Do you have a seafaring lad? If your little boy loves the sea, the Navy, or anything nautical, plan him a lakeside birthday that he will never forget.

Location, Location, Location

Ideally, you need a semi-private location that will accommodate all of your guests. Many lakes and reservoirs have rentable pavilions that are ideal for group gatherings, but if you are just getting a small group of your son's friends together, you should easily be able to fit into a camping site or a day-use-only picnic site. Make sure that you call the facility ahead of time to book a spot.

Active Entertainment

If you really want the kids to have fun, contact the lake's marina about renting some boats. With a pontoon or a party boat, you can move all of the kids onto the boat for a few hours, and if your budget allows it, you can even have the whole celebration on the boat.

To make your party even more festive, some boats are outfitted with slides – imagine the shrieks of joy as your son and his friends slide into the lake. As an added bonus, many marinas offer captains with their boats so that you don't have the burden of driving.

Alternatively, you can rent smaller crafts and moor them to the bank near your party. For example, you can get a jet ski, a canoe, or a paddle boat and let the kids (and adults) take turns having fun. Remember to have some fun games on the shore as well. Bocce ball, croquet, or badminton are all great options.

Tasty BBQ and Cake

If there's a grill on site, cook up some hot dogs, and plant a sail in each of them. A cocktail stick with a pirate or Navy-themed sail turns a hotdog into a ship that the kids will devour. Fruit is great to have on hand as a party snack, and if you're up to the task, you can even create a shark-shaped bowl out of a watermelon rind. Cupcakes are a fun alternative to birthday cake, and you can even let the kids decorate their own.

Odds and Ends

Finally, you will need to decorate for the event and deal with odds and ends. Stay away from paper banners or other decorations that could easily blow into the water and become litter. Instead, use multi-purpose durable decorations like torches or candles that double as bug repellent devices. If you are using paper plates and cups, don't forget the garbage bags.

Your little sea-loving boy will love this party, and he'll never forget the work you did to pull it all off!

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