Anniversary Party Planning Guide

Whether you are planning an anniversary party for yourself or planning an anniversary party for your parents, this guide will truly simplify the process. 

You want to ensure that you are planning a party that is memorable and one that people will talk about for years to come. 

An anniversary is a special date that is remembered or celebrated because a particular event happened on that date in a previous year.

It could be the first time you met, started dating, or got married. 

Most couples tend to celebrate the big milestones such as the silver and golden wedding anniversaries, but there are a lot of other times that an anniversary party can take place.

It honestly doesn’t matter whether it’s your first anniversary or your twentieth you want your party to be amazing.

That’s why you need these anniversary party tips and tricks to help you plan a party you and your guests will remember forever.

You can use this party planner to help keep you organized.  

It’s an anniversary party planner but can help with all the details you need to create an epic party. 

I will definitely be going into a few details on how to plan an anniversary party below. 

Here is how to plan an anniversary party:

Before we get started with our best tips on planning an anniversary party, we wanted you to take the time to like our Facebook Page here! We also use affiliate links in our blog post which means we can make a commission if you use any of our affiliate links. 

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I know that planning any event can get stressful.

With the right steps and ideas, you can plan the perfect day with ease. 

We also wanted to take the time to answer a few amazing questions our couples and readers had about planning an anniversary party with ease. 

A few popular questions we got were: 

  • Is it OK to throw your own anniversary party?

  • What should I plan for an anniversary?

  • How do you throw a small anniversary party?

  • How do you plan an anniversary party on a budget?

We hope you find our party planning tips and tricks easy to follow and you can plan the best wedding anniversary party!

Here are my best tips on planning an anniversary party on a budget. Anniversary party planning is easily done with our tips and tricks. Plan an amazing anniversary party with this guide full of ideas and tips, from venues and guest lists, to decorations and catering, plus much more!

What happens at an anniversary party?

An anniversary party is a great place to show your friends and family that love can live a long time with effort and work. 

A marriage is definitely hard work and a lot of people never make it. 

You should be glad and happy to celebrate each passing milestone. 

At your wedding anniversary party, you can take the time to renew your wedding vows, or even simply rewrite them.  

It’s a great place to show your partner how much you have appreciated them through the years.

And it’s the perfect time to include new family members that might have not shared your special day 1, 10, 15, 25 or 50 years ago. 

An anniversary is also a great place to simply celebrate with family and friends. 

1. Pick Your Venue

One of the first steps to planning your perfect anniversary party is to pick your venue, or where you would like for your party to be held.

When considering your venue you need to think about how large your party will be, whether or not you want the party to be indoors or outdoors, and any other amenities you might want to have. 

Are you having a wedding renewal?

Are you hosting something small and you would prefer hosting it at your home or a restaurant? 

There are so many amazing options. 

Planning a wedding anniversary party with more than 20 or so people needs more extensive details. 

Thinking of parking, bathrooms and where people will stay after the party especially if drinking is involved. 

Here are a few locations you might consider for your wedding anniversary party:

  • Hosting it at home
  • Booking an Airbnb or a private home
  • At A Restaurant (private room)
  • An Art Gallery
  • Hotel/ country club banquet room
  • Church
  • A Club or a fancy lounge

Check out this guide to booking an alternative or unconventional wedding venue and my best tips for choosing a wedding venue that is perfect for you! 

If you are throwing a small anniversary party, I would definitely consider hosting it in your backyard, your home or a cozy restaurant. 

Fun anniversary party ideas for those planning on throwing an anniversary party on a budget. How To Plan a Memorable Anniversary Party 8 simple steps to help throw the perfect anniversary party. Everything you need to celebrate the happy couple and lots of inspiration!

2. Pick Your Date / Time

Pick a date for your anniversary party when your venue is available.

If you are having your party at home, you can of course choose any date that you like.

I highly suggest picking a date that is close to the actual anniversary date. 

It makes it more special in my opinion. 

Many people plan their anniversary party for the weekend before or after their anniversary, the choice is up to you. 

Make sure you set this up as early as you can so you can have enough time to plan the event, book the vendors and venues as well as send out invitations. 

You definitely do not want to be planning the event a week prior to the date.

I would give it 6 to 4 months as certain venues can book up quickly, especially during wedding season or if you are looking for weekend dates. 

3. Pick A Theme For Your Party

Pick a theme for your anniversary party.

The theme for your anniversary party can be anything you want.

But you need to keep the budget in mind.

If you are planning an anniversary party on a budget, you do not want to have a black-tie formal affair.

So think of a theme that might work with your style and current lifestyle.

Do you want your party to be formal or casual?

You can plan your theme around the anniversary year, or you can pick a different type of theme entirely like a luau or a casino night.

Examples of designing your theme around the anniversary year are for the 5th year using wood accents to decorate, and using daisies for your floral arrangements. 

4. Choose And Send Your Invitations 

Now that you have chosen your venue and your date, it’s time to send out the invitations.

As I mentioned, plan for about 6-4 months of planning.

You can plan to send save-the-dates as soon as you’ve solidified the details about where and when you are hosting the anniversary party.

This can be followed up by sending out the actual invitation which should be done at least 3 to 6 weeks before the party.

You can print your own invitations or pick some at the local party store that goes along with your theme.

Not big on mailing invitations?

Send your guests an e-vite instead!

