled invitations and send party information to guests.  Some companies use completely recycled materials while others only have a percentage of recycled materials in their products.  Check to make sure that these companies are indeed using a significant percentage of recycled materials.
  • Seeds To Grow. Send a packet of seeds with a note attached. Write or type “Come and help me grow at ______’s Party!” on one side and put the party details on the back.

Eco-Friendly Party Decorations

  • Zoos, Parks, Orchards or Farms. Have an outdoor party at a local park, zoo or farm.  This way the venue in itself provides the ambiance and setting for the party.  If there is a party room decorated for the event ask to bring your own cloth table cover and partyware.
  • Eco-friendly Utensils and Dishware. Use eco friendly plates and utensils made of environmentally friendly and biodegradable materials.
  • Pots of Flowers. Use pots of flowers as party and table decor.  Let guests take one home as favor at the end of the party.

Eco-Friendly Party Guest Arrival and Introduction

Ask guests on the invitation to bring one book from home that they have already read and don’t need anymore.  Collect them as guests arrive.  Tell guests they can swap one to take home when they leave the party or donate them to the local library or charity.

Eco-Friendly Party Party Crafts

  • Potting Fun. Give each guest a terra cotta pot with flower seeds, soil and a trowel.  Let guests plant their own little garden to take home.
  • Birdie Treats. Make a delicious snack for birds using pine cones, seeds and peanut butter.  Spread peanut butter on the cone, roll in seeds and let harden in the fridge.  Hang on a tree outside for birds to eat.  Great for animals, especially during the cold winter months.
  • Beeswax Candles. Make easy beeswax candles using sheets of beeswax and rolling around a long candle wick.  Cut off excess wick at the bottom and tie a pretty rafia ribbon around the center.
  • Friendship bracelets. Get natural hemp string and make friendship bracelets using natural beads, shells and hemp.
  • Birdhouse. Get a kit to make a birdhouse.  When finished fight the urge to paint the birdhouse since natural wood is the best option for birds.

Eco-Friendly Party Party Recipes

  • Organic crackers. Get Organic Elmo, Big Bird Crackers from your local grocery stores and serve them in BPA free plastic or glass containers.
  • Organic fruits. Cut up chunks of fruit and thread on a skewer for organic fruit kebabs.  Serve chilled or slightly frozen.  Perfect healthy snack on a hot day after a scavenger hunt.
  • Organic juice in cups. Serve juice in glass cups or biodegradable cups instead of using juice boxes.
  • Organic peanut and jelly sandwiches. Make sandwiches out of whole wheat organic bread, peanut butter and if possible, jelly from a local organic farm.
  • Organic veggies and dip. Serve cut up veggies with dip for a healthy fresh crunch at snack time.

Eco-Friendly Party Party Cakes

  • Organic Earth Globe Cake. Use a round ball mold to make a round cake with organic cake batter.  Secure to the bottom of a serving dish with organic icing.  Ice the round ball blue to look like a globe.  Let icing harden a bit.  Pipe light brown icing to make the continents.
  • Organic Flower Cookies. Make or purchase cookies in the shape of flowers using organic ingredients and materials.  Decorate by piping icing on the edge of the cookies and then filling in with various colors.
  • Organic Leaf Cookies. Make green leaf cookies by using a cookie press in a leaf shape, baking it and then finally decorating it with green icing.
  • Organic Brownies. Use organic brownie batter to make delicious brownies.  Use applesauce instead of butter or oil to cut down on fat and to sneak in healthy vitamins into kids’ diet.
  • Mock Flowerpots. Line new, clean terra cotta pot with foil and fill with cake batter.  Bake according to directions in the oven.  Use a pretzel rod to make the stem of a flower, and use icing to “glue” on a flower sugar cookie.  Use fruit roll ups and cut in the shape of leaves.  Wrap around the pretzel rod in various places.  Add a few gummy worms and place inside the pot in the brownie “dirt”.

Eco-Friendly Party Party Games and Activities

  • Nature Scavenger Hunt. Go for a walk in a park, neighborhood or find a trail.  Print out several sheets of the Eco-Friendly Scavenger Hunt List and go on a fun hunt for natural elements.  The average American child does not get enough exercise, recess or physical activity during the day. This is a great way to add some activity while making a walk in the park fun and interesting.
  • Fairy or Leprechaun Houses. Find loose branches, twigs, leaves and rocks to build your own little shelter for our woodland friends, fairies and leprechauns.
  • Water Filtration. Head to a local pond or create your own “dirty water” by mixing soil and water.  Make a simple water filter using a used water bottle, filter and natural elements.  A great challenge for kids to see who can come up with the best filter that produces the clearest water.
  • Potato Sack Races. Collect potato sacks from local grocery stores, consignment stores, or salvation army and have some good old fashion fun and games.  See who can race the fastest from one end and back!
  • Knock those cans. Collect empty soda cans and pile into a pyramid.  Draw 3 lines with chalk from the cans at 3 feet, 6 feet and 12 feet ,for example.  See who knocks down the most cans.  For a challenge, blind fold the player first.
  • Homemade Playdough. Make home-made playdough and let kids have some fun kneading, rolling and cutting with rolling pins, plastic knives and forks.
  • Egg in a Bottle Science Trick. Create some excitement by showing guests how you can magically make an egg fit inside a bottle in front of their own eyes!
  • Tug of War. Get a thick long rope of about 1/2″ diameter and 100′ long.  Divide guests into two teams.  Tie a scarf in the middle of the rope and give each end to each team.  Mark a line in the center of the sand, grass or carpet.  See which team is the strongest and is able to pull most of the rope to their side.
  • Letterboxing. Download instructions to clues and hidden letterboxes all over the world or place your own letterbox for others to find.  Fun and free activity for all ages and difficulty levels.  For more information and instructions on letterboxing go here.
  • Apple Orchard. Take kids to a local apple orchard and let them pick apples.  Come back home and make an apple pie together.  Instead of candy as favor let them take their own mini pie home.
  • 350 Group Picture. What is 350 and what does it stand for?  350 is the number that scientists say is the safe upper limit for carbon dioxide in our atmosphere. 350 PPM (parts per million) is the number that we need to get back to as soon as possible to avoid more climate change.  This organization is trying to find creative ways to educate and inform people all over the world about carbon emissions and have fun doing it at the same time.  Create your own version of a group picture forming the number “350″ by using various mediums and sending it to the organization for their portfolio.  Challenge your group to get creative! {350.org}

Eco-Friendly Party Party Favors

  • Recycled Milk Cartons. Use recycled milk cartons to create recycled party favor boxes and fill with organic candy as favors.  These boxes are decorative and can double as table centerpieces as well.
  • Recycle Old Newspapers. Use recycled old newspapers to make your own simple pinata instead of buying one.  Blow up a balloon.  Make paper mache paste out of equal portions of flour and water, then tear pieces of newspaper and dip into the paste, similar to this dragon project.  Layer in overlapping fashion over the balloon until you have several layers and the entire balloon is covered.  Let dry.  Carve an opening with a sharp knife being careful not to damage the paper.  The balloon will also pop which is fine.  Open the flap and let the inside dry.    Fill with candy and tie the open closed with string.  You can now paint the pinata or decorate with stickers.
  • 100% Recycled Plastic Toothbrushes. Give something practical, useful and without the guilt of wasting plastic.  These Eco Friendly Toothbrushes are made of 100% recycled plastic, and are BPA free.