How to Throw Your Parents a Truly Memorable Anniversary Party




 This is a partnered guest post.

Whether it’s your parents’ 20th or 50th wedding anniversary, you want their party to be a truly memorable one. If you have a tight budget but still want to create an event your parents won’t forget, there are some great ways to throw an anniversary party without overspending. From venue location to buying your party supplies online, you can follow these great anniversary party suggestions to put on an unforgettable event.


Think About the Guest List

It pays to consider how large your parents would like their party to be. If 100 guests might be a little daunting or exhausting for them, keep the guest list to just close family and friends. The number of guests you invite helps to set the atmosphere. If you want to create an intimate and romantic event, don’t invite every extended family member, old work colleague and neighbour you can think of. Twenty carefully considered guests may give more meaning to the party than 200 people milling around.

Choose a Good Location

Hiring a venue can be expensive, so choose carefully where you want to hold the party. Holding it in a family member’s home is inexpensive and you don’t need to book months in advance. If space is an issue, think about booking a local church or community hall. Inexpensive and easily decorated, these venues are usually free or only require a donation. When picking your venue, think about where your parents would feel comfortable. Would a relaxed BBQ in a park setting be more fitting than a formal evening at the yacht club?

Bring Memories From Their Wedding Day

The aim of this anniversary party is to celebrate your parents’ marriage. One of the best ways to make the event a truly memorable one is to bring in mementos from their actual wedding day. They may have had a favourite song they did their first dance to. You may be able to get a replica of their wedding cake made up, or you can use the colours of their bridesmaid dresses in your decorations. Find out what food they served at their reception and possibly repeat this in your planning. Old wedding photos can make great centrepieces and are a wonderful talking point for both your parents and all guests involved.

Decorate in Style

As mentioned, you can decorate with old wedding photos and other mementos from your parents’ wedding day. Simple fairy lights, candles or flower petals can make the plainest of venues look great without costing a fortune. If possible, you can have your mother’s wedding dress displayed for guests to see. Depending on the era, it can make for an interesting conversation piece.

Gift Ideas

When celebrating a significant anniversary milestone, many guests want to show their love and support by giving your parents gifts. You can always include traditional gift information on the invitation; for example, the 15th anniversary is traditionally celebrated with crystal, 20th is with china, 25th is with silver, 30th is pearls and 50th is with gold. Some great gift ideas include engraved wine glasses, a framed photo, a quality bottle of Champagne or wine, a weekend getaway, ballroom dancing lessons or a meal for two at a top-class restaurant.

The Little Extras

Think about the little extras that can make the event truly memorable. If you can find your parents’ original wedding guest book and there are some spare pages at the back, then use this at their anniversary party. Otherwise, make sure you get a guest book so that each person who comes to the party can write a special message. Have someone you can rely on to be responsible for taking photos of the party. Or you may like to have disposable cameras on each table for guests to take their own photos. Think about playing music from the era when your parents were married. If you really want to make the party one to remember, you can request that guests dress up in clothing from the era your parents were married in.

Image by Flickr’s Creative Commons


About the Author: A contributing writer, Leslie Barkley also works as an event coordinator in Sydney. She enjoys sharing her ideas and advice about the best ways to put on that special event no matter what your budget.


I'm a mother of 2 who likes to get involved in too much! Besides writing here I started a non-profit, I'm on the PTO board, very active in my community and volunteer in the school. I enjoy music, reading, cooking, traveling and spending time with my family. We just adopted our 3rd cat and love them all!

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  1. Great tips for a once in a lifetime event

  2. My parents have been married 50+ years. They would have a heart attack if we threw a big party.

  3. My parents have been married 50+ years. They would have a heart attack if we threw a big party.

  4. I would love to throw my parents a great bash like this!

  5. In today’s society long marriages are harder to come by, so I definitely think they need to be celebrated in a BIG way! Great post!

  6. Great tips, my stepfather has passed so no parties in the works

  7. I would love to throw a party for my parents.

  8. My parents have are pretty close to celebrating 35 years. I would love to throw them a party.

  9. Wonderful ideas!

  10. We threw my parents a 25th anniversary over 10 years ago… maybe it’s time to throw them another party!

  11. These tips are great. My parents will be celebrating their 25th anniversary next January and I am excited to watch them renew their vows!

  12. I love the idea of using old photos from their wedding day!

  13. I’ll keep these tips in mind… I’d love to throw my parents an anniversary party on their 50th. 🙂

  14. Love this! We threw my parents a 30th anniversary party 2 years ago and there’s always things that I wish I could go back and redo — great list for the future!

  15. What a cute idea! My parents are divorced but my husband’s parents have been together for over 35 years.

  16. My parents are coming up on 35 years.

  17. My brother and his wife have been married 46 years! My other brother is pushing 34 years. It’s funny because my older brother and his wife were married four years prior to my birth, and his two kids are older than I am! Ethan and I are celebrating 17 years of wedded bliss this year!

  18. aww such great ideas! 🙂

  19. Great advice!

  20. I hope I can throw mine a party one day!

  21. My sister and I have already started talking about planning a party for my parents’ upcoming 50th. Thanks for the tips.