50th Birthday Party Ideas

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Birthday Ideas,Party
50th Birthday Ideas

Time to start planning for the big day and the big party to see the next phase of your life in with a swing.

Here are a few good ideas…

1961 Party

A great theme for the year you (or your partner) were born. You could have a rock and roll party playing songs from 1961. This could include Buddy Holly and Chuck Berry.

Surprise Party

Obviously you can’t do this one on your own, but a surprise party is a great idea. To make it really effective you have to let your partner know that a party is planned – with just a few close friends, but you keep the number of people a secret.

Hire a boat

A great party venue is to hire a boat. This could either be on a river or on the sea. (Watch out for the sea as some people may get sea sick). My brother hired a boat from Central London down to the Thames Barrage.

Hire a castle

A castle is a great venue for a party. Many castles have a banqueting hall. Even better you could also combine it with a Medieval Banquet. This would make an unmissable event.

Hire a hotel for the weekend

A great one to keep the festivities going. This was one that my sister-in-law Chris did for her 50th birthday.

Beach party

A nice thing to do in hot weather is to have a party on the beach. You may need to pick a location where you are not likely to get told off. In the middle of winter you could plan an indoor beach party where you wear hawaian shirts and spread sand on the floor. Jo went to a great 50th beach party recently. They even managed to get a boat in the marquee! We have built a page specially for Beach Party Ideas

Themed party

There are lots of other types of themed parties that you can try.

  • Caribbean
  • Pirates
  • Vicars and Tarts
  • Film Stars
  • School Dinners

Hire a big villa

Hire a big villa for a week or two abroad. Share the cost with your close friends. (sent in by Salli)

Hire a steam train

Nothing quite like a bit of nostalgia.  50 years ago steam trains were still in everyday action. Many railway preservation trusts will hire out a steam train for a party.

Party like Philip Green

For the ultimate of 50th Birthday Parties – if you had £5 million ($10 million) – to spare could could not do much better than emulate Philip Green.

He hired a Boeing 747 to fly 200 friends to a 50th birthday party in Cyprus. He paid Rod Stewart and Tom Jones to perform for his guests. Michael Aspel surprised the party by arriving on stage for a version of This Is Your Life.

It ended with a toga party in a mock Roman amphitheatre.

1980s Band

Hire an 80s band and let those memories come flooding back! (Thanks to Kev Brewer).

Murder Mystery Party
How about having a murder mystery party. These are a great way to have a party at home with friends. They come in lots of different themes and guest numbers. Halloween murder mysteries are especially popular in the late summer and autumn. (Thanks to John Delaney)

Miniature Railway
You could hire a portable live steam train, which is ideal for carrying adults/children. It would go down well at a 50th birthday party. – (Thanks to Simon)

On our website we have included a 50th Birthday template which could be used for a slideshow of pictures, or even for invitations, cards, decorations i.e. a banner or table settings and present/ gift tags. Click here

Any other good ideas?

If you have any other ideas – why not add them in the box below.


Published On: 7th Aug 2007

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Birthday Ideas,Party

  1. For the man with a stout heart, take an aerobatic flight.

    Anonymous 24 Aug at 2:51 am
  2. A look back on your life a slide show of the person celebrating their 50th and go thorough all the good and bad times in their lives.
    OR hire a jukebox and they can listen to all their favourite tunes in the era they were born in, get way to have fun with mates and have some fun it is your special day after all.

    Anonymous 11 Oct at 12:28 pm
  3. you could have you and your partners family over for a meal at your house , get caterers to do the cooking so that you can be with your guests

    Anonymous 27 Dec at 9:41 pm
  4. You could send a singing telegram to a party.
    No one ever forgets receiving a singing telegram, especially one featuring a song or character that has special meaning .

    auraclemusic 17 Feb at 11:03 pm
  5. islander theme

    Anonymous 26 Feb at 11:06 am

    Anonymous 29 Feb at 10:55 am
  7. a 1958 cd with rock and roll music or either classic and peaceful

    Anonymous 10 Mar at 6:59 pm
  8. make love all night

    Anonymous 27 Mar at 9:12 am
  9. Get a group of friends together & go camping. Have a big bonfire, plenty of wine etc, marshmallows to toast, stories, go on a night walk, BBQ.

