Need 50th Anniversary Ideas

I have 4 siblings and we're trying to decide what to do for our parent's 50th anniversary. We've gone from giving them a cruise, to a trip to Japan, to a party at the local Sheraton hotel, to a measly Chinese restaurant dinner and a gift certificate. We cannot seem to agree and we all have differing budgets, not to mention having to pay for travel, hotel and car rental expenses for some of us - not in lieu of, but in addition to the celebration expenses.

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Granted, some of us are "talking" more by email than we ever had, but it's also bringing up hard feelings, having to veto some ideas. We have at least 5 to 6 months to go, but I'm glad we started talking now! Any ideas?

I'm in NV, one sis is in CA, the other sis in NY and 2 brothers in WA state, which is where our parents live. I'd appreciate any ideas! Thanks so much, love this column.

Sheila

Editor's Note: This request was published in 2000. We are working on bringing older data into our database.

November 30, 20000 found this helpful

My parents celebrated their 50th anniversary in 1988. Mom passed away nine months later. Dad 4 years after that. Both wanted to spend the celebration with children, grand children and great grand children. As a family for each member we created a quilt square. Mom was a quilter. The square represented either the personality of the person it represented, her/his occupation or a special memory of Mom and/or Dad she/he had. It was marked with her/his name and date of birth. The quilt has become a loving memory of Mom and Dad. Mom used to read it over and over during the remaining months we had her with us.

Sandi

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November 30, 20000 found this helpful

We had a party Sunday afternoon in a park, invited all their friends, fed everyone hotdogs, hamburgers, and low-country boil (we're in the Southeast US). We played "Little-known Mom and Dad" facts. Questions were things like "His favorite color?" "Who sleeps nearest a window?" "Where was the honeymoon?" "What were they GOING to name the 2nd child?" and the guests all got to call out answers. For a correct answer, the guest received a gag gift: a small candle, fish tackle, key chain, foot powder. It was a riot! And a wedding-style cake and balloons complete the festivities.

Monica

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I have 4 siblings and we're trying to decide what to do for our parent's 50th anniversary. We've gone from giving them a cruise, to a trip to Japan, to a party at the local Sheraton hotel, to a measly Chinese restaurant dinner and a gift certificate. We cannot seem to agree and we all have differing budgets, not to mention having to pay for travel, hotel and car rental expenses for some of us - not in lieu of, but in addition to the celebration expenses.

Granted, some of us are "talking" more by email than we ever had, but it's also bringing up hard feelings, having to veto some ideas. We have at least 5 to 6 months to go, but I'm glad we started talking now! Any ideas?

I'm in NV, one sis is in CA, the other sis in NY and 2 brothers in WA state, which is where our parents live. I'd appreciate any ideas! Thanks so much, love this column.

Sheila

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We were in the same boat as you. My husband and I don't have a lot of money, and his siblings wanted to do something magical for their parents' anniversary. As my parents' own milestone anniversary was also looming, I was cringing at the bills that we'd be sent. His sister saved the day by suggesting that since a cruise or trip wouldn't include all of their family, that we each contibute four pages to a family photo album, that close relatives (his and her sisters) make two pages and that close friends create a single page of their friendships and that was made in advance and was set out at their anniversary party. Shortly thereafter, while his parents went on a cruise that they paid for, his mom became very ill. She was only TOO happy having it in her hospital room as she convalesced and attributes her recovery to the happy memories that were brought up in that memory book!

Alouette

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As far as a 50th aniversey part my husband's family did a life video for thier parents. We collect family photos from all four brothers, all other relatives and gave them to a video company and they made a "this is your life" style video. His parents loved it. They did not want a party, they did not want a "fuss" nor did they want their picture in the paper.

Helpful Reader

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At the time of my parents 50th anniversary, my father was not able to travel. There are three of us and we decided to have a Golden Anniversary party for them. We invited some of their friends and people that they have known and been in their lives during the years they were married.

