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Posted by Maxine Cleminson - - 13 comments

The Big One has just turned 7... where did that time go?!  And like most 7 year olds he has a pretty good idea of what he likes!  After my flat refusal to entertain the idea of a party at a certain Fromage Eating Mouse's Arcade  (a.k.a. Hell on Earth), he came up with the idea of having a Raptor party.  I initially thought he meant dinosaurs, but thanks to the Kratts brothers on PBS kids,  my budding zoologist meant birds of prey!  Apparently (according to the Big One at least)... "one can identify a raptor by three key features:  they have the forward facing eyes of a predator, sharp talons and hooked beaks".  That's me told!
So once I'd figured that out, I was then a little stumped with how to fulfill this wish.  Thankfully, the wonderful Houston Audubon Society came to the rescue in the form of their Outreach program and their marvelous birds.  We were very privileged to have Cairo (a peregrine falcon) and Tskili (a great horned owl) visit us at our home for the Big One's party!  Both are rescue birds that were unable to be returned to the wild and were absolutely enchanting!  Read below for more ideas for this theme...

Birthday Cake

I created a peregrine falcon birthday cake using a dove shaped cake pan (click on the image below to buy one).  I used my vegan chocolate cake recipe as it is very fail safe for this sort of project and one batch filled the cake pan perfectly.  This gave me a basic bird shape without too much effort.  I then carved the beak slightly to make it a bit hooked and removed the olive branch from the dove's mouth.  A thin smear of chocolate buttercream icing and then a layer of white fondant icing and I was given a blank canvas to paint (literally).  Using some extra fondant I shaped some legs with taloned feet.  Then I used Wilton color dust in brown, yellow, white and some Wilton Dab-n-Color in black, mixed with a little clear vanilla essence (although you can use any clear alchohol) to create the palette of colors I needed and I painted the fondant as if with watercolor paints!


Birthday Party Food
The party was held mid-afternoon and so I only provided a small finger buffet of snacks and treats.  With a bird theme for the party, I decided on the following:

The birds nests were simple chocolate rice crispy treats with chocolate mini eggs on top.

I displayed the grapes in a large glass bowl with plastic eggs.

The owl pops I decorated with ears made from mini choc chips stuck to the pop before coating in chocolate, light brown fondant icing for the tummy, a yellow moon shaped cupcake sprinkle for the beak and two white chocolate wafers (buttons) for the eyes.  I wrapped each one individually in a cello bag tied with an owl patterned ribbon from the discount bin at my local craft store!  I displayed these in a Styrofoam disc covered in tissue paper.

Goody Bags
I used plain 'natural' colored, paper goody bags with raffia handles for the goody bags and simply printed out labels with a thank you message and picture of a peregrine falcon to stick on the front.

For Raptor themed goody bag fillers I used:

Party Activities/Games

The presentation of the birds lasted an hour and kept all 12 children (and their parents) perfectly enthralled and entertained!

After that the children had a quick snack and a game of pin the beak on the owl!

I gave out raptor/birds of prey coloring books and dollar store crayon packs to the winners (click on image below)...

And the best bit was seeing the smile on the Big One's face when he got to have his picture taken with Cairo the Peregrine Falcon!

13 Responses so far.

  1. Anonymous says:

    What an awesome job you did! my son is also turning 7, raptor mad, and wants a falcon birthday cake. You've given me ideas, but I don't think I can do anywhere near as good a job!

  2. Mama Max says:

    Thanks so much for the lovely comment! I must admit, a falcon cake is quite a tall order... have you ever used edible photos? You can order them really cheaply on places like ebay and they can print your choice of image and words onto a sheet of icing sugar paper. You then just frost a cake with plain white icing and place the edible image on top! An easy solution to a tricky cake request! I've used them before and they look great! Worth considering!! Thanks again for visiting & commenting!

  3. Donna says:

    You are AMAZING!!! Thank you for the ideas we are well on our way to a birds of prey party. I really appreciate the work that you have posted for the public to use it is very generous!! Donna

  4. Sheryl says:

    Beautiful cake!!! We recently hosted a party inspired by the Kratts. I wish I had seen your site a month ago.

  5. Anonymous says:

    this is wonderful. my daughters are wanting a raptor-themed party. I love the ideas!

  6. Kelley B says:

    thanks for the wonderful ideas! you did a great job an I am hoping to grab a few ideas for my son's 7th falconry birthday.

  7. Fantastic job! My son is 14 today and raptors are is passion. I know he's getting too old for this type of "theme" party but deep down inside he would LOVE it! Great job!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Oh my, you are very talented! What a cake! My son also loves Peregrine Falcons. How did you find out about hiring someone for a presentation of raptors?

  9. Mama Max says:

    Hi! Thanks for all the lovely feedback! As for question about the presentation... I contacted my local Audobon Society! You can find yours here... http://www.audubon.org/search-by-zip ... they may have details of an outreach/education program near you! Hope this helps. :-)

  10. Anonymous says:

    This is truly inspiring! My soon-to-be seven year old told me earnestly yesterday that he wants a raptor-themed party for his birthday. The glory that is google led me to your site and now I have hope! ideas! and perhaps more questions to come, if you don't mind (about the actual logistics of painting a cake, something I've never done before). Thank you so very much! ~k

  11. Hi! this is awesome! I was searching for a raptor-themed party and chanced upon your site. I'm full of admiration for the simply marvellous work you've produced. The ideas are inspiring and have left me with a real challenge..a positive one nevertheless. Please tell your kids someone on the net said they are truly blessed to have you for a mum(kids need to hear that from outsiders:))

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Mama Max

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