America isn’t a very old country. In fact, in this country, we think something is pretty darned old when it hits fifty years. Wedding anniversaries are no exception, and the golden anniversary is one worth celebrating in a big way. It’s traditional for this anniversary party to be planned by a child of the couple, but a friend or one of the partners themselves can certainly do the honor. Here are a few tips – including 50th anniversary invitations, venue, consumption, and planning – for making it a smashing success.
Set the date in advance.
Nothing is more complicated than gathering a large group of loved ones together for a specific date, time and place. Setting the date far in advance is ideal. This way, if someone important has a conflict they can’t wriggle out of, the couple has the option to move the date. Still, make it clear that this is a last resort, and people should work to be there.
Decide on a location.
Sometimes a nice house is all you need. On the other hand, if you need to use a venue, you’ve got lots of options outside of your own home, including:
- The home of a friend or relative
- A private room at a restaurant
- Churches or other religious halls
- Hotels and banquet rooms
- Parks – make sure to plan for inclement weather!
Send out the invitations.
Send out lovely formal invitations well in advance. This will get you a head count, and allow you to set rules for children, +1s, and other things. It will also give you a great excuse to follow up on those RSVP procrastinators.
Choose a theme.
As a 50th is traditionally the golden anniversary, a gold theme is common (but not required). Outside of the color scheme, you could plan on the couple’s favorite colors, or their favorite sports team, or a theme related to the time of year in which they were married. Jewels can be a great winter theme, or bright pastels for spring. Each color can be matched to floral choices, as well.
- Greens – ivy, ferns, hanging plants
- Pinks and Pastels – carnations, roses, tulips
- Whites – baby’s breath, lilies, daisies, red roses
The same is true of banners, streamers, or other decorative items. Table settings, napkins, tableware, and candles can be matched to the theme as well.
Mention gift requests.
It’s generally bad form to request gifts for yourself, so this step is for the planner who isn’t a guest of honor. At a golden anniversary, the most traditional gift is, obviously, gold jewelry. On the other hand, that’s a quite expensive expectation, so if your honored guests have other interests, suggest them as a gifting option. Perhaps:
- A pooled gift of a second honeymoon for a couple who loves to travel.
- Engraved or otherwise personalized items commemorating their long love.
The most important element is fun. Make sure that the mood is right, that the toasts are short and sweet, and that the party is … well, a party. Remember that it won’t go as planned – and any couple who has been together for 50 years will certainly be able to roll with the punches.
Brielle has always been interested in party planning for people of all ages. When she comes up with great ideas she enjoys sharing them for others to use.