A Comprehensive (updated 2020) Sweet 16 Birthday Party Ideas To Start Today

16th-birthday-ideas(updated in 2020) Are you planning a sweet 16 birthday party?

Many of us have done it.

And we know planning the best party requires a lot of effort and originality. Just like what we found out in our article on birthday ideas for an 18 year old.

It seems that today, such parties have reached a whole new level and in some cases, parents save money for years to provide their children with the best, and the most original celebration.

We have seen almost everything.

From luxurious beach parties to extravagant celebrations with worldwide famous singers and guests.

However, if you are the one to organize the birthday party for your child or friend, but you don’t have any ideas, we can provide you with many simple and fun 16th birthday ideas.

In addition, for each theme, we have come out with the relevant decoration ideas, games and activities and also the most suitable gifts to buy.

Becoming a 16-year old is an important occasion and here are some of the best ideas that Birthday Dino has come out with for you!

So let’s begin!

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Party Theme Idea:
Energetic Backyard Concert With Best Live Music Performance

Let’s face it.

Many teenage boys and girls want to become famous singers one day and everyone is trying hard to achieve this goal.

In case your son or daughter is passionate about music, or even has a band, then organize a live backyard concert as a form of entertainment for the guests.

Make handmade concert tickets and personalized decorations with the number “16”.

Don’t forget than any artist has to give autographs, so let it happen originally, how about a digital autograph in a photo booth?

Photo booths are really popular nowadays and will be the ultimate touch for a great 16th birthday celebration ideas!

Important Checklist to Note:

1) Sufficient sound and lighting system testing
2) Photo booth rental

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

Check this out:

A beautiful, high quality and easy to setup background cloth gives you the best backdrop for the live concert. Easy to fold and non-reflective, you can easily bring this useful piece to the concert venue.

The party foil swirl decorations featuring rock and roll words, notes and guitar hype up the whole atmosphere. Rock star party supplies complete the decoration.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

What is rock and roll birthday theme without musical instrument like guitar. Giving the guests guitar treat bags packed with goodies will do just the trick. Dress up your guests with party hats and disco ball necklaces to get them in the mood.

Wait, there’s more.

Have a hearty singing session, mimicking their favourite rock style with the inflatable microphones given out to them. A mini singing competition is one great activity to include in the party, where your guests can display their singing talent. End the party by giving out rock star trophies to the best performing band, singer with best vocal voice and more.


Party Theme Idea:
Having A Blast At An Excellent 
Pool Party

Let’s get started.

If you have a pool in your backyard, then do not hesitate to throw a simple birthday party there. Pool birthday parties are extremely popular, and many teenagers wish to host them.

The pool party is ideal for 16 years old born in summer period because they can gather all their good friends and have a celebration with music and drinks.

And another thing.

It always happens that, at some point, all the invitees end up in a pool, having a great time with a lot of laughter and fun. What is more, you can think of many games and contests and thus make your birthday party even more exciting.

If you decide for a pool party for your birthday, you will not have many costs to cover, except for the food ideas and drinks. So, this would be an excellent 16th birthday party idea on a budget and inexpensive to plan as many of the activities are DIY.

Important Checklist To Note:

1) Accessible place with a sizeable pool
2) Planning sufficient games at the pool

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

Let’s jump right in.

One of the favourite themes for a youngster who like water activities or a theme for summer. Give the aloha feel with a happy birthday pool party banner, with splashes of water images.

Serve drinks literally in the pool with the inflatable drinks station, where guests can enjoy chilling in a nice float with drinks in their hands, without need to get out of the pool.

Serve the guests with food placed on summer splash birthday supplies set to complete the pool party feel.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

What is a pool party without games in the pool?

Play UNO card games with a twist with these waterproof clear cards, play them in the pool with these durable cards.

Have inflatable raft pool loungers for them to play the games, including poker and chips for 4 persons.

Place some funny inflatable unicorns which not just provide tools for the guests to chillax but also provide nice decor for the party.


Party Theme Idea:
Kart Racing To Bring Out The Excitement

It’s a no-brainer.

Boys will be boys and if you let them meet their need for speed will definitively bring a huge smile on their faces. Just gather up his friends and family and head to the nearest kart track.

Maybe you can make a small tournament too and make some special prizes. But the kart racing party can also be quite educational too since everybody will also get some experience behind the wheel.

Another nice and easy side of this event is that you won’t have to clean after the party, you will just leave the place and enjoy the rest of the day. A fun birthday idea for the 16 year old guy!

Here’s the thing.

Since go-karting appeals to guys of many ages including adults, this is also among the best 30th birthday ideas for men too! Planning of parties for younger birthday recipients like first birthday party ideas for boys, you can consider using colorful cartoon cars as the main theme, which the baby boys will surely be attracted to.

