Timeout New York Kids

Make the most of your city

Budget birthdays

Want to throw your child a bash but don't want to break the bank in the process? We found 17 venues around the city---from a local amusement park to a new Park Slope eatery with a game room---offering kids' parties for $300 or less*. Let the planning begin!

*Unless noted, parties are for ten kids

13th Street Repertory Theater


Includes The show!
Cost $10 per child, plus a $50 fee for using the area to eat lunch and cake
Length 90 minutes
After filling up on BYO pizza and cake in the theater's lobby, the lights are dimmed and kids take their seats for a production of Wise Acre Farm, a play about Foxy the fox, a critter who steals Cliffy the pig's birthday cake. Junior thespians then join the cast onstage to hunt for the missing confection. 50 W 13th St between Fifth and Sixth Aves (212-675-6677, 13thstreetrep.org)

Adventurer's Family Entertainment Center


Includes Food & dessert
Cost $22 per child, plus $30 for a cake
Length Two hours
Coney Island isn't the only Brooklyn spot to have an amusement park. This renovated entertainment center (you may remember it from its days as Nellie Bly) sports a Tilt-A-Whirl, a carousel and a water slide. Parties include an hour of unlimited rides and another hour for treats. 1824 Shore Pkwy at 25th Ave, Gravesend, Brooklyn (718-975-2748, adventurerspark.com)

Alice's Tea Cup


Includes Food & dessert
Cost $20 per child
Length 90 minutes
All three of these beloved uptown cafs host special "Wee Tee" birthdays (or unbirthdays) for little Alice in Wonderland fans, but the 64th Street location is your best bet for a party of ten. While sipping a cup of tisane (and donning a pair of angel wings), children enjoy sandwiches, scones and chocolate mousse—all served on three-tier stands. No need to purchase a separate cake; just stick a candle in one of the desserts. 156 E 64th St at Lexington Ave (212-486-9200, alicesteacup.com)

Alley Pond Environmental Center


Includes Meet-and-greet with animals!
Cost $200 (up to 15 children)
Length Two hours
After cozying up to a bearded dragon or rabbit (or whichever critter the birthday kid chooses), guests embark on an animal-themed craft or game. If the weather is warm enough, they'll explore the center's nature trails. There's a designated area for food and cake, but parents must bring their own. 228-06 Northern Blvd, Douglaston, Queens (718-229-4000, alleypond.com)

Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain


Includes Food, dessert & favors
Cost $200--$300 depending on day of week and food option
Length 90 minutes
At this restored 1920s pharmacy-turned--soda shop, kids play old-fashioned games and nosh on chocolate egg creams, root beer floats, and ice cream sundaes made using house-made sodas and syrups. Request songs from a bygone era or bring your kid's iPod along so they can listen to Willow Smith or the Jonas Brothers. Each guest gets a soda jerk hat to take home, plus a candy bag. 513 Henry St at Sackett St, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn (718-522-6260, brooklynfarmacy.blogspot.com)

Build-a-Bear Workshop


Includes A bear!
Cost Starts at $10 per child
Length 60 to 90 minutes
Kids customize their bears with an assortment of accessories. Parties here add up quickly, so limit your child's guest list to about five kids. Skip the private party room (it costs an additional $400) and instead take guests and their new stuffed friends across the street to Sbarro (574 Fifth Ave at 46th St) for a pie. 565 Fifth Ave at 46th St (212-871-7080, buildabear.com)

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