I just saw this article. I thought it was interesting because a friend and I were just talking about how kids parties were getting out of control. My SIL spends around $300.00 on her kids parties (ages 5 and 8)- not the gifts, just the party. She rents inflatables and gets nice cakes, etc.
I think that anything over $50.00 for a party is ridiculous. I let my son go to the local pizza place (like Chuck E Cheese) and take a couple of friends. Or go go-kart racing with 1 or 2 friends. If he wants to invite a bunch of friends, we can have a party at the house with games and food.
I just think it's insane what parents are doing for kids that won't even remember or appreciate the party.