Like a visit from the taxman, birthdays come every year. How you decide to celebrate them is entirely up to you, but the surprise birthday party will certainly be one that won't be soon forgotten.
The important issues to be determined are who to invite, when and where the party will be held, and how to get the guest-of-honor to the designated location without him or her knowing what's going on. The surprise birthday party demands Rambo-like coordination if everything is going to occur according to plan. In no particular order then, let's look at what it takes to throw the surprise birthday party.
When and where:
There is no set rule that dictates that the surprise birthday party needs to be held on the actual day of the birthday. Most party experts recommend thinking this one out. Consider if you want to reserve the actual date for a private function. Like maybe you want an intimate dinner for two that both you and your mate can enjoy. For this reason, it may be a good idea to have the surprise birthday party a few days ahead of time. There's another good reason for this: the event will be more of a surprise if it's not on the actual birth day. If your partner knows next Friday is his or her birthday then obviously they know some thing is up. If you have the surprise birthday party a few days early, then guess what - it really will be a surprise!
Guests and Location:
Who do you want to attend? Classmates from long ago? Current colleagues from the office? Just family? Depending on who you have in mind dictates how much lead time you need for a surprise birthday party. A surprise birthday party will be even more of a surprise depending on who attends. If its friends from school your partner hasn't seen in 20 years, well that's quite a surprise. If it's all your partners ex-wives and lovers that will sure be an event that stops traffic as well.
The location is important in as much as you need to successfully get all the guests there on time. And then you need to get the guest of honor there without him or her suspecting anything. So what will it be? Surprise birthday ideas can be theme parties like a Hawaiian Luau or Cowboy Party, or more sit-down affairs like a dinner at a restaurant. If it's at the home of a friend then it's just a matter of finding an excuse to stop by with your partner. Surprise birthday ideas should take into consideration what your partner enjoys doing. Remember, you're never too old to have a toga party!
Despite the best of intentions, guests tend to drop the ball. They either open there mouths because they can't keep a secret. Or they show up late, invariably walking in the door at the same time as the guest-of-honor. Then you're stuck with the fumbling through the question of, "what are YOU doing here?" Get guests in place at least a half hour in advance. Create a "recon" team. One person who coordinates all the guests at the designated location and who can be in contact with you while you're with your partner. Or if you leave that responsibility to someone else, then make it's someone who is indeed someone you can trust.
Those are the big ticket items for a surprise birthday party. Anything else - food and gifts for example - really are secondary to the surprise itself.
Now go to it. And happy birthday!