Birthdays are no big deal for many dads, so planning a party theme that dad will enjoy is no easy feat. Mining his occupation for decoration ideas is a fine place to start, such as paperclip streamers for a businessman dad or ribbon-festooned tools for a mechanic. For a party theme that’s more personal and meaningful, take inspiration from your dad’s hobbies, interests and passions.
Thrill and Grill
Sports and grilling out are all some guys need to have a great time. Decorations for a barbeque party can feature your dad’s favorite sport, like checkered flags for racecar driving or balls and bats for baseball. Set up an outdoor television to show game footage, then cap the activities with a family ball game. Prepare food such as marinated meats or vegetable kebabs so dad can easily get the grub on the grill or take on the barbequing for him if he’s willing to turn over the tongs. Score overtime points by presenting your dad with a party-themed gift, such as tickets to a ball game or a skydiving gift certificate.
Happy Hobby Day
Whether it's fishing, woodcarving, camping, guitar playing or bowling, most dads have hobbies they enjoy in their leisure hours, often on their own if spouses and kids don’t share their interest. Take advantage of the special occasion to spend your dad's birthday sharing his hobby with him. Arrange to take some lessons together that can accommodate his advanced skills while still being accessible to beginners. Or invest in some top notch supplies for him and beginner equipment for the rest of the family and let him show off his hobby skills as the instructor for the day.
Accounting for Taste
If your father has a favorite flavor he simply cannot get enough of, help him indulge with a potluck birthday party. The internet is filled with both savory and sweet recipes that highlight his preferred snack, whether dad loves bacon, potato chips or cheese, for example. Send out requests for party guests to show up with a dish featuring dad’s favorite food and spend the evening tasting all the crazy concoctions. Just remember to organize what type of dish each guest is bringing so you don’t wind up with a dozen desserts and side dishes, but no entrees.
Back in Time
Your dear old dad has a past that he might relish reliving on his birthday. Dig through photo albums for an era-themed party, such as a ‘70s shindig or an ‘80s event, that marks the decade in which he was born or attended high school. Decorate the venue with dad’s memorabilia and vintage finds from thrift stores, such as a boom box and cassette tape centerpiece. Encourage family and old friends to reminisce about dad’s past at the informal reunion birthday celebration. To go the extra mile, arrange to rent a vintage car reminiscent of his first automobile.
A former art instructor, high school counselor and party planner, Christine Bartsch writes fashion, travel, interior design, education and entertainment content. Bartsch earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in communications/psychology/fine arts from Wisconsin Lutheran College and a creative writing Master of Fine Arts from Spalding University. She's written scripts for film/television productions and worked as the senior writer at a video game company.