    Anonymous 17 Apr at 7:27 pm
  10. get the invited guests to write a note of a special event they remember of the birthday person and compile them before the party then have someone read them and get the birthday person to try and guess who wrote it. put them into a memory book and present it as a gift


    Anonymous 19 Apr at 1:15 am
  11. everyone goes dressed as the host

    Anonymous 5 May at 2:41 pm
  12. a small dinner party for 20 followed by a marquee in the garden for the rest of your friends the next day

    Anonymous 20 May at 2:08 pm
  13. a beer bus “Black Country Tours” west midlands

    Anonymous 3 Jun at 2:47 pm
  14. a children’s tea party theme for your 50th cake jelly, balloons pass the parcel, musical chairs!

    Anonymous 7 Jun at 8:29 pm
  15. A Famous five theme with the five go on a holiday book as the atmospheric set up.

    Jo 8 Jun at 8:37 pm
  16. play snooker

    colin 5 Jul at 3:36 pm
  17. strum your guitar

    matt 5 Jul at 3:41 pm
  18. for a relaxing fun night everyone wears pyjamas. and there cheap

    anonymous 4 Aug at 8:34 pm
  19. get a limo pick up in the morning and then drive to the perfect spa

    jessica 30 Aug at 12:42 pm
  20. Everyone arriving at the surprise party bring a picture of the birthday person that they don’t mind that person to keep. Just for a for a keep sake.

    samantha 17 Sep at 2:19 pm
  21. think of a time she nade you laugh and tell her in person at the party

    molly 16 Nov at 7:30 pm
  22. have a spanish themed party and do that as a theme

    bert mitchell 16 Nov at 7:32 pm
  23. Book a capsule on the london eye and have a champane party followed by dinner.

    Bobby 30 Nov at 6:39 pm
  24. Theme Attraction Spookers (Auckland) great laugh with family and friends

    Ikitoria-Reimon 3 Dec at 12:17 am
  25. Have a 50years in the life of ….. (Birthday Person) printed by sourcing pics from the invited guests; speaches, copies of interviews; special moments – like births; weddings; 1st steps etc. Have the book printed and bound for the birthday person on his birthday.

    Robyn 17 Jan at 7:21 pm
  26. If you have people of all ages
    Simple mask party include the people young & old with little cost

    Pet 26 Jan at 9:45 am
  27. Combine your 50th with your first primary school class reunion. Project a scanned 1964 class photo on the wall and get everyone to group in the same order for a 2009 photo. Everyone come to the party in school uniform!

    Margaret 19 Feb at 1:49 pm
  28. get all guests to send a picture of themselves approx 40yrs ago and then make up a pin board with the photos.All guests try to match the childhood ohotos with the party guests on the night.

    sharon 10 Mar at 8:39 pm
  29. Put sand on your lawn – HAVE A BEACH PARTY !!

    Jane 15 Mar at 4:09 pm
  30. ask groups of guests to make up a verse to Happy Birthday to you and then go round the room singing them.

    JIll 18 Apr at 7:21 am
  31. Have a Karaoke Party…….or have guys dress as girls and girls dress as guys! I’ve done both and they were GREAT!

    Courtney 17 May at 7:30 am
  32. have a party in the street for a laugh

    kirsty connor 8 Jul at 11:22 am
  33. have a barby at the sandy beach and then let off some fireworks

    kirsty connor 8 Jul at 11:24 am
  34. have a dogde ball party great fun

    tony 6 Aug at 5:09 pm
  35. “Hawaii Five O” Theme Party, Book it Dano !

    Andrew 16 Aug at 8:55 am
  36. I am 50 in November 2009. I,m organizing a pipe and slippers party.

    Rob 5 Sep at 2:09 pm
  37. men:
    have a Hawaiin theme BBQ with beer,burgers and cake

    Girls night in, or out, go for dinner and maybe bowling or a sleepover with your friends

    fatty BOOM 14 Oct at 11:06 pm
  38. or you could just beat it

    alissa 10 Nov at 10:05 pm
  39. invite family and friends over, shoot off fire works, BYOB of course, and party like its 1999.

    alissa 10 Nov at 10:07 pm
  40. Hire a large room and throw a”Strictly Come Dancing” party, with tunes from the 1950s.
    There will be quite a number of guests that can waltz and quick-step etc. and the other guests will have fun trying to copy them.

