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Ultimate Summer Party Ideas: Fun Games, Activities, and Themes

by Leah from Picta

Reading time: 6 minutes

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School is out, vacation is in full swing … it’s summertime! ☀️ And what better way to kick off this hot season than with a festive party to celebrate! Read on for ways to throw a summer party and other summer party ideas! From decorations to themes and games, to snacks and other fun goodies, this all-inclusive guide is here to heat up your party!

Summer Party Themes

Colorful summer party decorations for a festive atmosphere

🎉 Print and Party Like a Pro 🎊

Whether it is for an end of the school year bash, a fun office party to celebrate summer, or just a way to get together with friends, every great summer party begins with a theme. Go tropical with a luau theme and transport your guests to a Hawaiian paradise! Or head to the jungle with a jungle theme for some animal fun!

  1. Tropical Paradise: Bring the beach vibes with a tropical-themed party. Decorate with palm leaves, coconuts, and vibrant floral arrangements. Serve fruity cocktails and delicious tropical dishes to give your guests a taste of paradise!
  2. Hawaiian Luau: Transport your guests to the Hawaiian islands with a luau party. Use tiki torches, leis, and grass skirts for decorations to really set the ambiance. Serve traditional Hawaiian food like poi, kalua pig, and pineapple-based desserts for the perfect way to end the party!
  3. Beach Bonfire: Host a cozy beach bonfire party to kick off summer. Set up a bonfire, provide blankets and beach chairs, and offer s'mores, grilled food, and refreshing beverages to along with the flickering flames.
  4. Pool Party: Make a splash with a pool party! Set up inflatable pool toys, provide plenty of pool noodles and beach balls, and play fun pool games. On the menu? Refreshing drinks and easy-to-eat finger foods in between cannonballs.
  5. Festive Fiesta: Spice up your summer with a vibrant fiesta-themed party. Decorate with colorful papel picado banners, piñatas, and cacti. Serve Mexican cuisine like tacos, guacamole, and margaritas for an olé way to start the summer season!

Tropical paradise themed summer party setup

🌴 Bring Paradise Home with a Print 🏖️

  1. Summer Carnival: Create a festive carnival atmosphere with games and activities. Set up booths with classic carnival games, offer cotton candy, popcorn, and snow cones, and decorate with colorful balloons and streamers. This makes the perfect summer party!
  2. Backyard BBQ: Keep it classic with a backyard BBQ party. Fire up the grill, serve burgers, hot dogs, and grilled veggies, and provide outdoor games like cornhole or horseshoes while you get your grill on.
  3. Nautical Adventure: Set sail with a nautical-themed party! Decorate with anchors, ropes, and navy blue and white stripes. Serve seafood dishes, create a DIY photo booth with a boat backdrop, and hand out sailor hats as party favors.
  4. Into the Jungle: Feline fine with this rainforest themed party! Add in decorations like tigers and lions (and bears, oh my!) along with your jungle-themed decor to set the mood. For the treats, try monkey-themed cupcakes or a fruit salad to add in a wild touch.

Summer Party Decoration Ideas


Creative summer party invitations laid out

💌 Create Invites that Impress 🌟

First things first, once you’ve got the date all squared away, your next step is sending out invitations for your summer party! Make sure your invitations match your theme and add in all important information like when, where, what, who to make sure your guests know exactly what to look forward to!


With the Picta website, we’ve got hundreds of designs for every type of party! And the best part? They are ready the same-day and fully customizable.

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Create Your Own Decorations

DIY summer party decorations featuring tropical theme

🖼️ Turn Your Photos into DIY Decor 🌺

Take your favorite photo when you were on vacation in the Seychelles and transform it into a photo poster to create one-of-a-kind party decorations everyone is sure to love! Your son is a huge fan of white leopards and your local party store didn’t have any of this (very niche) type of party decorations? Not a problem, print your own!

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Party Favors

Unique party favors for summer gatherings

🎁 Craft Custom Favors in a Flash 🚀

This one is for the highly-motivated! Have a photo booth or a photo op at your summer party? Once the photos have been taken, upload them to the Picta website and transform them into the perfect party favor! The best part? They are ready in 1 hour, that’s less time than it takes for all those little munchkins to show you their synchonized swimming routine they’ve been practicing all afternoon!

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Party Games & Activities

Get ready to turn your summer parties into epic events with these exciting games and activities! We've rounded up some fantastic ideas that will keep your guests entertained and create unforgettable memories. Let's dive right in!

Tropical Paradise

Guests playing limbo at a tropical-themed party

🕺 Capture the Limbo Fun on Print 📸

  1. Limbo: Get those hips swaying and challenge your friends to a thrilling limbo competition. How low can you go without touching the ground? Don’t forget the music!
  2. Tropical Trivia: Test your guests' knowledge of all things tropical with a lively trivia game. From famous beaches to exotic fruits, let the tropical-themed questions transport everyone to paradise. The winner gets a taste of victory, a and a fun, festive prize!
  3. Hula Hoop Contest: Let loose and embrace the spirit of the islands with a hula hoop contest. Show off your hip-shaking skills and see who can keep the hoop spinning the longest. It's all about having fun in true tropical style!

