100+ Unique 50th Birthday Party Ideas To Celebrate The Milestone

Turning 50 is certainly one of the biggest milestones in life. A 50th birthday party is a celebration of one’s accomplishments. We generally raise a toast and wish for the best health of the person celebrating it. In short, it’s not limited to just cake and booze. If someone in your family is hitting the big five-oh, the festivity has to be unique and grand.

A few creative ideas and a little bit of effort would help you plan a fun-filled 50th birthday party. To help you organize the 50th birthday smoothly, we have collated a list of fantastic party ideas. From party themes to decorations, food, invitations, and party favors, you’ll find everything here.

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50th Birthday Party Planning Ideas

This list of 50th birthday ideas can make your party planning easy and convenient. Scroll through the options, and use the ideas that you think would work best for the upcoming party.

Surprise Party Themes

Deciding a theme for a big bash could be a confusing task. We have picked a few ideas to help you plan the party smoothly.

  1. Decade party: Pick a decade that has been special for the person whose birthday you are going to celebrate. If it is the 70s, then a hippie theme would be a good idea. Or if they choose the 80s, then nothing could beat the disco theme. Pick out an entertaining act according to the theme.
  2. Broadway musical: A Broadway-inspired theme should be all about bright lights, an assortment of wines, singing, and dancing. Set a stage, and play upbeat music in the background to let everyone enjoy the classic-themed party.
  3. Golden milestone: A golden birthday theme could be a dazzling idea to celebrate the 50th birthday as 50 is popularly referred to as the golden mark or golden year. You can decorate the room with golden balloons, confetti, chairs, and LED lights.

    Golden birthday party theme
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    Image: IStock

  4. Backyard barbeque: For a simple yet elegant party, a barbeque would be an excellent idea. All you would require is a grill, a few chairs, wholesome ingredients, and some popular drinks. Arrange for a few vibrant fireworks to end the night.
  5. Black and white: It is a timeless theme that can never go out of fashion. You can ask the guests to wear black or white outfits. Have a simple black and white decor, and play the classic era’s music.
  6. Countryside refreshment: A picturesque natural location, local wine, local organic food, and rustic decoration would make a sophisticated and inviting theme for a 50th birthday party celebration.
  7. Sushi night: If you enjoy sushi, then a live sushi counter would be so much fun and exciting. You can also set up a DIY sushi counter. Gather all your friends and family members and make some amazing sushi. Stock up on all the necessary ingredients and enjoy eating and dancing the night away.
  8. Cheese and wine party: Enjoy the night by hosting an epic cheese and wine night. Find a caterer who can organize cheeses and offer the guests a variety of wines. You can also hire a sommelier to educate you on different wines and make the event enjoyable.
  9. Bowling night: Spend your 50th birthday night bowling with your best buddies and family. According to the guest list, book an alley and enjoy your time with your gang. You may consider making some arrangements for refreshments to fuel up your guests.
  10. Woodstock party theme: Celebrate your 50th birthday in style by asking your guests to dress up in 1960s-style outfits, planning the event in a farm or anywhere outdoors, arranging hippie cuisine consisting of hotdogs and hamburgers, playing the iconic Woodstock music and playing trivia games with your guests.
  11. Candid camera party: This would be a unique party idea as it is inspired by the American TV show ‘ Candid Camera.’ For this party, you can put up funny pictures of the birthday person in the party space, have a camera-shaped cake, and do activities involving disposable cameras for the guests. This event will surely be fun and loaded with laughter.

Planning for the big day needs good coordination and seeking the support of friends may also help. Ainy Törnquist, a wife and mother, shares how she celebrated her husband Peter’s 50th birthday thanks to the support of her close ones. She says, “I have started sending out invitations to all his friends and relatives, trying to get confirmation. Two weeks before the surprise party, I met a good friend, Walter, who offered to help me with the catering….My friend Anna brought with her all the decorations for the place: flowers, candles, cakes, table cloth, lighting and many more. Peter was shocked, happy, very touched, and speechless for a moment. Tears of happiness came from him shortly after (ⅰ).’’

50th Birthday Party Ideas For Men

Here are a few interesting ideas that you could use for the birthday boy’s party. They can be used for the birthday girl, too, if she has a similar taste.

  1. Cheers to beers: If the birthday boy is a beer lover, then a beer-themed party would be an appropriate idea. You can play beeramid and have beer brewing kits as a special addition to the celebration.

