Whenever a reason to celebrate rolls around it’s always a good idea to throw a party! Whether it’s an end of summer bash, a back-to-school party, a birthday or reaching a big milestone we have you covered with the best party entertainers and party rental companies in the DC area. All of these party performers and event rentals are also available to entertain schools, camps and daycares as well! Read on to find the perfect way to keep kids happy at your next event.

You Won't Believe Your Eyes
The Great Zucchini is the iconic children's performer in the DC area. His interactive shows are a unique blend of comedy and magic that the under-8 crowd responds to like nothing else.  The Great Zucchini uses humor, jokes and games to keep kids belly-laughing long after his show ends. If you see The Great Zucchini you just might find your child in the midst of hysterics as he "accidentally" squirts himself in the face with water, makes a child disappear or takes a nap in the middle of the performance. At the end of some shows the Great Zucchini will play games that your children will want to play non-stop after the show.  Children immediately feel at ease when they realize The Great Zucchini is really just a kid in a grown-up body. Shows are usually booked a couple of months in advance so be sure to book early!

The Great Zucchini
Online: thegreatzucchini.com

Foamtastic Fun
If you are looking for a unique party that is sure to impress try a Foam Party Never heard of a Foam Party? You are not alone! The foam trend started in the European club scene and Magic & More brought the fantastic trend to backyards across the DMV. No set up is required! Just let the experts at Magic & Moore fill your yard to the brim with foam. They even bring music with waterproof speakers. All you need to do is let the kids loose in their swimsuits. The foam is made from nothing more than soap and water and dissolves on its own so there is no clean-up required! Daytime parties are great for the younger set but Magic & Moore also hosts foam parties for teens and adults at night complete with glowsticks!

Magic & Moore Foamtastic Parties
Online: magicandmoreinc.com

Electric Energy
Eric Energy does a fantastic science show for all ages. While Eric Energy performs magic with dry ice, lightbulbs. Eric Energy's performances are high energy, exciting and educational.  Pick from themes including the science of slime, Spark Attack focusing on electricity, sound and light and The Green Science Spectacular focusing on the environment and weather. Kids will have so much fun being amazed they may not realize that they also got a STEM lesson. Shows can be customized for kids in preschool through middle school.

Eric Energy
Online: ericenergy.com

Groovin' & Moovin'
Groovy Nate describes himself as a cross between Sesame Street and Parliament/Funkadelic. His unique shows involving exotic instruments and lots of singing are high energy and designed to get kids and parents alike up and moving! Groovy Nate isn't just a musician! He also incorporates puppetry into his shows to the delight of his little fans. Check out Groovy Nate's music on his website including his collaboration with other artists for the album ALL ONE TRIBE celebrating Black voices in family music. Shows can be customized to include a sing-a-long, music lessons, games and more!

Groovy Nate
Online: Groovy Nate

All-Star Fun
Captain All-Star  is a super funny, clumsy superhero with lots of positive energy. Shows are a creative mix of comedy magic and music. Captain All-Star may fall backwards in a chair or chase a flower that flies away. Captain All-Star may just bring his friends along, including Kirby the Bucket who likes to play tricks on the unsuspecting Captain All-Star much to the delight of his young fans. Captain All-Star finds ways to get candy using magic too! Captain All-Star's shows are very interactive and every child gets a chance to be a helper to help them learn the importance of teamwork! These high-energy shows can be tailored for different ages. Younger kids get more slapstick, silly comedy and magic while older kids can engage in All-Star Training with organized games and sports.

Captain All-Star
Online: captainallstar.com

Real Reptiles 
Adventure In Fun is the perfect party for little adventures who are up for the challenge of getting up close and personal with geckos, aquatic turtles, frogs, tortoises, arachnids, tropical birds, ferrets, snakes of all sizes and even an American Alligator. Dustin from Adventures In Fun is an avid animal rescue enthusiast and uses his shows to teach children about the animals under his care. If reptiles aren't enough, add on expert balloon twisting and stilt-walking.

