Its no secret that Max loves cars. Especially Hot Wheels cars. At this point our home has been overrun with them. They are in his bed, the couch cushions, the floors, the stairs. Everywhere. When it came time to pick a theme for Max’s 3rd Birthday, there was only one option: Hot Wheels Cars! Over the years, I’ve learned that with my kids’ birthday parties, simpler is usually better. Even so, we like to do a few things to make the day special, and this year was no different. With the help of Pinterest and a little imagination, we had a wonderful, adorable, affordable celebration featuring these Easy Ideas for an Awesome Race Car Birthday Party.
Race Track Number 3 Cake
The birthday cake is the centerpiece of a great birthday party and this one was no exception. I made two basic 9×11 inch cakes, one layer of chocolate and a second layer of vanilla. I made my cakes from scratch using a couple of favorite recipes but box cake mix would work well for this too. Then I simply turned the cakes out onto a platter, iced them with our favorite vanilla buttercream and added an Oreo cookie “tire” border around the edges. To make the number “3” as neatly as possible, I printed a number 3 onto a piece of 8.5 x 11″ paper, cut it out and traced it onto a large sheet of nonstick parchment paper. Then I cut the inside part of the number 3 out and laid the parchment stencil over top of the cake. I filled it with an even layer of chocolate graham cracker crumbs to create the track and used store bought green decorators icing to add the “grass” border. Some Hot Wheels cars and a checkered flag banner completed the look. The cake was delicious and looked great at the center of our table. Max loved it!
Easy Fruit and Veggie Cars
You guys, how cute are these??? I originally saw this idea on Pinterest, using apple segments for the body of the car with red grapes for wheels. I was concerned that apples would turn brown, so I switched to clementine segments and used green grapes since Max likes those better. I’d also picked up a bag of miniature pepper and it occurred to me they would make wonderful cars as well, so we sliced baby carrots for the wheels and away we went. Simply thread the fruit or veggies on a toothpick and break off the overhanging toothpick edge. They turned out so cute and the little “wheels” really turn so the kids had a great time with them on their plates.
Stoplight String Cheese and Pepper Sticks
Another adorable idea pilfered from Pinterest! Plain ole string cheese with little pieces of red, yellow and green peppers laid on top to look like a stop light. I used the small end of a Mellon baller to cut out the pepper pieces and just laid them on top of each cheese stick. The kids went nuts for these. Not sure how many actually at the peppers, but I think a few gave them a try.
We also offered hummus and pretzel “dipsticks” although I was too lazy to do cutesy food labels so I’m not sure how many people got that reference. However, I loved that we were able to offer so many healthy food choices, along with the standard cake/ice cream/pizza delivery trifecta.
Dollar Store Race Track Table Runner
Our party decorations turned out so cute. The best part — I only spent about $8 TOTAL on them! I started by downloading a party pack of free printable Hot Wheels decorations created by another blogger. The Hot Wheels bunting looked great over the entrance to our dining room (and it was free). Next I picked up a pack of Hot Wheels cake plates to carry the theme. Everything else came from The Dollar Tree. I was so pleased with the race track table runner! I started with a red plastic Dollar Tree tablecloth. On top, I added a black plastic tablecloth but I only unfolded this one the long way to create a “road” down the center of the table. Next I used some white washi tape to add the center lane and put a couple of cars and trucks on the table for effect. $3 and about 5 minutes and we were ready to party!
Wheely Easy Party Favors
Don’t you just love Pinterest? I originally saw these adorable free printables around Valentine’s Day and thought they were incredibly creative. The printable is laid out to be a treat bag topper that you staple to the top of a small cellophane bag. We were able to find Hot Wheels Cars on sale at Target. They are small and affordable and the kids were able to play with them during the party. They really were a perfect favor. I’d planned to take each car out of its packaging and drop them into a cellophane favor bag just like the one I’d seen on Pinterest, but I forgot to pick up treat bags. Instead, I left the cars in their packaging, cut out just the logo part of the free printable and glued it directly on top of the Hot Wheels logo. They turned out great and the kids really enjoyed them (although Max the Hot Wheels Hoarder had a hard time passing them out until we assured him he’d get to keep at least a half dozen….this kid has a really problem with the cars my friends!).
All in all, it was a great party. Fun to come plan, affordable and easy to execute and everyone had fun…especially our very special birthday boy!
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