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#60: Creating Engaging Informal Event Themes: Unleash Your Creativity in North Texas

In this episode, we're diving into the exciting world of event themes and how you can unleash your creativity to craft unforgettable experiences in North Texas.

We’re going to stick to informal event types for businesses, organizations, and collegiate groups in this episode. Why? Well simply put - this episode would never end if we didn’t limit it down!

Also - formal and informal events are VERY different so we will cover that soon, and private events (baby showers, wedding showers etc.) are a different type of event as well.

A quick look at the difference between an informal and formal event

Formal - examples: banquets, galas. Only invited guests are allowed to attend. Some type of dress code is either enforced or expected. Light background music.

Informal - examples: luncheons, team building, or training. I also think some banquets can be more semi-formal depending on the plans for the evening. More laid back, and still structured but you are able to incorporate more of a fun, unique atmosphere

Why Event Themes Matter

Honestly - we don’t necessarily think it’s important to have a theme. Plenty of events go great without a theme. But on the planning side of things, I think that a theme can make your job easier and harder in some ways. Harder because it can be difficult to pull off some themes. (Example beach theme if you are planning it in the middle of a dessert in Arizona) But it can also make it easier to determine a location, decorations, entertainment, etc. You already have your final vision, so the pieces go together a bit easier in my opinion.

From the guest's side of themed events, I don’t care who you are - themes make events more fun! Even people who might not go all in with a theme still enjoy being a part of a themed event and seeing the theme come together. ESPECIALLY if your audience/guest list enjoys that particular theme. From my experience, it seems like the attendance rate is higher.

The biggest benefit in having a theme?

Themes set the tone, creating a cohesive experience, and engaging attendees. Incorporating themes into different types of events:

  • Social events usually have a fun side to them, entertaining, etc. A theme helps streamline and guide planning for a more cohesive direction

  • Fundraising events can be themed to help push the cause, raise funds, etc: For example an animal shelter may do dog days of summer, bow wow bingo, yappy hour, bark in the park, bark at dark

Choosing the Perfect Event Theme

Corporate/business events have a wide range of event types. They host luncheons, midday events, and evening events either on weekdays or weekends. Obviously, these events will be very different in the types of themes they would have.

Keep in mind a lunch/midday event is already a less formal time for an event. So I wouldn’t plan a masquerade for a luncheon. (lol) I think something more fun and relaxed, maybe come and go if it is midday. An evening event on the weekend in my mind is more semi-formal to formal, depending on the event.

Quick Ideas for a themed luncheon:

  • Farmers market: local fresh bites small plates

  • The one where… Friends theme

  • Derby Tea

  • “Tee off…” golf theme

  • Seasonal theme

  • Topic of speaker

Collegiate - University events - informal vs. formal events

For those of you new to planning collegiate events, here are a few examples of the wide variety you may encounter:

  • Membership events - to grow (recruitment) or maintain (sisterhood/team building/retreats)

  • Philanthropic fundraisers

  • Campus related: fun events

  • Galas/formal social events

    • Awards, etc

Some quick ideas on where you can get some inspiration:

  • Social media

    • Ex: Eras tour = friendship bracelets, glitter, etc Barbie movie = spike in themes

    • Pinterest

    • Take colors + utilize them to reuse decor, make it cohesive, etc

    • PUNS

Implementing Event Themes Successfully

The biggest thing we want you to remember today is to take it slow - tackle 1 area at a time. For your food/catering areas - use puns/play on words, incorporate your colors, or make it interactive (for example an elite bar versus street corn). Then focus on arrival to check in - how will you direct the guests? How will you make sign-in quick, easy, and on a theme? Finally, how will you first wow them?


Listen to the Episode HERE


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