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We just celebrated my son’s 9th birthday in full Hobbit fashion and I’m so excited to share all the details with you. This theme is so ageless! It can be for 9 year olds, teenagers, graduations, weddings, baby showers, you name it! I do feel especially privledged that my children have such good taste and I have yet to have to throw a Thomas the Train or Bluey party. Phew! I think the most “mainstream” theme we’ve had is our Marvel party. But I digress. Let’s get to all the decorations, food, activities and details to help you pull this off!
Lord of the Rings Party Invitation
More and more people are just sending texts as birthday invitations. I certainly have (and honestly you get a better RSVP rate that way I think). But something about Lord of the Rings, I felt like they needed a real invitation to hold in their hand. Plus it’s so fun for kids that age to get something in the mail. And I guess you have to throw in the factor that I had such a blast designing these.
I’m happy to personalize these invitations for you for $10. Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with the details. I love that the background is a subtle map of middle earth!
Lord of the Rings Party Decorations & Food
I’ll lump food and decorations together on this one because the food really did serve as a large part of our decorations. I often wait until the end of the party to feed the guests and have cake and presents. But this time I decided to feed them first. I didn’t want to have to endure a lot of “I’m hungry”s that I often feel like I hear all party long. So let’s just feed them first I decided! It did seem to work better. Every party “flow” will be different, however, dependent on lots of factors like age group, time of day, party theme etc. If you’d like to see a little video of the party set up check out my Instagram Reel here.
Hobbit Feast Tablescape
Anyhow, we started off with a Hobbit feast. If you know anything about Hobbits, you know they love to eat. I worked on transforming our dining room into the Shire with a table fit for a Hobbit feast. This meant fancy. No plastic tablecloths or paper plates here. I went full-on fancy. I did purchase a few things, but mostly I tried to use what I already had and incorporate it in. I used this ivory tablecloth as the base. It worked out great as it was very long, even on my large table.
I then added this dark green cheesecloth as a table runner. I wanted to do moss originally and ordered a big long strip of moss, but it was so stiff and lumpy it wasn’t quite working out. I settled with sprinkling moss around the table as a finishing touch. I used gold chargers and white dinner plates topped with these green napkins that matched the table runner and DIY gold napkin rings.
I followed this tutorial from Michelle’s Party Plan it to emboss the gold cardstock napkin rings with the elvish inscription from the ring. It’s subtle but if you look closely you can see it. I then finished each place setting off with a goblet.
Next I used wooden platters that I had rounded up between myself and my mother in law. I filled them with all kinds of finger foods including: fresh fruits (strawberries, grapes and raspberries), fresh vegetables (cucumbers and grape tomatoes), little single serve treats (cinnamon rolls, muffins, scones), meat/cheese/cracker board with some nuts mixed in. And finally some croissants so they could make little sandwiches if they wanted.
Last I added some finishing touches like little lanterns and candlesticks, moss sprinkled around, some carrots with the tops on, and some golden rings sprinkled around like confetti. And finally, at each chair was their very own Hobbit cloak to wear for the big adventure they had coming up. Thanks to my amazing mother in law for sewing these! I wish I had taken more time to explain the magical nature of their cloaks allowing them to blend in with their surroundings.
I was really happy with how it all came together, it felt like an authentic hobbit gathering with food gathered from the Shire. I think the kids had a lot of fun eating in such a “fancy” setting too. I was teaching them about putting their napkins on their lap and one of the kids said, “oh I know about fancy dinners because I’ve been on a cruise”. Hah, cracked me up.
DIY Ent Trees and Dessert Table
The other focal point in “the shire” (aka the dining room) was our cake table. I wanted so badly to make Ent looking trees out of kraft paper on either side of the table. It proved very challenging! The hardest thing was getting it to stick to the wall. I would get pieces up and they would keep falling down. I eventually resorted to duct tape (shh don’t tell my husband) with minimal damage to the paint in the end-phew! I will warn you that it did take pretty much a whole roll of the kraft paper per tree.
