Birthday parties have morphed into an entity all their own. Each year's celebration has to be bigger and better than the last, but where to start? Don’t worry—we’ve rounded up some of Long Island’s best venues for parties to please a variety of kids, from divas and princesses to tumbling tots and animal enthusiasts. These places make party planning easy, and almost all include a host, setup and cleanup, food, and other essentials. The only hard part is picking just one!
Also, be sure to check out our Birthday Party Guide for Long Island Kids for tips on planning the perfect party for your child.
Adventureland — Farmingdale
2245 Broadhollow Road
Kids will flip for a celebration at this outdoor amusement park. Adventureland's party package entitles your guests to one hour of unlimited rides in the amusement park followed by one hour of food. These include thrill rides (bumper cars, pirate ship, roller coaster), as well as water rides (Adventure Falls and the Little Dipper). For smaller tots, there are kiddie rides with a slower pace. There are a few menu options (no outside food is permitted), and all parties include hats, candy, a tablecloth, and napkins—and cleanup and a party host/server are included.
Bowlmor Lanes — Melville
895 Walt Whitman Road
This isn't your standard Friday-night bowling scene. To spice up your party, Bowlmor offers XTreme glow-in-the-dark bowling as well as other games, such as wacky bowling, where you make a list of silly rules, character bowling, and guess-the-pins. Request bumpers for younger bowlers to help them knock 'em down every time. Each birthday package comes with two hours of bowling, shoes, and a party attendant. Customize your menu with a variety of kid-friendly meals.
Center for Science Teaching & Learning — Rockville Centre
1 Tanglewood Road
Get hands-on time with exotic animals at this nature preserve nestled next to a picturesque pond. Kids can choose to make slime, a fossil, or a foam flyer, tour the on-site zoo and indoor animal exhibit, excavate dinosaur bones, take a hike, or make leaf prints. Packages include two or three activities, private use of the party room, hosts, invitations and paper goods, pizza and beverages, goody bags, and more.
Darlings & Divas — Amityville
65 Merrick Road
If you have a little diva on your hands, pamper her and her guests with a spa party, or chillax with a tea party. There's always only one party at a time at Darlings & Divas, so your party prince or princess (ages 3–13) will feel like royalty. The standard party package (for 10 children) offers fun in the diva dress-up lounge and salon, a diva dance party, and a choice of a "divalicious makeover" or "sparkling spa" package. Invitations, hostesses, paper goods, a group photo and signed banner, a special gift for the birthday child, and a choice of lunch items and beverages are included. Boy party guests are also welcome, and the venue offers pirate and superhero dress-up clothes and face painting. Darlings & Divas also hosts parties at your home.
KZAM — Farmingdale
85 Sea Lane
Pow, bam, KZAM! For party animals looking to celebrate with a big crew, this is the place: KZAM can host 80+ kids for exclusive access to its three-story play structure, complete with 1,000 foam balls soaring through the air via ball blasters, tipping baskets, and tubes. After play time, kids move to the event room to be entertained by the house DJ and emcee and finally retreat to the celebration room for food and more fun.
The Little Gym — Various locations
TLG, which has various Long Island locations, combines gymnastics, games, Legos, and music for a party that tumbles past the competition. Choose from fairy-tale, superhero, pirate, or character themes. Your group will have exclusive use of the entire gym and a trained instructor to lead the party. Parties are 90 minutes long and can accommodate partygoers ages 1–12. All packages include pizza and juice, invites and paper goods, a Little Gym T-shirt for the birthday child, setup, and cleanup.
Long Island Aquarium — Riverhead
431 East Main Street
Kids will dive into fun at the Long Island Aquarium. All packages include full-day admission, a guided tour, invitations, aquatic-themed party-ware, and a host. In addition to plenty of food options, there are also lots of party upgrades to choose from, including a photo of a sea lion kissing you, a chance to feed stingrays and bamboo sharks, a ride on the Atlantis Explorer tour boat, snorkeling adventure, and fossil digging.
Long Island Children's Museum — Garden City
11 Davis Avenue
Kids ages 5 and under can choose to party in the TotSpot gallery (including a bubble gallery and a lighthouse, train station, grocery store, and post office for role-playing); have a Messy Merriment party (think slime, oobleck, and mud); or enjoy a quieter gathering with stories and crafts. Kids ages 5 and up can choose from a variety of themes, including Treasure Trove, Superheroes, Kids in the Kitchen, Weird Science, and Spy School. Each party includes 90 to 120 minutes in the museum, staff guides, invitations, paper goods and a T-shirt for the party child, setup, and cleanup. Partygoers will also get a two-for-one free admission pass in their goody bags so the fun can continue another day.
Monster Mini Golf — Deer Park
410-C Commack Road
No worries about the weather forecast for this golfing party: Monster Mini Golf is an 18-hole glow-in-the-dark indoor facility for all ages, from 1 to 90. Think three-dimensional props, animated monsters, a live DJ, skills contests and prizes, and fluorescent golf balls. Game cards for the arcade are also included. If you choose the Monster or VIP package, kids will get to dip their hands in monster slime and leave their permanent hand print on the wall! All parties include 90 minutes in the private party room, golf, a host, paper products and invites, and setup and cleanup.
Once Upon a Treetop — Plainview
151 Dupont Street
Exploration meets imagination at this whimsical play space for kids ages 1–10. Kids can climb, slide, jump, and crawl through a multi-level padded "tree house" or ride pedal cars, bikes, and other toys through the mini village, which includes a pretend fire house, pizzeria, construction site, and puppy store. Parties include an hour of play, pizza and juice, paper goods, and water bottle favors. Themes include Treetop Crafts, Stuff-a-Friend, Dance or Ballet, and Soccer Shots. Costumed characters and other fun add-ons are also available.
Safari Adventure — Riverhead
1074 Pulaski Street
After 90 minutes in the private party room, partygoers enjoy unlimited time in the shared play space—a rarity for party venues. Your child and friends will soar to new heights on the four-level soft playground, then hop on over to the inflatables, which include a bounce house, slides, an obstacle course, and a disco dance dome. There's also a state-of-the-art arcade, an interactive projected game floor, an augmented-reality kinetic sand table, light tables, and more. Toddler tagalongs can play in a special safe area, and there's a calming sensory zone if kids feel overwhelmed. All packages include birthday cake or cupcakes, game-play cards, a host, and setup and cleanup; the play space is also available for private rental upon request.
White Post Farms — Melville
250 Old Country Road
Mosey on up to White Post Farms for a party at this animal haven. It's cuteness overload time as kids ride the ponies and feed baby animals. Afterward, retreat to a private party room for pizza and cake while party planners bring around fluffy farm residents for petting (and ogling!). All packages include two ponies for riding, pizza and juice, decorations, cleanup, and a hostess. Cakes, invitations, favors, and hats are available with some packages.
Top photo by Shutterstock.
This article was first published in 2013, but has since been updated.