A birthday party for a new 12-year old and a giveaway from Funhaven Ottawa!)

A significant part of Sarah’s Birthday Weekend 2013 went down at Funhaven (a Fishbowl patron FYI) on Saturday. This made me very happy because (a) I knew everyone would have a great time and (b) it’s been a busy week around here and I knew I wouldn’t have to do anything other than show up.

Party planning started in March with these easy birthday party invitations. We planned the party for Saturday night over dinner hour. I knew that the girls could handle it and I thought an evening party would have a certain about of caché for tweens.

And then, wouldn’t you know it, the big day was finally here! So there we were, with nine girls, all rarin’ to go. They could hardly contain themselves, but it was the kind of chaos that was somewhat contained well-controlled… if you know what I mean. ;)

Our party package (you can read about the different ones here) included a bunch of different activities as well as some money for the arcade. We started out in Ballocity… which I had mistakenly referred to The Ball Room but was immediately corrected. :)

Ballocity at Funhaven

Clearly they have not outgrown this area yet, and I don’t know if they ever will.

The girls tore around the climbers and pummelled each other with soft balls, and then they pummelled their mother at the first opportunity.

After that it’s a blur. There is so much to do here. They had two turns in Laser Tag before dinner. The first time they played against a group of older girls and the second time they played a group of boys who appeared to be 7 or 8-years old. They beat both teams (HIGH FIVES), and I got to watch from the observation deck. It was hilarious to see them skulking around and sneaking up on one another:

Laser tag!

They were huffing and puffing by the time they were done (bwa ha ha! my plan worked!) and feeling rather victorious as they swaggered out to dinner. We had our own little room to enjoy our thin-crust pizza and raw veggies, which was followed by a very memorable opportunity to make-your-own-sundae. (There was cake included in the package but I opted out.) I took a photo of each guest with their sundae for us to keep as a memento and to email to each family as a thank-you afterwards.

Then we opened gifts, and THEN, went out on the floor to do more stuff… like conquer the climbing wall, and take a spin (or two) on the bumper cars:

Bumper cars at Funhaven

As I mentioned, each guest received a card with some cash on it to spend in the Funhaven arcade. The kids went wild and I lost them all in the blink of an eye. But I wasn’t worried. They grouped up and did their thing… they are TWELVE after all. Practically grown up! Some flocked to Dance Dance Revolution while others tried their hand at THE CLAAAAAW:


They really enjoyed the different arcade games and it was hard to tear them away. There’s one that simulates a roller coaster, one that has you driving a car, and another that simulates a motorcycle race. (I just hope none of the children were inspired to take this up as a career. Eep.)

Motorbike racer!

The kids had a great time. Really great. The staff was organized. The attractions were fun. The pizza was good. And it was just go-go-go the whole time. Perfect.

Not that it was ever really busy or crowded, but by 8:00 p.m. the place was nearly cleaned out of people. (Mental note!) At the end of the evening they discovered the photo booth (where we took the photo that’s pictured in this post) and they went to town. Hilarity ensued – with fantastic and memorable results:

Photobooth fun, at Funhaven

Sarah declared it to be The Best Birthday Party Ever… and this mom (and dad!) were very happy.

Here’s the giveaway part… Funhaven wants YOU to come and experience all of this for yourself. That’s why they are giving me THREE annual passes to give away to three lucky kids out there. You can read more about the annual pass on their website but I will say this: it’s pretty sweet and your kid will love it.


  • This giveaway is for THREE (3) annual passes to Funhaven. Each has a cash value of $99. Please have a quick look at the Funhaven website so you’re clear as to what this includes. Please note that the annual pass is good for one child only.
  • This giveaway is open to anyone residing in the Ottawa area but is void where prohibited by law.
  • In order for your entry to qualify you must answer the following question in the comments below: what part of Funhaven does your child enjoy the most? (If you’ve never been, have a look at the list of attractions and take an educated guess!)
  • One entry per child please! If you have two kids, leave a separate comment for each. So for example, your first entry might look like this: “My son Parker (11), loves to practice Mission Impossible-style maneuvers in Laser Frenzy!” Your second entry (second comment) would refer to your other child.
  • Winners must pick up their membership at Funhaven within 30 days. Another name will be drawn if it’s not picked up before then.
  • If you can’t post your comment here for whatever reason, you can email it to me for posting. Send it to andrea at quietfish dot com … however I cannot be responsible if your entry is misdirected or gets stuck in my Spam folder.
  • Good karma goes to those who tweet or share this giveaway on Facebook. Do you know someone who would appreciate the chance to win? I bet you do. Forward this info to them!