Adventure in Fun
Online: adventureinfun.com

Clownin' Around
If you have ever wanted a real Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus clown to perform at your child's party you are in luck. Miss Mollie left circus life to start a family of her own. Now she spends her time clowning around with kids in the DC area with a specialty in bubbles! During Miss Mollie's shows children are encouraged to explore all different types of bubble wands and blowers using gallons of Miss Mollie's homemade bubble juice. Miss Mollie's shows involve plenty of play but they are also a great STEM opportunity since kids experiment with several different types of wands and recyclables to blow fantastic and awe-inspiring prisms of fun of all sizes! Miss Mollie is also a certified special education teacher so she is gifted in gaining children's trust.

Miss Mollie
Online: goodgollyitsmollie.com

photo: iStock

Set the Stage
If your kiddo is a balloon-lover, then you’ll want to check out Balloon Zoom before you do anything else. They use sustainably-harvested latex that biodegrades fast and they don’t support helium balloon releases, instead using air-filled balloons 99% of the time. But trust us, the helium isn’t missed in these stunning balloon displays perfect for any child’s birthday. They offer several different packages, perfect for any size party – including a package perfect for a household-only party and one specifically designed for quarantine!

Balloon Zoom
Online: balloonzoom.com

Jump Around & Get Down
What kid doesn’t love a bounce house? They are a quintessential birthday party activity, and LunaFynn Moon Bounce offers a wide variety of options to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a traditional bounce house, one with a slide, or an inflatable slide with a pool, they’ve got you covered. They drop off, pick up, and clean and sanitize each bounce house after each rental, so all you need to do is pay and play. They also have Sno-Cone, Cotton Candy, and popcorn machines – and you can get $20 off if you rent a food machine with an inflatable!

LunaFynn Moon Bounce
Online: lunafynn.com

Choo Choo Choose a Train Ride 
Got a little engineer in the making? They’ll adore Big D's train rentals that come to you. With three different train options, plus one that fits on a trailer with two ponies (and who doesn’t love ponies?), you’ll easily find the perfect choo-choo for your little railroad rider. Their little train has 6 cars made out of 55-gallon drums and is perfect for kids ages 12 and younger. Their other trains can hold up to 12 kids and adults. They do recommend reserving your train 2-3 weeks in advance and you will need a 50% deposit to hold the date and the rental.

Big D’s Amusements & Party Rentals
Online: amusementrentalsnorthernva.com

Host a Backyard Barnyard 
Bring the petting zoo right to your own backyard with Squeals on Wheels! They offer a variety of package options, from cute little lap buddies to larger animals like alpacas and goats, for the perfect farm animal experience. To maximize safety during Covid, they are spacing animal pens as far apart as your space will allow and requiring everyone ages 3 & up (guests and staff members alike) to wear masks. But you’ll still get maximum time and contact with the animals because you can get in the pen and sit with and pet the furry little guys!

Squeals on Wheels
Online: squealsonwheels.us

Giddy Up with a Pony Ride
Kids and ponies go together like ice cream and waffle cones. And Hogback Mountain Pony Rides has four ponies to make sure your kids get the pony ride they want. And one of their ponies is a unicorn! Your little unicorn dreamer will forever treasure a photo with a real-life unicorn.

Hogback Mountain Pony Rides
Online: hogbackmountainponyrides.com

Princesses, Superheroes & Movie Stars, Oh my! 
Princess Parties of DC is a bit of a misnomer since princesses are only one part of their offering. They also have superheros and a whole host of other characters from movies like Mary Poppins, Toy Story, and Wizard of Oz. These princesses, superheroes, and other characters will sing and dance with the kids as well as a few other activities, including arm painting and glitter tattoos during Covid (it would usually be face painting). Whether you get Elsa for 30 minutes or Captain America for two hours, you’ll be making your little dreamer’s wish come true with one of these incredible performers at their party!

Princess Parties of DC
Online: princesspartiesdc.com

 

—Jamie Davis Smith and Wendy Miller

featured photo: iStock

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