    Plan a beer-themed party
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    Image: IStock

  2. Casino: Set up tables to enjoy blackjack and poker games and have unlimited fun with your buddies. Finger foods and lights can create a perfect ambiance for the casino-themed birthday celebration.
  1. Cowboy theme: A western-themed party, with everyone dressed up as cowboys and cowgirls would be a one-of-a-kind theme to celebrate your loved one’s 50th birthday. This entertaining theme is sure to bring joy and jubilation to the birthday boy and their guests.
  2. Mustache: It could be a funky theme if it’s going to be an ‘all men’ kind of party celebration. You can find plenty of mustache and beard props to add to the excitement.
  3. Sports bash: If the birthday boy is a sports lover, his favorite game can be the 50th birthday bash theme. Guests can wear jerseys and even play a game for entertainment before feasting on the cake and other savory items.
  1. Racing car: Racing and classic car fans would love to be the attraction of the party that is all about cars, races, and speed. You can design the birthday cake in the shape of a car, have a racing track as the party decor, and find car posters as banners.
  2. Traveler’s ride: If it is a traveler’s 50th birthday, nothing can beat the traveler-inspired idea for the party. You may use world maps as decoration or even use the person’s travel pictures and make a collage to display at the venue.
  3. Fondue party: Make your 50th birthday bash exciting by choosing a fondue party. You can choose either chocolate or cheese or both. Stock up on many fresh fruits, vegetables, napkins, plates, and drinks. This party will leave all the guests with filled tummies and happy hearts.
  4. Pool party: What better way to spend your birthday than relaxing by the pool, eating your favorite foods, and spending time with your loved ones? This party is ideal during the summer. Gather your loved ones, put on some SPF, spread finger foods and refreshing drinks, and put on some lovely music. This would be the most relaxed yet fun party for you and your guests.
  5. All-white-themed party: While you may choose any color you like, white just seems more elegant and classy. So, for this party, ask your guests to dress up in white and add other colors to the food and decorations.
  6. Coastal theme: If you are a beach lover, then this theme party will surely be fun and exciting. For this party, consider serving seafood items, sea shells, anchors, dainty flowers, and aesthetic decorations. You may also coordinate your cake and drinks with the colors of the sea.

50th Birthday Party Ideas For Women

Are you planning to have a ladies’ party? Let us help you out with some fascinating party ideas.

  1. Arabian Nights: A luxurious Moroccan theme with colorful drapes, succulent items on the menu, cushions, and dim lights could give a rich feel to the 50th birthday celebration for a woman who is an epitome of grace and has impeccable taste.
  2. Hollywood theme: Celebrity costumes, starry decoration, and movie posters all around could make for an interesting party theme to surprise a movie buff.
  3. 50-year journey: Take printouts and collect videos of the birthday woman’s life from her childhood days to teenage years, and then her adult life. Decorate the place with those pictures and play the videos to let her relive those beautiful moments of her 50 years.
  4. Flowery affair: If the woman loves flowers, you may have her favorite flowers in every party element. You could use them for decoration, make special food items, and enjoy an exquisite-style 50th birthday.
  5. Karaoke women’s night: If you are planning an ‘all-women night,’ then a karaoke theme would be an ideal choice. All the ladies at the party can sing together, dance, and munch on delicious food.
  6. Costume party: A dress-up party would always be happening for a woman. Let there be no restrictions on costume and makeup for the guests to have super fun.
  7. Family gathering: For a simple and memorable 50th birthday party, a nice family event to enjoy a meal together and express your feelings would be a lovely idea.

    Family gathering for 50th birthday
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    Image: IStock

  8. Sweet 50th: If there can be sweet 16, why not sweet 50th? A colorful theme with balloons, props, confetti, and customized posters in the background can be a simple yet graceful idea to celebrate the glorious 50th birthday.
  9. Southern style party: For this chic party event consider adding southern elements in decorations, like using paste colors, spanish moss and dixie-land band for entertainment. Offer traditional southern food, including mac and cheese, chicken fried steak, baked beans, potato salads and fruit cobblers. This southern-themed party would definitely become a memorable party for the guests.
  10. Denim party: Embrace your 50s with a denim themed party. Ask all your guests to dress up in denim and arrange for delicious finger food, drinks, and desserts. Put on some rocking music and enjoy the night dancing, eating, taking pictures, and making memories.
  11. Pajama party: A perfect combination of comfort and fun. Make all your guests dress up in their most comfy pajamas. Opt for casual decorations, delicious food, soothing music, drinks, and fun indoor games.
  12. Tropical theme party: This party theme is extremely versatile. You can choose an outdoor venue or celebrate it indoors with your loved ones. Add lots of green and bright colors to the decorations, have delicious tropical-inspired food and drinks for the guests, and have simple yet engaging activities, such as painting, arts and crafts, and movie marathons.