I will choose three winners using Random.org at noon EST on Tuesday April 23, 2013.

That’s it! Over to you. And good luck!

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  1. We have winnerrrrrs! Congratulations commenters:

    #97 – Holly Stardom
    #146 – Tracey Cantwell
    #65 – Melissa schaettgen

    Yay! You have each won one annual pass for one of your kids. I’ll be emailing each of you ASAP with further details.

    Thanks for all of your entries and thank you as well to Funhaven for hosting this fantastic giveaway!

  2. Myer (1 soon :-) would love the toddler area, and chasing around his older brother I’m sure

  3. My Xavier (3.5) would *love* the jungle gym & ballocity for sure! Have yet to visit Funhaven but this pass would help fix that :-)

  4. My daughter, Ty, loves the rock climbing wall most of all. She wants to have her birthday party there next month!

  5. My 2 soon to be 3 year old daughter (Alyssa) loves ballocity! For the time being that’s the main attraction she can enjoy until she gets bigger!

  6. My 5 year old loves the lazer tag and the bumper cars!! Ballocity also a hit! Ok so the whole place is amazing lol

  7. I don’t have any children, but I’m 19 and still love going to Funhaven, my favorite part is the laser tag for sure!

  8. Daymein age (8) loves the bumper cars
    Devin age (5) loves the hole place when I took him he said it was the best day ever lol

  9. Our godson who is 6 yr old just loves going to funhaven to play.I must say that really he loves meeting new kids there everytime we go more then anything.And that is priceless but when he ends up taking friends with us there he loves running around showing them all the great things you have for kids to play with so thx you so much for always having a clean fun and friendly place for kids.

  10. My seven-year-old daughter is a dyed-in-the-wool Klingon. Laser tag is as close as she can get to using disruptors without me freaking out :) She’s keen to try the bumper cars, too.

  11. I would love a membership I am 14 and just love the laser tag at funhaven I’ve only been once and even though I’m a teenager I still absolutely love it!!!!

  12. My son Noah (3) loves the Jungle Gym!! He is a climber, but not so swift on his feet! Loves that that he can go up and always find away down!

  13. My son Owen (5) loves the bumper cars! Loves the fact that he can ‘drive’ and be in the front seat! LOL. Anywhere you can go where the kids can be active and have fun but also be safe is amazing!

  14. My son (5) absolutely LOVES the Jungle Gym!! He can spend hours in there, and work up a real sweat!! :D He finally tried Laser Frenzy at a recent birthday party there, and really liked it. I’m thinking that might become his new favourite after another visit or two. :)

  15. My daughter Brooke (5) LOVES Ballacity BUT cannot wait until she is big enough for the bumper cars and the climbing wall!

  16. My son Brayden (7) LOVED the Laser Tag Frenzy at his last Birthday party – his friends said it was the best Birthday Party ever!

  17. My 7 and 9 year old boys love everything, but Laser tag the most! It’s a great place to go. We have been there several times and always make sure we bring friends!

  18. I’m going to take a wild guess and say my daughter would enjoy the jungle gym area, giving that hanging upside down is her new favourite thing.

  19. Max, our five-year old is also a HUGE fan. He loves all the food treats, the mini-bowling and blasting unsuspecting strangers with foamy bits.

  20. My 12 year old nephew loves the climbing wall and the lazer tag. I would be the coolest Aunt if I was able to win this for him:).

  21. My 10 year old daughter loves the Climbing Wall. Her twin brother loves the Bumper Cars & her older brother {11 yrs old} loves Laser Tag!
    Fantastic post & amazing giveaway! Happy belated to your DD, Andrea!

  22. My almost 4 year old, like her sister LOVES the make your own sundae bar;)…as for games, she loves the ballocity area, and the bowling!

  23. My 7 year old daughter loves the make your own ice cream sundaes the best;)…as for a play area, she really likes all the interactive games where you can win tickets. Fankly, she’s obsessed with winning as much as she can at whatever game she can so she can get a cool prize. That daughter of mine is very competitive…with herself that is;). Thanks for having the giveaway!

  24. My 15 year old is almost too old for Funhaven (or so she says), but she does enjoy it once we get her there. She enjoys playing the arcade with me!

