Though traditionally not considered a milestone, a person's 69th birthday is good reason to celebrate a lifetime of accomplishments and adventures. Planning a birthday party for a 69-year-old must, of course, include ideas for decorations, food and activities. While you should be sure to consider the age group to which you're catering, don't be afraid to include elements of fun and festivity.
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In order to narrow down the countless number of party decorations available to you, choose a relevant party theme that will help you in selecting appropriate decor. Host a birthday party with a historical theme. Go to your local library and select headlines from archived newspapers and magazines published in the year of the guest of honor's birth. Copy and print the headlines and frame them to use as wall decorations for the birthday party. For table centerpieces, frame old photos of the honoree and provide a small description of important events that happened during the year the photo was taken.
A young-at-heart party is a variation on a similar theme. Compile baby pictures of the guest of honor and hang them with clothespins from strings attached to the walls and ceilings. Instead of a traditional over-the-hill-themed decor, choose classic children's birthday decorations. Purchase colorful paper plates, cups, banners and streamers that read "6th Birthday" and "9th Birthday." Either cut and paste the numbers together for a custom decor or leave them separate for a tongue-in-cheek birthday theme.
When choosing party food for a 69-year-old's birthday party, be conscious about any health-related dietary restrictions or preferences. To celebrate the birthday guest's family, host a potluck in which family members bring dishes made from treasured family recipes. Invite guests to bring several additional recipes so that the total collected recipes equal 69; for example, if your guest list includes 20 guests, each guest should bring three recipes; the host would supply the additional nine. Present the guest of honor with the recipe collection.
Another option is to prepare dishes pulled from one or several cookbooks published in the year of the honoree's birth. When possible, decorate or arrange foods to reflect the number 69; for example, use icing to decorate cookies or cakes with the number 69.
Interactive games during the birthday party will keep guests involved and entertained. Prior to the event, ask guests to bring a favorite childhood photo of the birthday guest. Prepare a large piece of colored foam board with "69" written in large block numbers. Guests should use small pins to attach their photos to the foam board and leave short messages as a gift for the honoree. A foam board or poster board with a large "69" can also serve as a signature mural for guests. Provide several different pens or markers so guests can leave colorful messages for the guest of honor. During the party, read some of the messages aloud.
Another party activity involves compiling a list of 69 anecdotes, little-known-facts or traits of the guest of honor. Seat guests at six tables; each table is responsible for writing down 10 facts or stories about the birthday guest. Each table then reads their list to the entire party. The host provides the final nine items. Compile the lists into a small booklet for the guest of honor.