The cake table included a few elements: this Middle Earth map served as our backdrop and I hung a homemade banner with my son’s name I made with my cricut over the top of it. This was the biggest map of Middle Earth I could find for a decent price. It’s basically a sheet with Middle Earth printed on it. I used the gold carstock again to create the banner using this hobbit font. I stuck with the colors green and ivory/off white pretty much the best I could. I also made a bigger pennant banner that matched this that I strung all around the room, and come to think of it I don’t think I got a photo of it.
The cake was another magnificent creation of my mother-in-law. She used this topper and this base. It made the perfect centerpiece to our little dessert table. I wish I had ordered two of those green cheesecloths so I could have used one on this table. I settled for some burlap I had lying around.
I scored this cool vintage tool carrier things from the thrift store and thought it looked very “Lord of the Rings” so I snatched it up. I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to use it, but I ended up using it to hold all the quest prompts for our little hobbits. After their hobbit feast, they were each given one of these scrolls that was actually a letter from Bilbo and had “the ring” attached to it. I will explain more under the “party games” section as to how these worked and what happened next. I added the phrase “start your adventure” onto the little carrier with my cricut as this as the first step in their grand quest to destroy the ring.
On the other side of the table I had a framed quote from series along with Frodo’s sword (that we had from my son’s Halloween costume) and I put the three movie cases that we had there as well because I think they look kinda cool. The hanging moss I just got at my local Walmart. They only had 4, however, I really wanted like 8. So I filled in the gaps with some spanish moss also from the walmart craft section.
I’ve included this quote, along with a few other of my favorites from JRR Tolkien, in my Lord of the Rings Digital Bundle Pack. They are sized at 8X10 so you can put them in frames. You can print them on this paper like I did, or you I also have options to print some that already have a weathered background so you can print them on regular paper as well.
I don’t really know about my Ent Trees. I tried to wind some branches in front, some behind, some up to the ceiling to give it some depth but it felt pretty flat in the end. I draped as much moss as I could spare all over the tree to give it some greenery. And I did attach a strip about halfway up trying to imitate a mouth of sorts. This was my best attempt at creating a Tree Beard.
Here is the overall feel of the party room with the table set and our dessert table behind it. You can kind of see the pennant banner in the corners that I had strung around the room.
Lord of the Rings Party Games
A Quest to Destroy the Ring
So what did we DO at our Lord of the Rings party? If you’d like to see our quest in a quick 45 second video check out my Instagram reel here (and give me a follow while you’re over there!). I mentioned we started with our Hobbit Feast. Once that was over I passed out the letters from Bilbo I previously mentioned. Each one was tied as a scroll with some leather rope and one of these golden rings. Once they had all read their letter and tied their gold ring around their neck (the way Frodo does) we watched a short clip from the movie. I showed the beginning of the Fellowship of the Ring where you see Gandalf discovering the ring and the writing on the ring after they throw it in the fire, and Frodo appears and learns of the ring.
And thus began their quest to destroy the ring. I came up with different prompts and “stations” paralleling the plot in the books/movies that lasted for the next couple hours. Below is the first prompt they were given as a group after seeing the movie clip. They then had to head outside in search of: first a walking stick, and second Rivendell.
First they had to find Rivendell, each station was marked with a sign (also included in my digital party bundle). Once they found Rivendell (which was across a creek that we have on our property) they found the next prompt awaiting them. The kids each took turns reading the prompts at the different stations aloud for the group to hear.
At Rivendell they took a quick quiz that I created that helped them discover which member of the Fellowship they were: Legolas, Gimli, Aragon, Gandalf or Frodo (I know there are more members than that but I kept it to that for my quiz so my brain wouldn’t pop). Once we took the quiz as a group, went over the results to discover everyone’s identity, we then looked for the “elven trail” to follow to the Mines of Moria. I did not give them any hints. But it didn’t take too long until they spotted the little Elf Fudge cookies I had wrapped in sarand wrap to make a trail. Get it? Elven trail?? 😉
The Mines of Moria
Next stop was the Mines of Moria, they had to follow the Elf cookie trail to find it. Once they found it there was another prompt waiting for them to read. This one told them that they had to know the Elvish word for “Friend” to enter (like in the movie, by the way it’s ‘mellon’) and that once inside all their noise attracted the goblins- oh no! Their only way out was to fight like Gimli to kill all the goblins. Can you guess what we did next?
