Step-by-Step Guide: How to Throw an Epic Retro 80s Party

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Are you ready to transport yourself and your friends back to the vibrant era of big hair, neon colors, and funky beats? Look no further! In this step-by-step guide, we’ll show you how to throw an epic retro 80s party that will have your guests dancing, reminiscing, and creating memories that will last a lifetime. So put on your leg warmers, grab your boombox, and let’s dive into the ultimate 80s extravaganza!

Setting the Stage: Theme and Decorations

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Throw an Epic Retro 80s PartyTo throw an epic retro 80s party, it’s crucial to create the perfect ambiance that instantly transports your guests to the heyday of the 80s. Embrace the vibrant and energetic spirit of the decade by incorporating bold colors, iconic symbols, and popular trends. Here are some ideas to set the stage:

  • Glow It Up: Use black lights and neon decorations to create a mesmerizing glow-in-the-dark atmosphere. Hang neon signs, place glow sticks around the venue, and encourage your guests to dress in fluorescent attire. Check out the best range of neon party decorations by clicking here.
  • Back to the Future: Display posters and cutouts of famous 80s movies, such as “Back to the Future,” “Ghostbusters,” and “The Breakfast Club.” This will evoke a sense of nostalgia and add a touch of cinematic magic to your party. Check out the best range of 80’s posters by clicking here.
  • Cassette Tape Wall: Create a backdrop using oversized cardboard cutouts shaped like cassette tapes. Paint them in vibrant colors and arrange them on a wall to pay homage to the iconic music medium of the 80s. Check out these awesome 80s backdrops by clicking here.
  • Retro Arcade Corner: Set up a mini arcade corner with classic arcade games like Pac-Man, Space Invaders, and Donkey Kong. This will provide entertainment and a dash of nostalgia for your guests. Check out the best range of retro arcade games by clicking here.

Creating the Perfect 80s Playlist

No 80s party is complete without an incredible playlist that captures the essence of the era. Curating a mix of iconic hits and forgotten gems will keep your guests dancing all night long. Here’s how to create the perfect 80s playlist:

  • Chart-Toppers: Include chart-topping hits from the 80s that everyone knows and loves. Songs like “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson, “Like a Virgin” by Madonna, and “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey are must-haves. As always your best option for 80’s music is Amazon Music which you can check out here.
  • Genre Variety: The 80s saw the rise of various genres, from pop and rock to new wave and hip-hop. Make sure to include a diverse range of songs to cater to different musical tastes and keep the energy high. As always your best option for 80’s music is Amazon Music which you can check out here.
  • One-Hit Wonders: Don’t forget those one-hit wonders that defined the decade. Songs like “Take On Me” by a-ha, “Safety Dance” by Men Without Hats, and “Tainted Love” by Soft Cell will add an extra layer of fun to your playlist. As always your best option for 80’s music is Amazon Music which you can check out here.
  • Slow Jams: Balance the high-energy tracks with some romantic slow jams. Include ballads like “Every Breath You Take” by The Police, “Careless Whisper” by George Michael, and “Endless Love” by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie to create a nostalgic and intimate atmosphere. As always your best option for 80’s music is Amazon Music which you can check out here.

Dressing the Part: Costumes and Fashion

Encourage your guests to go all out with their 80s-themed costumes and fashion choices. The 80s were known for their bold and unique styles, so here are some tips to help your guests embrace the fashion of the era:

  • Neon Extravaganza: Encourage your guests to dress in neon colors from head to toe. Neon leggings, oversized neon sweatshirts, and fluorescent accessories like jelly bracelets and slap bracelets are all great choices. Check out neon clothing by clicking here.
  • Big Hair, Don’t Care: The 80s were all about big, voluminous hair. Tease it, spray it, and let it reach new heights! Wigs, scrunchies, and headbands can also add an extra touch of 80s flair. Check out all you need for an 80’s hairstyle by clicking here.
  • Glam Rock Royalty: For those who want to channel their inner rockstar, suggest leather jackets, ripped jeans, band t-shirts, and studded accessories. Don’t forget the iconic fingerless gloves and aviator sunglasses. Check out the best 80’s clothing by clicking here.
  • Leg Warmers and Shoulder Pads: Leg warmers were a staple of 80s fashion, often paired with leggings or miniskirts. Shoulder pads were also popular, so encourage your guests to bring out their power suits and oversized blazers. Check out the best legs warmers and shoulder pads by clicking here.

Food and Drinks: 80s-Inspired Delights

No party is complete without delicious food and drinks to satisfy your guests’ appetites. Incorporate 80s-inspired delights that will take everyone on a culinary journey back in time. Here are some ideas for your retro 80s menu:

  • Totally Tubular Tacos: Create a build-your-own taco bar with a variety of fillings and toppings. Offer classics like beef, chicken, and vegetarian options. Don’t forget to include 80s favorites like crispy shell tacos and tangy salsa.
  • Radical Sliders: Mini sliders are a crowd-pleasing option. Serve them with a twist by offering toppings like neon-colored ketchup and mustard, and include retro flavors like tangy barbecue sauce and pickle relish.
  • Pac-Man Pizza: Order or make pizzas in the shape of the iconic Pac-Man character. Top them with a variety of toppings to suit different tastes. Don’t forget to include some classic toppings like pepperoni and mushrooms.
  • Flashback Desserts: Indulge your guests’ sweet tooth with nostalgic desserts. Serve brightly colored Jello cups, mini cupcakes with neon frosting, and a colorful candy buffet with treats like Pop Rocks and Pixy Stix.

