8 Standout 70th birthday party ideas that will be remembered for years to come
If you have a 70th birthday coming around the corner, congratulations—we hope this remarkable milestone reminds you of every precious moment that has led you here. Or, maybe you have a loved one who’s ringing in the big 7-0 and deserves to be honored for another marvelous trip around the sun.
If you’re hosting a 70th birthday celebration, start by choosing a theme—it’ll help the rest of the party details fall right into place. From party favors to decorations and food, there’s no better way to enjoy the special occasion than with the perfect theme.
Here are 8 of our favorite 70th birthday party ideas—including 4 terrific, memorable themes—to help you start planning this special occasion.
70th birthday party themes
Give a 70th birthday party a meaningful theme that best reflects the life and personality of the honored guest. Whether your ideal 70th celebration feels traditional, festive, or colorful, you can implement a cohesive theme to get your guests excited to raise a toast.
Unsure of what theme may suit your guest of honor best? We’ve got 4 themes that will knock this birthday out of the park, whether it’s a surprise birthday party or one they’ve been looking forward to all year long.
Image by Jarrett Mills; “Kaboom Photo” by Paperless Post.
1. The best is yet to come
Think about the person being celebrated. Have they been seizing life ever since retiring? Do you find them knee-deep in knitting projects, on the golf course every morning, or fly fishing in a mountain stream?
Rejoice in your guest of honor’s post-retirement passions and hobbies with a best-is-yet-to-come-themed 70th birthday celebration. Who knows what fun and adventures the future holds?
— Décor: Honor the life of the party with lively decorations. Decorate the walls with colorful pinwheels or pictures of the guest of honor’s many adventures. Add some sensational streamers (1) for a festive feel. You can also showcase the birthday person’s newly found hobbies. For example, if your guest-of-honor has become a master birdwatcher, serve drinks with this bird-inspired pitcher (2). Or, if they’re constantly playing pitcher for the grandkids, fill the room with baseball balloons (3).
— Menu: Offer up a delicious spread of food that fuels the festivities. Opt for classic party food like pinwheel wraps, croissant sandwiches, and pigs in a blanket. You can use a delicious and traditional birthday sheet cake as a blank canvas. Decorate the cake with references to activities that your guest of honor enjoys. They’ll appreciate the thoughtfulness and novelty of a personalized cake.
— Activities and entertainment: If your guest of honor loves to laugh and enjoys jokes at their expense, a 70th birthday party could serve as the perfect opportunity for a roast. Select a few party guests who know the honoree well, and invite them to prepare a roast and a toast. The roast will give the guest of honor a chance to laugh at all the shenanigans they’ve gotten up to over the years. Follow it up with a heartfelt toast that will leave them overflowing with gratitude and love.
“Tray Cool” by Paperless Post; Image via Kenichi Nobusue.
2. Stay gold
This theme offers a highly-adaptable party to honor the golden years with a hint of opulence. After all, turning 70 is a big deal!
— Décor: Lay out an event space fit for royalty, with dazzling golden party decorations. Line your table with gold tableware and centerpieces to give the theme a polished feel. Add a gold-toned tablecloth to go with gold decor, plus a gold tinsel garland and party fan decorations to really make the place shine. Don’t forget some gold letter balloons and of course, some gilded cups for cheering.
— Menu: Lean into the gilded theme by opting for traditional platters to satisfy a crowd. A delicious roast chicken baked to golden perfection would pair well with mashed Yukon gold potatoes and roasted carrots. For a fantastic, regal finish, finish off with a decadent dessert. Options include, but are certainly not limited to: coconut cream pie, creme brulee, or caramelized pears. You can even add flakes of edible gold to the honoree’s favorite dishes or birthday cake for a spread Midas would envy.
— Activities and entertainment: Create new golden moments with a little help from family and friends. Have pre-recorded messages from the guest of honor’s nearest and dearest. Give them 30 seconds to relay a positive birthday message. This will give the guest of honor a beautiful memento of their 70 golden years.
Image via Mark and Graham; “Midcentury” by Cheree Berry Paper & Design for Paperless Post.
3. Party like it’s the 1950s
If you’re celebrating someone born in the 1950s, why not throw it back to where it all began? Put on your poodle skirt and leather jacket—it’s time for a fun ‘50s-themed party.
