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50th Birthday Party Ideas

Are you planning a 50th birthday party? Formal or casual, you guest of honor’s will love these adult birthday party ideas!

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50th Birthday Party Ideas50th Birthday Party Plans Start Here!

50 truly isn’t what it used to be! No "Over the Hill" parties here! You’re just getting started.

I once said to my husband, "Getting older stinks". His reply? "Maybe, but it sure comes with some cool perks too!" Well, he’s right!

One of those perks is the realization that life is for celebrating. Every birthday is a big deal; so celebrate with a little fanfare. You deserve it.

Start by selecting a great 50th Birthday Party Theme. There are dozens and dozens of creative birthday party themes on our Adult Birthday Party Page. Choose from: A "Bucket List Party", a 60s theme party, golf themed parties, or a funny "Florida" theme just to name a few.

Elegant Dinner 50th Birthday Party Ideas50th Birthday Party Ideas

Of course, picking a 50th birthday party theme is the first step, but you’ll also want to select birthday party favors at are designed especially for a 50th birthday.

What are some of the "top picks" for 50th birthday party ideas?

Wine Tasting Party Ideas for Fifty

Turning 50 deserves a good wine! Why not get your friends together for a birthday wine tasting party?

There are many ways to host a wine tasting, but for a birthday party, why not select wines by vintage.

Purchase a bottle of wine produced during the years of different milestones, such as the year you (or guest of honor if you're planning for another) were married, had a baby, sold a business, etc. Start with a bottle from the current year and work backwards to the year you were born!

Guests will love reminiscing the years with you and enjoy hearing why you selected specific years. For more ways to incorporate wine and cheese into your event, visit our Wine Tasting Party Ideas Pages. You'll find:

  • Free Downloadable Wine Tasting Sheets
  • Printable Wine and Cheese Pairing List
  • Various Wine Tasting Party Ideas

Backyard Barbeque Party

50th Birthday Party Ideas

For those who desire a low key 50th birthday party ideas, complete with children and grandchildren, have a backyard barbeque.

Whether you choose from luau themed backyard party ideas with limbo sticks and hula dancing or a Texas western themed party with smoked ribs and two stepping, backyard themed parties are a hit for everyone.

Explore our Backyard Party Ideas page to discover several festive backyard games for all ages.

50th Birthday Party Ideas: Have a Surprise Party

These 50th birthday party ideas were contributed by Themed Party Ideas Staff member Cynthia VanBibber.

I had a surprise birthday party for my husband William who's just turned 50. You'd be surprised: even if someone's about to turn the bend on this incredibly important milestone, most adults don't expect that you'll go all out for their birthday.

Surprise Party 50th BirthdayMy choice for a surprise birthday party was particularly because I believe he would have been slightly embarrassed, even at 50, to have a party just for himself, particularly a lavish party like the one I planned. But I knew I would have really regretted it had I not.

I followed all Jennifer's advice on how to prepare for a surprise party. But here are the specifics on how I set everything up:

1. I enlisted the help of my husband's friend Mike. I needed for William to be delayed after work enough for guests to be able to arrive at a reasonable hour (6:30 I'd decided). He and Mike work together. We planned that he would ask William to go with him after work on Friday night (his actual birthday) to tour a local brewery. (He and Mike plan to open a brewery one day). Because supposedly it was business, this impressed on William more that he needed to attend. Of course, when they arrived the tour somehow fell through, and they decided to have a beer. But there was one complication with our plan.

Surprise Party 50th Birthday2. William couldn't be allowed to come home just before his adventure out with Mike ... because we'd need to have enough time to decorate. He could have decided to come back to the house for a quick shower.

Additionally, after going out with Mike, even though I'd told William I had a little surprise planned for him so he wouldn't take forever getting back, he could have ventured off to do errands, go by the bank, liquor store, grocery store, etc.

And he would likely have come in through the back door (bad presentation, I thought). And I needed him to be on time. So we had to get his truck from him, so that he'd have to ride with Mike, but how?

3. I'd cooked up one idea: I would go by William's workplace and tell him I needed the truck to haul a mattress for a friend back from a store going out of business that very day. But it was raining all day ... it didn't make a very likely story. Then came a better plan: I'd lock myself out of my house and a friend would take me to get William's keys. At that point, I'd ask for the truck because I needed it and so my friend could go directly to class ... she had only enough time to take me there but not enough time to take me home. So this is what we did.