Important Checklist To Note:

1) Advanced Go-karting reservation
2) Food and beverage availability at karting arena.
3) Prizes for the winners

Decorations to Buy Immediately:


Deck up the party place with a happy birthday banner printed with red car racing.

This banner doubles up as a fantastic photo booth as well. Placing race car checkered tablecloth and having party pack of plates and cutlery of this theme give the guests a zoom feel!

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

The answer for a memorable birthday party?

Let the guests go home with fond memories of the event with checkered treat boxes filled with snacks.

Next, construct an indoor racing track by placing cool racetrack floor runner that comes with realistic looking white lane strips. It makes your race car theme even more exciting.

Set up a fun photo booth where the guests can come together for various wacky shots. This red banner with a victory backdrop and checkered design offers the best background for this booth.


Party Theme Idea:
Star Wars Party
A Dream Come True For The Sixteen Year Old

The reality is that an exciting birthday theme party is always a smart choice, and picking Star Wars will undoubtedly be a full score, isn’t it?

The truth is with millions of devotees all over the globe waiting for the newest movie, this is certainly a suitable 16th birthday party idea for boys if the birthday boy is one of the ardent Star Wars fan.

Best of all, you should not find it so hard to acquire the required Star Wars theme gear such as light sabers and costumes since they can be found in almost every mall or on the Internet.

The guests at the party should choose sides, boys will probably want to be the Sith, and the host can be Kylo Ren for example.


Once the set is settled the party can proceed, just be careful with those sabres and make sure the force does not become too strong.

If the birthday boy or girl likes Harry Potter, you can check out this great birthday idea in our page on the best teens birthday party ideas.

Important Checklist To Note:

1) Shops that offer wide range of Star Wars costume for rent or sale
2) Star Wars related decoration at the birthday venue

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

So let’s get to work.

Birthday who are Star Wars fans (or “Trekkies”, an endearing term) will be elated to have their 16th party be surrounded with their favourite characters like a Darth Vader Life Size Cardboard and Star War themed Masks.

Instead of decorating the place with normal colourful balloons, buy those Star Wars characters imprinted balloons and hanging swirl decorations.

Decorate the table with Star Wards table cover. Lay the table with Star Wars plates, napkins and cups to complete the decoration.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

First of all, may the force be with the guests by giving them “The Force Awakens” goodie bags!

Simple but interesting Star Wars board game is one activity to include to cater to guests who do not like to participate in war of swords.

In addition to that, light saber sword toys is a must for a Star Wars theme party, which means we must include a game of fun and war revolving around the signature inflatable light saber sword toys.


Party Theme Idea:
Solving a Mystery Party That Is Great and Engaging

How about walking in the shoes of Sherlock Holmes?

Sounds good?

Solving a murder by finding clues and leading a proper investigation will definitively be fun and undoubtedly a good and unusual birthday idea for the sixteen year old.

All the necessary kit is available on the Internet which is DIY, and you can find information about setting up the entire story too.

Try to incorporate 16 clues in total as this number is significant for the birthday recipient.

But one thing’s for sure, if you do not have the time to deal with the planning, you can hire professionals that can take care of everything for you. These are companies that offer night of mystery parties that provide all the logistic and manpower to conduct a successful event.

You know, a hell of a unique birthday party idea is ahead of you and your guests, just be careful not to let the murderer get away!

Important Checklist to Note:

1) Solving the mystery game kit
2) Local event planning company that offer night of mystery parties

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

Consider this:

Decorate the place with a silhouette of Sherlock Holmes printed on beautiful vintage paper and have decorative printed cut out signs pasted in the party room to bring out the air of mystery.

Place photo booth props for guests to have fun taking photos in the mystery themed party and you are done!

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

The first thing to do is to organize an escape room game for the energetic teens for them to solve a mystery in an active manner.

After that, let them take a breather, relax in a sitting manner by proceeding with board games – with a strategy board game to test their wits and solving skills or a unique mug in a fun gift box which they can drink a mysterious beverage that you have created.


Party Theme Idea:
Explore Future Technology With Virtual Reality

A cool 16th birthday party theme to consider.

Cyber space and Virtual Reality are two more things that all the boys love and will deeply love once combined and accessed. So why not giving them the thing they want?

Rent the VR glasses from a certified shop, few games that are suitable to VR for your Xbox and let the entertainment all be done by itself. The guests will love the excellent indoor birthday idea which is relatively easy to plan.

For food ideas, don’t forget to add some game-themed snacks, like Mario shaped cookies or Minecraft tarts, and have fun!

