How to Give Toasts for a 40th Birthday. At a 40th birthday party, the host is bound to ask guests to make toasts that praise or roast the guest of honor. Whether you're honoring your friend or loved one, make your speech the most memorable with a combination of humor, personal experience and sentimental touches.
Reveal how the birthday "boy" has changed over the past 40 years if you've known him all his life. Briefly discuss the positive changes you've seen in his personality, aspirations and pastimes from decade to decade.
Inject humor into toasts by telling stories about silly experiences you shared as kids or one of her embarrassing moments if she's a good sport. Forego the usual 40th birthday "over the hill" jokes that others have used too many times.
Discuss your loved one's admirable, quirky or funny characteristics. Consider compiling a list of his forty top traits for the special occasion. Since several people will be giving toasts, just make a list of single words to read quickly-the words will create a telling portrait of the honoree.
Thank the honoree for the ways she's helped and supported you when you've needed it and reveal how much she means to you. Discuss her admirable traits, what people love most about her and how you hope you can repay the favors she's done for you sometime in the next 40 years.
Consider the ages and personalities of the other party guests when making your toast. Try not to use potentially offensive or off-color jokes if there area a lot of children or older relatives in the audience, for example.
Practice the birthday toast several times so you know exactly what you're going to say. That way, you'll be able to keep going on memory even if you become emotional during a sentimental speech.