Party Planning Guide: How To Make a Pinata

What You'll Need
A large balloon
2 cups flour
3 cups water
Colored crepe paper
Paint, crayons or markers
Buttons for eyes and nose (if making an animal)

When party planning for this holiday season, remember that a piñata makes an excellent addition to a birthday party, Christmas party or Mexican-themed fiesta! Involve children in the process of making a piñata as this is a great way for them to have fun, get dirty and be creative at the same time. Follow these easy instructions for making (and breaking) a party piñata.

Step 1: Prepare the Newspaper and Balloon

Cut newspaper into 1-inch strips and blow up balloon to desired size.

Step 2: Make a Paste

Mix 2 cups of flour and 3 cups of water together, stirring thoroughly until it makes a consistently smooth paste.

Step 3: Cover Balloon with Paste-covered Newspaper Strips

Dip each strip of newspaper into the paste until it is completely covered. Stick the strips onto the balloon one at a time until the balloon is completely covered, except for a hole at the top large enough to drop candy and/or toys into.

Step 4: Dry and Layer Twice More

Allow the pasty newspaper to dry completely. Then add another layer completely covering the previous layer. Allow to dry completely once again before applying a third and final layer. Dry.

Step 5: Remove the Balloon

Once the final newspaper layer has dried, pop the balloon and remove it. You should have a hollow, hard sphere ready for decoration.

Step 6: Make a Handle

To make a handle to hang your piñata from, punch two holes several inches apart on the top of the balloon. Run a string through each hole, tying together to form a loop.

Step 7: Decorate Your Sphere

Traditionally, piñatas were in the shape of stars, but you can turn your piñata into any shape you would like, such as an animal. To make a star, roll a piece of paper into a cone. Staple, glue or tape to hold the cone to the right shape and cover with colored crepe paper. Attach several cones on your sphere to make a star-shaped piñata. To make an animal, use empty toilet paper or paper towel cardboard rolls covered with crepe paper for legs and/or neck. Heads can be made from scrunched up paper glued together to form a shape resembling a head.

Step 8: Add Candy and Cover the Hole

Fill your piñata with candy and other surprises. Cover the opening on the top by either stuffing the top full with newspaper; or stapling a piece of paper over the hole.

Hang up your piñata and take turns smacking it with a bat, stick or sword!