We rented an beautiful mansion (that was owned by the parks) in our area and catered it ourselves. We gave them a couple of big gifts that they needed and wanted and the party. We had finger foods (chicken wings and vegetable trays, meatballs, fresh fruits, chips and finger sandwiches.) And we had a wedding cake and an champagne punch (that was great).

They really did appreciate all of their siblings (that could make it) and us and our families to be together. We had friends that kept the food and the punch going. The look they had on their faces when the party started was worth so much, you see my dad passed away 6 months later. Your parents will be glad to just get all of you together with your families and with them. Those are memories you and your siblings will never forget.

I think nothing is worth arguing about when it comes to families. Maybe you all can come to some agreement but whatever you do, please make this a great memory for your parents. You will never regret it.

Elaine

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I live away from my parents and it is very rare for us all to get together at one time. My Mom treasures those times more than anything else. Perhaps you should all choose a central meeting location. Rent hotel rooms or a cabin. Just spend time together as a family. State parks can be pretty reasonable with cabin rental, and a lot of them are very nice. Depending on the time of year, you may have to make reservation pretty far in advance, but it sounds like you have plenty of time.

Good luck with the planning, and enjoy the time you are communicating with your siblings!

Teresa B.

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As a mother, grandmother and great grandmother I feel the best gift you could give your parents is to have all of their children together for a long visit. I know I really look forward to seeing all of my kids together, interacting with them and watching them interact with each other. It's like having all my chicks back in the nest. I would rather spend time with my kids than go on a cruise or see Japan. Maybe have a party with family and friends then spend a week talking about how much fun it was and seeing the sights in their town.

Sharon

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Since your brothers live near your parents, have them casually, during a conversation, mention it's their 50th coming up. Reminisce with them about how they met, where they went on their first date, and what their plans were when they first married.

Also ask what are THEY are planning, you don't want to interfere if they have something special they want to do together.

If a trip for them is in the planning, try to find out where THEY would like to go. They might just like to spend a week, or even a weekend, at a nice hotel, somewhere where they can relax, do some sightseeing, or see a show. Or maybe they'd like to take turns spending a week with each of you, doing some sightseeing and getting reacquainted.

And definitely plan a dinner out with ALL of you present.

KayD http://CookingForFun.tripod.com

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I guess it would depend on your family and what things they enjoy, but something we did for our parents on their 50th and they loved was to have a professional video photo album made for them. We gathered up family photos from the time they met to the current date and had them set to music to fit the photos. You could also do music to fit the time frame of the photos, but that would probably be more difficult. Since it takes a while, (lots of time gathering and sorting photos) it might be too late for something like this, but it is a thought.

Peg

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For the 50th Anniversary... how about you all split the costs and give them 50 day trips to places? They don't have to be expensive or set in stone, but give them where to go and when if reservations are required? That way you are only paying for 10 things and each of you can either work together or decide on your own and compare then to make sure no one else is doing the same. A dinner would be also nice, and ask people to write a favorite memory of them, and make a book. (ex. 50 Wonderful Memories of you for 50 wonderful years). Just a thought.

Daisy

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February 21, 20050 found this helpful

I have three brothers and I am the only girl and we want to give our parents a 50th anniversary party. they go on cruises or travel whenever they want. It will be held in the barn at my house, which is very nice. my brothers can't afford a lot, so any ideas would be helpful. We are looking at about 150 people to attend

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July 16, 20050 found this helpful

50th Anniversary is golden anniversary. For a sentimental gift how about 50 silk magnolias sprayed gold, and arranged in a lovely vase.

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July 18, 20050 found this helpful

You could treat them to a side trip on the cruise.

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May 12, 20080 found this helpful

My parents 50th anniversary is coming up soon, also. My brother and I (and our families) plan to give them a family portrait for an anniversary gift. It's impossible to think that our families could all go to a studio. Therefore, the photographer plans to come out to our family farm to take the portrait. It will be a casual picture. Everyone dressed in jeans and a white shirt or khakis and white. Just another idea for you.

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