As an event planner, an engaging party theme makes any gathering or corporate event more memorable for your attendees. Each of your guests should be encouraged to photograph, provide feedback about your venue, and engage with their surroundings. A fun, cohesive event theme can help your audience naturally relax—while also demonstrating value to your sponsors.
Below are ten party theme suggestions to get your team’s creative ideas flowing:
A reclaimed factory or other historical manufacturing site is well suited for analysing innovation, obsolescence, and technology’s environmental or ethical challenges. This theme could feature media and lectures that highlight the industrial disruption of your chosen venue and encourage discussion on the transformation of the workplace, in general. Industrial spaces tend to be open and large.
If the cavernous interior of a reclaimed factory isn’t available for your event, consider an active, modernised party theme that provides more value to your guests with less energy expended. Less energy used to operate the venue; less energy used to transport and cater to guests; and less packaging, literature, and physical waste on the day of ceremonies. This theme emphasises minimising without sacrificing value or ingenuity. No disposable party hats allowed!
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Through interactive areas in your venue of choice, encourage guests to build something as a group. This can be a fun exercise with strangers and colleagues alike, or it can be an on-site visit with hard hats and hard questions to engineer as a group. Puzzles are a great way for guests to think creatively during lulls in the action. Straddle the line between high-engagement team-building and fun-filled distraction. Make sure your sponsors and speakers maintain focus during the day’s itinerary.
Help prepare your guests for Earth’s inevitable domination by sentient machines with a theme that thinks ahead. Encourage drone flying, examples of machine learning, and experiences that delve into what virtual and augmented reality may look like for consumers in the near future.
Speaking of futuristic party themes, don’t forget to look upwards for inspiration. Space is a playground for Earth’s wealthiest people—and it’s safe to assume that even your high-net-worth guests won’t be headed there anytime soon. In the meantime, they can enjoy event content focused on science, technological achievement, and human capabilities beyond Earth’s atmosphere. Consider a “space camp” theme with rehydrated snacks and interactive lectures on the difficulties of working in zero gravity. Telescopes, science fiction, and the final frontier for your event planning imagination.
Highlight the agricultural challenges facing humankind, or just snack on local, healthy cuisine in a rural environment. Enjoy the sights, smells, and flavours of farm life in juxtaposition to typical conference rooms, catered food, and urban landscapes. Watch vegetables go from soil to gourmet or familiarise guests with meat processing. If the venue is accessible, provide everyone with rubber boots and invite them into the yard for brainstorming. This theme is perfect for restaurateurs.
Choose a venue that provides a window into forestry, atmospheric science, or the future of natural resources management. Access to commercial, experimental, or old-growth forest is a great bonus for guests, who can enjoy lunch or an organised field trip into the woods. Treehouse or cabin rentals make for fun guest lodging, and hunting lodges and botanical gardens can usually accommodate large groups.
A marina, dam, or reservoir can each offer eye-opening perspectives on the ever-changing and ever-important role of freshwater within the global economy. Let your guests experiment with water filtration, erosion, or hydroelectric power to reinforce your theme. You may also want to consider a floating venue, where you can hold your audience captive for hours on end.
Elevate your guests with a venue that has a wide, unobstructed view, and encourage them to brainstorm about the challenges and opportunities they see on the horizon. This could be in a high rise or on a real mountaintop; what’s important is that your theme encourages long-term thinking and an appreciation for focusing on new ideas. Small ski areas and rustic mountain lodges are generally available for rental at a daily rate and provide lots of character for your guests to admire.
Who wouldn’t enjoy a little strategy and deep thinking while sitting by the ocean? Planning an event adjacent to a major port, shipping canal, or fishery will make this theme feel complete. The sea provides thought-provoking scenery and rhythmic sounds to keep your event flowing. This theme is possible if your event is located in-land by renting out an aquarium or supplying seafood to your guests, but it works best when you can smell the saltwater nearby.
There’s no shortage of aesthetically-pleasing themes for your next event or company party—so be bold! The best corporate parties feature a theme that is consistent with its surroundings and doesn’t detract from the presentation or information offered to attendees.
It’s your responsibility as an event planner to build a theme that represents your brand and engages your guests with the people and concepts at hand.
Featured image: Elephants via unsplash