Ideas for 50th Birthday Party Decorations

A party looks bland without proper decoration. Based on the theme you choose, you may pick a few ideas from here to add more color to the venue.

  1. Balloon decoration: Balloons are an easy and versatile pick for any party decoration. They are available in different colors and add a personalized touch to the decor.
  2. Props or accessories: You can decorate your party venue in creative and quirky ways using different kinds of props, including photo booth accessories, sashes, sunglasses, confetti, hats, and a lot more.
  3. Candles and soft lights: If you have planned a simple backyard evening party or a night party, you may use dim lights, LEDs, and candles to create an intimate party vibe.
  4. Memory wall: Select a big wall at the venue and make it a memory wall by decorating it with pictures of the person whose 50th birthday you are celebrating. You can ask all the guests to leave messages on the wall to make it even more special.
  5. Flowers or banners: These are simple-to-use props for all kinds of 50th birthday party themes. They are cost-effective, readily available, and merge well with the existing decorations.
  6. Letters: You can find letters available in the form of balloons, ribbons, and cut-outs. These can be used to write the name on the wall or create a welcome arc at the venue.
  7. DIY decor: If you want to save money and still want to have loads of fun, you can use paper, cardboard, and other crafty materials to make colorful and unique decorations.
  8. Fancy cutlery: To amp up your decorations, you can use fancy platters, cupcake holders, decorative bowls, and plates. These will add up to the overall decorations at the party.
  9. Floor pillows: For a casual birthday party, floor pillows make a perfect cozy atmosphere. You may choose the color of these pillows, considering other decorations. You can also throw some shrugs around. These decorations are great for an intimate birthday party at home.
  10. Nature’s decorations: If you are celebrating a birthday during the day in the summer or spring, then consider celebrating it in a park or a farm. The green grass, trees, and flowers will be an incredible backdrop.

50th Birthday Gift Ideas

Choosing the right presents for someone turning 50 could be puzzling. We bring you some practical and thoughtful gifting ideas as a way to say congratulations.

  1. Fitness watch: Taking care of the health of someone turning 50 should be your priority. A smartwatch that tracks daily fitness, including calories burned, heart rate, daily steps, and sleep patterns could be an ideal gift.
  2. Spa gift set: It could be the right choice for a woman on her 50th birthday. Pamper her and help her relax in the comforts of her home.

    Gift a spa, 50th birthday idea
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    Image: IStock

  3. Wine glass set: Instead of making the recipient feel old, you can express how perfectly they are aging by gifting them a vintage wine glass set.
  4. Travel map: If your birthday friend loves traveling, what could be better than a travel destination map on which they can mark the places they visited and the ones on their bucket list?
  5. Pizza oven: After turning 50, one should enjoy life to the fullest. An electric pizza oven would be a unique choice if your friend is a foodie or likes cooking.
  6. Birthstones: In case you want to give a timeless gift, then a birthstone could be a good option to commemorate the 50th birthday celebration.
  7. Gardening kit: It is a thoughtful idea to present a gardening kit to someone who wants to get closer to nature and spend peaceful afternoons.
  8. Pottery classes: Book a month of pottery classes as a gift. This gift will help them explore their creative side while having fun and learning how to make mugs, vases, and bowls.
  9. Subscription food services: These services will benefit someone with a busy schedule. This gift would be something that will be cherished with every meal.
  10. Luggage set: This is going to be a unique gift option. This luggage set would be handy for someone who travels often and will be appreciated.
  11. E-reading: A Kindle would be a heartwarming gift option. They can carry it anywhere and read their favorite books.
  12. Theme park tickets: Theme parks are not only for children and teens; adults too can enjoy theme parks. So get them family tickets for a day, and this would be the most memorable birthday gift.
  13. Flower arranging classes: This would be a lovely gift for someone who loves flowers and nature. These classes would cover setting styles, making flower crowns, and more.
  14. Road trip: A surprise road trip for an adventurous soul will be very much appreciated. Load up on snacks and drinks and take a road trip either to a favorite spot or check out any new quirky attractions in the countryside.
  15. Coffee maker: No matter how old one gets, they love their coffee. This would be a great gifting option for anyone. It is surely going to be the most cherished gift.
  16. Skincare set: This one is a thoughtful gift option. Create a skincare hamper consisting of their favorite products and some candies and chocolates.
  17. Book club subscription: Nothing can be more appealing to a book lover than books. So, get them a yearly subscription from which they can choose whichever books they like. Undoubtedly, this is going to be a valuable gift.
  18. Essential oil diffuser: A lovely gift option that can be used for aromatherapy, meditation, or simple relaxation. It’s a stress buster gift, for sure.
  19. Smart mug: It’s an everyday mug but with added technology. This will help keep the coffee or tea at a perfect temperature—a simple and sophisticated gift option.

