Retro 70's party
Retro Party Games & Activities
For kids over the age of 10 or 11 (girls especially), try not to organize too much. They absolutely love the dance part of this party, and won't want to spend the time with your plans. Try lots of primping, one game, one craft, plus a big dance contest (everyone wins)! Adults will enjoy some of these games too!
PIN THE SMILE ON THE SMILEY FACE – Borrowing from the concept of the tried and true game of Pin the Tail on the Donkey, we suggest a fun game of Pin the Smile on the Smiley Face. Use our big inflatable Smiley, and cut smiles out of black construction paper. Blindfold each participate as his/her turn arrives, spin, point in the right direction, and watch your smiley get really happy! For older kids, try a game of "Pin the peace sign on the Hippie." Same concept…a little more grown up. (All ages)
DO THE HUSTLE – Divide the guests into two equal teams. Create two starting lines with masking tape, and secure two inflatable smileys in place about 10-15 yards away. Line the teams up with the disco wardrobe at the starting line. At the signal to begin, the first player on each team quickly dresses up, runs the course, and then returns the wardrobe to the next player. The first team to complete the course wins. An Afro wig, love beads, fringe vest, and hippie glasses will lead to some "hustling" to the finish line. (Ages 4-11)
TIE-DYE – An unforgettable time, and the most amazing photo backdrop! Purchase plain white cotton boys or men's t-shirts from a discount store- most come in three packs, and cost less than $2.00/shirt. For your craft activity, tie-dye the shirts in brilliant colors. Most young children and many adults have never done this. In addition to the dye, you'll need to have plenty of rubber bands, rubber gloves, and extra adult helpers on hand. Do this activity toward the beginning of the party, so you'll have time to execute on the photo opportunity. If the weather is cooperating hang a clothesline outside, if not, use a basement or even a kitchen to hang the clothesline. As each shirt is completed, hang it to dry on the line. When all are completed take a group photo with the masterpieces hanging behind you. For a little variety, try using white boxer shorts or tank tops, as both are very popular right now, and can be purchased inexpensively in the men's underwear section of a discount store. (Ages 7-adult)
DAISY CHAINS – Young girls will love to create "wreathes" for their hair using fresh daisies. Put a smile on their glowing faces, as you remember how much you enjoyed this as a child. (Girls age 5-12)
DANCE 'TILL YOU DROP – If you weren't around to do the Hustle, the Bump and the Bus Stop the first time around, find a friend or neighbor who was and recruit him or her. Teach these popular and simple steps to your party guests and enjoy the fun! (All ages)
"I REMEMBER THAT ONE!" – With the advent of Nickelodeon's™ Nick at Nite™ and TV Land™, re-runs of the best shows from the 60's and 70's are plentiful. Who didn't have a pang of bedroom envy when Greg Brady got to move out of the boy's room, into his own groovy pad in the attic (complete with love beads, lava lamp, peace signs, and far-out lighting)? Set your VCR to tape a few episodes of the Brady Bunch, Partridge Family, Gilligan's Island, and I dream of Jeannie. Kids today are enjoying these shows as much as we did…and they'll see exactly how cheesy we dressed back then. This is great for a sleepover party. Adults will love the opportunity to re-visit some of their favorites. Make a game of it with the adults. Tape 15-25 episodes of one show, and then see who can remember the outcome the fastest. Fast forward as soon as someone guesses, and keep track of points. The prize… the tape of course! (All ages)
GET READY TO DISCO – Most girls love to primp. Help them do so by providing plenty of blue eyeshadow, body glitter, bright pink blush, and Maybelline™ mascara. If the girls are younger, have a friend pose as Bambi the make-up artist. Purchase or borrow a crimping iron, part their hair down the center, and crimp the girls' hair. Add a headband to their foreheads, and send them on to have their nails done. With the invention of nail polish that dries in only one minute, party manicures are a breeze. Purchase Express Dry nail polish in colors to match your theme, and then stripe each nail with three or four bright funkadelic colors. If your budget permits, or if the group is small, hire someone to give "hairwraps" to the girls. Call a local hairdresser to find a name, or check with neighborhood teens. One or all of these primping ideas will absolutely delight your girls. (Ages 6-18)
SMILEY-BALL – Play volley ball, dodge ball or keep-away with our huge inflatable smiley! (All ages)
PINATA FUN – Our smiley piñata can do double duty—he'll hang as a decoration until you are ready to use him. A universal favorite! (Ages 3 and up)
NAME THAT TUNE – This one is for the grown-ups only. You'll need a CD player and some compact discs with a compilation of hits from the 60's and 70's. Play the first few bars, and see which guest can name that tune the fastest. Keep track of points and award the winner with some music from the past. If your group is large, play a variation on this game. Using AM Top 40 hits from the 60's and 70's, list song titles on one side of a page, and Artists on the other side, and make enough copies for all guests. Challenge guests to match as many as possible. A fun trip down memory lane! To get you started, here are a few:
Hooked on a Feeling – Blue Swede
The Night Chicago Died – Paper Lace
Hitchin' a Ride – Vanity Fare
How Do You Do? – Mouth and MacNeal
Beach Baby – First Class
Sky High – Jigsaw
Seasons in the Sun – Terry Jacks
Billy, Don't Be a Hero – Bo Donaldson and the Heywoods
Chevy Van – Sammy Johns
Dancing in the Moonlight – King Harvest
Rock Me Gently – Andy Kim
Moonlight Feels Right – Starbuck
Afternoon Delight – Starland Vocal Band
Beautiful Sunday – Daniel Boone
One Tin Soldier, The Legend of Billy Jack – Coven
Shannon – Henry Gross
Dream Weaver – Gary Wright
Puppy Love – Donny Osmond
One Bad Apple – Jackson Five
My Baby Loves Lovin' – White Plains
If – Bread
Stairway to Heaven – Led Zeppelin
Fill a page, and let the contest last throughout the party! For the winner…a greatest hits CD!
Retro Party Food Ideas
This is a tough one, and we would welcome any input you have on some foods that stand out as memorable or worth recreating from the 60's and 70's. We recall that the fast food industry was just in its infant stage. McDonald's™ was a "new" craze, and Burger King was just getting started too. Families just didn't frequent restaurants and fast food joints as often as they do today. When we think of a typical 60's or 70's meal, one word comes to mind. STARCH! A true meat and potatoes period in time, with Holidays being the time to roll out the special Jell-O™ mold. It was inevitably green, and filled with things your mother otherwise never served.
That said, we feel the field is wide open at your retro party to serve foods that you WISH were served in the good old days. Serve pizza, loaded hoagie sandwiches, a Mexican taco bar, heavy appetizers…your options are unlimited. Feel free to showcase your own personal preferences, talents, and style. The only thing that wouldn't be appropriate for a retro theme would be a formal meal. No good china allowed here!
If the party is for a child, and you are serving dinner, let the birthday boy or girl choose his/her favorites. We generally recommend that unless you are having a sleepover party, that you avoid scheduling a party around times that would need to include a meal. Serving snacks, birthday cake and ice cream, along with beverages is plenty.