It’s not often I’m jealous of a 9-year-old; however, a Sacramento, California mom changed that this week when she released photos of her son’s in-store Target birthday bash.

Melissa Johnson, founder and author of the popular lifestyle site Best Friends for Frosting threw her 9-year-old son, Charlie, a birthday party inside an actual Target. According to Johnson, Charlie’s bash took place in July, and keeping the full details a secret was no easy task. From the pictures, it’s clear why.

Target Dessert Cart
Credit: Best Friends For Frosting PHOTO: Andy Johnson
Target party display
Credit: Best Friends For Frosting PHOTO: Andy Johnson

“What if I had my birthday party at Target?”

According to Johnson, that’s what Charlie asked earlier this year. “Just kidding, I know that would never happen,” he continued. However, Charlie clearly underestimated his mom’s creativity as the suggestion sparked an idea in her mind, which eventually led to the Target-themed bash. 

Target birthday
Credit: Best Friends For Frosting PHOTO: Andy Johnson

Since you’re probably wondering—no, Target does not regularly book in-store parties. However, through the kind of impressive magic that only happens at Target, Johnson was able to arrange this once-in-a-lifetime celebration for her son. 

Party attendees adorably wore red shirts and khakis, the signature uniform we’ve all come to know so well. They even wore custom-made badges to complete their outfits. 

Credit: Best Friends For Frosting PHOTO: Andy Johnson
Credit: Best Friends For Frosting PHOTO: Andy Johnson

The party came complete with a Starbucks Coffee bar for moms.

Since no trip to Target is complete without a stop at Starbucks, Johnson’s party included “Charlie’s Coffee Bar,” complete with Frappuccinos for moms—caramel Frappuccinos to be exact—since that was the flavor Johnson drank while pregnant with Charlie. So adorably and deliciously nostalgic. 

The store bash also appropriately had cookies featuring Bullseye the Target Dog and cookies in a fun gingham print with the saying, “ICEE sips and Target trips”.

Credit: Best Friends For Frosting PHOTO: Andy Johnson
Target cookies
Credit: Best Friends For Frosting PHOTO: Andy Johnson

Charlie’s party is Target goals.

 Johnson shared her connections to the Target store where she held Charlie’s party—the same Target she’s shopped at since she was five.

Every mom who considers herself a “Target mom” has a favorite Target and a favorite Target story. When I was a brand new first-time mom, Target was one of the first places I felt comfortable regularly taking my son. Even now as a mom of three, I can’t resist a good Target run. It’s like a trip to Disney World without the airplane ride and the long lines.

Target has a little something for everyone, and Johnson’s party perfectly captured that.

While most of us likely won’t book Target for our next birthday, we can live vicariously through Charlie. To check out more of Johnson’s in-store birthday bash, and to get tips on how to throw your own Target party (Target store not included), head over to Best Friends for Frosting.


Creative Director, Melissa Johnson

Project Developer & Stylist, Kim Alcala

Editorial Director, Event Planner, Molly Allen

Target Store Director, Joe Forbes 

Photographer, Andy Johnson

Videographer, Ray Casillas

Balloons: Ready Set Confetti

Decorated Cookies & Kookie Kart: Konfections and Konfetti

3-Tier Target Cake: Megan’s Bake Shop

Target Party Sign: Paper Lane Designs

Custom Birthday Party Hats: August Root 

Probably at Target Doormat: Linden Fields

Starbucks Ring Toss: Ford Country

Starbucks Coffee Customized Sign: Party Perfect Design

Target Sign: Custom by Dre

Candace Alnaji

Candace is a workplace civil rights attorney, writer, and proud mom of three. Her musings on work and parenthood have appeared in numerous places around the web. In 2019, she was named one of Working Mother Magazine's Top Working Mom Bloggers. Candace can be found writing about law, motherhood, and more on her blog as The Mom at Law. She can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.