If you little one loves all things ocean, throw him or her an under-the-sea celebration with our Ocean Party Ideas! From invitations to party favors, we have all the bases covered so your party goes swimmingly!
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Planning & Invitations
What Do I Need For the Party?
In addition to basic ocean themed party supplies, like plates, cups, napkins and decorations, you may want to consider purchasing, borrowing or renting the following items for your Ocean party:
- A bubble machine
- Ocean-related cartoons such as Finding Nemo, The Little Mermaid, SpongeBob SquarePants and Ponyo
- An ocean themed pinata
If you have the time to make your own invitations, here are a few ideas to consider:
- Send a Message in a Bottle! Thoroughly wash and dry old soda bottles. Write your party details on a slip of paper, roll it up, and slide it inside. Make sure the paper is rolled tightly and secured so it will easily slip out of the bottle once your guests receive it. Check out our Invitations in a Bottle for inspiration!
- Purchase seashells at a craft store, or collect them on the beach and wash and dry them thoroughly. Write your party details on the shells and send them in highly padded envelopes, or hand deliver them to your guests.
- Punch a hole in the corner of a card-style invitation and attach it to a fish-shaped cookie cutter or fish straw. Send to your guests in padded envelopes.
- Cut the shape of an angel fish out of blue or orange cardstock. Use colored markers to draw on the details and use glitter glue or puff paint for the accents. Write your party details on the back.
- Include creative wording for your party details, such as:
Come to an adventure under the sea,And party with Marcy who is turning three!
Games will be played and cake will be served,
RSVP to give me your word!
If you would rather not make your own invitations, but would still like a personalized touch, consider our Personalized Ocean themed Invitations, which include all the party details for you!
To provide your guests with a true under-the-sea experience, consider these options for decorations:
- Cover the ceiling, walls and floor with blue transparent cellophane wrap to give the impression of being underwater. Scatter seashells and sand dollars around the perimeter of the room.
- Set a bubble machine in one corner of the room.
- Hang plastic toy fish from the ceiling using clear fishing line.
- Make a “sunken” treasure chest by covering a large shoebox with brown construction paper and strips of gold foil or glitter paint. Fill it with shells, plastic necklaces and jewels, and chocolate gold coins.
- Fill the party area with bunches of blue and green balloons (right) ! Add fish-shaped Mylar balloons to a few of the bunches.
- Cover the tables with blue tablecloths and decorate them with sand, faux pearls and seashells.
- Hang a banner. Check out our personalized ocean-themed banners and let us do the work for you.
- Place groups of stuffed clown fish, angel fish, starfish, and sharks in the corners of the party area.
- Cut out giant fish shapes and starfish shapes out of construction paper to hang on the walls of the party area.
- Hang a pinata in the party area that can be used as a decoration before the activity begins. Remember, you can transform any pinata into a pull-string with these easy instructions.
It can be fun for the host and the guests to include theme-specific treats during the party. For an Ocean Party, consider the following ideas:
- Make octopus treats! Cut red licorice strings into 2″ sections and attach 8 sections to a red gumball with a little red frosting. Draw on two eyes with black decorator icing.
- Serve goldfish crackers, Swedish Fish, gummy sharks, and sour gummy fish.
- Cook seashell-shaped pasta and spinach linguini and serve chilled with a little butter. Call it “Seaweed & Shells Pasta”.
- Make “Sea Water” by coloring pitchers of apple juice with blue food coloring, and serve with fish straw.
Fish Cake – Start with any flavor cake baked in a 9″x13″ cake pan. Let it cool and remove from pan. You’ll need two colors of frosting so that the fins and tail are a different color than the body of the fish. A green body with yellow fins would look good, but choose any two colors that you like. You’ll also need Necco wafer candies to make the fish scales, one chocolate sandwich cookie for the eye, and a small piece of red licorice string to create a smile.
Cut the cake as shown in our drawings and arrange the pieces on a cake plate. Frost the body of the fish in one icing color and frost the fins and the tail in the second icing color. Then put the cookie eye and the licorice string mouth in place. The last step is to arrange the Necco wafers over the body of the fish to resemble scales.
- If you would rather not make a cake, make a jello “ocean” instead. First, add blue and green jelly beans (to resemble rocks and plants) to the bottom of a shallow glass baking dish. Make blue-colored jello and pour it over the jelly beans. Before the jello sets, add gummy fish.
Party Favor Ideas
Thank your guests with aquatic party favors! To find a large variety of ocean party favors, visit our Ocean party page and click the “Party Favors” tab or the “More Fun Stuff” tab. Some of the favors we have include:
- Bean bag sea animals
- Silly fish squirters
- Fish putty
- Mini plush fish
- Squishy and sticky sea creatures
- Bubble necklaces
- Ocean Stamps
- Sticker books
- Fun-shaped candy and lollipops
Also check out our complete favor sets and personalized products such as zipper pulls, placemats, and stickers.
Party Planning Toolbox
Use the links below to quickly find related theme party supplies, planning tips, printable checklists, and advice from our party planning experts.
- Ocean Party Supplies: Includes paperware, invitations, personalized items, favors, and decorations for your party theme.
- Ocean Personalized Items: Check out our exclusive personalized items including invitations, bookmarks, stickers, and more!
- Party Planning 101: Our useful party planning guide includes cake ideas, party etiquette tips, a printable guest list, and much more.
- Birthday Party Decorating Ideas: This guide will tell you how to decorate for your party theme, what to do with balloons and streamers, how to decorate with food, how to set the table, and how to make your own party decorations.
- Parties Under $100: Use this guide to celebrate in style without breaking the bank!
- Party Budget Estimator: Download this guide to help budget your expenses.
- More Birthday Theme Ideas: Browse our list of over 130 themed party guides to find tips for your child’s next birthday! Each guide includes ideas for invitations, decorations, food, favors, games and more.
Games and Activities
The cake is missing and the guests must follow the clues to find it.
Fill a bottle with colorful layers of candy “sand” then eat it!
Let children “color” a 3-D picture using glue and colored sand.
This is one time when it’s okay for your partygoers to act crabby.
Make lobster party hats for your guests before the party.
Any “fish” caught by the “octopus” must help catch other “fish”.
Send your partygoers deep-sea fishing with this fun and goofy game.
Test everyone’s knowledge of the deep blue sea with this fun quiz.
Let your partygoers make their own deep-sea treasure with seashells and string.
Kids will have a whale of a good time pretending to be fish in this game.
Get all of your partygoers involved in this fun sea creature guessing game.
Keep your guests entertained with this fun mermaid-themed craft.
Your guests will love decorating our printable Ocean coloring page.
A great activity to keep guests busy until everyone arrives at the party.
An easy and fun craft using paper plates to make a fish.