Throw a truly unexpected surprise party: look beyond the birthday

This week's article is all about looking beyond the birthday when you plan a surprise party! When most people think of a surprise party, they immediately think of a birthday. Birthdays seem to have stolen the spotlight when it comes to unexpected parties and are now the most obvious occasion to host a surprise event. Unfortunately, obviousness and surprise don't mix! There can be a lot of expectation around birthdays and any unusual activity is immediately suspicious. This heightened anticipation can work against you and ruin your all of your carefully thought out plans.

Luckily, there are any other number of reasons to host a surprise event! It doesn't have to be limited to the birthday (don't get me wrong, surprise birthdays are awesome, if a bit more difficult to pull off!). With a little out-of-the-box thinking, any milestone can warrant a surprise party.

If you're still having difficulty picturing it, here is a list of some worth-celebrating milestones! Graduations (high school, college, undergrad, law school, medical school, Masters, PhD); receiving a professional designation (craftsman, getting called to the bar, becoming a P.Eng, becoming a Chartered Accountant); promotions at work; retirements.

Don't forget all of the wedding and family related events! Anniversaries; engagements; wedding and baby showers; bachelor and bachelorette parties; birth of a child; divorces (yes that's a thing now!); and... weddings! Surprise weddings are becoming more popular these days. Before you ask, the bride and groom surprise their guests by inviting them to a "party" and unexpectedly getting married there. And though I've just seen a commercial where a family throws a "first girlfriend" party for their son, even I don't recommend that one.

As you can see, surprise parties are not exclusive to the birthday and, in fact, are more unexpected when the occasion isn't a birthday. If you think outside the box, you will find any number of awesome occasions worth celebrating with a surprise!

Thanks for reading and I hope one of these ideas has inspired you to throw an awesome party! Please leave a comment below if you have any other ideas for a surprise-appropriate occasion, or if you want to share a store about an unexpected party you threw. And as always, you can connect with me over social media on Facebook, Twitter, and  Instagram.