A Hunger Games party theme is perfect for teens. It combines excitement, competition, and creativity and makes for a downright wonderful party.
Inspired by the popular dystopian Hunger Games books and film series, this party theme allows teens to immerse themselves in the thrilling world of the Hunger Games.
Just like many tweens may go through a period of fascination with Harry Potter, it’s almost inevitable that most teenagers will go through a Hunger Games phase, during which they may either read all the books or at the very least, watch all the movies.
And with the franchise coming up with a new Hunger Games movie by the end of 2023, the Hunger Games party theme is sure to soar in popularity once more.
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My girls are older teens now, and since we just finished all the original movies, it was the perfect time to have a Hunger Games party with all their friends.
I ended up breaking up our Hunger Games party ideas into several posts. This one will concentrate on the decorations and the food. I have another post on the party games we played and the scavenger hunt and another specifically on how to make the parachute favor boxes.
I chose to incorporate two different themes for the Hunger Games party decorations. The cake table and photobooth were designed with a “fiery” motif, while the rest of the decorations had a dystopian vibe. It all looked awesome together and made the party really stand out.
Alright, let’s get into it.
But first, you may want to check out the video of the party:And please sign up to my YouTube channel by clicking here:
How to Plan a Hunger Games Party
At the start of any party, I print a fresh party planner to collect all my thoughts and ideas.
I don’t print all the pages of my Ultimate Birthday Party Planner, only the ones I think I will need. But I always print the whole checklist to make sure I don’t forget anything.
I put all the pages in a folder and scribble all the ideas I find.
When planning any birthday party, I can’t recommend enough making the one-time investment of a complete birthday planner! One you can use for years to come.
It reduced stress to have everything in one place and to have a full checklist to refer to.
Custom Hunger Games Tribute T-shirts
We wanted every guest to feel like a tribute and part of a team. We also knew we would have them running around the neighborhood, so we decided to make them all matching Hunger Games t-shirts.
I got the original idea from The Simply Crafted Life. I used the same basic technique of spraying bleach onto a black T-shirt, but I used my cutting machine to cut a simplified version of the Mockingjay symbol on sticker paper. (I put the SVG file in my free downloads library)
We then placed a sticker on each t-shirt about 3 inches from the collar. The stickers made for clean, crisp, beautiful edges on the logo but unfortunately, they can’t be re-used. You’ll need one sticker per T-shirt. But now that you have sticker paper, you can make the Hunger Games stickers for your favors too.
You must use 95-100% black cotton shirts. We mistakenly bought noncotton shirts at first and it did not go well.
Don’t forget to put a barrier inside the t-shirts so the bleach does not bleed through to the back and put straight bleach in a spray bottle and spray. Have someone ready to hose the shirt down as soon as you see the desired results. It happens very fast so you’ve got to be quick on the draw.
We let them air dry, removed the sticker, and voila. We did run them all through the washer and dryer to soften them up a little and rinse off any remaining bleach.
The Coal on Fire Cake
On the fiery-themed party table, the cake stood front and center.
I wanted it to look like a piece of coal on fire to represent District 12.
So I just made my delicious chocolate cake and poured a chocolate ganache over it. Then I added crushed Oreo cookies all over it before the ganache set completely.
Once melted, I just broke pieces and used them at the back of the cake to make flames. I used one pound of each candy and it was way too much. I put the remaining flames in a bowl as a candy treat.
The Dessert Table
The first decor you saw as you entered the house was this grand dessert table with the cake on fire, cookies, and snacks.
The Balloon Arch
I used several types of balloons to create the fiery arch effect. These mylar flame balloons were perfectly in theme and paired well with the red and orange agate balloons and the solid colored red and orange balloons into an organic balloon arch.
The Mockingjay Symbol Sign
I made the Mockingjay sign out of coroplast and spray-painted it gold. Coroplast is corrugated plastic sheets. It looks like cardboard but it’s plastic and thus sturdier. A lot of signs are made out of coroplast. You can buy it in sheets at your home improvement store.
I had some from an old sign so I used that. You could use any other hard material like foam board or even wood.
You just need a way to cut your material. Foam board is easily cut with a craft knife, for coroplast, you need a hot knife.
I got the Mockingjay symbol for free from Deviant Art and scaled it to fit the coroplast sign I had. I printed the enlarged Mockingjay symbol on multiple sheets of paper, taped them, and proceeded to cut the shape with a hot knife.
The Flame Cookies
I made the flame cookies from scratch using a simple sugar cookie and icing recipe (which I need to post).
I could not find any flame cookie cutters I liked so I printed out my own flame templates and just traced each cookie by hand.
I just love how they all turned out!
The printed treat boxes worked great for cheese balls which doubled as Fire Balls to stay in the theme.
I also added a bunch of mini chocolates I wrapped in my printable wrappers.
A bowl contained chocolate coals and another held the rest of the fire candy I made for the cake.