If you are planning a small birthday party for the 16 year old, then this idea is a highly relevant one to consider as you can scale it down relatively easily.

Important Checklist To Note:

1) VR glasses
2) Game consoles that support VR games

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

Think about this.

Virtual Reality is gaining popularity, thanks to the technology savvy youngster. As this theme revolves around virtual attraction, the highlight of the theme lies in the games and activities organised.

Hence, the decorations will be simple and apt, with more emphasis placed on the games. A happy birthday banner with pom pom balls livens up the place.

Buy beautifully decorated plates and napkins to magnify the cheerful mood at the tableware. Display a hi-tech night light projector in the room to add the alluring and mysterious part of the theme.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

Immerse the teens in an environment of artificial intelligence with VR games by providing them with VR Headset with Remote Controller, that fits almost all smartphones.

Organize an augmented reality game of bow and arrows with this foldable game arrow bow, which is compatible with almost all smartphones too.

You may also organise an activity that let the guests operate a drone or quadcopter that can take high definition videos. It will be a new perspective for them to view landmarks from a high ground.


Party Theme Idea:
Prom Party That Is Most Ideal For Sweet 16 Birthday Girls

That’s right.

A prom party is something most of the girls yearn for. These parties look glamorous, with all the guests being trimmed and beautified. The girls usually wear dresses, while the boys wear suits.

Of course, the birthday girl has the prettiest dress of all. Prom parties are an excellent choice because they don’t require a lot of money to be spent.

All you need is a big hall with some lights, and a DJ specialised in sweet sixteens’ music.

Prom parties last the whole night, and the birthday girl can have a crazy night with her best friends. Having a memorable prom party is surely among the most ideal sweet 16th birthday party ideas for girls and will be remembered forever.

Important Checklist To Note:

1) Venue with a sizeable hall area
2) Decoration at birthday party venue that matches prom theme

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

So let’s get down to it.

Prom party is one theme that there will be lots of of photo taking as guests like to pose and take lot of photos with wefies, selfies and more. Therefore a huge, gigantic poster wall décor with photo booth props kit is a must.

Let them have a night of fun and record their unforgettable memories in print at the photo booth.

Once you’ve nailed it, go down to detail by decorating the table, plates and drinkware with DIY Wrapper Favors and Decorations.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

For one thing, the prom night party favor boxes are integral to the party because it is a nice accessory for the guests, in their photo taking session, to get in the prom party mood.

Organize a few games like a fun song game to for the guests to sing their night away in their nice party dresses or suits or strategic card game that test on the guests’ wits to make the party entertaining and fun.


Party Theme Idea:
Masquerade Party With Special Unique Costumes

A great birthday idea for the sweet 16 year old girl.

Like in good old times, that’s like a fairy tale for teenager girls. Basically the update to their Disney Princess themed party is right now, here.

Brainstorm the most popular theme, and let the girls get all about the 18th century, or the Victorian Times with the big beautiful dresses.

Beautiful dresses, nice masks, classical music and intrigue. The girls will love it and will remember it for all their lives, if you succeed to recreate the needed atmosphere! Being the queen of the ball or masquerade is really fascinating.

Important checklist:

1) Local shop that offers costume rental services
2) Decoration at party venue that matches the costume theme

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

Here are a few ways:

Create masquerade party with air of elegance and sophistication with the birthday party photography backdrop.

In addition to that, set up a detailed photo booth for the invitees to create beautiful memories in their fanciful outfits and gold photo booth props.

To top it off, add some glitter to the party with a set of elegant plates and cutlery for a touch of luxury gold.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

Let us show you how.

Present each of your guest with these uniquely designed small masquerade masks in their favour bags, which provides a great momento.

Play the old time favourite game of bingo which is decorated with masquerade images.

Give out game of dare, in form of scratch games cards, is sure to liven up the party mood too.


Party Theme Idea:
Wild, Creative and Thrilling Zombie Party

Get this:

Whether the date of the birthday party is near to Halloween or not, a zombie themed party will be adored by both girls and guys and definitely fun and cool!

It allows the fantasy go wild and engage in a big variety of outdoor activities.

You can even make a pre-party, where the guests will be dying and doing the make up to each other, or simply announce the topic, and make some eye-like candies or finger-cookies.

It should be creepy and unusual, so don’t forget to rent a nice DJ, so your little brain-eaters have the ultimate fun.

Best of all, besides being a creative birthday idea, it is relatively cheap to organize this type of party, which makes it also a suitable sweet 16th birthday party idea on a budget.