Hawaiian Luau

Hula dance performance at Hawaiian Luau party

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  • Hula Dancing: Get your grass skirts and leis ready for a hula dancing extravaganza! Learn the graceful moves of this traditional Hawaiian dance and create a mesmerizing group performance. It's sure to add an authentic touch to your luau.
  • Tiki Toss: Test your aim and precision with a thrilling game of tiki toss. Take turns tossing rings onto tiki torches or other targets to score points. Will you master the art of the toss and claim victory? Just make sure the torches aren’t lit just yet!
  • Coconut Bowling: Roll up your sleeves and embrace the Hawaiian spirit with a lively game of coconut bowling. Set up pineapples as pins and use real coconuts as bowling balls. Let the good times roll!

Beach Bonfire

Friends enjoying beach bonfire party game

🔥 Keep the Bonfire Glow on Print 🔥

  • Beach Volleyball: Feel the sand between your toes and gather your friends for an exhilarating game of beach volleyball. Dive, spike, and set your way to victory under the warm summer sun!
  • Beach Scavenger Hunt: Embark on an exciting beach adventure with a scavenger hunt. Create a list of beach-themed items like seashells and driftwood for your guests to find. Who will be the first to complete the treasure hunt and claim the prize?
  • Glow-in-the-Dark Frisbee: Take your beach bonfire to the next level with a glow-in-the-dark frisbee game. Watch as the illuminated discs soar through the night sky.

Pool Party

Pool party with inflatable toys and games

🏊 Splash Your Pool Party Pics in Print 🌊

  • Marco Polo: Dive into the pool and get ready for a classic game of Marco Polo. It's a splashin' good time!
  • Pool Noodle Race: Grab your trusty pool noodle and compete in a thrilling race across the water. Glide, float, and paddle your way to victory. Who will be crowned the pool noodle champion?
  • Water Balloon Toss: Beat the heat and have a blast with a water balloon toss. Stand back-to-back with a partner and toss the balloon gently, testing your coordination and catching skills. Stay dry or get soaked—it's all part of the fun!

Fiesta Fiesta

Colorful fiesta party scene with piñata game

🎊 Fiesta Forever with Printed Pics 🎉

  • Piñata: No fiesta is complete without a colorful piñata. Swing blindfolded and channel your inner strength to crack it open and release the candy inside - sugar rush guaranteed!
  • Salsa Showdown: Unleash your culinary creativity with a salsa-making competition. Provide an array of fresh ingredients and let your guests whip up their signature salsas. The taste buds of the judges will be dancing with delight!
  • Mexican Hat Dance: Shake, shimmy, and stomp your way through a lively Mexican Hat Dance. Follow the energetic rhythm and embrace the vibrant cultural traditions. It's a fiesta on the dance floor!

Summer Carnival

Carnival themed summer party with fun games

🎪 Bring the Carnival Home in Print 🎡

  • Ring Toss: Set up a ring toss game where guests throw rings onto bottles or other targets to win prizes.
  • Duck Pond Game: Fill a small pool with water and place rubber ducks with numbers on the bottom. Guests pick a duck and win a prize based on the number on the duck, it’s sure to be a quack of a time!
  • Face Painting: Hire a face painter or set up a DIY face painting station where guests can get their faces painted with fun carnival designs to get in the mood!

Backyard BBQ

Backyard BBQ setup with games and grilling

🍖 Grill & Print: BBQ Memories 🌭

  • Cornhole: Set up a cornhole game and have guests take turns tossing bean bags into the holes to score points. Back up for even more of a challenge!
  • BBQ Cook-Off: Hold a BBQ cook-off where guests can showcase their grilling skills. Provide different meats and ingredients for them to create their signature dishes. A panel of judges can determine the winner, and enjoy the culinary creations!
  • Water Balloon Dodgeball: Divide guests into teams and have a friendly water balloon dodgeball game in the backyard, try not to get splashed!

Nautical Adventure

Nautical adventure party decor with boat race game

⚓ Sail into Memories with Prints ⛵

  • Boat Race: Organize a boat race using remote-controlled boats in a large inflatable pool or a nearby pond, no crashing allowed!
  • Knot-Tying Contest: Teach guests various nautical knots and have them compete to see who can tie the knots the fastest or most accurately. These knots are sure to give you a nauti time.
  • Treasure Hunt: Create a treasure hunt with nautical-themed clues and have guests search for hidden treasures around the party area to become the pirate champs!

Summer Party

Group of friends enjoying a vibrant summer party

🌞 Summer Fun Printed Instantly 📷

We hope these ideas help make your summer party a super fun time!