Looking for summer party themes for college students? Whether you’re looking for a good backyard party theme, good house party ideas, or a frat party theme / sorority party theme for those left at college over the summer or even a college mixer, we have great party ideas and unique college party themes for you!
Best Summer Party Themes for College Students
So what are good themes for parties for college students? Add these to your summer frat party themes / summer sorority parties or just a fun party at home with friends!
Fun Party Themes for College Kids
Summer College Theme Parties Ideas That Rock:
- Starry Night
- Meme Theme Party
- White Lies Shirt Party
- Dad Bod Party
- Silent Disco
- Wednesday Addams Party / Nevermore Party Theme
- No-Pool Pool Party Theme
- Backyard Movie Marathon (one of my favorite summer party ideas!)
- Summer School Spirit
- Anything But Cups Party
- Glow Party Theme
- Luau Party Theme
- Christmas In July Party
- Decade Party (past decades like 90s Grunge Party, 80s Night, 70s Disco Party, etc.)
- Casino Night Party
- Toga Party (yes, still!)
- Alice In Wonderland / Down The Rabbit Hole Theme
- Carnival Party Theme
- High School Stereotypes Party
- Graffiti Party
- Beach Party
- Euphoria Themed Party from the TV show
- Formal Great Gatsby Theme Party (with a dress code)
- Ugly Sweater Party (yes, even funnier as a summer party theme!)
- Breakfast Club Characters Theme
- All Black Party Theme / All White Party Theme (guests dress in all black or all white, same with decorations and food)
Don’t miss the details for the easy college party themes / cool themes below. Keep scrolling and we’ll answer how do you make a summer party fun and give you great ideas for unique parties for college party themes and ideas!
Before we get to party theme ideas, let’s cover some party hacks and tips that will help with an epic summer college party!
College Summer Party Tips
How do you throw an amazing college party?
- Decide on an epic location where everyone can spread out.
- Have a college party theme and encourage people to dress up! Having a theme party gets people involved and having a good time. (PARTY TIP? Skip anything with “hoes” in the name. We’ve moved past that…)
- Create an awesome playlist of current songs and also older popular songs.
- Throw in a funny song or two that everyone knows into your playlist. It will get groans, but secretly everyone will love it! (Think: Baby Shark, Hokey Pokey, etc.).
- Do some fun activities like a photo scavenger hunt, have a photo booth with hilarious photo props, or do TikTok challenge for those who want to participate. (Not everyone will and that’s cool, too!)
- Offer a variety of drinks (not just alcohol) and stick with twist-off caps if you can. Many people today want to be in charge of opening their own drinks (for safety reasons).
- Curb the underage drinking so no one gets in trouble.
- Offer food, even if it’s just a variety of snacks.
- Have sober monitors to make sure everyone stays safe.
- Make designated drivers available.
How do I have fun at a college party?
To have fun at college parties and still stay safe parties:
- Go all out with the theme of the party — like dressing up and participating in theme games. It’s a great way to bond with others and have a good time, especially if you’re going to a party where you don’t know a lot of people.
- Don’t participate in any wild party themes / drinking party themes you’re not comfortable with! (You know, just say NO.)
- Go with a best friend or two and keep an eye out for each of the people in your group.
- Keep track of your own drinks. (Pour your own drinks or drink only things that you open yourself.) Don’t leave your drink unattended with anyone (not even people you think you know).
- Turn on the tracking for your phone and let friends know the address of the party.
- Easily make small talk by starting with, “How do you know [the host]?”
- Let go and don’t worry about what other people are thinking!
- Dress comfortably so you can sit / stand without worrying about what you’re wearing.
- Ditch the purse or backpack and put your keys, ID, money, and phone in front pockets or zippered jacket pockets.
- If you will be drinking, plan to Uber home with your friends.
ALSO CHECK OUT FAVORITE FOOD IDEAS: SUMMER FOOD PARTY NAMES LIST
Can you go to college parties and not drink?
Yes, it’s definitely possible to go to college parties and not drink AND still have fun! Many college groups today are respectful of other people’s choices, so you probably don’t need to worry about peer pressure. Just politely decline drinks and go for the bottled water (open it yourself) or bring your own twist-off soft drink or water. Be sure to keep it in your possession at all times.
OK! Let’s get to our college theme party ideas and a perfect way to throw a summer party with friends!
17 Most Popular Ideas For Summer Party Themes For College Students
These are popular trending themed parties for a fun night! Here are favorite college party theme ideas…
Silent Disco Party
If you’re looking for a perfect theme to get everyone dancing or unique party themes unlike other parties, this is it.
A silent rave party is where people wear headphones to dance and party, but no music is played over speakers.
This makes a really fun birthday party theme (great for 18th birthday or 21st birthday party ideas), too!
Little White Lie Shirt Party
This is super trending for college parties right now (just check TikTok parties!) and is a hilarious party idea.
Everyone comes to the party with a white lie written on a shirt. (And making fun of people’s white lies is a great excuse to get to know them!)
(Who knew some white t-shirts and Sharpies would be a lot of fun and make one of the best themes ever?!)
Everything But A Cup Party
An “anything but a cup” party is a party where people bring things to drink, but they are not allowed to use traditional cups or glasses.
Instead, they have to get creative and use alternative containers or vessels to hold and consume their drinks. (Think: construction hat, rain boot, flower vases, or even hollowed-out fruits as drink containers.)
SUPER popular and trending college party theme right now!
Glow Dance Party (aka: Neon Dark Party)
Who doesn’t love glow in the dark? Add music and a dance floor and you have the best college party idea ever!
