A Great Wolf Celebration

A few months back we started prepping for Marcus' sixth birthday. We tossed around party ideas, venues to go to, even parks to rent out.

As much as I love party planning, I just couldn't muster the energy or excitement to do the same party we've basically been doing for six years.

Scott and I suggested to Marcus that in lieu of a traditional party we go somewhere fun and experience something we might not otherwise do.

To our surprise, Marcus agreed.

Marcus asked his best friend to join us for a weekend at Great Wolf Lodge.

I briefly contemplated bringing my "good" camera, but ultimately decided that high humidity and constant splashing wasn't probably the best exposure for it. Cell phone pics are all we have. If you followed along on our adventures in my Instagram stories, many of these pics are repeats. So much of the weekend was spent in the moment celebrating Marcus that many times I simply didn't even think to snap a pic.

Upon arrival, the lobby had us all oooh'ing and ahhhh'ing. Antler chandeliers. Large, overstuffed furniture made of knotty woods, a fireplace so massive six people could easily sit in front of its flames.
This wall of flowers gave me a sweet little thrill, and the boys played along with my photo taking shenanigans. 

A peek at the water park had the kids beyond excited. And a look into our room to see bunk beds that looked like a wolf den set the kids all over the top with giddy squeals and giggles.

Most of Saturday evening was spent going down slides, being tossed around the wave pool, and dancing around in the splash area.

Post dinner we were treated to birthday decor and cake all ready for us in our room.
Then it was time for a trip to the arcade where the boys were set on getting as many tickets as possible, while Julia happily pressed buttons and imagined she was truly playing games.
We wound down the night with a bubble dance party which delighted Julia the most.

Sunday morning was much of the same. Another round in the pool had Marcus going down a few slides on his own, as well as Marcus and Scott getting the chance to boogie board.
Before our time was up we made one more stop in the arcade to spend the last few points we had, grab a game of 10 pin bowling, claimed a few prizes, and made a stope in the resident candy store.
As we drove home I listened to Marcus talk about his favorite part of the water park (the wave pool), how much he loved the arcade, and how his weekend was so much fun. Marcus is still talking about Great Wolf, and how much he would like to go back.
Any doubts I had about not having a traditional party were immediately erased. I'm not sure we'll ever revert to traditional birthday parties again.

Marcus' Great Wolf 6th Birthday Celebration from Desiree Macke on Vimeo. (For my own memories sake, a 2 minute montage of our weekend, including footage of water slide and boogie board action.)


  1. We got to go to the Great Wolf Lodge here when they they day passes available, but I'd love to go stay there some time too!

  2. We've contemplated doing something like this for Mason's next birthday! Not sure how it will pan out. Great Wolf looks like a blast! Love the pictures and super love that Marcus enjoyed his special weekend.