    June 29 Nov at 12:05 am
  41. I had a lovely dinner dance party for about eighty people – I hired the local community centre,hired caterers and hired someone to play cds with tunes from the 1950s and 60s. I asked the guests to dress to impress (Tux & Tiaras)and what a night that was! Years later my friends still say it was one of the best parties they have been to. Not only did they enjoy the ballroom dancing but the sing a long was great fun too.

    Mary 29 Nov at 12:31 am
  42. Scottish/Country Dancing – with a caller telling you what to do. Suits all ages. Fantastic fun.

    Jean 18 Jan at 12:37 pm
  43. 50th birthday party ideas for the Richest people.

    These ideas are for the super rich, not for your average celebrity with a few dollars.

    1. Contact the Burj Khalifa, which is the world’s tallest building and hire the top floors. Arrange for the Red Arrows to do a flyby, followed by 50 hot air balloons floating pass the building with your name on each balloon. Your DJ jumps out of the last balloon and carefully parachutes onto the building, enters and starts the party.

    2. Hire 3 or more luxury yachts, depending on the number of guests and make an enclosure in the middle of a deep bay. A triangle or circle shape would be best. For your grand entrance, you surface from the middle of the enclosure in a military submarine. A helicopter then airlifts you onto the main yacht. The submarine dives, followed by a 3 aircraft flyby and the party begins.

    If you successfully adopt any of the above ideas, or variation on the same theme, you are welcome to send a gratuity to Big Sand with some photos from the event.

    Big Sand - steel band hire 18 Jan at 3:06 pm
  44. Stay in

    Phil 22 Jan at 8:04 pm
  45. 50th Birthday ideas for the Celebrity.

    Hire a script writer and production team to create a documentary or drama based on your life.

    It must only last for 50 minutes, so you’ll have to focus on the key aspects. For the party, you will arrange to show the film to your guests immediately after the champagne reception. Try to cast some of your guests in the film so that they are also keen to see the final cut and have some fun watching it.

    If it went down well, you may be offered a proper deal by one of your celebrity guest. So make sure that you invite the right people.

    After the film and the applause, you immediately go up a gear and let the real party begin. No speech, it drains too much energy from the party. Incorporate it into the film.

    For your champagne reception, you could hire a 5 piece steel band to perform some lively music to show your guests that you can still shake it. They will then be happy to relax and watch a film after that introduction.

    For the rest of the party, focus on providing great food, drink and entertainment. If this works, you are welcome to send a gratuity to Big Sand and a copy of the film.

    Big Sand - Steel band hire 28 Jan at 6:56 am
  46. Heard of a good 50th party from a friend. Everyone went in the fancy dress of their choice but it had to start with B (the birthday girl’s initial). There were Barbies, babies, butterflies, batman and Bertie Bassett even put in an appearance!

    Liza 5 Feb at 1:49 pm
  47. For my husbands 50th we had a mexican theme, we all got dressed up in mexican costume the men all had a false tash on , we hired a rodeo bull, we had mexican music , 8 of us learnt the mexican hat dance ,and perfomed it on the night ,pin the tale on the donkey , not a real one of course,lots of mexican food ,chilli nachos,fajitas and nibbles , we made vodka and lime jelly shots,plenty of tequila and sol, played What’s the gist?
    1. Grab the camera, a cheap one set the self-timer and the game begins.
    2. Each player must hold the camera at arm’s length and point it at themselves for a second or two – before passing it on to their left.
    3. Keep going, until the camera goes off with a flash of light, a startled face and much laughter.
    4. If the flash goes off, that person must do a quick forfeit (you decide!) before the game continues. Of course, random forfeits can also be awarded for not holding the camera long enough…

    Who wins? Anyone lucky enough to avoid the flash.
    we had a fantastic time and a good laugh.

    sue 21 Feb at 5:02 pm
  48. How about a tramps party cheap and easy to do catering was hotpot table covers were news papers.

    Oliver 28 Feb at 4:40 pm
  49. It’s my 50th but a number of my friends (who are in 20s, & 30s) don’t know I’m 50. Those that do know my age are saying I must do something and I’m feeling pressurized. I’d like to do something (and pretend I’m 45) but my friends are so diverse in age and background, I don’t know what do do. I actually am depressed at the thought of being 50. I’m single, fat (which makes me really feel old), unemployed – what’s there to celebrate really?

