Tag Archives: Wiltshire

Local Children’s Entertainer?

Performing At A Town Near You

Being a Children’s Entertainer based in Portsmouth is different to being one based in, say, Leicester.

As Portsmouth is on the South Coast of Hampshire, my catchment area is not 360 degrees, but something like half that. To the south, there is The Solent. In other words, sea!

This means I travel further afield than a Midlands based Children’s Entertainer. My range is about seventy miles to the north, west and east. I do Children’s Parties as far afield as South London, Brighton and Poole and am frequently performing Magic Parties in Surrey, North Hampshire, Wiltshire, Dorset and West Sussex.

The advantage of this for you, the Birthday Child’s parent, is that you can book one of my quality, professional, less-stress party packages. You might live in an area where there are very few Children’s Entertainers, so everybody has booked the same person. When you book me, the Birthday child and their friends will see a different Magic Show and play different games.

Wherever you live, I will arrive in good time to set up and be ready for the start of your party. I will bring my professional sound equipment, music and prizes. In fact, I bring everything I need!

And my prices include travel, so there are no hidden extras.

Whether you live in Arundel, Basingstoke, Cobham, Denmead, Eastleigh, Farnham, Guildford, Haslemere, Iping, Kings Somborne, Lyndhurst, Midhurst, Netley, Overton, Petersfield, Ringwood, Southampton, Tangmere, Upwaltham, Virginia Water or Yateley, you can have a Mister Tall Party!

Click below to get a price, check my availability or simply discuss how I can help.

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Don’t Forget!

Things To Remember For Your Birthday Party

Birthday Party Checklist

To be honest, organising your Children’s Birthday Party can be stressful.

And sometimes when you’re stressed, it’s easy to forget stuff.

So here is a checklist to help remind you.

THE CHILD (VERY IMPORTANT)

THE CAKE

SOME CANDLES

A KNIFE (FOR THE CAKE)

LIGHTER / MATCHES

BANNERS & DECORATIONS

DRAWING PINS

SELLOTAPE (FOR WHEN DRAWING PINS AREN’T ALLOWED!)

BLUTAC (FOR WHEN SELLOTAPE ISN’T ALLOWED!!)

WHITETAC (FOR WHEN BLUETAC ISN’T ALLOWED!!!)

BALLOONS

PUMP (SAVE YOUR PUFF)

SOME STRING (JUST IN CASE)

A PAIR OF SCISSORS

FOOD

TABLECLOTHS

PLATES (PAPER OR PLASTIC TO SAVE WASHING UP)

DRINKS FOR THE CHILDREN

TEA, COFFEE, SUGAR & MILK FOR THE ADULTS

CUPS (PAPER OR PLASTIC TO SAVE BREAKAGES)

SERVIETTES

WET WIPES (TO CLEAN OFF THOSE CHOCCY MOUSTACHES)

KITCHEN ROLLS (IN CASE THE ADULTS SPILL THEIR DRINKS)

PARTY BAGS

BIN BAGS (FOR THE RUBBISH AND TO PUT THE PRESENTS IN)

CLING FILM / FOOD BAGS (FOR ANY LEFTOVER FOOD)

OH AND TAKE SOME £1 COINS FOR THE LECCY METER (I HAVE BEEN TO A HALL WHERE THEY WERE NEEDED)

There’s Only One Mister Tall!

Mister Tall Late Booking

I’m writing this one week into November and at the time of writing, there are many people enquiring for Christmas Magic Shows and Christmas Children’s Parties. Unfortunately, a lot of them are finding that I am not available on their dates. They have left it too late.

So I thought I’d write with a possible answer to the question –

When Do I Book a Children’s Entertainer?

Can I book the day before my party?

Unfortunately, people sometimes get let down at the last minute by the entertainer they have booked, and they then ring around looking for somebody to help them out. If you only have a day’s notice, you will be very lucky to find somebody good available. So it could be a case of just getting someone to bale you out. One thing to consider when trying to book for the next day, is that many Children’s Entertainers are ‘suspicious’ of such a late booking. Therefore it is important that you can prove you are genuine in your enquiry.

By the way, to reduce the chances of being let down, ALWAYS choose an Entertainer who will provide written confirmation of the booking and who has a good reputation.

Can I book one or two weeks before my party?

Depending on the time of year and how flexible you can be with your event’s timing, you might be able to book the Children’s Entertainer you want for your party. Throughout the year, there are many busy periods. Obviously Christmas and Halloween are busy, but sometimes there is no obvious explanation for it. If you only have a fixed time for your party, the entertainer you want may already be booked, so you would need to change your time to get them.

