Have some under-the-big-top fun for your child's next birthday (or at Halloween) by throwing a circus theme party! Circuses are about having a great time, so the entire family and all of your guests are sure to enjoy your special event. To throw one together, you're going to need to set the perfect atmosphere by choosing the best circus party supplies. Here you'll get a checklist of the essentials along with some fabulous circus theme party ideas to give you the tools to tame this beast. So let's begin!

A Circus Theme Party: Make Them Laugh

Red Foam Clown Noses (1 dz)Circuses are all about big jokes, bigger performances, and the biggest animals around. As a kid, they are significantly memorable events full of silly clowns, brave animal tamers, and death-defying acrobats. It's impossible not to love a circus, so creating a fun circus-like atmosphere for your child's next birthday or as a Halloween theme party is a fun way to go!

You don't need death-defying acts and trained animals at your circus theme party to make it special and memorable. In fact, there are many circus party supplies out there that will make the day memorable without bursting your budget!

Circus Party Supplies: Your Must-Have Checklist

The list below covers the most essential party supplies you need to create the perfect circus theme in your home or backyard. 

Big Top Circus Pop up Invitations Pack of 8Circus invitations

What would a circus party be without some sort of invitation announcing the big show? And having the invitation act like a ticket is a fun way to play up the circus theme. When your guests arrive you could even paper punch their ticket just like they would do at an old-fashioned circus. It's a sure-fire way to pump up the excitement for your bash before the day arrives.

Circus tableware

Every circus has a center ring where all eyes focus, and your circus theme party's version is your main table. Sure, it's going to be full of all sorts of treats, but also make sure it's themed out to match the overall circus vibe. There are many circus themed paper plates, napkins, and table covers available that will enhance your space's look. Also opt for a circus centerpiece for the middle of your table to give it some dimension.

A circus cake

A colorful cake is one way to play up a circus-like theme. You can do this through the choice of flavors and icing itself. Or opt for a circus cake topper that showcases the three-ring theme or a circus' train as it comes to town.

Dozen Popcorn Paper BagsPopcorn bags 

Instead of putting snacks on your table in normal bowls, how about offering popcorn is some classic popcorn bags? It's just like what you'd get when you're visiting the big top personally!

Circus pennants and balloons

Your space needs to be trimmed out just like a circus tent, and circus balloons and colorful pennants are a wonderful choice for doing just that. You can hang those pennants all across your space to create a festive air, and place those balloons in strategic places like hard-to-furnish corners and near your food tables.

100 Foot Multicolor Pennant Banner
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Inflatable zoo animals

You definitely need some animals for your circus theme party, and live ones probably don't fit your budget (let alone your local laws.) Inflatable plastic animals are your solution! You'll find them in all sorts of shapes and exotic animal types. They are loads of fun to place around your party space, and you could even raffle them off at party's end as a fun give-away!

12-pack Inflatable Jungle Animal Shaped Beach Balls
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Big Top Paper Top HatPaper circus hats

You've got the space supplies covered, and now it's time to focus on the supplies to make you and your guests fit the theme. Paper circus hats come in many styles, from the traditional coned party hat to paper top hats just like the circus ringmaster would wear.

A clown costume (or two)

Dressing up is a big part of the fun of a circus party, especially for the kids! There are many great clown costumes available that fit the bill and let you play a very goofy role during the party. If a clown is not your thing, try dressing up like a circus ringmaster with one of those paper circus hats.Forum Novelties Clown On The Town Costume

Circus party favors: Red foam noses, jumbo sunglasses, and some squirting clown flowers

Every theme party needs some give-aways to get people into the mood, and a circus theme party just begs for a troop of clowns! Have for your guests, both the kids and adults alike, some of the great clown accessories like red foam noses, squirting clown flowers, and those jumbo sunglasses. They'll have a great time goofing around at the party, and there will be some excellent photo opportunities, too.

Rhode Island Novelty Foam Clown Noses, Red, 12-Pack
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(price as of Jul 27, 2013)

Clown makeup

Take the party favors to another level by having a clown makeup corner where the kids can get face painted! This is an excellent way to build up the children's engagement in the party and make it memorable as well.

Large Clown Face Painting Makeup Set
Amazon Price: $9.99 $8.99 Buy Now
(price as of Jul 27, 2013)

A circus game or two

While there aren't as many games at a circus party compared to a carnival theme party, you can still have a lot of fun! A great one is a circus-themed ring toss. You could even give away party favors as rewards for landing a perfect throw.Creative Converting Big Top Circus Photo Opportunity Banner

A circus photo opportunity banner

A circus is a family event, and that means it's a great place for making memories. Make sure your party has terrific photo opportunities just like the circus does. The circus party favors, makeup, and games help accomplish that, but also have a fun photo banner where the parents and kids can stick their heads through. It's silly fun, but that's the kind of fun that lasts in memories (and photos) for a long time.

When you deliver the goods with these essential circus party supplies, you are sure to draw big, big smiles and lots of laughs from the crowd. Use these as your base, but don't forget to get imaginative, too! There are many other fun circus supplies that you can use to personalize your event. Making it feel your own is half of the fun, so put on that thinking cap, consider your guests, and deliver something special!