    Veronica 13 Mar at 11:23 pm
  50. Cheer up Veronica! Just because you’re coming up 50 you don’t have to look it or act it if you don’t want to. Have a Plastic Surgery Party where everyone has to try and look 10 years younger.

    Alicia 29 Mar at 7:51 pm
  51. I am having a rock and roll party for my 5Oth really looking forward to it, fancy dress easy for everyone especially as legins are back in fashion

    monica 31 Mar at 5:22 pm
  52. Stay in and forget about the fact

    Kevan 10 Apr at 8:27 am
  53. Party Party Party ………… Its great being 50.

    Rosa 15 Apr at 5:26 pm
  54. For my husband’s 50th I hired a caricature drawer who drew an individual picture of all guests on the night… It was a wonderful keepsake for my husband.

    Debbie 17 Apr at 8:58 am
  55. Make it a night to remember.Have a garden party in the summer with lots of fairy lights and candles in jars hanging around the garden. Music from all 5 decades, plenty of food and drink and invite everyone that is special to you. Lovely.

    Jan 22 Apr at 11:56 am
  56. For the more socialite ! I will turned 50 next year. I am a classical trained musician and will give a recital for about 80 guests followed by a buffet reception afterwards.

    Ronald 4 May at 7:58 pm
  57. I am having my 50th birthday in August, I am having a “Uniform” theme, which means you can go to as little or as much trouble as you like to dress up.
    I am having guests bring a memory of me written down on paper and will make a book of memories.
    There will be heaps of food, drink and music and around 100 guests – I can’t wait!!!!

    Michelle 28 May at 4:43 am
  58. i am having a 50th in july, i have yet to firm up the theme but like the idea of childrens tea party, as i am having ice cream van come and dish out ice creams – cant wait.

    caroll 14 Jun at 12:04 pm
  59. I have read all of your submitted ideas and love all of them. thank you for helping me compose a combination of a bit of it all….!!

    Anonymous 14 Jun at 3:10 pm
  60. Have a scottish caleigh

    Sophie 18 Jun at 8:40 am
  61. Bollywood party with guests dressed in glam clothes, with food n decor from Indian movies

    Fanny 17 Jul at 4:46 pm
  62. i need more ideas. I can not fine my dress

    leonor 20 Jul at 2:52 am
  63. hire a bus for you and all your freinds. for a trip to the seaside for the day.

    champion 1 Aug at 4:15 pm
  64. For my 50th I had a runway fashion show party. I love clothes so everyone got all dolled up and I had a red carpet and decorated my house in fancy shoes, dresses and spotlights. All rentals. Great music and a prize for the best dressed woman and man. It was a blast and everyone loved it.

    Anonymous 5 Aug at 4:27 pm
  65. I am having a surprise 50th for my hubby in Sept. He thinks his present is a week in the South of France I gave him but doesnt know that his family, friends and most of his travel pals from years ago will be at a surprise dinner the evening we return. He is still traveling in his head so is more 25 than 50 so I decided to go for the 3 D’s – Dinner, Drinking and very, very strange Dancing (they are 50 you know). Everyone is bringing something that reminds them most of him and we’ll have it in a “50 years in the life of” chest. Hope he doesnt log on here or I’ve just ruined it 🙂

    Hazel- Dublin 19 Aug at 4:22 pm
  66. I’ve loved Music all my life so I’m having a Music themed party. A friend is the DJ. The Cake will be an Electric Guitar {which I’ve been trying to learn all my life}. Everyone has to wear something musical. And we’re having a Guitar Pinata! I’m not real happy about turning 50 but figure I can’t get out of it so I may as well enjoy it. I’ve thrown 32 parties for my 3 kids – it’s my turn now!!!

    Karen 23 Sep at 2:25 pm
  67. My husband is turning 50 and I’m throwing a surprise party at a Bingo Hall. Our friends are dressing up in old person clothes with walkers and canes. I also considered renting a party room at a retirement center, but I was afraid we would be too rowdy!

