Fun Theme Party Ideas for Summer

Summer-PartyThis post was written by a guest contributor.

If you’re like most people, you love a summer party. But if you’re thinking of hosting your own, you’re probably hoping to find a way to set it apart from the crowd to make it something worth remembering. Coming up with a theme for your party can be a great way to make it unique, while also keeping it easy to plan. Once you have a theme figured out, it’s easy to start piecing together decorations and food options, so tackle the hardest part first and commit to a theme.

  • ~Have a Christmas in July party. Replace a snowball fight with a water balloon fight and your snowman with a sandman. Combine winter favorites like eggnog and hot chocolate with summer classics like fruit salad and grilled burgers. Or consider serving eggnog and hot chocolate cold, maybe with an added bit of muddled mint. Get yourself a Tipsy Elves ugly sweater and encourage guests to wear their tackiest Christmas gear.
  • ~Throw a classic 50s-style beach party with Beach Boys music, volleyball, a bonfire, and classic surf boards for decorations if you can find or borrow them. Put out blankets on the grass or the sand (depending on if you do it in the backyard or actually at the beach) and if you have a budget, rent a classic car for guests to take to the beach.
  • ~Host a splash party. water balloonSet up in a backyard with a pool, bring out lots of pool toys, put on the sprinkler, get out the slip-n-slide, and start a water balloon or water gun fight. A party like this will be a hit for all ages!
  • ~Have a dog party. Invite friends who have dogs to come over and bring their fur children along and have a party for both the dogs and the owners. Set up baby pools and sprinklers for the dogs to cool down, and make a menu for both the human and animal guests.
  • ~Host a summer carnival. For many people, fairs and boardwalk carnivals are an important part of their memories of their best summers. Set up a party that pays homage by decorating in red and white stripes, serving popcorn and hotdogs, and providing your own games and activities. Easy games would include knocking down milk bottles with a ball or tossing rings onto bottle tops. You could set up a fortune teller, cotton candy machine, or snow cone machine for an added effect.
  • ~Set up an outdoor movie. Outdoor movies have been a long-time classic of the suburban summer, though you don’t see them as often anymore. outdoor movie nightBring back the nostalgia by setting up your own. Rent a projector and hang a white sheet or use the plain wall of your home. Set up a hodge podge of beach chairs and blankets for guests. Serve boxes of popcorn and offer a variety of soda. Make homemade candies and package them in boxes. Put your kids in charge of a little “concession stand” if they want to help out!
  • ~Have a costume party. Invite friends to dress up and play some favorite classic monster movies and make it Halloween themed. As with the Christmas party, mix up summer and fall traditions, so use a pumpkin bowl from your Halloween decorations to serve punch or fruit salad (combine something like orange slices with blackberries for a good Halloween dish).
  • ~Have a garden party, tea party, brunch, or an ice cream social. Invite your friends to dress their best and set up long tables on the lawn for a glamorous afternoon. Encourage your guests to bring along something to contribute to the party. For example, if you’re having a brunch party, tell guests to bring a dish and make it potluck style and whip up some delicious muffins.
  • ~Have an actual gardening party. Invite friends to choose from a selection of seeds to plant in pots to take home with them. You can get some inexpensive items for the potting, like Mason jars and small pots from a hardware store, for everyone.
  • ~Invite all of your girlfriends over for a craft party. Crafting-PartyResearch a few interesting DIY projects ahead of time and gather some craft supplies. Ask your friends to pick up a few of the supplies as well, and spend the day creating cool projects together.

Planning a great theme summer party just takes a little creativity and personality. Figure out what will suit you and your group of friends and go from there!


  1. Performers, games, and out-of-the-box decor? Few event themes are more fun than a carnival for summer. Rent out large tents for an outdoor carnival or set things up indoors with a large space for the main event and breakout spaces for activities.

  2. Who needs a venue when you can take the party to the streets? A block party can be a great idea for larger events with several attendees, vendors, and performances. Though it will call for working with the host city to secure permits permissions, and potentially working with local police to work through security logistics.

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