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At the beginning of a birthday party, it’s nice to have a low-key activity to provide a gathering point for the kids. Coloring is simple and great because kids can easily jump right in as they arrive. For our Tangled birthday party, I downloaded some free printable coloring pages from the Disney website and put them out along with a jar of crayons on our family room table.
After all the guests had arrived, we moved onto our party craft, which was making these Pascal Party Blowers. On New Year’s Eve my mom gave Attalie a party blower and after playing with it for a while, Attalie remarked how it was just like the tongue of Rapunzel’s pet chameleon in Tangled. I smiled at her cleverness but didn’t think much of it until I saw this idea for Pascal Party Blowers as I was looking for Tangled coloring pages. After what Attalie had said, I figured we had to do this project for our craft.
Before the party, I used the free template Disney provided for tracing and cutting out the Pascal heads from adhesive craft foam. The instructions also called for cutting out a bunch of white and yellow circles to create eyes, but I got googly eyes at the craft store to save time, and I think they’re much cuter. During the party, the kids adhered the googly eyes with glue dots and drew on smiley faces with black permanent marker. Since I didn’t want permanent marker all over my table and couch, I gave them to a couple of trusted adults who kept close tabs on the markers.
To keep the party moving, we played “Pin the Frying Pan on Flynn Rider.” One of the funniest scenes in the Tangled movie is when Flynn climbs into Rapunzel’s tower, and surprised and scared of this intruder, she whacks him over the head with her only weapon: a black frying pan. The pan comes up several other times in the movie, and I thought it would be fun to incorporate into our party.
My mom accepted the tough job of drawing the Flynn Rider “Wanted” sign from the movie onto a poster board, and I got the much easier task of designing a frying pan printable to cutout and use in the game.
After dinner, the kids decorated sun-shaped sugar cookies. I found a 3-inch sun cookie cutter for a couple dollars online. I almost forgot to order it, and remembered just a week before the party, but gratefully the company shipped super fast and it arrived in time.
I made the cookies ahead of time using my favorite recipe, which I got from my cousin a few years ago:
Sour Cream Sugar Cookies
1 cup butter/margarine
2 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 cups flour
Instructions: Cream butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla together. Add sour cream and blend. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl then add to wet mix. Knead dough (I used a KitchenAid with the dough hook attached). Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Makes 5 dozen.
I made the dough up the night before and refrigerated it overnight. Then on the morning of the party, I rolled out, cut and baked the cookies. This recipe makes a lot of dough, so I froze the leftovers to use another time.
During the party we used plastic knives to scoop a large dollop of yellow frosting onto each child’s plate. We also gave them each a small cup of sprinkles.
Probably one of the most impressive things in the Tangled movie are the floating lanterns released by the kingdom every year on Rapunzel’s birthday. I thought a lantern send-off would be the perfect way to end our party, but I’d never seen these lanterns before and wasn’t even sure if they were safe. It took a bit of digging to find that the floating lanterns in the movie were inspired by Flying Sky or Wish Lanterns used traditionally in some Asian cultures (Kongming is the Chinese name for the lanterns.)
I was eventually able to locate floating rice paper lanterns on Amazon. (Free shipping too!) If it had been up to me I would have ordered all white lanterns, but the birthday girl wanted a couple different colors.
The sky lanterns work like hot air balloons but on a smaller scale. To send them off one person holds the paper lantern up, while another lights the fuel cell. The lantern fills with hot air and begins to lift off.
Naturally I was concerned about safety with these lanterns. I understood that when setting them off you personally accept liability for whatever might happen. I think traditionally the lanterns are just lit and let go, but no matter how you look at it sending a flaming paper balloon uncontrolled into the sky is just asking for trouble.
We decided the safest way to do it would be to tie the lanterns down, sort of like a kite, keeping them under control at all times. Rapunzel’s hair yarn did the job quite nicely.
Here’s a nice, little legal disclaimer from Superdad: Sky lanterns should be used only by adults with extreme caution. We at PagingSupermom.com provide these details for your information only. Should you choose to use sky lanterns yourself, please read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions and understand that you always use the lanterns at your own risk.
We set the lanterns off one at a time and they floated up at least 50 feet into the sky. It really was a gorgeous sight.
After 5-10 minutes the fire in the lanterns would wane and they came floating back down. It was a good thing we had the paper lanterns secured with string so we could control their descent, keeping them out of trees, off our roof and safely away from people.
By this point in our party, most of the parents had returned to pick up their little party goers and stayed to watch the paper lantern send off.
We ended up doing three lanterns (one of each color). The kids were in awe for the first couple, but started losing interest even though most of the adults were still enthralled. Luckily I had bought some sidewalk chalk as a backup activity — in the movie, Rapunzel colors on the sidewalk in the village with a bunch of kids. I wasn’t sure if we’d have a chance to use it, but I set out the chalk and the kids entertained themselves drawing pictures while we did the last sky lantern.
It started raining as we were doing our last lantern, which could have been a bummer, but since we were pretty much done by that point, it was okay. Actually it gave me a nice head start with cleaning up the sidewalk chalk.
Since Rapunzel is trapped in a tower all day, every day, for about 18 years, she becomes quite skilled at drawing and painting, among other things. Since my little princess also loves painting, I thought watercolors would be the perfect party favor for her to give to her friends. I found inexpensive watercolor paint sets at a local craft store. I removed the existing labels from the packaging and then put on a personalized “Rapunzel Paints” label.
More Tangled Party Games and Activities
As I was brainstorming for this Rapunzel birthday party I came up with more party game and activity ideas then we had time to include. Here is a list of other favorite ideas that we didn’t get to use:
Tower Bean Bag Toss: I was thinking of making a few bean bags and then making a tower out of a large refrigerator-type cardboard box painted purple with a couple “window” targets cut out.
Rapunzel Hair Tug of War: This is one activity I really wanted to do, but I couldn’t track down a tug of war rope to borrow and didn’t have the budget to buy one.
Sun Medallion Necklace: Before I found the Pascal Party Blowers, the craft project I was planning was to make homemade modeling clay and using the sun cookie cutter to cut out and dry sun medallions. I planned to spray paint them gold ahead of time and then at the party let the kids string the medallions along with gold beads to make a necklace.
Souvenir Sun Flags: Since my party was for six year olds, I didn’t think this idea would work out too well, but for a party with kids a couple years older I think it would have been fun to prepare ahead of time flags made from purple rectangles stapled or glued onto dowels. Then provide fabric, glitter paint or pre-cut yellow felt suns for the kids to glue on and make their own souvenir sun flags like the one Rapunzel picked up at the kingdom’s lantern festival.
Paint the Walls: In the movie Rapunzel paints all the walls of her tower with her beautiful artwork. For a daytime party, I was thinking I could line my backyard walls with butcher paper, give the kids smocks, paint brushes and a bunch of washable paint then let them have at it.
EDITOR’S NOTE: We’ve heard the requests for an easier Tangled Birthday Party Invitation, and we’ve created these two NEW! colorful and printable Rapunzel-themed invites that can be personalized with all your party details. For more info visit our Supermom Co-Op.26