50th Birthday Food and Drink Ideas

The food on the menu of the birthday party should go by the theme. We have some popular ideas for food and drinks that you could include.

  1. Cocktails: Have a mixture of cocktails on the table with alcoholic and non-alcoholic choices for everyone to enjoy the party.
  2. Special cake: No birthday party is complete without a cake. Get a unique personalized cake that can surprise the guest of honor and the guests.
  3. Decade favorites: If the party theme is based on a particular decade, you can pick the most famous recipes of those times and help them to relive the wonderful days.
  4. Fusion fiesta: A fusion of food and drinks from different cuisines can be a unique idea to have as the 50th birthday party menu. You can add sweets, drinks, meat, and anything that is convenient to arrange.
  5. Finger foods: Include finger foods such as mini burgers, cupcakes, rolls, and meatballs or bites as these are easy to make in large quantities and also quick to munch. You do not need to arrange dining tables, saving you time and effort.
  6. Go healthy: It could be an inspiring idea to set the table with only healthy items, without fried, spicy, and too-sugary stuff.
  7. Barbeque: If you plan an evening party or a backyard party, then a barbeque menu would be a refreshing idea.
  8. Smoothie counter: This will be a hit idea for parties during the day or summer. Make delicious smoothies with fresh fruits and vegetables and serve them to your guests.
  9. Salad station: Not all salads have to be boring. Provide your guests with fresh vegetables, beans, corn, and dressings. This salad station is great for a healthy touch.
  10. Dessert corner: Arrange various desserts in small serving sizes for the guests. You can include tarts, brownies, cupcakes, donuts and macaroons.

Ideas for 50th Birthday Party Invitations

A special 50th birthday party calls for creative birthday invitations. Check out some ideas we have in store for you.

  1. DIY cards: If the guest list is not that big, you can get crafty and try making handmade invitation cards. You would require paper, cardboard, and such art items.

    DIY cards fir 50th birthday
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    Image: Shutterstock

  2. Balloon invites: You can either get balloons customized or use a marker to write the 50th birthday party’s details and send them to a handful of guests.
  3. Old cassettes or records: Instead of expensive cards, you can use old cassettes and paint on them to make creative birthday party invitations.
  4. Retro invites: To make the invitations fabulous, retro-style birthday party invitations would be an interesting choice. You can use old posters and turn them into cards.
  5. Cartoon portrait: If you are looking for a funny birthday invitation, then a cartoon portrait of your birthday mate on the card could bring a smile on everyone’s face.
  6. Sweet invitation: You can send small invites with a sweet cupcake, chocolate, and anything small and dry.
  7. Voice notes: When there’s not much time to make and send invitations, a voice note recording could be the new-age idea. All you have to do is record a voice note with the party’s details and send it to the guests’ phones.
  8. Movie ticket: Design an invitation that looks like a movie ticket with all the party details—a unique invitation option.
  9. Emoji cutouts: For a fun invite, simply cut out different emojis and enter all the party-relevant information.
  10. Adventure map invite: Adventure maps are the best for an interesting and suspenseful invite. Add all the party-relevant information as clues, but ensure the clues are easy.
  11. Doodle-themed invite: For a simple and casual invite, a doodle theme would be perfect. Add some interesting doodles and party relevant information in a quirky way.

Ideas for 50th Birthday Party Favors

To make the party a lovely memory for everyone, you can bring some cute and affordable gifts as birthday party favors.

