Remember that particular summer during middle school when, suddenly, coed parties were all the rage? With a hint of nostalgia and a flair for the nontraditional, conjoined bachelor-bachelorette parties are starting to come into style. Celebrities such as Tracy Morgan and Megan Wollover have opted to bring all of their friends together in a fun, modern celebration before their nuptials. It's a great option for couples who have many of the same friends – boys and girls alike – or those who want to opt out of the traditional bachelorette parties or bachelor parties for a more inclusive joint bachelor-bachelorette party.
If you’re looking get all your guys and gals involved in a combine pre-wedding romp, we have some great ideas to make your celebration with friends and your wedding party especially memorable.
Here are some of our favorite joint bachelor-bachelorette party ideas:
If you and your wedding party are near a large body of water, like an ocean or a lake, chances are, you’ll have a lot of nautical options at the click of your mouse. Many marinas have special boats and yachts available for celebrations of any size and style, which can include bachelor and bachelorette party celebrations. You can work with professionals to create the perfect menu, playlist, evening events, and party games – the day can be as laid-back or formal as you'd like. It may feel a little like planning a wedding, but in the end, you get to party with your closest friends on the water! These boats or yachts are generally on the larger side, so it’s the perfect option for a co-ed pre-wedding day bash. If you’re looking for something a little more low-key for your combined bachelor-bachelorette party, there are usually options to rent smaller boats: you could pack your favorite foods, drinks, and people for an easy picnic on the water. Once you get off the boat, consider a fun beach day or lake day!
This type of event is for any wedding party that doesn’t skimp on the booze and longs for those crazy college nights. Pick a location near you with some great bars (or, if you’re feeling adventurous: some new bars in an unfamiliar area) and map out your desired route. If some places aren’t within walking distance, be sure to arrange for sober transportation ahead of time – a party bus could be a fun option for a classic pub crawl.
The hosts can be as creative as they’d like! For example, make a list of activities the bride and groom must do at each new bar (sing a popular duet song all the way through, get a stranger to buy them each a drink without speaking, take a picture with every bouncer they encounter, etc.) and enforce it. The maid of honor and the best man can hold onto the list throughout the night, or the activities can be written on poster paper and hung around the happy couple’s necks like signs, so that everyone knows what they’re up to! This idea is great for more traditional, single-gender parties, but what bride would want to miss her groom singing a karaoke version of a Celine Dion song in front of a crowded bar? If you have the same group of friends, this could be a wonderful option!
If you are feeling like splurging for your combined bachelor-bachelorette parties, renting a house for the weekend can be an incredible bonding experience for your wedding party before the wedding itself. Pick a location that’s within a few hours drive from your central location (a place on the beach, a cabin in the mountains, maybe even the charming little house a few towns over). This is a great option if everyone involved knows each other well and doesn’t mind being cooped up together for a few days at a vacation home, Airbnb, or even a hotel suite.
The best part? You can be as hands-on or hands-off as you’d like: laid-back organizers can bring up some board games and maps of the town to decide the day’s activities on the spot, and detail-oriented planners can research the town, schedule meals, plan spa days, and make room assignments in advance. Houses are great for big parties and having both men and women for impromptu games of “Truth or Dare” is always interesting. Just be sure to not plan too many activities! You'll want your friends to have some down time and not feel like they're on a schedule the entire time... after all, it should be a party!
If your group of friends is already a little theatrical (and could fake a few accents), then gather them together for an evening of intrigue and detective work. There are a variety of murder mystery kits sold online, which would leave very little extra work for the host(s): these usually include a plot line, rules, list of characters and their descriptions, clues, and a definitive guide as to how to plan the evening. Or, if the group prefers to take the reigns, be creative and create your own version! The party could be themed (1920s, Las Vegas, etc.) and everyone plays along, trying to figure out which party guest may be a killer. At the end, everyone can make accusations and defend themselves, and after the murderer is revealed, you can wind down with food and conversation – either with a dinner party or casual backyard barbecue. It’s a unique idea for a couple that has a flair for dramatics and wants their friends to take part at the bachelor-bachelorette party!
If you're looking for some friendly competition for your combined bachelor-bachelorette party, one of our favorite group party ideas is planning an Olympics-style competition with bridesmaids vs. groomsmen or any other "teams" you choose. Dodgeball, relay races, or track-and-field style events are a great option for the day time, and then the night could turn into drinking games, which are popular at your typical bachelor and bachelorette parties. If you're more into regular co-ed team sports, consider a game of kickball, flag football, or even volleyball on a court or the beach! This is a great option for the couple who loves sports or even bonded over their athletic abilities in high school or college. If you're not the most athletic, consider a scavenger hunt instead for some friendly competition!
In light of recent events and limited worldwide travel due to Covid-19, road trips are becoming more and more popular. With the rise in wanting to see more nature and parts of the country by car, consider taking bachelor-bachelorette parties to some famous road trip destinations! National parks are always a great choice, but other ideas include visiting a nearby town in your state that you've always wanted to explore or even a place special to the couple's relationship, like where they first met, had their first kiss, fell in love, or lived together for the first time. You can make it as personal as you'd like! Either take one of your friends' cars or rent a classic car or even van so you can all travel together if you're a larger group. The road trip can be as lengthy as you'd like or even just a day trip! Whatever works best for your bachelor-bachelorette party crew.
If you're unsure of combined bachelor-bachelorette parties but you still want to be together with the one you love for this pre-wedding event, consider doing both! You can each have a separate party, and then come together for a combined party! For example, one group can go for a spa day while the other group goes to a spring-training baseball game, and then you can all come together in the evening for a night out on the town! Karaoke is always a fun group activity, or stick to "tradition" and choose a bar crawl with your closest friends. If you're more laid-back, an at-home dinner party or game night all together could be a great way to relax after a day celebrating individually with your bridesmaids or groomsmen. This option works especially well too if your friends include other couples – they'll also appreciate having separate time followed by time celebrating all together.