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Lockdown Birthday Ideas


Last year my little boy had a Lockdown Birthday and I won't lie, I was really worried it would be a flop. Luckily, the sun shone and it was a huge success. At bedtime he said it was his best birthday ever! High praise indeed from the new 6 year old. It was such a relief and as I went to bed that night I was thankful that his 7th birthday would be a more normal affair. How wrong was I!

While we don't really know what the months ahead will bring in terms of restrictions, we can't guarantee that we can mix, or that businesses will be open as before.  Now I face a whole new challenge - a second Lockdown Birthday! It won't be much fun if it's the same as the last one so I thought it would be a good idea to put together a list of ideas that could inspire you if you are in the same position as me!

The most important thing is to plan the day. Know what's happening and avoid the "what can we do now?" or the "I'm bored" comments. It will take the stress out of everything on the day itself.


Everything revolves around food in our house!

  • Make a special breakfast together - homemade pancakes, a full English, waffles. Remember on your birthday you can have whatever you like for breakfast!
  • BBQ - if you have a garden and the weather is on your side this is always a winner
  • Picnic in the garden - pack a proper picnic and take it outside. Get the kids involved in making it
  • Deliveries for afternoon tea, a treat box or takeaway
  • Make a grazing table for the family to enjoy - this can be filled with all your favourites
  • Ice cream van delivery
  • A homemade cake is very special but if you aren't a baker, there are lots of options to buy a cake from a local business.


It's a great time to get others involved, even those not in your bubble.

  • Drive by singers - ask friends to drive by and stop outside your house to sing Happy Birthday!
  • Doorstep gift drop offs - much as it is difficult not to invite people into your home, just seeing people and having a chat outside your home is like a breath of fresh air
  • Zoom party with best friends/family - schedule a couple of these, one for family, one for friend
  • Virtual party with an entertainer - whether its a traditional party entertainer, a superhero, a zoo experience or a magician, there are lots of option
  • Video messages - ask friends to send a video and edit them all together into a celebration video. There are apps you can use for this
  • Try and organise a video message from a celebrity - a sports personality or similar. Often they respond to tweets and will send a short message

Fun & Games

Plan some games and activities and stretch them out to fill the day.

  • Treasure hunt for birthday presents - spread it out and make it last all day
  • Play games outside - swing ball, cricket, nerf gun targets, pin the tail on the donkey
  • Birthday Parade - Ask neighbours to put a poster or birthday banner/message in their front window or to be there to wave at a certain time, then walk round your neighbourhood and see the birthday wishes!
  • Set up something different like a bowling lane or a mini golf course in the garden
  • Hire something fun - bouncy castle, cinema experience, hot tub
  • Birthday makeover - how about a mini pamper session with a bestie via zoom
  • Disco/karaoke - kids love to dance so get some tunes on and you could even use the glow stick disco idea in the evening
  • Sleepover - if you cant have friends to stay maybe the whole family could have a sleepover in the living room, or you could hire some teepees to make it extra special
  • Camping in the garden - if you have a pop up tent that will be safe to sleep in outside this could be great fun - weather permitting
  • Truth or dare - the old games are the best and playing this via zooms brings new challenges
  • Family escape rooms - there are websites offering this or you could design your own
  • Doorstep visit from a princess or a superhero - who wouldn't love a personal visit from Spiderman or Anna?
  • Have a family dance off - speaks for itself
  • Water fight - obviously this is a summer activity
  • Minute to win it games 

  • Mission Impossible inspired obstacle course - use string or crepe paper to make the strips
  • Virtual day trip - there are loads of options online
  • Two truths and a lie - a great game to play via zoom testing just how well you all know your family and friends

Netflix Birthday or BBC Together

Netflix - Type 'birthday' into the search bar and over 20 options will appear where there are a variety of messages from characters and kids TV shows.  
BBC Together - this enables you to watch a show at the same time as someone far away! 


It's worth taking a bit of time on this as it will help everyone get into the birthday spirit. Decorations don't have to be expensive. You can buy ready made or you could make your own!

  • Make bunting together - really simple, just cut paper into triangles and attach to string
  • Balloons - you can never have enough balloons at a birthday. Fill their bedroom while they are asleep for an instant surprise when they wake up!
  • Piñata- These are available to buy online and in local shops or you could have a go at making your own like our friends at Mum's guide to Hertford (this is a pumpkin for Halloween but you could use the same principle to make any design)
  • Cover the door to the living room or their bedroom in wrapping paper so they have to 'break in' to get their presents. Or use streamers/balloons etc


You may want to choose a theme to help steer your decisions. Your child will no doubt have their own ideas about this. Will it be a gaming party,  all about our favourite superheroes, princesses, dinosaurs, horses, a PJ party, movie night at the Oscars, sports day/the Olympics, a pamper party or something completely different?

We can help!

Don't forget we have a great 'parties' section in our directory where you can find lots of local businesses who can supply cakes, food, entertainers and much more.

Whatever you decide to do, we would love to hear about it! You might have some great ideas that we haven't thought of and we would really love to add your suggestions to this article. You can contact us via our Facebook page or here and tell us your Lockdown Birthday plans.

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