How to Throw a 50th Birthday Bash

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This past weekend we celebrated my father-in-laws 50th birthday. It was a memorable event and a total surprise to him. Whether you are celebrating your own 50th milestone or know someone who is, I wanted to share with you How to Throw a 50th Birthday Bash so you can make sure it’s a year to remember!

How to Throw a 50th Birthday Bash

Now if you have ever thrown a party before you know that there are basically 3 essentials that can make or break a party. These 3 are:

  • Party Decorations
  • Food
  • Drinks (including alcoholic and non-alcoholic choices)

Of course guests are also a necessity but I think that goes without saying.

So you now the basics but where do you start? Well, you want to start with a theme. For me, my theme was simply “50 years”. My sister-in-law and I decided to go with elegant colors that would work well for a cocktail party. We chose silver, gold, and black. For the decorations we shopped at ShinDigz and purchased the following items:

  • Balloons and Curling Ribbon (in metallic black, gold, and silver)
  • Balloon Weights
  • Tableware (including cups, napkins, cutlery and tablecloths)
  • “50” Numbered Confetti
  • Spiral Danglers
  • Crepe Paper Streamers
  • Tissue Poms

We hung the decorations around the entire inside and outside. We then had a piece of black paper taped to the wall with a foil curtain hanging down. We then had  metallic sharpie markers sitting to the side so guests could write a message to the birthday boy. It was a huge hit!

board to sign at 50th birthday bash

A “50” photo collage was made out of pictures that we had guests upload and share in a private Facebook group. They were printed in black and white and glued into the shape of 50 on a large piece of foam board. Again, another huge hit! 50th photo board

For the stair railing we decided to blow up balloons which we used a Balloon Time Helium tank because after all, that is the easiest and most cost effective way of decorating with balloons. We tied the balloons to the railing and then taped some pictures onto the ends of the string. This was displayed right in the main entrance of the house.

balloons on railing

Outside we set up some large cocktail tables that were perfect for guests that prefer to stand. They were covered in black table cloths and had a balloon weight with balloons tied to it and pictures taped to the bottom.

cocktail tables for 50th bash

We also set up a Make Your Own Cocktail bar and decorated that as well. There was a cooler of ice located next to it.

cocktail bar at 50th birthday bash I have to say, the decorations turned out so great and I really think they made the party so nice and elegant looking. To complete the entire idea of the party I just had to purchase this Over the Hill Cane. It comes complete with it’s own horn too!

survivial over the hill cane

Food and Drinks

Food was the next item on our list. We made it sort of a potluck and asked guests to bring an item that was an appetizer or beverage such as a bottle of wine. We had lots of finger foods including meatballs and mini sausages. We also had meat and cheese trays, cheese fondue dip with beer bread, crackers, chips and salsa, and so much more. For dessert we served up scoops of Baskin Robbins ice cream which we just purchased a bunch of different flavors in the prepackaged quarts.

For drinks we had everything from water to 2-liters of soda to hard liquor and wine. It was really amazing the variety of delicious food and beverage choices we had.

food at 50th birthday bash

All in all, the party was a fantastic success! I truly think my father-in-law was surprised and had a fantastic time. I want to give a huge thanks to so many of our sponsors that helped make this party successful. For more ideas including appetizers, drinks, and party decorations please visit my 50 Cheers for 50 Years Guide!


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  1. Looks like the party was fabulous – you did a fantastic job! Thank you for some much needed ideas! I love the 50 collage!

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