HINT: It needs to be DARK and you’ll need lights like this to make it work!
Mock Influencer Party
Have guests dress as their favorite online influencer or favorite character from YouTube or TikTok. (Have some fun dress up items, too, like boas, sunglasses, hats and more for people who didn’t dress up but change their minds at the party.)
Create your own party hashtag and invite everyone to share their party pics and videos on Instagram and TikTok.
Check out the platforms for college party themes TikTok and do some challenges as a group.
Animal House Party (Toga Party Theme)
Throw an Animal House Toga Party!
(You knew this one was coming, right?)
I know it’s one of those classic themes that everyone does, but that’s because it’s such a fun party idea!
Serve cheap canned beer, soft drinks, and college food. (Just watch the Animal House toga party scene for ideas.)
And, yes, it’s STILL one of those funny party themes that everyone loves and one of the ultimate frat party ideas (and still one of the best party themes for a good rager!).
Transport your guests to the islands with seashells, bamboo torches, flower leis, and lots of steel drum island music.
Serve up traditional Hawaiian food like BBQ pork, pineapple, and umbrella drinks in coconuts like this.
Perfect party for an outdoor space warm weather party!
Pool Party (Or Un-Pool Parties)
Keep it cool with a pool party theme!
Serve up refreshing drinks like fruit smoothies and Pina Coladas and snacks like watermelon slices and popsicles.
Decorate with mini inflatable beach balls, pool blow ups, and sun glasses that partygoers can wear and take home.
Don’t have a pool? No worries!
If you’re looking for easy pool party themes college ideas without a pool, this is it!
Set up some baby pools (with water!) and place chairs around them and have backyard water fun items, summer water games, bubbles to blow, umbrella drinks, beach music, sandcastle building stations, sprinkles and more.
(Seriously, you don’t need a pool for a beach-themed party! We did this and I think people had more fun than if we’d had a regular pool! It was a HUGE hit and was such a cheap and easy theme to setup!)
Fire up the grill and celebrate summer with a backyard BBQ.
Serve up classics like hot dogs and hamburgers, potato salad, and watermelon.
Add some fun with festive tablecloths, cowboy hat favors (that people can wear!), and a grill and chill party music play list.
If you’re looking for a super chill party, this is the best way to have one!
Have nerdy friends? This party theme is for you!
Get your guests in the mood for some star-gazing with a starry night themed party.
Decorate with galaxy-inspired props like planets, stars, and space ships.
Set up telescopes so that your guests can view the moon and stars.
Serve up out-of-this-world treats like astronaut ice cream and milky way bars (swap out the snickers in this dessert with Milky Way bars and call it On the Way to the Milky Way Fluff).
Outdoor Movie Night Theme
Transport your guests to the movies with this fun theme … except outdoors!
Serve up popcorn, candy, and soda in theater-style boxes.
With a projector hooked to your laptop and pop-up screen (or even a bed sheet screen), your backyard or balcony becomes an outdoor theater!
This is also a great theme to pair up with a college pajama party for an overnight great time!
School Spirit Party
Show your school spirit with a school themed party!
Decorate with school banners and balloons in your school colors.
Serve up favorite party foods like pizza and popcorn. (Learn how to color popcorn in your school colors!)
Break out the games for some friendly competition with classics like beer pong, flip cup, and corn hole or divide into teams for a funny challenge course.
Give out awards for best school spirit like craziest school spirit hair, best school spirit costume, loudest cheer and more.
(This can actually turn into one of those really funny themes and the best thing is that you already have the costume stuff!)
Carnival Theme (or Circus Party Theme)
A carnival themed party is something everyone loves (no matter your age!).
Decorate with bright colors, festive banners, and streamers.
Serve up favorite carnival treats like cotton candy (grab a maker), funnel cake pops, lemonade, and different flavors of popcorn popcorn.
Play games like ring toss, hit the cans, bean bag toss, and, if you’re brave, rent a dunk tank!
Water Balloon Games Party
This party is perfect for a hot summer day, especially if you have a backyard.
Ask you guests to come dressed to get wet set up a balloon obstacle course in your backyard.
Think: balloon toss, race with your balloon on a spoon, sit on the water balloon to see who can burst it first, and more.
A few blow up baby pools and tons of balloons (we like these) and having guests pitch-in money for pizza (tell them ahead of time!) make this a cheap, but super fun party idea.
Casino Night Theme
Host a night of “gambling” fun with play money for prizes.
Set up a few casino games like roulette, dice games, blackjack, and a few poker tables. (This is a good game set.)
Get a range of prizes — a couple with a high perceived value (gift cards, tickets to a local sporting event, etc.), medium priced items (these would be great), and then mostly cheap, funny trinkets.
Serve up a fun Vegas style buffet and have a bartender.
Favorite Meme Party Theme
Have everyone dress up as their favorite meme and see if others can guess.
Give out prizes (best meme, most obscure meme, etc.) and play the meme game.
Christmas In July
A July Christmas party is fun because you can put a summer twist on classic holiday party activities.
And, who doesn’t love a Santa pool party or Christmas at the beach theme?
Summer is the perfect time to get your college friends together for a party. With so many fun themes to choose from, your next party will be lit!
MORE FUN COLLEGE PARTY IDEAS: HOW TO HOST A FOOTBALL PARTY OR TAILGATE PARTY!
Have other themed party ideas or sorority party / frat party theme ideas or unique college party themes that you loved? Let us know and we’ll add them to our college party list!