Birthday fun at the Putting Edge

by Dani For his seventh birthday, my middle son Simon wanted a party at the Putting Edge, an indoor glow-in-the-dark mini-golf place tucked in behind the Costco off Merivale Road. One of his classmates had had a party there in the fall, and Simon was adamant that this would be the best place for his party.

In Simon's estimation (which is, really, the only one that counts!) the Putting Edge party was the best! one! ever! With three boys, we've been to lot of party places: A Gym Tale, Starr Gymnastics, Merivale Bowling, Cosmic Adventures, Playtime4Kids -- so many, in fact, that I wrote a giant blog post about fun places to have a birthday party in Ottawa last year! -- and so "best ever" is pretty high praise indeed!

Our party started out with 45 minutes dedicated to putt-putt, which was choreographed and supervised by the wonderful party hosts. (More about them later.) We then had an hour in a semi-private cubicle for pizza, cake and presents, and a final 15 minutes where the kids were set free in the mini-arcade clutching fistsful of tokens.

Blacklight birthday party

(It's a great place for a party, but a real challenge if you're a camera-toting photo junkie of a mom! That black light might be fun, but it is not favourable to anyone's complexion!)

They broke our party of 10 into two groups for the golf. The party host was great about keeping them on the course, keeping them laughing and engaged with silly activities like zombie walking, and keeping them from giving each other concussions via out-of-control putters. (Oy, boys!) We were there for 11:15 on a Sunday morning and had the place to ourselves, which was a terrific fluke of luck, but I've heard the place can be chaos at other times of day.

It was really the party hosts, Pat and Daniel, that elevated this to one of my favourite-ever locations for a birthday party. They were thoughtful and considerate, both to me and the guests. They sweetly offered a putter and ball to not-quite-three-year-old Lucas and the 13-year-old family friend who was tagging along to keep an eye on him, even though we didn't pay for them to play as part of our package. The hosts anticipated our every need, from a lighter for candles to drink refills to shepherding presents to offering to wrap up leftover chips and wash our cake ornaments for us. They were easily two of the most charming young fellows I've come across in the service industry. With someone to watch the toddler and the party hosts taking care of the details, I felt like I was actually attending and enjoying Simon's party, rather than simply enduring it!

38:365 Happy Birthday Simon!

Putting Edge offers several party packages from the bare-bones Birthday Special at $15.95 per guest to the Ultimate Package at (eek!) $24.95 per guest, with an à la carte menu of extra services. Since we wanted a lunch-time slot, we chose the Funtastic Package at $19.95 per guest, and feel like we got our money's worth and more.

Simon and his friends had a blast, the Putting Edge did all the work, and the parents and grandparents had a great time -- what more could you ask for?

Danielle Donders lives in Manotick with her Beloved and three little boys. She has been blogging about Ottawa family fun and just about anything else that pops into her mind since 2005 at Postcards from the Mothership.

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