Guides

50 Fantastic 50th Birthday Party Ideas

Last Updated on November 17, 2020

So the big 5-0 is coming up and chances are you've done the bar hopping and group dinner thing for the past 30 years. It’s time to shake things up.

A 50th birthday party is joyous recognition of a half-century lived and wisdom earned. It’s an opportunity to draw friends and family near, to reminisce, and to make new memories together. You deserve a truly extraordinary and exceptional 50th birthday party to kick off the new decade. You deserve a celebration worthy of 50 years of being you. Most of all, you deserve to have some fun!

50th birthday party balloons

Ready to usher in your golden decade? Here are 50 fantastic 50th birthday party ideas that will make this your best birthday bash yet.

Jump to Section

Classes

1. Take an Online Cooking Class

Whether you are quarantined during a pandemic or all of your family lives in different states, an online cooking class is a great 50th birthday party idea that will bring everyone together. You and a group of virtual attendees can follow along live as a professional chef shows you expert tips and techniques behind some of your favorite dishes. Learn to make restaurant-quality pizza, fresh pasta, authentic paella and more — right from your very own kitchen! 

an online cooking class is a fantastic 50th birthday party idea
via Cozymeal

2. Learn to Make Macarons

Treat your sophisticated 50-year-old palate to the finer things in life: French macarons. Learn both the art and the science of making the classic (and classy) French macaron completely from scratch. You'll indulge in elegant flavors like pistachio, lavender, lemon and Earl Grey. How’s that for a sweet birthday party idea? Find an in-person macarons class or take this Parisian Macarons class virtually.

3. Stir Up Some Fun in a Mixology Session

For a refreshing departure from the typical birthday bar scene, enjoy craft cocktail lessons and a crowd-free night out for a fun 50th birthday party. Learn the art of mixing the perfect cocktail and get your hands “dirty” making drinks and tasting your creations. Best of all, with online mixology classes you don't even need to leave the house if you don't want to. 

Take a mixology classes for a unique birthday experience
via Cozymeal

4. Register for a BYOB Art Class

For a fun 50th birthday party idea, celebrate your creativity! Invite your friends, sip your favorite beverage, and enjoy step-by-step instruction with experienced and enthusiastic local artists. There are tons of options, from painting to pottery to jewelry making and more, and you’ll leave with your very own one-of-a-kind creation.

5. Treat Yourself to Cake Decorating

No 50th birthday party is complete without an over-the-top cake topped with glossy icing, sprinkles and the works. Learn how to bake and decorate a cake worthy of a 50th birthday party in an online cake decorating class. You'll learn how to whip up rich buttercream and fluffy sponge cake as the chef teaches you techniques behind frosting, assembling and garnishing. Go on, treat yourself! This idea really takes the cake.

A cake decorating class makes for an engaging and creative birthday party
via Cozymeal

Tours and Tastings

6. Go on a Food Tour

Stroll through local staples and hidden gems that capture the essence of classic home cooking, gourmet dining and international wonders. You and your entourage can indulge in a unique culinary landscape and experience what your hometown has to offer by going on a food tour led by the city’s best guides. Food tours are a great 50th birthday party idea and cater to every flavor palate and personality. You'll stop by local hotspots sampling the best regional cuisine with the expertise of a local food expert. Find a food tour near you, and get ready to see your city in a whole new culinary light!

Food tours are a unique 50th birthday party idea
via Cozymeal

7. Go on a Brewery Tour

A brewery tour is one of those birthday party ideas that never gets old — partly because there are always new craft breweries and microbreweries popping up all over the place. Do a little research and check out what tours are available in your city. Or, hire a designated driver, round up your friends, and make your own itinerary!

8. Go Wine Tasting

Vineyards nearby? Gather the troops, rent a party bus, and tour your area's finest vino. Wine tasting tours are a great 50th birthday party idea because there is minimal decision making involved. You can taste freely, take in the views, and enjoy turning 50 in a fun, safe, and stress-free environment.

