32 answers

Birthday Celebration Ideas for My 11 Year Old Son

Hi Mamas,
I'm at an absolute loss. My son has his 11th birthday on the 23rd of December. He doesn't want a party, which, quite frankly, is probably because the past 6 years have been a bust because of the holidays. It didn't matter the type of birthday party: bowling, park, movie, etc. usually only a couple kids showed up and that was the kids whose parents needed a babysitter while they were shopping.

Any ideas would be appreciated.

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We're still working on the plans, but thank you so much for so many wonderful responses. Will update when we have an answer.

Featured Answers

This won't help for this year (sorry), but what about having his party in June? We had a friend with a Christmas Day baby, and they always had her party on June 25th. They didn't ignore her actual birthday on Christmas, but kept it very simple with birthday cards.

As for this year, if he's saying he doesn't want a party, don't throw one. What about taking just a couple of kids whom he really likes out for a relaxed, fun dinner? Or having a sleepover? An (attempted) all-nighter of video games and snack foods sounds exactly like 11 year old boys to me.

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Why don't you let him plan the day? You can plan it out beforehand, or else if he likes to go off the cuff, just let him get up and declare "waffles for breakfast!" and then "let's go mini-golfing!" or whatever strikes his fancy. You might need to give him a budget, but he can invite one friend to participate as well for as long as it makes sense. Maybe have the friend sleep over the night before, so you don't have to waste precious birthday moments arranging rides. That sounds like fun to me. And he gets to decide who participates - it might be fun for you to play against him at his favorite video game or crash into him with bumper cars.

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Maybe take him and just one good friend to Disney or Seaworld or Knotts or some other place that he really wants to go then dinner at one of his favorite places.

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More Answers

Why don't you take him somewhere? Disneyland, an amusment park? Maybe 1 or 2 kids can come with him. Have you asked him where he may like to go?
Good luck! And happy birthday to your son!

1 mom found this helpful

I would look into taking him somewhere GREAT for the day. Maybe just the two of you. I'm not sure which amusement parks you are near, but that would be fun!

The last time my husband deployed, I took my son to Magic Mountain, just he and I. We had a great time .. he was your son's age at the time. He's 13 now and still has really fond memories of our trip.

Hope that helps?

1 mom found this helpful

Today is my son's 11th birthday! this year what we decided to do was have him invite only 2 of his very best friends over for a sleepover. We're taking the boys to Mountasia in Valencia and getting them unlimited wrist bands for unlimited fun! The boys are very excited, it's quite intimate and if one or both of the boys were to not be able to make it, we were just going to have my son invite 2 other kids. It's a lot easier to manage and to pick and chose if there's only a few. He's very excited at the idea of an "all day" playdate.

1 mom found this helpful

Dear S.,

I know it is drummed into us that somehow birthday parties are mandatory for a full life, but I think that family is always more important than friends. We are lucky if, when we die, we have one or two close (true) friends. Your son may be closer to realizing this than some much older adults.
I would just go with his wishes and do something as a family if he's ok with that. Or maybe he wants to invite one or two especially close friends to do something with. Small parties can be just as fun as large ones...if it does not feel like there are empty places that should have been filled.
Definitely acknowledge/celebrate the birthday...but there is a lot of flexibility in how that is done.

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I agree...Disneyland! My nephew has done this for the last 2 years now that he's getting a little older and loves it.

1 mom found this helpful

My sons' bday is on New Years. I make sure that I make his day, his day even though it falls on New Years. My bday is on the 19th of December. When I was young, my family made sure to set aside time for me on the 19th and even on the 24th/25th of Christmas and for half of the day spent it was all about my bday and later that day it was all about Christmas.

Whatever you decide to do, make sure he feels as though it is his day. There were times I didnt want a bday party and was fine as long as I had cake, icecream, and a gift.

1 mom found this helpful

I have a son whose birthday is December 12th and one of our most "attended" parties was at Dave and Busters. You can just do game time or book a party with food and cake and then play games. His 12th birthday was his first "all boy" party so that was a little easier to manage. Good Luck because I know from experience that the birthday boy can get discouraged easily when friends can't attend.

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I have had a few friends over the years that celebrate their 1/2 birthday and do a small cake or something with the family in December. Good Luck

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