New York Theme Sweet 16 Party Ideas

These little town blues, are getting in your way, so start spreading the news, you’re having a party today! Bring all the glamor and excitement of New York without ever having to buy an airplane ticket or pay for a hotel. Turn Sweet 16 in the big city!

New York Theme Party Invitations
New York is a city of tickets – to the theater, sporting events, train or subway. So what better way to invite your guests to a night in New York than with an actual ticket? can create a fabulous photo ticket invitation just for you. Make it into a magnet and it can stick right to your guests’ refrigerator. Once everyone hears about this party, they’ll be trying to find scalpers to get an invitation!
You can also surprise the birthday girl with a Sweet 16 Custom Caricature invitation.  On this invite, have the birthday girl in a gorgeous evening gown in the center of Times Square with a group of paparazzi behind, or have the guest of honor standing in an "I (Heart) New York" tshirt in front of the Statue of Liberty on a sunny day! The sky's the limit for this customized invite!

If you want a more traditional invitation, send a personalized New York themed invite.  Here are some great options:
Put confetti in the envelope for a special touch.  Another great invite style are Backstage Pass invitations. Give your guests the VIP treatment to the hottest show in New York... your Sweet 16!
For your personalized invites, try using one of these themed phrases:
Celebrate in the big city
For Caroline's Sweet 16!
Bring your New York City style
To Rachel's 16th birthday party!
For Ashley's Sweet 16,
Let's go out on the town!
Feeling creative? Design your own invitation in the shape of an apple (remember New York is The Big Apple) or a skyscraper. Use bright red paper for the apple and shiny silver for the building. Write the party information on the back in black or silver pen.

New York Decorations and Party Supplies
There are so many decorating possibilities for a New York theme party.  Central Park is one of New York’s most famous and beautiful landmarks. Few of us can have a lake, boat house or walking path in our front yard, but it can still be scenic and bright. Black city street lights placed along a front walk look elegant and romantic. And how magical will the entrance to your party look with small, white twinkle lights on bushes and trees?
As your guests walk through the front door, greet them with a great welcome banner. This New York cityscape banner can be customized any way you want – a general party welcome or one to a New York City landmark - “Welcome to the Smith’s 21 Club” or “Smith’s Madison Square Garden, Ticket Holders Only.”
New York is known for its night life, so play up the glitter and glitz of the big city with a silver and gold color scheme. Mix bunches of silver and gold balloons on either side of the door. Clear balloons filled with metallic shred or confetti create a really unique look. You can use these balloon bunches as centerpieces on your tables, too – they look fabulous and are cost effective.  Here are some balloons and accessories that will help make great bouquets:
  • Silver balloons, gold balloons and clear balloons 
  • Portable helium tanks
  • Balloon weights - choose coordinating colors
  • Curling ribbon - we like colors opposite of our balloon weights
As your guests enter the party room, be sure that the smooth sounds of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. are playing. This classic music will set the tone for the evening.  Include some of these other New York City themed songs as part of your playlist:
  1. "Theme from New York, New York" - Frank Sinatra
  2. "Autumn in New York" - Billie Holiday
  3. "Take the 'A' Train" - The Duke Ellington Orchestra
  4. "On Broadway" - George Bensen
  5. "New York State of Mind" - Billy Joel
  6. "Living for the City" - Stevie Wonder
  7. "Walk on the Wild Side" - Lou Reed
  8. "Manhattan" - Ella Fitzgerald
  9. "Give My Regards to Broadway" - James Cagney
  10. "Harlem Blues" - Nat King Cole
  11. "Harlem Shuffle" - Bob & Earl

New York Table Top and Menu

Since it’s a party, no one wants to be stuck in the kitchen doing dishes so paper plates are a must! But not just any paper plates. Use black plastic tableware matched with black, silver or gold napkins and silverware – whatever you like best.  Then, try some of these stylish options for table decorations:
  • Light up your tables with mini city street lamps, reminiscent of the bright lights of Manhattan!
  • Pay homage to everyone's favorite New York sites by theming each table.  A "Statue of Liberty" table might include a small cardboard standup of the iconic lady with Statue of Liberty keychains at each seat for favors. Try the Empire State Building, Madison Square Garden, Central Park, Times Square, Little Italy, Chinatown, the Brooklyn Bridge, Broadway, and Wall Street as themes for each table.  Let the Big Apple inspire you!
  • Guide guests to their seats with  taxi cab place cards.  Buy toy taxi cabs and slide a place card through the top or side door. These fun reminders of New York's busy streets serve as favors too!
  • Weave black and white boas around centerpieces, and toss silver party beads on tables so guests can deck themselves out in some bling!
  • Add votive candles around centerpieces to add a festive glow to the party.
The table is set, now it’s time to eat. New York is famous for its restaurants and eateries so be sure to offer your guests a sampling of the City’s finest! Your guests will love a buffet overflowing with egg rolls and chow mein (from Chinatown), hot dogs (remember Nathan’s?), pizza (home of the famous slice), corned beef and pickles (from the Lower East Side), hot pretzels and roasted chestnuts (found on any street corner), and cheesecake (Lindy’s is the best).
Make labels for each buffet item, paying homage to some of the best restaurants and street corner food in the world! Also, try combining some or all of these New York delicacies with your own specialties for an evening that’s as delicious as it is fun.

New York Party Favors
Want to give your guests more than just great memories from your party? A personalized New York theme candy bar is another sweet favor.  Try one of these other unique favor ideas that take advantage of New York fads:
  • Authentic "I (Heart) New York" souvenirs would be a quick and cool favor option.  You can buy tshirts, coffee mugs, pencils, and hats online. 
  • Try sticking a couple of iconic New York souvenirs (like a Times Square snow globe or a miniature Statue of Liberty figurine) in an "I © New York" tote.  Guests will love these easy take home gifts they can use again and again.
  • Stick an "I © New York" sticker on a red delicious apple.  How appropriate for the big city!
  • Take a picture of the birthday girl and her friends, and before guests leave, print the pictures and put them in themed city skyline photo frames.  The girls will love this personalized memento!
  • Fill New York Theme Party Favor Bags with fun New York sticker sets and delicious salt water taffy.
  • If the birthday girl is a baseball fan, fill favor bags with New York gear, like a New York Yankees note pad or a New York Mets beach ball. 

New York is a city of magic and wonder just like your New York, New York party will be. From, have a fun and happy Sweet 16!