If you aren’t looking for anyone in particular, then contact an agency and they might have a Children’s Entertainer available.

How about a month before, will that be okay?

Again it does depend on the time of year. There are some weekends in December that will be in high demand and on these weekends, I am booked up months in advance. If you are booking one month before your Children’s Party, try to be flexible with your times. Be prepared for either a morning or afternoon slot, or switching to a different day. Then you are likely to be able to book the Children’s Entertainer you want.

Again, if you don’t mind who you have, then an agency will get you someone.

So really, you’re saying I should book at least six weeks before?

Basically Yes. The thing is, there is only one Mister Tall. When you think that there are just two, two hour party slots (11.00 to 1.00 and 3.00 to 5.00) per day at a weekend, you can see why it is easy for me to be booked up early. So what I’m suggesting is that if you really do want me, or another specific children’s entertainer, at the time you prefer, you should book as soon as possible. If you leave it – it might be too late. For instance, there are some Christmas Party Organisers, who book me for the following year, immediately after their party. So really what I’m saying is…

Don’t Delay! Book Today!

Doing It Yourself?

SOME TIPS FOR ORGANISING YOUR OWN CHILDREN’S BIRTHDAY PARTY

 Mister Tall DIY Party

Hopefully I’m not talking myself out of a job, but here is some advice about running your own Children’s Birthday Party

How long should the party be?

Plan for your children’s party to be a maximum of two hours. Some parents do have three hour parties. This is a very long time for children, as they can find it very tiring. Whatever you decide, I recommend you split your time in to short segments, with a different activity in each segment. This will keep the children occupied and will hold their attention. The food time will be one of these segments, but here’s a thing – If you plan for the children to take 30 minutes to eat; they will take 10! And if you plan for them to take 10 minutes, yes, you guessed it, they’ll take 30!!!

How much party food do I need?

You know how it is when you are preparing for your party, you are worried that there won’t be enough food. So you make lots of sandwiches, get plenty of nibbles and tons of sweet things. Then at the end of the party you have lots of sandwiches, plenty of nibbles and tons of sweet things left over! I have found that the best way to avoid having lots of leftover food is to make up a food package for each child. You can buy a party box or colourful food bag for each guest and fill it with the party snacks. Have a few of these packs as spare, just in case extra guests arrive, but you should find you won’t have a mountain of leftovers.

How many children shall I invite?

Generally speaking, children like to invite their class mates to their party. So that could be thirty children. Therefore if you are holding a party for two children, you could have up to sixty kids! That is a lot of noise! The thing is, you might invite that many and prepare to feed that many, but only have half as many turn up on the day. So…

How can I be sure of how many children will arrive?

Hmmm, well, who knows?!? There can be a problem with parents actually replying to invites. I’ll be honest I have been at parties where the Birthday children’s parents really didn’t know how many children were going to turn up. Here are a couple of ways that you might get some clues…

To make sure not so many children are away, avoid holding your party during school holidays – perhaps arrange it for the last weekend before the end of term, or the first weekend after the start of term.

Try to get the invited children’s parents’ mobile numbers – then text them to ask if they are coming. And maybe send a reminder a few days before.

Facebook – as above, send them a message, so they give to you an answer.

Finally, be prepared for extras! It’s not uncommon for a sibling or two to be brought along to the party as well.

Latecomers and Early Birds

Whatever time you decide to start your party, there will always be someone who arrives early and someone who arrives late. It’s just one of those things. If the parents stay, provide some seating for them and maybe some beverages. If they drop and run, do make sure that you have a contact number for them and remind them what time the party finishes.

What games shall I do?

There are loads of traditional games that you can do. Children like musical bumps and statues, but they don’t like being eliminated. Also if you have a lot of children at your party and you eliminate most of them, you’ll have a hoard of restless children milling around. So think of ways of playing games where everyone stays in. Remember, children do like to run around and they also like to play ‘Boys V Girls’ games.

This might be a helpful tip – Be sure to have one point of focus for the children, a loud voice or amplified voice. And have something to play music loud enough.

Sometimes parents play a game (like Pass The Parcel) with the aim of giving every child a small prize. Personally, I wouldn’t recommend this. I have seen the last children to get their prize become upset because they are last and have also seen children get forgotten.

Balloons

Nearly every Children’s Birthday party has balloons. So I thought I’d give them a little mention. They are great to use on a gate post or front door to show where the party is. They are great decorations on walls or in some form of sculpture. They also make great footballs, rugby balls and weapons. I’m not saying that as a suggestion. It is a fact and if you have some balloons on the floor, or within reach, they will be used in that way. Just be prepared.