Axe throwing! We set up a stump of wood and I taped some goblin photos to it and let the kids go to town! Well, in a very controlled, one at a time, way. With lots of rules and instructions, haha. These are the axes I ordered, and we gifted it to our son as his birthday present to go along with his party. They really worked great and the kids had a blast. We let them have three tries at a time and went through the line up about 3-4 times. Once they defeated the goblins the prompt told them to head for Gondor.
The Battle of Gondor
Upon arriving in Gondor (remember I had each location marked with a sign) there was another prompt for the kids to read where they learned now they would need to battle the Orcs! Out of the frying pan and into the fire…
Can you guess how they had to defeat the Orcs? Yup. Archery! We had a fun little Archery lesson from my 11 year old son who got a bow for Christmas, and then each of the kids got a few turns to shoot the Orcs.
We got a few bales of hay for the target and I stuck some really ugly looking Orcs behind the twine on the hay bales to give them something to aim for. Of course you could opt for nerf bow & arrows, especially if the kiddos are a bit younger.
After defeating all the orcs the kids opened another prompt which told them they had to solve Gollum’s riddle to find out where to go next. The riddle is included in the prompts and the answer to this riddle is “darkness”. The prompts let them know that Gollum now leads them to Shelob’s Cave of Darkness.
For Shelob’s Cave (Shelob is the enormous spider that almost kills Frodo after stinging him and wrapping him up in his web) I transformed our climbing dome into her lair. I ordered this spider webbing (wish I had gotten two) and strung it from the rungs throughout the dome. I then put a tarp over it so it would be dark like a cave inside.
I saw a few other blogs, like this one, with the following idea which I used as well- Inside the cave were spider eggs (just easter eggs). The kids had to climb through the cave (without getting caught up in the spider webs) and retrieve an egg. If the egg had a spider inside that meant they were bit by the spider. If it had webbing inside (a cotton ball) that meant they made it through safely. After all the kids had successfully retrieved an egg, the ones that got webbing then wrapped up the ones that got a spider with toilet paper. They looked just like Frodo had after being wrapped up by Shelob! And they had a lot more fun with it than I anticipated!
The prompt told them to head for Mordor once they escape Shelob’s lair. One last stop to complete their quest of destroying the ring!
Mordor, Mt. Doom
The final stop was of course, Mt. Doom. The kids had been wearing their rings the entire time and now it was time to destroy them. We had a big bonfire going that was up a bit of a hill and the kids had to carry each other on their backs up the hill and toss their rings into the fire. Then it was back to the shire! (inside for cake and presents).
I did not include an image of every prompt we had, but hopefully enough to give you an idea of what they were like. The digital party bundle comes with 8 total prompts, not including the quiz. It also includes signs to hang at each station, party favor tags, Tolkien quote signs, cupcake toppers and a banner.
Lord of the Rings Party Favors
For party favors I just filled little bags with gummy worms and sweedish fish and called them “Gollum’s Gummies”. I printed the tags on Avery 2 1/2 inch circle stickers and then stuck them on black cardstock circles I cut with my cricut. The cupcake toppers are sized the same way and can be printed on the stickers as well. These tags are included in the digital party bundle.
Lord of the Rings Digital Party Bundle
This is kind on insane, and definitely my biggest bundle to date, but this bundle comes with over 50 pages of printables! A lot of those are doubles where I made one copy with a weathered looking background and one copy with a plain white background in case you buy the vintage paper I suggested in this post. So it’s probably closer to 30 or so pages, but my goodness, I think you will be well equipped for your LOTR party with this bundle.
You can purchase the bundle by adding it to your cart below, thanks so much for your support!
Lord of the Rings Party Shopping List
Here are links to things I purchased or used for this party, when you purchase through my links I make a small commission, thank you so much for your support!