When Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted came out in theaters, we threw a Circus Party to celebrate. I’ve always been a fan of animated features and planning the party was a great way get excited about seeing the movie. As a member of the Madagascar 3 Circus Circle on Crowdtap, I received a digital party kit so we could “Move it, Move it” in celebration of the June 8th release.
My 2.5 year old loves the characters and music from the first two movies, but we knew his attention span wasn’t ready for a trip to the movie theaters. So, we opted to wait until the DVD release- which was last week October 16.
Here’s how we threw our Circus-themed party. We hope it will inspire you to turn your living room into your very own circus.
Circus Party Food Ideas
To get ready for the party I prepared Marty’s Crack-a-lackin’ Zebra Cake and a batch of Rainbow Afro Fruit Pizzas.
Here are the recipes:
Marty’s Zebra Cake (obtained from the Madagascar 3 Party Kit)
What you need to make a zebra cake
- 4 Large Eggs
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup milk (I substituted almond milk- since I can’t have dairy right now)
- 1 cup oil (corn, vegetable, or canola)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 teaspoon vanilla powder (or 1/2 tsp vanilla extract)
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
Directions for making a zebra cake
- In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs with sugar until mixed using a hand-held electric mixer or wire whisk beat until the mixture is creamy and light in color.
- Add milk and oil and continue until well blended.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, vanilla powder and baking powder. (if using vanilla extract- add to wet ingredients). Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and beat just until the batter is smooth. Divide the mixture into 2 equal bowls. In one bowl, add the cocoa powder and mix.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease the baking tray with oil.
- The most important part is assembling the cake mixtures in a baking tray. Scoop 3 heaped tablespoons of the plain mixture into the middle of the baking pan. Then scoop 3 tablespoons of the cocoa mixture and pour it in the center on top of the plain mixture and repeat. If you’re careful you should find concentric circles of alternating colors forming in the tray. (I used 2 ice cream scoops and it worked great). Repeat until all the mixture is used.
- Bake in the oven for 40 minutes. To check if the cake is ready, insert a clean tooth pick into the center. It should come out clean when ready. Remove from the oven. Immediately run a small thin knife around the inside of the pan to loosen the cake. Allow the cake to cool for 5-10 minutes then invert the cake onto a cooling rack and turn the cake back over. Enjoy!!
Rainbow Afro Fruit Pizzas
- 1 package of sugar cookie dough mix
- 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
How to make Rainbow Afro Fruit Pizzas
- Prepare cookie dough according to package directions for rolled cookies. Roll dough and cut circles to desired size. I used an upside down Pampered Chef Prep cup to measure.
- In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with 1/2 cup sugar and vanilla until light. Spread on cooled crust. Arrange a rainbow of colored fruit on top and chill.
Circus Party Decorations
I set the scene for the festivities by hanging red & white crepe paper from the ceiling fan to look like a big top. I also cut out Alex and Marty Garland from the patterns I was given and hung them in front of the circus snacks. In addition to the fruit pizzas and zebra cake, we had popcorn, goldfish, animal crackers, and home-made guacamole. I even found some plastic popcorn boxes for .99 at shoprite.
Circus Party Games & Activities
Since most of the kids are between the ages of 2 and 3, the party was mostly “free play” with circus related activities from the Party Kit mixed in.We played Pin the Tail on Gloria, sans blindfolds, and surprisingly only 1 out of 6 kids actually put the tail in the right spot. They had a lot of fun trying though, and especially got a kick out of the piece of tape on the tail. We also wore masks of our favorite characters and danced to the Afro Circus Remix on YouTube. The strings on the masks didn’t last very long, but they were still a big hit while they did. Then, we moved onto the coloring pages featuring Marty, Alex, and the other characters from the movie.
We even took pictures of our guests and used the Mad Wig Out app to add Rainbow Wigs before printing them out for the parents to take home. The kids loved all the activities and the 2 hours flew by. If your kids are like mine and can’t get enough Afro Circus, you can visit the official website of the movie, http://www.madagascarmovie.com/to play games, download coloring and other activity pages, and watch videos.