  25. My 2 1/2 year old loves everything about Funhaven – he loves that he can go in there and go “kindof” wild :) He loves the balls the most of all!

  26. My 12 yr old girl LOVES tagging her little brother off in the lazer tag! Oh yah! Girls love lazer tag too!

  27. But my two year old is terrified of the loud noises from inside Ballocity, and won’t even go inside. She likes hanging out in the new toddler area, ComfyLand.

  28. My sons’s favourite part of Funhaven is the Laser Tag – he has been there twice, and both times has raved about how much he has enjoyed it!

  29. And my son Harris would be thrilled if he could do laser tag, but at his age and size it’s the play structure for now.

  30. I know my 6M old son is probably too small to really understand what Funhaven is…but he absolutely adores his older sister when she’s screaming and having a “ball” inside ballocity shooting the big guns! It’s never too early to start, right? LOL

  31. My 2 year old loves, loves, loves the Jungle Theme jungle gym with all the foam balls that she can stuff into those huge guns! And what kid doesn’t love the slide?! Would love to win the annual pass for her. Thanks!

  32. My youngest Hayden loves playing the video games as well as playing in ball city! Having a membership would be amazing!

  33. My oldest who is 8 absolutely loves fun haven! I wish I could take them more often but having three kids runs expensive at these kind of places! But he loves the laser tag as well as the rock climbing area!

  34. And my daughter Alexis (3) loves that there are bags to help carry the balls up to the ‘guns’ she loves shooting the balls and the bags help her carry more than one at a time up. We always end out trips there with frozen yogurt! :)

  35. Wow sounds like your little party had a blast. My 3 year old Mason absolutely loves ballocity ( although the sound of the machine that throws the balls in the air made him squeamish at first). My 11 year old Mateo and my 13 year old Cameron both go crazy for lazer frenzy ( what 2 boys don’t like the opportunity to run around and shoot each other ) kinda like being in a video game. Funhaven makes this mom of 4 boys happy because after about 2-3 hours of running around like crazy little men it is usually lights out and blissful quiet before we even hit the queensway.

  36. Last but not least is my sweet little almost 4year old granddaughter who would do anything her older brothers and cousins would do and do it with great enthusiasm but she’d love Ballocity. Thanks for hosting this giveaway! I’ve wanted to bring some or all of them to Funhaven for a long time and was thinking this summer would be the time to start going.

  37. Then there’s my 5 year old grandson who would probably follow the others in loving the bumper cars with the arcade a close second. If the whole group of them went together really they’d have a blast as a team playing lazer tag. :)

  38. For my 4 yr/old daughter (I have twins) I think it is a tie between the climbing wall and the Dance Dance Revolution game in the arcade. We’ll see what she thinks of Laser Tag once she’s old enough to play …

  39. 4yr/o boy loves the motorcycle simulator. They haven’t tried the bumper cars yet … maybe once he tries them he’ll change his mind …

  40. My 6 year old loves the arcade and would love a chance to see if the rock climbing harness will fit her yet. She was too small last time. :-(

  41. My Boys love the arcade the most but my 3yo likes to ride the motorcycle. I don’t even put any money in, just sit him on and away we go.

    When we were there last week my 8yo took great delight in hitting me in the balocity and whooping my butt in lazer tag. It is a great place!

  42. We’ve never been but I’m pretty sure my youngest would get a kick out of being allowed to throw balls at her sister :)

  43. My six year old would want to live there if he knew about it. I think he’d go into complete melt-down of excitement. As is, he’d like to go to their neighbor to the west (for which he is almost just too tall to go.)

  44. My five year old has only ever been there for birthday parties, so if you ask her, I’m sure she’d say she loves the ice cream :). But we haven’t been there since they opened their new toddler area – she’s getting big for it but I suspect it will be a hit with her, as she likes more quiet spaces.

  45. My 8 year old, on the other hand, is all about the games. If she doesn’t leave Funhaven without a big bag full of gizmos and gadgets, she isn’t happy.

  46. As a parent I love FunHaven! I can take my kid solo and within minutes he will be playing with a group of kids and I can sit back and enjoy a coffee ;)

    I would say the best spot is Ballocity since he can spend the most time & energy there. He would say his favourite spot is the bumper cars.

  47. My niece would love the arcade most of all. But, my husband would insist that he go with her to try out the bumper cars!