We have had some super fun birthday parties for our kids over the years. One year, we had “Batgirl.” Another year, we had two ponies come to our very own backyard for two hours, and the kids were able to ride them. Another time, we had an amazing bounce house with a water slide and pool at the end. These businesses were local, professional and provided an amazing time for the kids. My son’s pony party happened on his 2nd birthday. His birthday is coming up in June, and he wants to do another pony party. Last night, I tried to find the company but couldn’t remember the name. I looked at a few links, almost gave up, and then giggled with delight when I saw a picture of one of the ponies that came to our last party, “Squeakers.” I am so excited. It looks like they’re still doing the parties. They will travel anywhere in the “Portland Metro’ish” area and bring the ponies for rides. The guys that brought them were SO nice. They brought apples and carrots for the kids to feed the ponies and brushes so the kids could brush them too. This is just one service that Portland has for kids’ parties. Below is a list of local suggestions for kiddo party entertainment.
Wish Upon a Pony-
I might as well start with my suggestion I listed above. “Wish Upon a Pony” is the company we used for our pony party. You can choose one pony or two. One pony for one hour is $150. You can add the 2nd pony for an additional $50 an hour. The company will bring the ponies in their trailer and come to your location as long as you are in or near the Portland area. Smaller ponies can carry up to 65-pound kiddos. Bigger ponies can carry kiddos up to 125 pounds. To book a party, email: PortlandPonyRides@gmail.com or call Katie at 503.866.6702. For more info, here is the link: https://www.wishuponapony.com/.
Kids Portland Party-
This Portland-based company has various princesses, superheroes, magicians, and face painters. There are different types of performances available: games, obstacle courses, photo opportunities, balloon-twisting, storytelling, and more. Pricing starts at $140 and varies depending on the character/s and services. There is a section on the website to book a party to make a “regal inquiry.” Here is the link for more info: https://www.kidsportlandparty.com/.
This company has some awesome offerings. There are several different themes for parties, including young wizards, spooky science, reactions in action, mad about blue, air blast, or winter holiday party. Once you pick a theme, you pick a party package. They offer a virtual option or several in-person packages. The prices range from $235 all the way up to $500 depending on how many guests and how many goodies you would like in the package. The packages include a one-hour science show and a make and take project based on the party theme. Some of the other features include a birthday poster signed by all the guests, lab coats, and goodie bags. There is also an option to add “extras” like cotton candy making, rocket science, dry ice bubbling potion, a static electricity show, and a robot follower activity. I will definitely look at these options for my kids’ future parties. Here is the link for more info: https://portland.madscience.org/parents-birthdayparties.aspx.
Penny’s Puppet Productions-
This company has a special place in my heart. We absolutely adore Penny of Penny’s Puppets. She is just the sweetest and so great with kids. Over the years, we have seen several of Penny Puppet’s puppet shows at various venues. She does such a great job, has wonderful puppets and very engaging storylines. Currently, she is offering “social distanced puppet shows” or will also do shows through Zoom. Shows include a 5-minute introduction, the show itself is around 30-40 minutes, and then she does a Q and A session with the puppets and audience for around 10 minutes. She brings her own stage, which is around 4 feet long and requires an electrical outlet somewhere near to plug-in. Another cool feature is that she has several different show choices for parties: Ted E. Bear’s surprise, Mother Goose on the Loose, The Princess and the Peanut, Turtle, and Rabbit, Who Stole the Cookie from the Cookie Jar?, Myrna the Mermaid, and the Golden Key, Super Hero Machine, and Whiz Bang Boom Professor Gabby’s in the Room. Prices: 1-20 kids cost $200. 21-50 kids cost $225. 50-100 kids cost $250. For more info, here is the link: https://pennypuppets.com/birthday-parties.
Presto the Magician-
I have never heard of him until now. Presto the Magician has been entertaining kiddos in Portland at their birthday parties for around 15 years. He was rated #1 kids party entertainer by Red Tricycle in 2016. He offers 3 birthday packages. Basic is 30 minutes long; the kids get a souvenir activity card. The basic package costs $350, and there is no limit on the number of guests. The deluxe package is 45 minutes and comes with a few more goodies, like a magic wand and a magic fun-book with over 150 magic tricks and activities. It also includes a theater backdrop to make it seem more like a real magic show. Lastly, the ultimate package is a two-hour show with all the extras in the deluxe and 30 minutes of party games. The cost for the ultimate package is $625. For more info, here is the link: https://www.prestothemagician.com/kids-birthday-parties/birthday-party-packages/.
BJ the Clown and Company-
This guy looks like a lot of fun! The website boasts that BJ has performed over 4,000 times at various schools, parties, and events. He shows up to parties with his big toy trunk and entertains the kiddos with comedy, magic, puppets, juggling, storytelling, music, games, balloon art, and face painting. There are 3 packages: the classic, the deluxe, and the super. The classic is $175 and lasts 45 minutes. The deluxe is hour-long and includes balloons (hats, swords, animals) for up to 15 guests. The super does not have a price but indicates a longer show than the others. There is also an option to hire extra face painters and balloonists. An additional face-painter is $75 per hour; there was no extra balloonist price. Here is the link for more info and a gallery of past party pictures: http://www.bjtheclown.com/Birthday.htm.
Whether it’s magic, a visit from a special character, or a puppet show: Portland has a lot to offer for kids’ party entertainment. I love how these businesses have adapted to social distancing and virtual offerings. Besides entertainment, many places around Portland have great opportunities for kids’ birthday parties. At our favorite frozen yogurt place the other day, EZ Freeze on SE 122nd and Division street, we were floored to see that they have birthday parties there too! My daughter decided right then and there that she would have her party there, ha-ha. It is so nice that things are slightly heading toward normal again and that some families will be able to have in-person birthday parties again this year. A far cry from the beginning of the pandemic. Best of luck to you all in finding some great entertainment for your kiddos’ birthday parties.