A 65th birthday is reason to hold a big celebration, especially if the person you're honoring is retiring. Hold a party filled with games that adults and older children can enjoy, or a dinner party for just adults with games afterward. Either way, the games will make the party more memorable.
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Divine Dinner Party describes an effective icebreaker for parties. Give each guest a necklace or lei as they arrive, and tell them they must collect as many as possible from the other guests. To take a necklace from another person, they must trick that person into saying the word "no." For instance, they can walk up to a new person and say, "You're Tom's friend from the Philippines, right?" when the answer is clearly "no."
In this classic game, players try to form words using the letters on the board, and words that cross certain squares get more points. The game can become quite silly as players try to stretch its limits, writing words that other players have never heard of, or trying to use proper nouns.
Turn the birthday party into a mystery night with a game that lasts until near the end. This inspires conversation amongst new acquaintances. If you prefer, make it a themed party and give everyone a role to play, secretly telling one person she's the culprit. Or, skip the roles and keep the mystery. Tell a story about the "crime" to everyone after most people have arrived, with subtle clues that hint at who did it and how. You can buy a packaged game, visit Who Dun It Mysteries for free ones, or create your own mystery story.
Create your own trivia challenge, or find a game about trivia from 65 years ago. Ask questions about movie stars, sports figures, famous happenings, popular sayings, and more. The extra effort will help everyone learn and reminisce about "the good old days," even if they didn't live through them. Or, let all the guests play a trivia challenge about the birthday person's life, which is sure to be entertaining for all.
House of Cards
Challenge people to build their own house of cards within a certain time limit. Clear space on the tables so a few players or teams can work, and see whose house is still standing when the time's up. Have someone else judge the finished products.
In this game, a player reads from a card a phrase that sounds like nonsense and tries to understand what it is saying. The phrases are written as they sound on the cards, but not spelled correctly, so as they repeat the phrases, players sound like foreigners trying to pronounce English for the first time. The player's partner tells her if she gets the answer right within the allotted time, and the next team takes its turn.