Go wine tasting for your 50th birthday this year
via Shutterstock

Fun for Foodies

9. Savor Fancy Cocktail Party Hors d’Oeuvres

An amazing birthday party dinner doesn't always need to be five courses. Instead, throw a cocktail party for a delicious and fuss-free 50th birthday. Get creative with hors d'oeuvres, offering a wide array that's impressive in both taste and presentation. Some classics you can never go wrong with include crostini, crab cakes with remoulade, shrimp cocktail, stuffed mushrooms, and deviled eggs. Your next dinner party is sure to be a hit.

Throw an elegant 50th birthday party with the help of this Cocktail Party Hors d’Oeuvres cooking class
via Cozymeal

10. Organize a Cheese Tasting and Fondue Party

Yes: a things-on-skewers-dunked-into-a-vat-of-melted-cheese party. A cheese tasting and fondue party is a great party idea that doesn’t involve subjecting yourself to elaborate recipes. Plus, you can encourage guests to bring their favorite cheese or something funky they’ve always wanted to try.

11. Enjoy an Alfresco Farm to Table Dinner

Take it outside for an unforgettable alfresco 50th birthday party. Farm dinners are a radical alternative to stale birthday dinner parties. Enjoy a restaurant created at the source where you and your friends and family can dine at one long table set between earth and sky. Book a seat at the table with Outstanding in the Field.

Host a 50th birthday party with a farm to table dinner
via Outstanding in the Field

12. Backyard Grill and Chill

Nothing beats a good old-fashioned American cookout. So fire up the grill and have a classic backyard birthday barbeque filled with food, fun, friends and family for a 50th birthday everyone will love. Not a skilled grillmaster? Learn the ropes in a BBQ cooking class or a good YouTube video. Soon, you'll be armed with the know-how behind perfectly grilled chicken, kabobs and even desserts.

13. Indulge in a Michelin Quality Meal

Treat yourself to a Michelin quality meal made by a private chef for an all-out indulgent 50th party. No matter what you’re craving, there’s a signature private chef experience for you. These multi-course menus feature incredible high-quality dishes prepared for you by some of the best chefs in the country. Chefs arrive at your location of choice with all of the necessary ingredients and equipment to prepare a gourmet meal. They'll even clean up before they leave! From Miami to Houston to San Diego, find a private chef experience near you.

Hire a personal chef for your 50th birthday
via Cozymeal

14. Enjoy a Progressive Dinner Party

Progressive dinner parties, where each course is served at a different home or location, transform a basic meal into a fun and engaging activity. These moving feasts offer hours of entertainment with a limited amount of prep work. It's a great birthday party idea and a way to entertain a group without one person having to shoulder the entire responsibility (or cost) of a multi-course dinner party.

15. Start the Day With Brunch

Brunch is always a great idea. Whether as sustenance for the day ahead or as recovery from the night before, there’s no better way to kick off a new decade than surrounded by your favorite people, eating elegant and indulgent fares, and sipping a mimosa or building your own bloody mary. Take a brunch cooking class near you with your group for an interactive experience and prepare anything from fluffy New Orleans beignets to juicy fried chicken and waffles.

Start your 50th birthday party with a delicious brunch
via Cozymeal

16. Have a Hawaiian Luau Pig Roast

Maybe you can't jet off to Hawaii for your 50th birthday, but you can add the spirit of the islands to your birthday party right at home. Host a Hawaiian luau and proper pig roast for the ultimate lei’d back 50th birthday party celebration.

17. Enjoy a Relaxing Picnic

Skip the noisy restaurant and lay out a 50th birthday party picnic instead. Find the perfect park or rent a picnic area for the day, get creative with fun drinks and finger foods, and prepare classic picnic games like wheelbarrow relays and egg and spoon races.

A relaxing outdoor picnic makes for a fun and fuss-free birthday
via Unsplash

18. Try a Taste of Authentic Spanish Tapas

Explore the flavors of Spain with a trip through an authentic tapas menu. Create a tapas themed birthday party by highlighting iconic, elegant flavor profiles of popular Spanish cuisine. Some favorites include pan con tomate, gambas al ajillo, patatas bravas and tuna-stuffed peppers. Most importantly, each dish is designed to be shared among good company for one of the tastiest 50th birthday party ideas out there.

