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Are they really cutting back?

Lavish children's parties are supposedly taking a hit.

Linda Kaye, a New York-based party planner for over 25 years, said that lately she's seen parents -- who had typically not batted an eyelash at $1,500 price tags for their kindergartener's party -- less willing to "go all out" on their tot's celebrations.

"The last place people want to save money is when it comes to their children," said Kaye. "But now they are just more sensitive to how they're spending it."

"Before [the economic crisis] they'd say, 'Johnny wants Barney at the party, I don't care how much it costs,' and now they're settling for Barney on their child's birthday cake instead," she said.


Jessica Gottlieb, a mother of two from Los Angeles who contributes to the Silicon Valley Mom's Blog, said she's shown up at birthday parties and been "aghast" at what she's seen.

"For one 2-year-old's party, the parents brought in an entire theme park," Gottlieb recalls. "They did pony rides and a little roller coaster and a carousel. And it was catered.

"It must have cost more than my wedding," she said.

Joanne Jacobs writes-

I raised my daughter in affluent Palo Alto during the boom years. I never met anyone who spent that kind of money on a little kid's party. It's wasted: Kids don't want catered food. They don't need Dad to rent out a theme park for their party.
I agree with Joanne. Children want macaroni and chesse plus cookies and ice cream. What do they care about gourmet.

I find the article amusing because last night my wife, her sister, and their mother went to a the birthday party for an 18-year-old daughter of a friend of theirs. The celebration was held at a West Palm Beach hotel and had 250 guests. My wife said the food was mediocre and that the party probably cost a couple of thousand. I'd say.low five figures at least.

Don't worry there are plenty of people still willing to go overboard for one day.


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Comments (7)

Somehow I don't think there... (Below threshold)

Somehow I don't think there will be a huge shortage of spoiled children just yet.

As long as we have narcissi... (Below threshold)

As long as we have narcissistic self-absorbed parents, we'll have spoiled children. And as long as we have them, these party planners will surivive a downturn in the economy.

I cannot fathom spending th... (Below threshold)

I cannot fathom spending that kind of dough on a party. What a waste. The most we'll do is rent Pump-It-Up for special occasions, and that's only been once. It's a place with giant inflatable toys for kids to jump around on. Slides, obstacle course and the like. Somewhere between $100 and $150 for 20 kids. There's also a room with tables for cake and ice cream for a little extra.

Typically, we just invite family and friends over and everyone brings a dish. It's tons cheaper, the food is much better, and it's a lot more fun.

There is just *one* thing y... (Below threshold)

There is just *one* thing you have to remember:

It's their money and they get to choose how its spent.

Somehow I don't think th... (Below threshold)

Somehow I don't think there will be a huge shortage of spoiled children just yet.

See Democratic Party.

My daughter had a sleepover... (Below threshold)

My daughter had a sleepover last week with friends for her 17th. Junk food and movies in family room, then up at 7am to do her chores with me feeding the cattle and horses in a foot of snow.

$50 for two pizzas, pop, and movie rental.

Stephen:Glad to se... (Below threshold)


Glad to see SOMEONE can read in between the lines.






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