50th Birthday Party IdeasIt took 15 minutes to chase him down at work; he was so busy. And as a result William was so, so angry at me interupting him. (This would have made the third time I'd locked myself out). And though it was indeed for the cause, I did take some time getting over his upset. Ultimately, though, it was a fantastic plan: he was sure to experience the full range of emotions this day!

4. After getting his truck, I was able to get a table I'd rented for the party. I bought flowers and some other things for the party and went home to work on the decor.

I'd already purchased most of my party supplies from beau coup and Private Island Party. I'd gone shopping at a few dollar stores before-hand just to see if I could find cheaper supplies, but surprisingly, shopping online was much cheaper, and I was able to get the exact look I was after.

Surprise 50th Birthday Party IdeasI got a personalized banner (they're only like 12 bucks), party hats, blowers, honkers, balloons for decoration and a fortune game (the fortunes are in the balloons).

I didn't want any chance we might burn down the house putting 50 candles on the cake, so I bought some fun birthday candles that cut down the number of candles we needed! And I got a necklace to place around his neck when he entered that read "Happy 50th Birthday".

Having Mike out with William, we were able to time exactly when he'd arrive with the help of latest of technology: texting. William never suspected Mike was texting me — and not perhaps his son — as he so often did. Our correspondence in the last minutes went, "eta," "10 minutes", "hold off 15", "k", "come now", "there in 10." We knew he'd be there at just about exactly 6:43.

If you want to pull off a surprise party, it really helps to have friends who can pull off a white lie and who understand just how important it is not to blow the surprise.

50th Birthday Party PlanningWhen my husband was visiting with one of our good friends days before, he mentioned to her that his 50th birthday was on Friday. She said, "Oh really? How nice! Happy Birthday!"

Mike was a very good actor through all this (and he luckily did have experience acting). He added when dropping William off at the front door, "I wished I'd known it was your 50th birthday; we might could have planned to do something more."

I was on the porch dressed up in a vintage dress from the 40s, pearls, and a red wig he'd never seen. I was holding flowers. As he was getting out of Mike's car I tapped on the window for everyone to be silent. When he approached I said, "Surprise! I got you some flowers." "I didn't even recognize you," he said. He thought this was the surprise and that we were in for a fun, but quiet evening.

When he opened the door everyone yelled, "Surprise!" and honked as loudly as they could for perhaps a solid minute. One of my friends later said she realized that part of what made this one of the best parties of her life was that she could be a kid again.

The Vine BrothersNathan McLeod, the saxophonist I'd hired, and Garrett Jones, bassist, began playing a birthday song. William was so surprised he stood with his mouth agape for at least a minute. And as a friend reported, "He turned 7 shades of red."

I'd planned some no-fuss adult party games: fortune balloons and conversation starter cards. The fortune balloons were much more of a hit than I'd imagined. I almost didn't get this done because I was running out of time, but I'm so glad I did. This adult birthday party game was such a hit we made one you too can download. You'll find it here.

Additionally I'd hired the Vine Brothers. They were excellent and had a very versatile repertoire. This isn't something I'd do for just any party. It was the most expensive item of the party. But live music really lifts the mood. When I told my mother-in-law about the party he next day, she said, "Your house must feel like it's still bouncing." It was funny how accurate she was. The energy of this party has lingered for days, and helped simultaneously to be the housewarming that we never really got until now in our new home.

50th Birthday Party Themes

50th Birthday Party Themes

Popular themes of the past have focused on the downhill slope. How drab! 50 is life's peak! You'll find several fun themed party ideas here perfect for celebrating 50.

50th Birthday Cake Ideas

50th Birthday Cake Ideas

Cake time! Every party should have a cake, the bigger the better! Get clever ideas for creating a 50th birthday cake. Not a baker? Get easy supplies for making a plain cake into a 50th birthday cake to remember.

50th Birthday Ideas

50th Birthday Ideas

There are just too many amazing 50th birthday ideas for one page. Find over a dozen 50th Birthday Party Themes from golf and Nascar to dinner parties, garden parties and more on the 50th birthday party ideas page.

Return from 50th Birthday Party Ideas to Adult Birthday Party Ideas.

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