  1. Cookie box: Homemade cookies or special cookies wrapped in an attractive package would be a simple and sweet birthday favor.
  2. Scented candles: A customized scented candle with 50 mentioned on it could be a memorable birthday favor.
  3. Flowers: If you are decorating the party venue with flowers or using flowers as a theme, then a bouquet could be a lovely choice for a 59th wedding birthday party favor.
  4. Candle or light holder: A small antique candle holder can be an exclusive idea and memorable favor for family members and friends.
  5. Keychain: Customized keychains based on the party theme can be made and given as birthday party favors. Mentioning ‘50’ on them would also serve the purpose.
  6. Photo frame: Magnetic photo frames are an elegant and practical option as party favors. 
  7. Succulents: The baby succulents in a two-inch pot wrapped beautifully are an adorable gift option for your guest,
  8. Mini champagne: Make your guests happy by giving them mini champagne bottles. You can add the guests’ name tags and write a sweet note to them for a more personal touch.
  9. Crackers kit: Make mini hampers for your guests and fill them with different crackers. Include various flavors such as cheese, pepperoni, and peri-peri.
  10. Customized olive oil: A unique gift option for your guest, little bottles of olive oil infused with garlic, oregano, lemon, or sage.
  11. Lavender sachets: A simple and cost effective gift option. Fill them with dried lavender or dried rose petals, they’ll be smelling amazing, and your guests will love it.
  12. Homemade sauces: The best way to show your guests gratitude is by giving them mini homemade sauces. Pack the sauce in a glass bottle and add a lovely note for your guests.
  13. Candied pecan bags: Pack candied pecans and other nuts into small packets and gift them to your guests. It’s a cute yet sweet way of thanking them for their presence.
  14. Personalized tote bags: Choose tan or black colored tote bags and print the names of each guest on the bag and gift them.
  15. Homemade rum balls: Gift your guest some homemade rum balls in small boxes. Add a cute ribbon for a personal touch.
  16. Macarons: Gift your guest small boxes of different flavored macaroons.It’s a lovely yet attractive gifting option.
  17. Gourmet salt: Another unique gifting option. Infuse salt with rosemary or lavender and transfer them into little bottles with cork and add a label with the guest name.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the 50th birthday significance?

The 50th birthday marks an essential milestone in a person’s life of having completed 50 golden years of their lives. This marks the beginning of the next chapter of life as one reflects on all the hard work, love, and fun moments that made their 50 years glorious.

2. What are the benefits of turning 50?

There can be countless benefits to turning 50. For example, they are 50 years wiser with the experiences and lessons learned, they can start planning their retirement, sign up for activities, plan trips to tick off their bucket list, and have a vast network of caring and supportive people built over the years

3. What is the traditional gift for a 50th birthday?

The traditional gift for one’s 50th birthday is usually associated with reaching half a century of life. In many cultures, the 50th birthday is called the “golden” birthday or the “golden jubilee.” As such, the traditional gift often involves using gold or is symbolically linked to gold.

4. What color roses are appropriate for a 50th birthday?

The color of roses appropriate for a 50th birthday can vary depending on personal preferences and cultural traditions. However, yellow colored roses are a popular choice of color often associated with a 50th birthday celebration as it symbolizes the golden anniversary.

5. Can I throw my 50th birthday party?

It is acceptable and common to throw your own 50th birthday party. Many people choose to take the initiative in organizing and hosting their milestone birthday celebrations with their friends and close ones.

6. How far in advance should I start planning a 50th birthday party?

The ideal timeframe for planning a 50th birthday party can vary depending on the scale of the event, including the budget and the guest list, the desired level of detail, and personal preferences. As a result, it can range from a few weeks to a few months.

7. What should I include in the invitations for a 50th birthday party?

Some common information generally included in the invitations for a 50th birthday party consists of the person celebrating the birthday, the date, and the time of the event, followed by the venue. Besides, you can mention the theme or dress code (if any), add special instructions, and include your contact details.

8. What are some potential challenges to planning a 50th birthday party?

Planning a 50th birthday party, like any event, can come with challenges including, determining the budget, creating the guest list, planning broad activities, finding the right venue, decorations, event logistics, and finally, personal expectations and pressure to make it a successful event.

The 50th birthday party of your loved one is a special event. So before throwing the party, take a cue from the ideas listed above, such as surprise themes and decorations and gender-specific ideas. You may also combine a few concepts to get more creative. You should also prepare appropriate invitation cards, food and beverages, and a perfect gift for them. Remember, the goal is to have a great time, so do whatever you think would work best, and don’t forget to capture the beautiful moments to cherish in the future.

Infographic: 50th Birthday Party Ideas

Celebrating the golden jubilee is a milestone that brings together years of experiences and memories. It also gives them a chance to reflect on all those bitter-sweet moments. We are here to help you make the birthday party memorable with the following infographic. Check it out and choose the idea that resonates with them the most.

party ideas for 50th birthday (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Get the high-quality PDF version of this infographic.

Download Infographic in PDF version

Key Pointers

  • Cheers to beers, Sports bash, Arabian nights, Flowery affair are a few of the many birthday party ideas based on the gender of the person.
  • Black and white, Broadway musical, countryside refreshment are some interesting themes for people turning 50.
  • If you are invited to one such birthday party, you can gift them a fitness watch, gardening kit, travel map, and much more.
50th birthday party_illustration

Image: Dall·E/MomJunction Design Team

Is a dear one’s 50th birthday nearing? Are you planning to celebrate the birthday in a grand manner? Watch this video to get some amazing ideas to arrange and celebrate a 50th birthday party.

Personal Experience: Source

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