— Décor: Set the tone for your ‘50s party with retro-inspired supplies and decorations. Choose checkered napkins for a clean, diner-esque vibe, hang a shimmery chandelier, and play a rousing game of prosecco pong using old-fashioned coupe glasses. It little bit sophisticated, a little bit kitsch. It’s the perfect mix.
— Menu: Cocktail parties in the ‘50s were all about dips, deviled eggs, pigs in blankets, and pineapple upside-down cake. Serve up those, along with some of the guest of honor’s personal nostalgic favorites from their childhood. For drinks, offer martinis, Manhattans, and daiquiris.
— Activities and entertainment: Create a scrapbook that retells your guest of honor’s life story. Let them read through it with guests for some good-humored editorializing. This memento will be a comfort during and after the party.
“Wine Label” by Paperless Post; Image via Poetry and Pies.
4. Favorite Things
A 70-year life most certainly consists of plenty of favorites, from stories to foods to activities. So give your guest of honor a chance to put it all out there with a theme that highlights all of their favorite things.
Your septuagenarian may have a motto like “don’t sweat the small stuff,” or a beloved practice that helps them focus on cherishing life—like this centenarian who swears by a glass of red wine every day for longevity. Here’s your chance to incorporate it into this theme.
— Décor: Try and get in the mindset of your guest of honor. Do they live a minimalist lifestyle? Do they believe travel is the key to a life well-lived? Do they think that everything’s better when there’s jazz playing? Whatever their “thing” is, you can decorate accordingly. Look for decor that comes in the guest of honor’s favorite colors, like balloons and ceiling decorations.
— Menu: Take your menu cues from your guest of honor. If they believe that they owe their long life to a good and healthy diet, you should make sure you have their favorite healthy options available. However, if they believe the secret to a happy life is chocolate, chocolate, and more chocolate, you better make sure your double-fudge birthday cake takes center stage.
— Activities and entertainment: If your guest of honor is an avid bowler or a beast on the pickleball court, you know what to do. Or, give them the chance to call the shots through a few playful games of “Simon Says.” A game for all ages, the honored guest will enjoy giving guests silly instructions. It’s definitely worth turning on the video camera.
Tips for planning a 70th birthday bash
Make sure everyone has a fantastic time celebrating 70 with these thoughtful planning tricks.
5. Send festive (and foolproof) invitations
Picking the perfect 70th birthday invitations to suit your party’s essence will excite your guests and get them in the party spirit.
— Around the Sun: Celebrate with a card that regards the honoree with high esteem and rays of sunshine.
— Gilt Border Birthday: Show off your guest of honor’s star-quality smile.
— Decade Photo: Pay homage to a life full of precious moments with a card to uplift yet another once-in-a-lifetime event.
– The Big Cheers: Say “Cheers!” with a fun-filled Flyer to kick off a good time.
When you use Paperless Post, you can ensure that every invitation makes it safely (and instantly) to each birthday guest’s inbox. Track opens and RSVPs, see which email addresses weren’t quite right, and communicate with guests seamlessly.
6. Make every guest feel comfortable
Ensure you give thought and attention to accessibility. Your guests may need wheelchair access, an elevator, plenty of comfy chairs, or even a ride to the event. Keep your guests’ needs in mind and everyone will be able to focus on what matters most—the newly minted 70-year-old’s big day.
7. Be sure to include their favorites
No matter which theme you choose, keep your guest of honor looped in (unless the party is a surprise!). Consult on menu options, decorative elements, or fun party games. This will give them a chance to feel celebrated rather than catered to.
8. Curate a timeless playlist
Make sure to take note of your honoree’s favorite musicians, soundtracks, and albums. Playing cherished songs from their life can summon beautiful memories. Don’t be surprised to find them humming along all evening.
“Cruisin’” Flyer by Paperless Post.
Party through the ages with Paperless Post
At Paperless Post, we’re all about helping you throw parties that only look like they took 70 years to plan. Choose from hundreds of beautiful, customizable birthday invitations and Flyers to let everyone know about the best birthday party ever. And stop by our Party Shop to stock up on unique party supplies and decor to take your party to the next level.
Paperless Post helps you cross multiple items off your 70th birthday party planning checklist in one place, so you can focus on what matters: making memories to last a lifetime.