19. Host a Hand Roll Sushi Party

Celebrate the big 5-0 at home in Japanese fashion with a proper Hand Roll Sushi Party. Taking a sushi making class promises to be a fun-filled 50th birthday party idea guaranteed to satisfy everyone regardless of dietary preferences. Learn how to make perfect sushi rice, prepare your fillings and pick the best toppings for your rolls. You will also have the opportunity to get acquainted with the complex flavor and sweet, pungent quality of fresh wasabi to kick things up a notch.

A hand roll sushi class is a unique birthday event
via Cozymeal

20. Throw a Homemade Pizza Party

Nothing beats homemade pizza. And making pizza from scratch is easier than you think. It’s even more fun when you turn it into a party! Throw a homemade pizza party and take a pizza making class to learn tips and tricks to making handmade pizzas for a fun 50th party idea. Learn the secrets behind the perfect pizza dough, then choose from a wide array of both vegetarian and carnivorous combinations. 

Throw a Party

21.  Throw a "Golden Milestone" Party

Enter your golden age with an all-gold themed 50th birthday party. From decor to dress code, go all-out for your big day. Gold streamers, confetti, tableware and mylar balloons will make the space sparkle. Don some gold garb to top off the look!

throw a golden milestone party with all of the glam decor
via Canva

22. Go for the Gold With an Olympic Party

This is one of those 50th birthday party ideas that will definitely strike gold. Organize a handful of games and an array of international food and drinks and you’ve got a party that will carry the torch for years to come.

23. Deal Up a Casino Party

You can bet the house that a casino-themed birthday party is a surefire winner. The stakes are high when conjuring up 50th birthday party ideas, so don’t take a gamble on a lackluster theme for the big bash.

a casino themed party is a fun adult birthday idea
via Canva

24. Have a Speakeasy Soirée

Known for luxury and excess, this makes the perfect theme for an out-of-this-era 50th birthday party. With a 20s themed dress code, art deco decor, and plenty of bubbly, guests will talk about this celebration for years to come.

25. Throw a Masquerade Ball

Masked in mystery and draped in decadence, a masquerade ball is a birthday party idea that will be nothing short of magical. A 50th birthday party masquerade ball promises to be elegant and stylish while leaving plenty of room for creativity and a lot to the imagination.

a mask for a masquerade ball
via Canva

26. Host a Murder Mystery Party

For a thrilling 50th birthday party idea, try Night of Mystery downloadable murder mystery parties. There are plenty of themes to choose from. Guests receive a detailed character description in their invitation along with some background information on the party. Everyone can arrive in character and start mingling and verbally sleuthing before a murder occurs. Dun dun duuunnnnn…

27. DIY a Double Feature Drive-In Movie Night

Though you might be hard-pressed to find an operational drive-in theater, it doesn’t take much to set up your own backyard movie night. All you need is a projector, a screen, and all the proper concession stand fixings for a double feature drive-in movie 50th birthday party.

throw a DIY backyard movie night
via Mobile Bay Magazine

28. Have a Board Game Night

Invite everyone to bring their favorite board game and rouse a little friendly competition for a fun 50th birthday party. Double down on game night with some wordplay featuring exotic game meats like alligator jerky, venison meatballs, deviled duck eggs, bison sliders, and more.

29. Host a Black Tie Affair

A black tie 50th birthday party will go down in the books as one to remember. Ask guests to dress to the nines and instead of gifts, make it a fundraiser and ask guests to donate to a charity of the birthday honoree’s choosing.

host a black tie affair for an elegant 50th party
via Canva

30. Flashback to the 50s Party

What about throwing a 50s party — as in the 1950s? Putting together a sock hop type thing is a great 50th birthday party idea sure to be filled with great music, swinging poodle skirts, and leather jackets galore.

Events and Activities

31. Celebrate at a Music Festival

Music festivals come in all shapes and sizes and feature every genre of music under the sun. Find out what music festivals are scheduled on or near your big day for an amped-up 50th party.

