Make the most of your child's birthday with some of the best adventures Chattanooga has to offer. Whether the birthday comes in January, July or December, this guide can help you plan a party your kid's been dreaming of.
Sing "Happy Birthday" under the sea-or river-at the Tennessee Aquarium's Ocean and River Journeys. Not only does the birthday boy or girl get in free, everyone in the group gets a 10-percent discount on admission. Not to mention, an aquarium birthday experience is easy on Mom and Dad because no pre-planning is required. Simply mention the birthday package at the ticket window upon arrival. Cost: General admission to the Aquarium is $14.95 for kids ages 3-12, $24.95 for adults. Learn more at tnaqua.org.
Every kid has the right to get a little wild on their birthday, and the Chattanooga Zoo is the perfect place for it. Planning parents must provide refreshments and paper products, but Zoo staff members take care of everything else, including invitations, two hours in the party room, a treasure hunt with prizes, an up-close-and-personal animal presentation, a guided tour and more. Cost: $150 for members; $180 for nonmembers, up to 20 kids and 25 adults. Learn more at chattzoo.org
Set the kids loose for a romp through the wildlife sanctuary known as Audubon Acres. The property is chock full of Chattanooga's natural beauty and plenty of space to run and play. Hooting owls perched on tree branches and wild turkeys roaming in open fields are just some of the natural sights party guests can see in this unique green space. Learn more about facility rental fees at chattanoogaaudubon.org
Chattanooga Arboretum and Nature Center
From secret club meetings to outdoor sleepovers, every gathering in a tree house is memorable, and Chattanooga Arboretum and Nature Center has one that can house an entire birthday party- the Discovery Forest Treehouse. Set among the blue herons, turtles and wild turkeys of the wetlands, a party in the tree house includes a scavenger hunt and a face-to-face encounter with one of the resident animals. Cost: $125 for members; $145 for nonmembers. Learn more at chattanooganaturecenter.org
A party at a local climbing gym is sure to be the high point of an adventurous kid's birthday. Both Urban Rocks Gym and Tennessee Bouldering Authority feature party packages, which generally include a couple of hours of supervised climbing and any necessary gear. For young climbing newbies, it could be the beautiful start to a beloved and beneficial hobby. Learn more at urbanrocksgym.com and tbagym.com.