When I got my invitation a couple weeks prior to this particular event I started counting the days. I couldn’t stop talking about it with my fiancé and thinking about how fun it would be. Mind you this invite wasn’t for a wedding, a gala, or an end of summer bash. Rather, it was for a child’s birthday party.
Sidney’s nephew, Harrison, celebrates his third birthday today. However, he had his birthday party with all of his friends yesterday. You won’t find a bigger fan of pirates, especially the “Jake and The Never Land Pirates” franchise, than Harrison. Because of this, his mom (Sid’s sister) organized the most perfect birthday party imaginable. You ready to hear about this?…
Working through Pirate Adventures of Myrtle Beach, Stephanie and her husband, Jon, organized a pirate’s voyage for Harrison and all of his closest friends. Harrison, his first mates, and family members were invited to board a buccaneer ship called the Treasure Hunter and go treasure hunting with real pirates! Of course finding that treasure wouldn’t be a walk in the park. More on that in just a little bit.
As I mentioned, I was extremely excited to celebrate Harrison’s special day aboard the Treasure Hunter, probably more excited than any adult should be for a child’s birthday party. In fact, the party theme had me feeling such a way that I wanted to fully participate in it. Not too long after I received the invite, I started to plead with Sidney to dress up with me as a pirate. It took a lot of convincing and I didn’t think she was going to go along with it until the day before when we were at Target and she started looking for outfit items. After our Target trip we went to a couple more stores to pick up some props to compliment our costumes.
When we arrived at the area where the ship was docked for the party, we were able to surprise Harrison and Russell (his sister) in our outfits. It quickly became apparent that we may have done too good of a job dressing up. Parents thought we were actual cast members of Pirate Adventures. One mom asked Sidney to tie a bandana on her child’s head, another mom who knew Sidney well didn’t recognize her and mistook us for the real deal. We passed out skull rings to the kids that we bought at a party store and waited for the professional pirates to arrive.
The program that Pirate Adventures put on was pretty legit. It started with a couple of the pirates coming ashore where everyone was gathered and providing face painting for the kids. Photos were then taken as the “pirates in training” boarded the ship.
Once everyone was on board, the story was presented. A particularly disgruntled pirate named Billy Bad Bones wanted to stage a mutiny with the hope of stealing the treasure. After a sword fight between the villain and a good pirate, Bad Bones was thrown off the ship. As the ship set sail, the captain explained that the goal of the voyage was to learn how to be a pirate and to possibly find some hidden treasure.
For the first part of the voyage, the kids were taught many different pirate activities. They learned to read a treasure map, shoot a gun, clean the ship, sword fight, and to be trustworthy. The little bucs and Pirate Adventures crew stayed on the deck of the ship while most adults sat up top in the cabin with the captain. Of course “most adults” didn’t pertain to Sidney and I. We stayed on the deck and during the gun practice part of the voyage, the captain directed all the kids to run over our way and let us have it with their water guns. On a very hot Myrtle Beach day, it felt good.
The trip wasn’t without adversity though. Billy Bad Bones got wind of our location and tried to attack our ship from his personal boat. But Harrison and his friends saved us from certain death as they used the water cannons on the ship to overwhelm Billy and his overmatched water gun. The scallywag had to surrender! Our ship couldn’t celebrate for too long though because there was treasure to be found. Luckily soon after the demise of Billy Bad Bones we found the mark of the treasure under a bridge. We pulled up to the mark and the kids all helped to pull a rope that brought up a treasure chest from under the water.
The loot was brought on board and placed in the middle of the deck. Despite a last ditch effort by another one of the pirates to keep it all to herself, the chest was opened, revealing hundreds of “gold” coins. Each kid got to keep four of the souvenir tokens. All of the children on board were proclaimed real pirates by the captain and a couple victory songs were played. Before we knew it, the ship had arrived back at shore. The end of the voyage wasn’t a bummer though because cup cakes and ice cream followed up in the cabin. Yep, you had a lot of happy little pirates.
This story ends with one final humorous note. When the party had ended, some of us adults not attached to the little raiders found ourselves a little hungry and thirsty. As we were right next to a major block of restaurants in Myrtle Beach, it made sense to just step off the boat and walk inside one of them. Sidney and I got over our mild embarrassment of walking into a crowded restaurant in full pirate gear and had a great time with her parents, her sister, and her sister’s boyfriend. I made sure to take off my eye patch though.
Thanks to Stephanie, Jon, Harrison, and Russell for inviting me on this special pirate trip. I had a wonderful time. Don’t Blink.