    Tracy 8 Oct at 3:38 am
  68. i am 50 in January and im throwing a Oscars night party red carpet and all the trimmings cant wait

    melanie 12 Oct at 9:06 pm
  69. an.. irish fiftieth fake wake… where everyone is dressed up,.. go to the pub and talk about you all night the good only and then drink, sing and dance in your honour (and with you of course)invite local musicians and talent

    lorraine didek 15 Oct at 10:26 pm
  70. Items suitable 50th Birthday Table decoration:

    – 50th design place card holder
    – 50th design tea light candle holder
    – 50th design place card frame

    Favours for guest at 50th birthday party:

    – 50th design bookmarks
    – 50th design key rings
    – 50th design crystal ornament
    – 50th design wine bottle stopper
    – cupcake design candle
    – gift box design candle

    MM Giftware 18 Oct at 1:18 pm
  71. I am organising a Sailors & Salesmen theme for my husbands 50th – he was in the navy for 23 yrs and now has his own business. People are coming dressed to the theme – what they don’t know is that we will be having a ‘Dragons Den’ and instruction on parade marching – switching the roles around which should be a real laugh. Lots of good food, plenty of drink and the obligatory memory album and themed cake – can’t wait!

    Lynda 20 Oct at 7:46 am
  72. I am having a 50th in April and really want to go all out.I am going to be doing senior olympics. And have games using walking sticks walking rings Please if anyone else can help me with more ideas Thanx

    Belinda 24 Oct at 7:27 am
  73. hire a box at the races, not cheap, but you’re only 50 once

    charlottefrancesca 25 Oct at 5:05 pm
  74. Here’s my take on a 50th Surprise Birthday Party: Invite the party boy or girl to your house. Using garden stakes, create a timeline along the path to your front door noting 10 (1 for every 5 years) special moments in his or her life. The timeline will give the person a sense that something is up, but won’t give them enough time to bolt. When you answer the knock at the door, be sure to hold up the last garden stake with the date and “So and so’s Surprise Birthday Party!” written on it. It’s fun to keep the garden stakes, and even use them in the garden.

    BirthdayPartyBabble.com 27 Dec at 12:28 am
  75. We are holding my Husband a “Horrible Histories” 50th Party in July.( As in the CBBC series!) Guests can choose to come as any character in History, we have created lots of ‘Horrible facts’ to put up as decorations,eg,did you know that the Ancient Egyptian dentists used to believe that half a hot, freshly killed mouse in your mouth will prevent bad breath! We are also planning some ‘fearsome food’ eg jellied eyeballs(jelly with sweetie eyeballs in!) Also some ‘gruesome grog'(whatever hideous looking punch i can create!) Its going to be great fun with all our friends celebrating how brilliant my hubby is!

    Stefi 2 Jun at 7:26 pm
  76. I had a hollywood party..come as a movie star or a character from a movie…get someone to take photos..had a cardboard standup of Halle Berry to take pics next to. make film strip cut from black card board as runners for tables..Get old movie posters from a video shop to decorate the walls..If you want to go all out hire a red carpet, a spotlight and some fire twirlers for when your guests arrive..then party! Dj is always fun!

    Tracca 28 Jul at 2:47 pm
  77. ime 50 in 2013 i cant believe ime that old !!!! ime in the process of organising a party to remember,ime thinking fancy dress karaoke loads of food and drink but not sure on a theme yet.

    julie 13 Mar at 2:42 am
  78. The first idea reminded me to my aunt’s party. We had a 60’s party, with The Beatles, Rolling Stone, pace and love…I ordered to a page (cancionespararegalar.com) a song with the letter written by me and my sister and the guys addded the music (all rock and roll)

    María Cayena 15 Jun at 9:00 am
  79. Best idea for my wife’s 40th, (can be used for 50th as well), have all guests dress up as an elderly person,…so the guest of honor looks & feels the youngest. People loved it and went all out with their costumes,….including smeared lipstick, misplaced eyebrows, misstucked shirts/skirts & crossword puzzles, crazy too short ties, mismatched clothes, spray grey hair, oldstyle glasses,..with my padded 3 piece suit, my wife didn ‘t even recognize me…

    Dennis Plizga 31 Dec at 6:24 pm
  80. Im 50 in july and as going to have a sixtys theme dress in the sixties cloths ,would the younger family and friends enjoy this x

    Rita 15 Jan at 2:08 pm
  81. who says we cannot put a twist? I’d like to have a pajama party on my 50th Birthday! It’s only a norm that this is suitable for teens or kids. BUT, I like a unique one 🙂

    Birthday Blueprints 14 Apr at 5:46 am
  82. Try something new – go to track together:)

    Diana 10 May at 7:31 am