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Birthday Party Registration and Policies

Step 3: Learn about our party space

Return to Step 2                                                                Go to Step 4: Schedule Your Birthday Party

Please review, we want you to have fun! For the best experience possible, please refer to the following party guidelines before you book a party, to ensure that TNC is the right place for your celebration.

Party location & theme

  • Birthday parties are scheduled for 2.5 hour time slots (this includes setup & cleanup).
  • Birthday parties begin and end at the time listed on the confirmation sheet. Please ask parents to drop off and pick up children promptly. We strive to start and finish parties on time, as there are often other parties scheduled on the same day.
  • Parties are held under our outdoor, covered pavilion which has retractable canvas sides and a fireplace.
  • Parties run rain or shine unless TNC must cancel due to extreme circumstances. In cases of inclement weather, parents may request moving into our indoor museum and your alternate program will replace your original outdoor choice.
  • TNC Invitations are available for you to print and distribute to your guests

Party Example Schedule

 10:30-11:00 am  Parents/guardians arrive and set up (may decorate)
 11:00 am-12:00 pm  Themed Program (TNC Educator or Presenter led)
 12:00-12:30 pm  Refreshment time. Pizza, cake, etc. (Parent led)
 12:30-1:00 pm   Parents/guardians hand out favors as guests depart. Clean-up.
 1:00 pm   Depart from TNC (with smiles, presents & garbage in car)

Party Decorations & Setup (30 minutes)

  • We suggest that you arrive 30 minutes before your program start time in order to decorate the party space. If you feel you need more time, please discuss this with our Education Director in order to check space and educator availability.
  • We encourage parents to drop off their children for the party.
  • Decorations are encouraged (we suggest banners, crepe paper, streamers) and parents are asked to leave the space in the same condition as they found it.
  • Please do not bring noisemakers, piñatas, or balloons (latex or mylar can be harmful to wildlife).
  • Tenafly Nature Center respectfully requests that noisemaker or live animal party favors be excluded from your party.
  • Read our green party tips page for advice and ideas on throwing an Eco-friendly party!

Party Refreshments (30 minutes)

  • After the party program, there are 30 minutes to enjoy refreshments on your own (provided or delivery arranged by the family).
  • Food may be brought or delivered to your party (there is no cooking on site). TNC does not supply any food or refrigeration.
  • Tenafly Nature Center practices the principles of Leave No Trace. Trash removal is your responsibility. Please bring a trash bag for your garbage and take it with you when you leave.
  • No drink boxes, please (clear straw wrappers can be harmful to our animal friends).
  • Please do not place any food, plates, cups etc. in the trash cans outside, this attracts wild animals.
  • If the party is moved indoors, children will be able to sit and eat picnic style in the visitor center. Tables and chairs may be set up for parties with fewer than 24 guests.
  • Alcohol is not permitted.

Party Cleanup (30 minutes)

  • Families are allotted 30 minutes for clean-up.
  • Tenafly Nature Center practices the principles of Leave No Trace. For more information on these principles, please visit the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics page. Please bring a trash bag for your garbage and take the bag with you when you leave.
  • TNC has the space for recyclables, and encourages the recycling of cardboard, glass, metals, and plastics numbered 1-7.
  • For the health of our wildlife, please do not place any food, plates, cups, etc. in the trash cans outside.

Supervision and Helpful Tips for Maximum Fun

  • Participant behavior is the responsibility of the parents, not the staff of TNC. We ask party parents to provide adequate supervision for their guests.
    • If your adult guests will be staying for the party, a maximum of 10 supervising parents are permitted to accompany the children during the themed program in order to provide a quality experience for the birthday child and their guests.
      • For parties with children ages 3-5, the suggested ratio is 1 adult for every 3 children.
      • For parties with children ages 5 and older, the suggested ratio is 1 adult for every 5 children.
      • Supervising parents are asked to please turn off or silence their cell phones so as not to disrupt the program. If parents need to take a call, we ask that they move away from the group to talk.
    • Non-supervising parents who stay are welcome to enjoy refreshments and conversation in the conference room or non-program space of the pavilion while the children are with the educator.
    • Siblings who are not guests of your party, as well as parents who do not wish to remain for the duration of the party, may tour our grounds. All children must be accompanied by an adult when visiting other areas of the TNC.
  • Mark Saunders PhotogrpahySmaller groups may make your child’s program more meaningful (we suggest limiting invitations to your child’s age plus two).
  • Please keep in mind that TNC is a nature preserve. For the safety of all guests and the nature center please visit our Trail Map page and respect all the trail rules & information posted.
  • For more information on trip preparation, pavilion use, directions, and other policies, please visit our Group Attendance Policies page.
  • Group representatives assume full responsibility for the behavior of their guests and damages to the property.
  • Gratuity is not required but greatly appreciated!                                                                                                                                 Mark Saunders Photography 

Party Attire

  • Programs vary seasonally and are mostly outdoors; please encourage your guests to dress for the weather and wear closed-toed shoes.
  • Due to elevation and forest cover, TNC tends to be cooler throughout the year.
  • Please apply insect repellent at home before you arrive at the Nature Center. We suggest that you apply to clothing rather than skin. We ask that you don’t spray insect repellent in our parking lot!

    Accessibility at TNC

    Select birthday programs are wheelchair accessible at the Tenafly Nature Center. We ask that you give two weeks notice so that we can accommodate the needs of your group.