For the rest of the dessert table decorations, I used a black sequenced curtain, black tablecloth, some gold tulle, big gold confetti, a white rose (for President Snow), and a couple of printed signs from my set.
The Food Table and Specialties
Once you stepped outside, our guests were transported to the Hob.
The Hob is the black market in District 12 where, in the movie, Katniss receives her Mockingjay pin from one of the black marketers. (In the book, the mayor’s daughter gives her the pin). I have to give credit to Great Fun for Kids blog who gave me the idea.
The themed decorations here are pretty simple. I had my daughters spray paint “The odds are never in your favor” on a huge black paper from a roll and “The Hob” on random cardboard we had.
I had a bunch of burlap and lots of fish nets from one of our many tropical parties and used them to create a dystopian feel.
In the back, I placed my daughter’s fake bow and arrow from an earlier Katniss Everdeen costume she made for Halloween. You could add a variety of fake weapons too. I considered painting water guns black but ran out of time.
For the food in the Hob, I wanted items for each district represented. I ended up not using District 1, which honestly I didn’t even know existed. I thought it was the Capitol until my daughter looked it up. it seems District 1 makes goods for the Capitol. Forget them.
I printed place cards for each party food and since I was going to serve dinner (something I never used to do when the kids were younger). I found that a stew would work well to stay in theme (for the famous Capitol lamb stew) as well as to represent District 10.
The Capitol was represented with official Capitol water with custom wraps around water bottles.
This is how I represented each district with its own unique place cards.
Hunger Games Themed Food:
- Capitol: Official Capitol water
- District 2 (Masonry): Chocolate bricks (Minis)
- District 3 (Electronics): Red Vines wires
- District 4 (Fishing): Fishy snacks (Goldfish)
- District 5 (Power): Power punch
- District 6 (Transportation): Chocolate wheels (Donuts)
- District 7 (Wood): Pretzel sticks
- District 8 (Textile): Fruit leather
- District 9 (Grain): Baguettes
- District 10 (Livestock): Beef stew
- District 11 (Agriculture): Grapes
- District 12 (Coal): Coal brownies (Brownies shaped like balls)
I also put together a big tray of pastries (with pita bread of course) with a big framed Mellark Bakery sign. (Available in the printable set).
I had a lot of flame balloons so the photobooth got the “fiery” treatment as well.
The hanging “flames” we made with red, orange, and yellow plastic tablecloths cut into strips and stretched. We’ve used the same technique before for the Jellyfish costume and large under-the-sea decorations.
The Arena Parachute Box Favors
When in the Hunger Games arena, the tributes may receive sponsor gifts inside silver parachute containers. I wanted to reconstruct that container and use parachutes as decor too.
I ended up designing my own box and simply attaching a silver balloon to it and hanging them to mimic a parachute. It’s a birthday party after all and balloons create a lively atmosphere.
You can see how to make the parachute box here.
Hunger Games Birthday Party Pinata
We debated quite a bit about the pinata. First, should we even have one? The girls looked at me like I was insane when I asked that question.
“Of course, Mom!”
“But you guys are older now”, I replied, “Do you think your friends will want to whack a pinata?”.
“We don’t care”, they said, “We want to whack the pinata!”.
And yes, about half of their friends wanted to whack it and were excited about it. So teens are not too old for pinatas. But now they have a lot more strength so beware of the super cheap pinatas.
It’s best to make one yourself or get one from a Pinatero.
After more debate on what the pinata would look like we settled on a coal on fire to keep in the theme. We bought a round pinata (I think it was a baseball) from a Mexican party store and decorated it with black tissue paper fringes and big squares of red, orange, and yellow tissue paper on top.
The Custom Hunger Games T-shirts
Yes, we could have asked people to dress up as their favorite Hunger Games character, but we wanted each kid to feel part of a team especially when they were out playing the scavenger hunt we set up around the neighborhood.
So we made custom Mockingjay T-shirts for everyone that we handed out as the kids came in!
My daughter made everyone go and change first thing.
They were a great hit, and everyone looked amazing in them. I show you how we made them here.
Myself, I dressed up as Effie Trinket. I looked a little ridiculous but the kids, and I’m sure my neighbors, all loved it.
Party Games and Scavenger Hunt.
To be in the theme. You have to have your own version of the Hunger Games, a scoreboard, and a winner.
We chose to do teams (by different districts with name badges) and to have a reaping, a fashion parade game, a training game, and a full-blown scavenger hunt around the neighborhood which was the highlight of the party.
My husband and I were the judges and decided who won each part, then the overall games.
I go over the fun games we played, the full scavenger hunt, and how we scored in another post.
This was truly a great party. One for the books! Not one teen was bored or not engaged. We only saw phones come out to take selfies along the way.
That’s what I call success!
I hope I’ve inspired and helped you to throw your own Hunger Games party. Go see the rest of the Hunger Games Birthday party posts for more:
Don’t forget to pin these Hunger Games theme party ideas: