How To Plan A Retirement Dinner


If you’re wondering how to plan a retirement dinner, you’ve come to the right place. Planning a dinner for someone who is about to retire, isn’t much different from planning a dinner party or a birthday party, except maybe minus the games!


There are some things that you must get in order first before moving on the the small details of the party. Number one, create a guest list so you are able to find out how many people will be attending. With that information you will want to book the hall or a restaurant, where ever you decide you want to host this party.

In order to book a place though you will have to make a decision of what type of retirement party you wish to have. Is it going to be for a small intimate group or a larger group of co-workers, friends and family. Once you have decided on the type of party you want to through you can then move on to choosing a place to have the party. A restaurant is a nice place for a smaller group. Try and get a spot in the restaurant that is secluded from the rest of the restaurant guests as people may want to say a speech or toast to the newly retired person.

If you are planning a larger event, you may think about renting a hall or press club. Or if your work has the space, why not use one of their large board rooms, lunch hall, etc. If money is tight and no one seems to mind, having the party in the office can work too. It may just be a little cramped.

Once you have chosen your venue and you have your guest list done, next will be to pick a date and time and then to make the invitations. Dinner Invitations should be sent out at least 3 weeks before the event if sending by snail mail. If sending over the internet or handing them out, 2 weeks should be sufficient.

Okay, you now have everything done that needs to be done right away. Now its time to plan the party. Food, cake, entertainment, and decorations is next on your list. Lets start with food. Depending on the amount of people coming and the time you choose to have this party will determine the amount and the type of food you will be serving. We are of course assuming that the party will not be held at a restaurant. The easiest way to serve food to a lot of people is not to have a sit down meal. Of course a sit down meal can be very intimate and gives time for speeches and toasts, but it is also quite expensive due to the amount of meals needing to be purchased and the staff required to serve. Finger foods like vegetables, fruits, cheese and crackers or have a fancier selection which all are a easier choice and guests can serve themselves. If you want to do a sit down meal a cheaper way would be to make it a buffet style so guests will serve themselves. This saves on hiring serving staff.

You will want to have some sort of desert, and what better way to serve desert than by having a retirement cake to congratulate the retiree! A cake can go two ways, purchase a giant cake large enough to serve everyone or purchase a smaller cake and offer guests cupcakes instead of cutting the cake. This is just a convenience thing.

Hiring entertainment may or may not be on your list of things to do. This will depend on the style of the party. You may want to hire a band for music or just a D.J. Or, you may find it easier to just make a CD on your own and play it using a CD player!


The only other thing that you may want to include in your party planning is if you want to have Party Favors?  These are not a necessary option but it is a nice surprise for the guests.  And it could be a great way for the guest of honour to say his or her thanks.



Now that everything else is decided and planned you will have to choose decorations. Decorations will consist of streamers, balloons saying ‘Happy Retirement’, and banners that send congratulations. Also don’t forget to pick up plates, napkins and utensils for the cake and/or meal. Good luck and have fun!



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