Celebrate at a music festival for a fun 50th birthday party
via Lollapalooza

32. Hit a Karaoke Bar

Indulge late-night singing appetites and let your musical freak flags fly at a karaoke bar. At their core, great karaoke bars allow people to feel comfortable creatively expressing themselves around the people they love, even when a note falls flat — which is why karaoke night always makes for a great birthday party.

33. Set Sail for a Booze Cruise

Ahoy, party people! Why limit 50th birthday party ideas to dry land? From happy hour party boats to sunset cruises to moonlight coasting, make a splash with birthday booze cruises equipped with full bars, light bites, live music, and popping dance floors to keep you afloat on your birthday.

hop aboard a booze cruise for a fun birthday idea
via Adeline's Sea Moose

34. Check Something Off the Bucket List

What’s on your bucket list? Skydiving? Learning how to scuba dive? No matter what still needs to be checked off your bucket list, there’s no better time than the present. Pick one (or more!) items on the list and turn it into a 50th birthday party.

35. Check Out a Comedy Club

“I just really don’t like to laugh much,” said nobody, of any age, ever. Comedy clubs are often overlooked, but can make for memorable nights full of laughter. Consider checking out a local comedy club or show for your 50th birthday to help you laugh your way through turning another year older. Who knows? You may even end up being a part of the act on account of the special occasion!

a comedy club always makes for a fun birthday celebration
via Brad Garrett Comedy Club

36. Enjoy Live Music and Dancing

Instead of going bar hopping or clubbing to get your kicks, check out live music venues in your city for a jazzy 50th birthday party. No matter where you end up or what genre of music you find, a night of live music never fails to leave you feeling energized, inspired, and ready to face 50 head-on.

Sports and the Outdoors

37. Ride in a Hot Air Balloon

No birthday party is complete without an abundance of balloons. But it’s time to take it up a notch (okay, a lot of notches) and sail through the sky in a hot air balloon for a fun birthday idea that will take you to cloud nine.

Take your 50th birthday party to new heights with a hot air balloon ride
via Unsplash

38. Get Groovy at Roller Disco

Roll on down to funkytown for a groovy 50th birthday party at the roller disco. Skate around the rink while the DJ spins your favorite disco and boogie tracks. Of course, 70s and 80s style costumes will not be optional.

39. See a Sporting Event

And kick it off with a 50th birthday tailgating party! It doesn’t matter the sport, the teams playing, or even if it’s a pro or amateur game, a sporting event has all the makings of a winning birthday party idea, no matter the age.

See a football game or sporting event for a worthwhile 50th birthday party idea
via Unsplash

40. Play Lawn Games

Pick from corn hole, bocce ball, horseshoes, or whatever else strikes your fancy. There are a host of lawn games that have all the makings of a great birthday party. And no, you’re never too old to play giant beer pong.

41. Float Down a Lazy River

Forgo waterslides and splash zones for relaxation, cocktails, and refined floating. Whether you opt for a luxury resort where you can park your inner tube at the swim-up bar or go all natural, a float down a lazy river is one of the best 50th birthday party ideas ever pooled together.

Take it easy with a spa or lazy river for your 50th birthday
via Four Seasons Orlando

42. Go Glamping

The older you get, the harder it is to convince your friends that camping is a good idea, whether it’s your 50th birthday party or not. Enter glamping, aka glamorous camping. Glamping is where stunning nature meets modern luxury. It’s something your older and wiser cadre of friends can get behind.

43. Get Rowdy at a Rodeo

Even if it’s your first rodeo, you’ll be roped in by all the fun and excitement a rodeo has to offer, which is why it makes for a great 50th birthday party idea. Cowboy boots and hats not optional.

Looking for a unique 50th birthday party idea? Try a rodeo!
via Unsplash

44. Build a Beach Bonfire

A beach bonfire has magical abilities to transform any evening into a memorable occasion. Add together s’mores fixings, someone who knows how to build (and tend) a fire, snuggly blankets, a full cooler, and family and friends for a fun and relaxed birthday.