Important Checklist to Note:

1) Sufficient makeup kit for the guests
2) Creepy decoration and music for the birthday venue

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

Here’s how:

Decorate the place with zombie themed happy birthday kit and Halloween scary photo booth props is sure to bring the fear factor of the party to a heightened level. Black and red balloons hanging on the wall give it an additional touch to the theme.

When it comes to cake cutting ceremony, do not forget to include cake toppers to maintain the eerie mood. Buy a zombie theme table cover and place the “scary” napkins, plates and cups on the table to complete the whole decoration.

Treat your thirsty guests with blood bags drinks, to remind them that “blood” can quench thirst better than water.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

Give your guests an unforgettable scary night as a memento with Zombie Survival Drawstring backpacks, which is also a practical gift, which they can re-use them for their outdoor activities or to keep stuff.

You get the idea.

For guests who are more adventurous, organise a zombie zone selfie scavenger hunt and scared their night away.

Those who love board games, present them with a game that everyone knows, zombie version of monopoly.

Relevant Birthday Gifts to Consider:

For the birthday 16 year old boy who loves zombie and NFL, marry his two likes with the NFL zombie gift, which makes a nice décor in his room. You may consider giving him a zombie coloring book which is a great way to enhance one’s creativity and destress.

Here’s the interesting part.

If he is one who loves gag gift, he will be sure to have a good laugh to receive the “Zombies Eat Brains So You’re Safe” t shirt. He will thank you for this funny t shirt as it makes a great conversational starter at parties.


Party Theme Idea:
Cool and Fun Sci-Fiction Concept

Many teens including sixteen year olds love sci-fiction, whenever it’s “Star Trek”, “Matrix”, “Gravity” or even “Inception”, guys, especially teenagers, are in love with them, and would love to see a party theme like this to celebrate the birthday.

Basically, “everything is possible”- should be the main rule of this party, regards decoration, and clothing.

You can easily combine a nice masquerade, where everybody should dress as original as possible, with an outdoor sitting around with some grills and songs to celebrate the occasion.

For more activities, invent a quest based on the favorite movie, or combine them all and make a quiz game that is simple but enjoyable, it’s the ultimate fun and cool birthday idea!

Important Checklist To Note:

1) Local shop that offers Sci-Fi costume rental services
2) Decoration at party venue that matches costume theme

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

Let the birthday theme start off with a big surprise as the guests are soaked in Sci Fi ambience against a backdrop of the universe, in starry sky planet background.

Place a flood light to further spruce up the party décor, creating the mysterious planet surrounding with the neon light.

And the best part?

Complete the décor with space birthday party supplies set, giving the guests a space feel while chomping down on their favourite party food.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

Though the outer space drawstring bags are for children, they are suitable for teenagers as well, because they are colorful and make good organizer bags for teens to keep in their bags.

Test the youths’ knowledge about science in a fun way with a deck of cards featuring fun facts and scientific explanations.

After a mind boggling game, let your guests take a break and do some physical activity and strategize with the Star Trek board game.


Party Theme Idea:
Go Back In Time To The 1920s Great Gatsby

If you are considering possible birthday party themes for the 16 year old, why not select the Great Gatsby?

Many teens love the book, and then the movie, so why not making a luxury Great Gatsby themed party? Everyone dressed like in the good 20s or 30s, with nice Jazz music and lot of dancing.

Here’s the fun part:

If the budget allows for this indoor birthday party idea, then you can call a Jazz band and some nice mini lighting display around midnight. Be a real lady and don’t forget to be as classy as possible for this unique and unusual birthday idea.

Let the birthday venue be filled with the number “16” related decorations so that guests are reminded of the significance of this number as they soak into the 1920s and 30s atmosphere.

Important Checklist To Note:

1) Local shop that offers Great Gatsby related, 1920s and 1930s, costume rental services
2) Glamorous and luxurious decoration at party venue

Decorations to Buy Immediately:

You know this.

Give the party a vintage feel with the Great Gatsby Photography backdrop. Place some 1920s’ party booth props at the backdrop to inject some fun for the guests when taking photos.

Further create a vintage ambience by including 1920s party supplies such as plates, cutlery and cups, so that the guests can have their meals soaked in vintage atmosphere.

Activity Items/Games to Get Now:

Make this sweet sixteen birthday party theme even better.

Giving 1920s Art Deco Jazz Party Favor Boxes is a must have for the guests, to go home with the classic feel. Jazz up the party with a session of roaring 20s dare game which will bring laughs among the guests.

Lastly, invoke some enigma in the party with a murder mystery game, which will make the guests think and work as team to solve the puzzle.


In essence, being 16 year old is the time of life when everyone wants to be the coolest and the most popular in school or even in the town, and what can help more than cool sweet 16 birthday ideas to achieve that?

Follow our ideas listed above and make your party the best one.

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