Also if you have a special helium balloon, which is for the Birthday Child, keep it safely out of reach. Keep it special and then it can be enjoyed for long after the party.

Scared by the whole idea?

The idea of having to entertain a couple of dozen partied up children for one hundred and twenty minutes might fill you with dread. Well it can be done and you will survive. But if you really are scared and don’t fancy the challenge and live in Hampshire, Sussex, Surrey, Berkshire, Wiltshire or Dorset, book me and I’ll run your whole party for you.

You won’t need to worry, it will be less stressful and you might even enjoy it!

Home or Away?

Do You hold Your Child’s Birthday Party at Home or in a Hall?

Kids Party Clean Up

So you’ve decided that you are going to have a birthday party for your child, but where is the best place to hold it?

Are you happy for all of their friends to come into your home? Or is it better to book a large room or hall and let them run riot there?

Well, I hope I can make you aware of some of the pros and cons about both.

AT HOME

There are advantages with holding your children’s party at home.

Cost – It’s free!

Availability – You can have the party anytime you like!

Travel – You live there!

And you know exactly what it’s like.

You can arrange which rooms you are going to use and make as much space as you need. It’s possible (weather permitting) that you can make use of the garden as well.

One thing which is important to consider is, how many children are you inviting? If you are getting the whole class to come along, do you have the room for 30 or so children? If you haven’t, then you should keep a cap on the numbers. Invite best friends only, or only the girls, or only the boys.

If you do have room for that many children, be sure to clear the room which they will be using. Get the settees pushed back to the walls and move any valuable (or not so valuable) ornaments out of the way. Children do like to run around, so you really do need to make sure they have the space to do so.

Regardless of the number of children you have invited, be prepared for mess. Unfortunately there is a very high chance that someone will spill a drink, or drop a piece of chocolate cake. So if you have a lovely cream carpet in your living room, it’s best to keep that room out of bounds!

One more thing about having the party at home is to consider how the children will behave. A party is often the only time class friends meet up outside of school. So when they meet, they will act like they do at school. Imagine what children do at playtime, they run about, they play games, they play fight and sometimes actually fight. This is how they may behave in your home. Be prepared! Make sure that there is some structure that will keep them occupied. It might sound a bit OTT, but have a timetable in mind for how the party will go. Be flexible though, because sometimes what seems a great idea in your head doesn’t go so smoothly on the day!

The final thing is the cleaning up when they all go. Well to be honest, you are likely to have that whether you are at home or a hall. But the advantage of cleaning up at home is that you can take your time. There’s no pressure to ‘be out’.

IN A HALL

This could be a Village Hall, Community Centre, Scout Hut, Social Club or Church Hall. It is going to cost something to hire and is probably going to have time slots of availability. But the big advantage is space!

This is the most likely option when you are inviting the whole class. A good hall will have space for tables to be set up for when the children eat and still have plenty of room for them to play.

You may not have to travel too far to find a good venue. But an important thing to consider is parking. If the weather is bad and you are ferrying party food to and from your car, you don’t want to be miles away. Also, if it’s difficult for you to park, it’s going to be hard for your guests, which could make them late.

Something to look out for in your hall is a Sound Limiter. This is a ‘box’ which is fitted at one end of the room and it monitors the sound volume. If the sound gets too loud, it will cut out the electricity. These devices are fitted to stop loud music being a nuisance to the neighbours, but are sometimes set so sensitively that children can cause a cut out.

When you book your hall, be sure to get some form of confirmation and a contact telephone number. Many halls are run by volunteers and sometimes they are very good and sometimes they are… ur… a little bit too casual. I have experienced these casual caretakers at quite a few parties. On more than one occasion, they have been late opening up the venue. Instead of having half an hour to set up, the parents have only got into the hall five minutes before the party was due to start. This really does cause unnecessary stress. If you have a contact number and send them a reminder on the day before your party, you should avoid this.

Also when booking the venue, be sure that you do have enough time to set up the room how you want and pack away afterwards. I know of a venue in Portsmouth, that only allows fifteen minutes between bookings. That means one party has to clean away in seven and a half minutes and the other set up in the same time. Again, this is unnecessary stress.

To sum up, the advantage of a hall is that there is much more room and there is no chance that any of your stuff getting damaged!

Whether you decide on Home or Hall – The Amazing Mister Tall can provide the perfect party package!