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Best 70th Birthday Party Ideas

Last Updated: Jun 30, 2017

With every decade lived comes countless cherished memories and accomplishments. For that reason, a 70th birthday is a special time that should be celebrated by family and friends. Hosting a party for your loved one is a perfect way to highlight their incredible life so far. We want to help you make the most of that party. Check out a few 70th birthday party ideas we’ve found to get the party started.

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70th birthday party invitation with then and now photos

70th Birthday Party Ideas for 2018

The birthday guest of honor probably threw their fair share of parties. You can make their 70th birthday stand out by creating a personalized space rich in memories and festivity. From their favorite photos, to great food and drinks, to themed tributes from loved ones: you can choose from a variety of creative 70th birthday party ideas below.

Then & Now Party Invites

Choose party invitations that have a “then & now” design. This type of birthday invite allows you to showcase the honoree when they were a kid or young adult. This idea is a perfect way to showcase the many years of life and experience that have led up to this birthday. You can even print the invite as a poster to display at the celebration.

Make sure you have all the important information covered by checking out our guides on what to include in party invitations and how to write a party invite.

Photo Booth

Create a photo booth for friends and family to use during the party. The backdrop can be anything from classic birthday decorations to special photos and memories from the birthday guest’s life. Make sure to include plenty of props, such as:

  • Speech bubbles with classic quotes from the Guest of Honor
  • Speech bubbles with birthday quotes or sayings
  • Classic Birthday decor like balloons, party whistles, etc.
  • Paper mustaches, hats, and foam fingers
  • Old family photos in frames

70-Page Photo Book

Create a special 70-page birthday photo book that summarizes seven decades of life. In addition to photos, you can also include personal, heartfelt letters to him or her from every family member and close friend. These letters should share what the birthday honoree means to each of them, the qualities they admire, favorite memories, and personal birthday wishes. This makes both a great feature for the party and an even better present.

Photo Posters

Share seven images from the past by printing 20×30 photo posters and propping them on easels.  You can choose both vintage and current photos that span over all seven decades of the birthday honoree’s life. This is a creative way to mark each decade of their life and pay tribute to how far they’ve come.

Slideshow

Reminisce about past memories by creating a slideshow with their favorite photos. You can include photos from different generations of the family and ask loved ones to contribute any photos they have. The slideshow should be a compilation of photos from the honoree’s life and milestones such as their first job, a grandchild’s graduation, or an close family member’s wedding.

70 Messages From 70 Friends

Collect 70 messages from 70 friends for the honoree. Round up the collection of sweet, humorous, and heartfelt birthday messages and place them in a jar. Consider reaching out to close family members, distant family members, friends, past colleagues, and anyone else who played a role in their life. The birthday honoree will be surprised by the amount of people they’ve made an impact on.

Photo Timeline

Create a timeline of the honoree’s life from start to finish. You can collect and print photos from family and friends to display your timeline on a wall at the party. Make sure the timeline includes important milestones such as when they had children, graduations, wedding moments, and anything else special. Remember to print large photos so they’re visible when you create your timeline at the venue.

Party Music Playlists

When it comes to music, you can create a variety of playlists for the birthday guest of honor. You can create a playlist that takes them through their favorite decades. From classics as a child to their favorite music as an adult, playlists create a nostalgic flashback to some of their most memorable years (although the best is still yet to come).

Custom Birthday Video

Honor their 70 years on earth by working with a videographer to create a birthday video. Ask friends and family members to share their sentiments about the birthday boy or girl. Include their favorite memories and messages of appreciation for a heartfelt video. Try including cute messages from grandchildren to add a bit of humor. You can also create your own compilation video and ask loved ones to send in video clips recorded on their phone.

Birthday Cake Ideas

When picking a birthday cake, make sure to find out the guest of honor’s favorite flavor. Whether it’s strawberry, red velvet, or ice cream cake, pairing the flavor with the right decorations ties the whole package together. Consider getting a cake with photo printed icing at your local grocer or cake shop to incorporate a childhood photo of the guest of honor. Or, use their favorite colors to decorate. If they have a lot of grandchildren, help the young ones add a special touch with their own icing design.

