1. Luau celebration. When Hawaii became a state in 1959, it sparked a tourism boom (no pun intended) that was so pronounced it – and Don Ho – promptly got absorbed by popular culture. “Gidget” went there, Elvis went there and even the Brady Bunch vacationed in the islands. Kiddos coming of age in the years following WWII were continually tempted by the allure of ocean breezes, boogie boards and poi products. The islands still rank high as vacation destinations, the luau likewise as one of the all-time popular party themes. Boomers were among the first to appreciate both.
2. Party of a Decade. Though the timespan depends on the context of the discussion, the Baby Boom by most accounts occurred about 1946 into the early 60s, so it is often helpful to think in terms of early Boomers and late Boomers. The early wave came of age in the 60s and a whole lot of them are retiring now. Those who came later finished high school in the 1970s – and in the 70s, the 50s party first became popular! That means there are at least three decades the members of this generation love to party to.
3. Zebra retro. Big, colorful florals, op art and zebra patterns were all iterations of the strong, “mod” patterns fashionable in the 1960s for clothing, accessories and even home furnishings. A zebra party is another way to go retro, and as luck would have it, it also happens to be an “in” party theme for multiple generations right now so there are plenty of decorating options to be had. The fashion plates and the Boomers who adore the excesses and exaggerations of the Austin Powers movies really dig this party, baby, in both regular and hot pink.
4. Murder mystery. Boomers grew up playing Clue (as well as other classic board games such as Candy Land and Monopoly) and many of them likewise enjoyed the first Clue-based murder mystery role-playing parties of the 1980s. Combine nostalgia, humor and lots of entertaining activity during a dinner party with a Boomer as guest of honor, starting with the coolest licensed murder-oriented props around.
5. Music. When you read above about the luau and Don Ho, does the song “Tiny Bubbles” run through your head? Background music is far more than just about movies; it is woven inextricably with our memories and therefore comprises a powerful force in our personal and shared histories. Match the party soundtrack to theme and mood, and include some of the party VIP’s selections. You can also spotlight music itself – check out the new Music Note decorations as well as established favorites Music of the Night, Disco and Jazz/1920s collections.
While there’s no substitute for knowing the tastes and interests of the Baby Boom generation co-worker, friend or relative in your life, we hope discussing popular themes has helped you work those creativity muscles! Explore even more on the Themes pages, and let us know how it goes.