A surprise birthday party is fun for both the guests and the guest of honor. Planning a surprise birthday party takes some secrecy and just a little bit of trickery to pull off the perfect surprise. You can hold the surprise party at the guest of honor’s home, at a friend’s home, a restaurant, or even plan an entire surprise getaway day. While any type of party is fun, there are a few elements that are essential to planning a birthday surprise. It’s always fun to throw a surprise party for a friend, and planning it and keeping it a secret is the best part of it. Surprise parties are increasing in popularity. So much so that sometimes guests assume a party is a surprise even when it isn’t! This can often lead to confusion so whether you’re hosting a surprise birthday party or a surprise bridal shower, here are some tips to get you started so you make sure the surprise stays a surprise.
It is great to have an accomplice when planning a surprise birthday party. Although it is not impossible to keep the party a secret and plan all of the elements by yourself, having a helper who does not live in the same house as the guest of honor makes it that much easier. If you have someone off-site to help, it is easier to store party supplies, decorate the party venue, and receive responses from guests without the birthday guy or girl discovering your secret. The first rule of planning a surprise party is: Do not talk about the surprise party. The second rule of the surprise party is: Do not talk about the surprise party. Getting all of the party guests to keep the secret is notoriously difficult, but not impossible. A surprise invitation should make it crystal clear that this is a huge secret and that you are counting on guests not to spill the beans. Direct RSVPs to a private cell phone or e-mail (yours or your accomplice’s), especially if you’re planning the party for a spouse or someone who lives with you. Try planning the surprise party ideas around something that’s routine in the Surprise’s life. For example, if they go out for breakfast every Saturday morning, try incorporating the party around that specific routine (that way the Surprise will be less suspicious). Also, you might want to consider having the party at a place the Surprise won’t consider suspicious their own house, a relative or friend’s house, a favorite restaurant or bar, etc. Plan to have someone capture the moment of surprise in a photo. Before the party, ask each guest to email you an anecdote about the guest of honor, and put them all together in a small book or photo album. During the party, take a Polaroid of each guest and paste the photo into a scrapbook with the corresponding anecdote. At the end of the party, the finished book makes a wonderful keepsake. Another way to keep the element of surprise is to hold the party before or after the actual birthday, or at an unusual time. While the birthday girl may be suspicious of an outing in the evening, she will not be expecting a birthday brunch or afternoon picnic.