Summer Party Themes For College Students [College Party Ideas]

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!

Summer Party Themes For College Students [College Party Ideas] black dog in funny red sunglasses with a strawberry drink giving the peace sign

Best Summer Party Themes for College Students

So what are good themes for parties for college students?

Fun Party Themes for College Kids

Summer College Theme Parties Ideas

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  • Starry Night
  • Meme Theme Party
  • No-Pool Pool Party Theme
  • Summer School Spirit
  • Glow Party Theme
  • Luau Party Theme
  • Christmas In July Party
  • Casino Party
  • Toga Party (yes, still!)
  • Alice In Wonderland / Down The Rabbit Hole Theme
  • Carnival Party Theme
  • Ugly Sweater (yes, even funnier as a summer party 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!

How do you throw an amazing college party?

  1. Decide on an epic location where everyone can spread out.
  2. Have a college party theme and encourage people to dress up! (Skip anything with “hoes” in the name. We’ve moved past that…)
  3. Create an awesome playlist of current songs and also older popular songs.
  4. Throw in a funny song or two that everyone knows into your playlist. (Think: Baby Shark, Hokey Pokey, etc.).
  5. 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).
  6. Offer food, even if it’s just a variety of snacks.
  7. Have sober monitors to make sure everyone stays safe.
  8. Make designated drivers available.

How do I have fun at a college party?

  1. Go all out with the theme of the party.
  2. Don’t participate in any wild party themes / drinking party themes you’re not comfortable with!
  3. Go with a friend or two and keep an eye out for each of the people in your group.
  4. Keep track of your own drinks. (Pour your own drinks or drink only things that you open yourself.)
  5. Turn on the tracking for your phone and let friends know the address of the party.
  6. Easily make small talk by starting with, “How do you know [the host]?”
  7. Let go and don’t worry about what other people are thinking!
  8. Dress comfortably so you can sit / stand without worrying about what you’re wearing.
  9. Ditch the purse or backpack and put your keys, ID, money, and phone in front pockets or zippered jacket pockets.
  10. If you will be drinking, plan to Uber home with your friends.


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. Be sure to keep it in your possession at all times.

OK! Let’s get to our college theme party ideas!

IDEAS FOR SUMMER COLLEGE PARTIES [COLLEGE PARTY THEMES] yellow dog wearing big pineapple sunglasses in front of a background of summer drinks

Ideas For Summer Party Themes For College Students

1 ) Animal House: (You knew this one was coming, right?) Throw an Animal House Toga Party. Wear togas (or generic college shirts) and have the movie playing in the background with music from Animal House also playing. 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!

2) Hawaiian Luau: 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.

3) Pool Party: 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! Set up some baby pools (with water!) and place chairs around them and have backyard water fun items.

4) Summer BBQ: 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 and grill and chill party music.


5) Starry Night: 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).

6) Outdoor Movie Night: 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, your backyard or balcony becomes an outdoor theater!


7) School Spirit: 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. 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!)

8) Carnival Theme: A carnival themed party is something everyone loves. Decorate with bright colors, festive banners, and streamers. Serve up favorite carnival treats like cotton candy (grab a maker), funnel cake pops, lemonade, and popcorn. Play games like ring toss, hit the cans, bean bag toss, and, if you’re brave, rent a dunk tank!

9) 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.

10) Casino Night: Host a night of “gambling” fun with play money. Set up a few casino games like roulette, dice games, blackjack, and a few poker tables. (This is a good game set.) Use play money (or casino coins) that party goers can trade in for prizes at the end of the night. 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. You can make it a complete Vegas Night with these decorations (don’t forget the funny photo props!). Serve up a fun Vegas style buffet and have a bartender.

11) Glow Dance Party: Who doesn’t love glow in the dark? Add music and you have the best college party idea ever! Set up your area (indoors or out) with black and neon decorations like this (don’t forget glowing photo props!). Use glow sticks and glow body paint, get these lights, and make the best dance party playlist you can think of! HINT: It needs to be DARK and you’ll need lights like this to make it work!


12) Mock Influencer Party: Have guests dress as their favorite online influencer. (Have some fun dress up items, too, like boas, sunglasses, hats and more.) Set up different selfie stations and even have a TikTok station. 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. Use WiFi signs so everyone knows the password and set up charging stations throughout the party.

13) Favorite Meme Party: 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.

14) 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? GET CHRISTMAS IN JULY PARTY IDEAS HERE

Summer is the perfect time to get your college friends together for a party. With so many fun themes to choose from, there is sure to be one that suits your mood!

Have other themed party ideas? Let us know!

Have fun with these summer party themes for college students!

DISCLOSURE: Affiliate links are used on this site. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please refer to our DISCLOSURE.

About the author

Friends have called Jackie the "Midwestern Martha" [Stewart] because of her 20 years of over-the-top theme parties, super fun sleepover tips, and fun theme recipes.

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