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The ultimate 21st birthday party checklist

February 10th, 2017

party glasses and champagne


Planning a 21st can be stressful. There are so many things to get organised. Food, drinks, invites, decorations and budget can lead to a major meltdown, and that’s never fun.

To help you avoid a birthday planning meltdown, we’ve compiled a checklist of 8 easy things to help you plan the ultimate 21st birthday.

Pick your 21st party theme

This has to be the best part of planning a party!

There are hundreds of themes you can choose from. Here are just a few of our favourite ideas:

  • The decade you were born in
  • Movies
  • Favourite book
  • The letter your name starts with
  • Come as a pair
  • Favourite food

If you’re after some more inspiration, you can get well and truly lost in the depths of the party planning internet. Here’s a great list of 101 theme party ideas to help spark up those ideas:

Create your 21st birthday party invite list

Do you want a huge party or a small one?

Do you want to invite extended family or just your best friends?

You need to figure out what size party you’d like and create your invite list. Our tips for creating an invite list:

  • Think about the size of party you want to have. If you prefer intimate occasions, quality is definitely better than quantity.
  • Do you want/need to invite family? Invite accordingly.
  • If you were invited to their party, did you go? If you did, it’s a good idea to invite them to your party
  • What’s your budget? If you’ve got a limited budget, limit the number of people invited so you aren’t too limited when buying food and drinks.

Pick your 21st party venue

Every 21st needs a great venue. You’ll need to make sure the venue can cater for your party size. Picking your venue early will mean you can get the invitations out earlier, and get everyone excited for your big event! If you’re not sure whether to have a party at home, or at a catered venue, think about the following:

  • Do you have room at home?
  • Are there enough people willing to help you if you have a party at home?
  • Who will get the food organised and cleaned up when the party is pumping?
  • Do you have someone to make sure everyone will stay well behaved?
  • Will you be stressed out if someone breaks your belongings if the party is at home?

A catered venue would address all these issues, and help you and your family have a stress-free evening. After all, who likes cleaning up after a big party?
(If you’re looking at hiring a fully serviced venue so you can just sit back and enjoy your 21st party, check out Hunter294).

Send the invites

Designing and sending out your invitations can be nerve-wracking, but there are plenty of places that are available to design and print your invitations. Here are a few basics on what to include if you decide to DIY:

  • Name
  • Date and time of party
  • Party Location
  • Theme
  • RSVP date and contact details

If you’re DIY-ing the invitations, check out these tools and inspirational ideas:

(If you’re booking an event at Hunter294, guests from out of the area can stay at one of these nearby hotels.)

Sort out your 21st party decorations

Arranging your party decorations is almost as fun as picking your theme. Baby photos and school photos spread across the wall are always a good time.

Plan and buy these decorations in advance so your birthday party can be as organised as possible. Shindigs are Australia’s leading party decoration warehouse that has plenty of decorations in a variety of themes. Don’t forget about your outfit, either. If your party has a theme you’ll want to get your costume sorted nice and early.

Create a party playlist

Every party has great music, so make sure you get your playlist sorted as soon as possible. You can ask your friends to add music too, in case you forget any great songs. Check out Spotify for some great playlists and ideas.

Organise the cakes and speeches

Every amazing 21st has two things in common- a cake and memorable speeches. Ask close friends and family if they will share a few funny stories with your party guests when it’s time to cut the cake. You can make the cake yourself (see this Pinterest board for some great inspiration), or get a local baker to make the cake for you.

If you’re in Newcastle and the Hunter, here’s a handy list of some great cake bakers you could use:

Planning a 21st Birthday Party doesn’t have to be stressful! It’s one of the most fun times of your life, so enjoy it. If you follow everything on this checklist you will surely have the ultimate 21st birthday party.

If you’re considering having a 21st birthday party in Newcastle with Hunter294, give us a call today. We can help you plan your special day!

Check out our information on private party celebrations, we’d love to help you have the best 21st birthday party ever.

Fill in our enquiry form and we will help you plan your perfect 21st birthday party!


Image source: Kaboom