5 Worst Birthday Party Themes

over the hill
Getting older should be celebrated, not mocked.

Throwing a themed birthday party can be a lot of fun, but it also comes with a certain measure of risk. Not every theme is going to go over well with everyone on your guest list. The biggest mistake you can make when planning a theme is forgetting who your audience is. A kid's party that's so long and complicated that there are big lulls between games and activities is never a good idea. Kids need a constant flow of entertainment. If you have a high count of "stick in the mud" family members, something requiring too much participation is a bad move. Before you plan your next themed birthday party, take heed of our warnings.


5: Ultimate Frisbee

In this case, Ultimate Frisbee actually means any kind of overly athletic theme. You may be an über athlete, but if you're going with some kind of theme that requires a lot of physical exertion, you'd better be sure everybody there is up for it. People generally want to go to a party to hang out with friends and relax, not beat each other in a potato sack race. So leave the hardcore sports for your leisure time. If you really want to do something active, keep it low-impact and fun, and set up a volleyball net for those who feel like getting sweaty.


4: Politics

political birthday
Unless your birthday is on July 4th, let's keep the red and blue out of it.

Getting politics involved in your birthday shenanigans is a decidedly poor idea. When it comes to friends and family, there's no place for crossing party lines if you plan on having a good time. You might be an enthusiastic tea party-er, but making that a part of your birthday plans won't get you re-elected. You're more likely to offend someone close to you who doesn't share your worldview. Birthday parties should skew toward to lighter side of life, and politics don't fall into that realm for most folks. Shut the polls down when the birthday cake comes out -- your guests will appreciate it.


3: Over the Hill

The over-the-hill theme is a staple on the birthday party scene, typically for landmark dates like the 40th and 50th celebrations. While it may be a popular choice for some, for others, it may not be the best idea. Transitioning from one decade to the next is a tough time for many people, and if you poke fun of and highlight this, you could wind you up with egg on your face. If you insist on throwing a party with walkers, AARP forms and dentures on the table, then make sure you know that your birthday boy or girl will take it with tongue in cheek. Actually, maybe it's best to avoid for women in all cases. No lady needs the public reminder that she's officially at cougar status.


2: Costumes

costume birthday party
Just a little over the top!

Some people think that it's fun to double up a birthday party as a costume party. This can go over well in certain circumstances, but not everyone relishes donning a toga all night to help you celebrate your birthday Caligula-style. While you may think it's fun, there are many adult party poopers who won't even dress up for Halloween anymore. Putting pressure on these fuddy-duddies to throw together a '70s disco costume might keep a few of them from showing up. So, unless all of your friends belong to a theater troupe, save the costume parties for Oct. 31.


1: Birthday Suit

Nudists enjoy recreating in the buff -- anything from wave surfing and volleyball to bird watching. If you fall into this category, you may delight in throwing yourself a birthday suit birthday party so you and your friends can frolic, sans clothing, before you blow out the candles.

Save it for the nudist colony. The truth is the mere thought of someone's nether regions being near a tub of ice cream is enough to make even the most open-minded person shudder in horror. For birthday parties, it's a best practice to keep everyone fully clothed.


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  • "Is she a real urban cougar?" Dateacougar.info, 2010.http://www.dateacougar.info/is-she-a-real-urban-cougar.html
  • "Nudism & Naturism - Legal Aspects." Religioustolerance.com, 2010.http://www.religioustolerance.org/nudism1.htm#laws
  • "Ultimate History." Whatisultimate.com, 2010.http://www.whatisultimate.com/history/history_home_en.html