Games and Activities: Fun with a Nostalgic Twist

Keep your guests entertained with games and activities that embrace the spirit of the 80s. Here are some ideas to get the party started:

  • Dance-Off: Set up a dance floor and have a dance-off competition. Play classic 80s tunes and let your guests show off their best moves. Award prizes for the most energetic dancer or the best 80s dance routine. Check out this 80’s themed dace floor by clicking here.
  • Trivia Challenge: Test your guests’ knowledge of the 80s with a trivia challenge. Prepare a list of 80s-related questions and divide your guests into teams. The team with the most correct answers wins a prize. Check out this 80’s trivia game by clicking here.
  • Rubik’s Cube Tournament: Challenge your guests to solve the Rubik’s Cube in record time. Set up a tournament-style competition and see who can conquer the colorful cube the fastest. Check out the best price for Rubix Cube by clicking here.
  • Lip Sync Battle: Host an 80s-themed lip sync battle where your guests can channel their favorite 80s music icons. Provide props and costumes to enhance the performances, and let the audience choose the winner. As always your best option for 80’s music is Amazon Music which you can check out here.

Capturing the Memories: Photo Booth and Props

Ensure that the memories of your epic retro 80s party last a lifetime by setting up a photo booth area with props that capture the essence of the era. Here’s how to create a photo-worthy experience:

  • Backdrop Extravaganza: Create a vibrant and eye-catching backdrop for your photo booth. Hang a sequined curtain, set up a graffiti wall, or use a backdrop with geometric patterns reminiscent of the 80s. Check out this range of 80’s themed party backdrops by clicking here.
  • Prop Paradise: Fill a table with a variety of 80s-themed props for your guests to use in their photos. Include items like oversized sunglasses, colorful wigs, inflatable boomboxes, and cardboard cutouts of 80s celebrities. Check out this range of 80’s themed party props by clicking here.
  • Polaroid Fun: Provide a Polaroid camera or instant photo printer so that guests can take home physical copies of their pictures as keepsakes. This adds a nostalgic touch and allows for immediate gratification. Check out Polaroid cameras by clicking here.

Invitations and Promotion: Spreading the Word

To ensure a successful turnout for your epic retro 80s party, it’s important to effectively spread the word and create excitement among your potential guests. Here’s how to promote your event:

  • Funky Invitations: Design eye-catching invitations that reflect the 80s theme. Use vibrant colors, neon fonts, and incorporate iconic 80s imagery like cassette tapes or Rubik’s Cubes. Include all the essential details: date, time, location, and any specific instructions or dress code. Check out 80’s themed party invitations by clicking here.
  • Social Media Buzz: Leverage the power of social media to create buzz around your party. Create a dedicated event page or hashtag and share sneak peeks of the preparations, playlists, and costume ideas to generate excitement and encourage sharing.
  • Word of Mouth: Encourage your guests to invite their friends by word of mouth. Personal recommendations can be powerful, so make sure your guests are excited and have a great time at your party. Offer incentives for bringing additional guests or sharing the event on their social media platforms.

Safety First: Tips for a Smooth and Secure Event

While throwing an epic retro 80s party is all about having fun, it’s crucial to prioritize safety and ensure a smooth and secure event. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Venue Considerations: Choose a venue that can comfortably accommodate your guest list and provide adequate space for dancing, games, and activities. Consider any necessary permits or permissions required for hosting an event.
  • Security Measures: If hosting a larger event, consider hiring security personnel to maintain order and ensure the safety of your guests. Additionally, have a plan in place for handling any potential issues that may arise.
  • Food and Allergies: Take into account any dietary restrictions or allergies your guests may have when planning your menu. Clearly label food items that contain common allergens and provide alternative options for those with specific dietary needs.

Wrapping Up: Thank You and Farewell

As the night comes to a close and your epic retro 80s party draws to an end, it’s important to express your gratitude and bid farewell to your guests. Here are some ways to wrap up the event:

  • Thank You Speech: Take a moment to address your guests and express your heartfelt thanks for their presence at your party. Share some highlights from the evening and acknowledge any individuals who helped make the event a success.
  • Party Favors: Send your guests off with a token of appreciation by providing them with 80s-themed party favors. Consider items like custom mixtapes or CDs with the party playlist, neon-colored sunglasses, or personalized keychains. Check out these 80’s themed party favors by clicking here.
  • Memory Wall: Set up a memory wall where guests can leave notes, photos, or drawings to commemorate the event. This creates a lasting memento and allows everyone to reflect on the fun-filled night. Check out this board which is ideal for a memory wall by clicking here.

Remember, the key to throwing an epic retro 80s party is to immerse your guests in the vibrant and nostalgic atmosphere of the era. By following this step-by-step guide, incorporating the right elements, and paying attention to the details, you’ll create an unforgettable experience that will leave your guests talking about it for years to come.

So put on your dancing shoes, turn up the volume, and get ready to throw the most epic retro 80s party ever!

Take a look at more how to party guides here.

Written by Doc cotton

Doc Cotton is a man of simple pleasures and diverse interests. His heart belongs to the world of cosplay and fancy dress, with a special fondness for Halloween, where his creative spirit truly shines.

When he's not busy crafting imaginative costumes, Doc Cotton loves nothing more than a good party. He's the one who knows how to turn any gathering into a memorable event, infusing it with fun and excitement.

Beyond the world of costumes and festivities, Doc Cotton finds solace and joy in van life and outdoor adventures. Whether he's hitting the open road, camping beneath the stars, or exploring the great outdoors, he cherishes every moment of his outdoor escapades.

You can catch up with Doc Cotton's insights and experiences on his writing platforms, CostumeRocket and HotPartyShack. There, he shares his costume wisdom and event-planning expertise, offering inspiration and tips to fellow enthusiasts.