Just make sure that you have a way for your guests to R.S.V.P so you know how many to expect. 

You can also check out invitations from Minted – totally affordable.

Save the date wedding anniversary invitations from Minted! Check out these wedding anniversary invitation cards created by Minted.

5. Choose Your Menu

It’s not a wedding anniversary party without amazing food and drinks now is it?

You can serve similar foods to those that you had at your wedding reception or come up with a completely different kind of menu.

I suggest checking out this list of cheap wedding reception food ideas on a budget

Many couples choose to have a small recreation of their wedding cake as part of their menu.

If you want to shake things up a bit from the traditional you could serve cupcakes or cake pops. 

Another thing to consider about your menu is whether or not you plan to have your food catered or do you plan to prepare most of it yourself?

If you want to prepare it yourself do you have a way to hold the food at a safe temperature until serving time?

Consider the costs of catering versus doing it yourself, and make sure that you factor in the amount of time you will have to spend preparing food if you go the do-it-yourself route. 

6. Make a Video Slideshow

Just like any other party, anniversary party planning can take time to put together depending on how elegant or even how simple you want it to be.

All the small tiny details do truly make or break the event. 

Simple details such as including a romantic slideshow will really create the ambiance and set the tone for the event. 

I am here to say that no matter how many years of wedded bliss you are celebrating you will want to share those memories with your guests.

You can start your slide show from when you started dating or from your wedding, whichever suits you best. 

Creating a slide show with music can make it even more romantic or you can simply just have the slide show play in the background as your guests mingle. 

7. Choose Your Entertainment 

In addition to the slide show, you will need to decide on any other entertainment that you would like to have at your anniversary party, like having a DJ or a live band.

Except for food, having entertainment is a must at any event.

It will immediately determine how fun the event will be or if it will be for a short time only. 

Otherwise, your guests may get bored or leave.

I would suggest that you choose your anniversary party entertainment wisely.

If your party is more of the backyard BBQ variety you could have some outdoor games set up like corn hole or horseshoes.

If your party is indoors you can play games like the “Not So Newlywed Game” a variation of the Newlywed game show, or “Who Am I” where everyone has a sticker on their back of a person and must ask questions to figure out who they are. 

More entertainment ideas for your anniversary party:

  • Live Band/DJ
  • Games
  • Magician
  • Hire a caricaturist
  • Have ice sculptures

8. Create Your Hashtag 

Create a hashtag for your wedding anniversary party.

This way when your guests post photos of the fun on social media you can follow the hashtag and see them all.

If you plan your hashtag in advance you can even put it on your invitations, and create a social media event page.

Once the party is over you can go through and print your favourite pictures for an anniversary album. 

I suggest using any of these wedding hashtag generators to come up with some pretty creative hashtags. 

Now you are ready for the perfect wedding anniversary celebration!

What kind of anniversary party are you going to have small and casual, or big and formal?

No matter what size or style you choose your anniversary party is sure to leave you with fabulous memories that will last a lifetime. 

Fun anniversary party ideas for those planning on throwing an anniversary party on a budget. How To Plan a Memorable Anniversary Party 8 simple steps to help throw the perfect anniversary party. Everything you need to celebrate the happy couple and lots of inspiration!

Is it OK to throw your own anniversary party?

Absolutely, there is no rule to suggest that you can’t throw your own anniversary party.

You can make it as grand or as intimate as you want it to be. 

By throwing your own anniversary party, you can add all the intimate touches that make your relationship so special. 

These tips are perfect for couples planning their own elegant anniversary party or planning an anniversary party for their parents or close friends. 

So follow our tips and you will be well on your way to hosting the perfect wedding anniversary party!

Wedding anniversary party ideas:

Whether you are looking for some surprise anniversary party ideas or some fun anniversary party ideas that a small group of people can enjoy, let me say you have come to the right place. 

Recreate your wedding day:

Are you planning your 1 year wedding anniversary? Then consider recreating your wedding day today! Plan the perfect southern anniversary by recreating your wedding day.

Via: Design Studio South / Photography: The Happy Bloom 

Renew Your Wedding Vows:

Renew Your Wedding Vows. These Ultra Romantic Vow Renewal Ideas Will Steal Your Heart

Via: Martha Stewart / Photographer: Kir Tuben

Wedding anniversary party theme ideas:

Are you looking for some cute wedding anniversary party theme ideas? Check out this cute garden themed wedding anniversary party!

Via: SMP / Photographer: Sierra Solis Photography

Celebrate Your 50th Wedding Anniversary:

50th wedding anniversary party ideas! 50Th Wedding Anniversary Decorations Ideas

Via: Magnolia Rouge/ PhotographerANASTASIIA KRIVENOK|CARMENCITAFILMLAB

Intimate wedding vow renewal:

This couple celebrated 10 years together with a vintage Americana vow renewal on the 4th of July. Check out this simple wedding vow renewal.

Via: Wedding Chiks / Photographers: Dawn Honsky Photography 

And there you have it, everything you need to know about planning an anniversary party! 

Are you thinking of throwing a wedding anniversary party anytime soon?

We would love to hear from you below. 

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Don’t forget to check out our wedding printable shop to get more checklists, printables and everything you will need to plan a wedding.

The Wedding Printable shop! Wedding printables for planning weddings!

Planning An Anniversary Party: Tips and Tricks That Work