70th Birthday Ideas For Mom

For a matriarch centered birthday party, focus on what means the most to her. If that’s family, make sure that everyone in her close circle is attending, and focus the festivities around family bonding. If she’s a wine lover, make sure the cellar never runs out. Here’s a few other popular 70’s birthday ideas for Mom:

Use Her Favorite Foods:

Utilize Mom’s favorite food and dishes as a center for the festivities. Build a charcuterie board with her favorite cheeses or put out special finger foods. These will keep the guests full and happy and your Mom will appreciate the special thought you put into the menu/

Take a Family Photo:

Arrange to have a family photo taken of all the women with the matriarch. Have the little ones in front and position everyone so they’re centered around your Mom. This will make a great memento for years to come and celebrates the legacy of the women in the family.

Toast Her Life and Accomplishments:

Prepare a toast to highlight all the incredible things she’s done or family she created. You know what makes your mother your hero, so write it down and celebrate with those who share the same feelings.

Play Party Games:

Party games are a great way to keep guests entertained, especially when there’s children involved. Get the whole family together and check out our ideas for entertaining party games.

70th Birthday Ideas For Dad

Over the last seven decades, your father has built some incredible things and made you who you are. Now it’s your turn to show your gratitude and congratulate him on everything he’s done. Check out these 70th birthday ideas for Dad before you plan your party:

Cocktail Bar:

Does Dad have a favorite cocktail? Feature it on the menu. Better yet, make one up using his favorite ingredients and name it after him. Check out our resource on cocktail party ideas for more inspiration. And if Dad doesn’t drink, check out our ideas on tasty mocktail recipes perfect for any party.

Toast Him and All that He’s Achieved:

Your words of praise and appreciation mean the world to him. Give a toast in his honor as a highlight of the night, and encourage others to do the same.

Sign a Momento:

Get a football or baseball (or the game piece of whatever his favorite sport is) and have the whole family sign it. Include a card with memories of those who he taught how to play that game or sport. Then, if you have the time and space, play a game with that ball and let your dad see the legacy of sportsmanship that he’s built.

Surprise 70th Birthday Ideas

The key to throwing a successful surprise 70th birthday party is to bring unexpected joy into the birthday guest’s life. The surprise shouldn’t come from a jump scare as they enter the house. Instead, let the surprise be all of their friends and family joining them for a giant celebration when they were only expecting a small dinner. Promise a small party at first, then deliver big. Fill the venue with plenty of decorations, food, and fun and blow the guest of honor’s expectations away. Let the surprise speak for itself.

Use this advice with the previously mentioned party ideas to craft the perfect surprise party.

Finding a Venue

When it comes to choosing a party location, look for a family-oriented location or host at a family’s member home. This location should also be kid-friendly since the party will be multi-generational. Consider a local recreational center, a private room at their favorite restaurant, or a family member’s backyard. Make sure you’ll have plenty of space for everyone and that the layout is open and well lit. If you’re planning an outdoor party, make sure you’re well prepared for any bad weather.

Party Favor Ideas

Party favorite make great lasting memories of a perfect party. Make sure you get the right party favor that both celebrate the guest of honor and is useful for the guest. Here’s a list of some of some popular party favor ideas:

  • Customized photo mugs filled with the birthday guest’s favorite candy.
  • Wine glasses with the celebration and guest of honor’s name engraved.
  • Family and Friends T-shirts to commemorate the party.
  • iPhone cases with favorite photos from the honoree’s life.

No matter was you send your guests home with, make sure the birthday guest is on their minds.

Capture the Party in a Photo Book

After the party, create a birthday photo book full of the best photos from the birthday celebration. This allows your loved one to relive the joy of the evening and add a new photo album to their collection. Be sure to have your photographer take a new family photo at the birthday party to include in your photo book.