45. Road Trip to a Weekend Getaway

Plan an entire weekend away for a fun 50th birthday party. You can road trip to a new destination or one of your old favorites. Grab your entourage, find a fun Airbnb to bunk at for the night, make a playlist full of classic road trip tunes, and hit the open road for a combination road trip and weekend getaway.

planning a road trip always makes for a fun new adventure
via Canva

46. Score Big With a Scavenger Hunt

Some things just get better with age: fine wine, cheese, jeans, a 401(k) and… scavenger hunts! A scavenger hunt is a great 50th birthday party idea that provides hours of unbridled fun and excitement.

47. Go to the Horse Races or a Polo Match

Anywhere requiring big froofy hats and a mint julep in hand is an ideal setting for a posh 50th birthday party. See what races are coming up at the local racing track or find a polo club near you for a birthday filled with plenty of horsing around.

Head to the horse racing track for a great 50th birthday
via Unsplash

Health and Wellness

48. Head to a Yoga Retreat

For a simultaneously energizing and relaxing 50th birthday party idea, head to a yoga retreat with your omies. Some friends may think a yoga retreat might be a bit of a stretch, but whether you're looking for beaches or mountains, rustic or lux, the physical or the spiritual, there's a yoga retreat out there for you.

A yoga retreat makes for a relaxing 50th birthday
via Unsplash

49. Register for a Fun Run

There’s The Color Run, Warrior Dash, and tons of other mud runs and obstacle course races. Even underwear runs can easily be turned into the most fun 50th birthday party idea ever! These wild and crazy events get the body, mind, and spirit off to the races. Of course, there will be more celebration to continue after you cross the finish line.

50. Relax With a Spa Day

Book a day at the spa for one of the most relaxing and rejuvenating 50th birthday party ideas. Indulge in a mud bath, enjoy a hot stone massage, go all out with a spa smorgasbord, or try out a trendy new spa treatment. Forest bathing, anyone?

book yourself a spa day as a relaxing birthday party and gift in one
via Canva

 

As you get ready to usher in the big 5-0, remember: This is a season of life worth celebrating.

Whether you like to rock out, party, relax or eat, there’s a memorable 50th birthday party idea waiting for you. Go on and plan your best birthday bash yet. You’ve earned it!

For even more fantastic 50th birthday party ideas, check out other experiences on Cozymeal happening near you — in over 40 cities, including Houston, New Orleans, New York City, San Francisco, and more!

Celebrating other milestones? Check out our guides for 30th birthday party ideas, 40th birthday party ideas, and virtual birthday party ideas!

 

FAQs

How do you celebrate a 50th birthday without a party?

Celebrating a birthday without a physical gathering may not be the norm, but it can still be fun and memorable. You and your loved ones can learn to make your favorite food in an online cooking class, catch a movie together with the Netflix Party browser extension, host a hilarious virtual game night with Jackbox.TV or just spend some quality face time over FaceTime. Technology offers more options than ever for long-distance hangouts — make the most of it!

What should I plan for a 50th birthday party?

Planning is key for any successful party! Give yourself plenty of time to think about your guest list, theme, food and drink options, and activities so the only thing left to do on the big day is enjoy your time.

What is the color for a 50th birthday?

Turning 50 is all about entering the "golden age," so go all-out in gold. Don't be afraid to add some sparkle to the occasion!

How do I decorate my house for a 50th birthday party?

Kick your party prep off with a color palette or theme (think old Hollywood, 1950s, or the luau or all-gold ideas mentioned here!), which will guide you in your decor decision-making. Then, pick out some streamers, balloons, confetti, plates and napkins, and more that fit the bill. You could even top off the scene with some fun, on-theme party favors — like paper leis for a luau or pig roast.

What should you wear to a 50th birthday party?

You're the star of the show, so feel free to set the "dress code" to whatever makes you feel your best. Whether you're dressing up for a theme, donning gold from head to toe or simply keeping it comfortable and casual, you're sure to look great. Just be sure to tell your guests what to wear!

About Cozymeal

Discover the best in culinary experiences and products on Cozymeal: From in-person cooking classes to virtual cooking & mixology classes to private chef experiences and top-rated cookware — from world-class chefs, mixologists & more.

View All Experiences & Cookware on Cozymeal