Ideas for the Party

Someone you know is turning 50 and you’re in charge of planning the party! Whether it’s your husband, wife, mother, father, best friend, or sister-in-law, it’s bound to feel like a lot of pressure. After all, how do you bridge the gap between youth and maturity with a party both age-appropriate and fun? These 50th birthday party ideas are sure to get your event planning wheels in gear.

Throw a Surprise Party

50th Surprise Party

Surprise parties are great fun for all ages. If your party needs to incorporate a wide range of family members and friends, a surprise party is a simple way to get a large number of people involved. Jumping out and shouting “SURPRISE!” is the easy part. Keeping the party a secret from the guest of honor requires some planning, and there are several techniques you can employ in order to successfully pull off a surprise party.

One course of action is to convince the birthday guy or girl that you’ve planned a special evening out just for the two of you. Meanwhile, the guest’s family and friends are already hiding out at the designated location, waiting to shock them. Another option for pulling off the surprise party is to create a plan that gets the person who’s birthday it is out of their house for a few hours, thus allowing you plenty of time to set up. Distract them with an errand or a spa day, while you and the other party planners decorate and put the attendees in place. For those who like a bit more risk, try the “kidnap” strategy: simply put a blindfold on your guest of honor and take them to the party, refusing to answer any questions about where you are taking them along the way. Just be sure to keep the mood playful!

Choose an ‘Over the Hill’ Theme

Over the Hill Cupcakes

The “over-the-hill” theme is a classic as far as 50th birthday party ideas go. If your birthday guest is up for it, why not go all out? The jovial theme of old age is sure to get some laughs from party goers. Adult diapers, dentures, walking sticks, reading glasses, and, of course, hills are all fun themes to riff off of in your party decor.

Party games are a great way to expand upon this theme. Select activities stereotypical of the elderly and turn them into party events. Play a few rounds of Bingo or host a knitting circle. When it comes to music, stick with the Oldies!

Back to Childhood

Adult Kid Birthday Party

Childhood is an idyllic time for many. What better way to celebrate middle age with a visit to youth? Throw the kind of party your guest of honor may have had at age five or six. Pin the tail on the donkey, paper party hats, and standard issue ice cream cake are just a few ways to make this feel like a true childhood birthday party. The young and the young at heart will enjoy this theme equally.

Make it a Gold Party

Gold Birthday Theme

If you’re looking for a classier way to celebrate a 50th birthday, a Gold Party is an excellent way to go. Since gold is the color for any 50th milestone, it’s the perfect color scheme to choose for the decor at a 50th birthday party. Gold balloons, gold dinnerware, gold tablecloths, even gold flowers. Just be sure to balance the gold with something neutral, such as cream or black. This way the metallic elements will stand out but won’t be overbearing. If possible, suggest that guests wear an item of gold clothing, or a piece of gold jewelry.

Celebrate the Year of Their Birth

Era Party

Show your guest of honor just how far they’ve come in life with a “Year of Your Birth” themed party. Make the decorations, games, and music all era-appropriate for the year in which they were born. Guests can choose to dress in year-specific clothing, adding a costume party effect to the evening. The idea of a throwback party is a fun revisit of youth to celebrate age.

If the year of their birth is too specific, pick the decade in which they came of age. If they were a teen/twenty-something in the 70s or 80s, then base the party decor and music off of that time period. An era-themed party is sure to bring back a ton of memories for the guest of honor and their friends. The younger guests will get a kick out of the throwback theme as they get to live in another time for a night!


The 50th birthday is a big milestone. It’s important to give this day the respect it deserves with these great 50th birthday party ideas. Your guest of honor will feel celebrated and ready to take on the next stage of life!

2 thoughts on “Ideas for the Party

  1. Another great idea for your 50th birthday party is to have all your friends over and head over to your local homeless shelter/food bank and feed the homeless! I guess it depends on what kind of friends you have but for my 50th birthday party, that’s what I am going to do (I’m only 49 so far! Phew! haha).

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