Throw this party: A Nerdy Thirty birthday party

January 26 | meganfinley
Megan's Nerdy 30
A deliriously happy 30-year-old Megan with her stormtrooper birthday cake. Photo by Jana Morgan

About two weeks before my 30th birthday in August, someone reminded me that my "dirty thirty" was coming up soon. To which Aaron, that guy I married, responded: "With Megan, it's more like her nerdy thirty." And thus, a theme was born!

This is how I pulled off one hell of an awesome Nerdy Thirty birthday theme with only two weeks to plan, and with a little help from my friends:

INVITATIONS

I decided to go with online invitations, as I only had two weeks' time. Plus, I'm a big internet nerd — obviously. Of course, first I consulted Cat's post about online invitations to choose the right service for my needs.

Now, finding nerdy enough invitations became a challenge… until I discovered Punchbowl's kids birthday invitation section! That's where I found my little robot guy. So cute, so perfect.

DECOR:

Megan's Nerdy 30Inspired by the watermelon shark punch bowl from Offbeat Bride, I created a watermelon robot fruit bowl. It looked adorable and it was good for appetizers.

Megan's Nerdy 30Once again, children's party stuff is the way to go! Kawaii animal paper plates were perfect for the party.

DRINKS

Megan's Nerdy 30I'm a big fan of getting beer that goes with the theme of the party I'm throwing. I decided to try and round up all the nerdy beers that I could find. Here's a list of generally easy-to-find nerdy beers:

ENTERTAINMENT

Megan's Nerdy 30Inspired by a wedding I shot where Nerf gun fights were erupting everywhere, I've been collecting a ton of Nerf guns that go on sale. In the days leading up to my birthday, Aaron and I had a blast finding more guns and basically just using the party as an excuse to go toy shopping.

Nerf fightObviously, fun times shooting each other ensued. Including a super dark, but strangely fun game of Russian Roulette with my Nerf N-Strike Maverick.

FOOD:

Megan's Nerdy 30When brainstorming party food ideas with my buddy, he told me about Valley's Pizza Land that makes pizzas the size of a freaking table! So OF COURSE I had to get the craziest, biggest pizza anyone has ever seen before. Coolest meal EVAR!

Megan's Nerdy 30
Excuse me, miss? There seems to be a mistake. I believe I ordered the *large* pizza.

FAVORS

IMG_0266-1I also bought a box of Nerd Rope candies for people to enjoy at the party and take home as favors, because: 1. It's delicious candy. 2. The name, obviously. 3. They look like DNA strands!

CAKE:

<Megan's Nerdy 30
Photo by Jana Morgan
My sweet friend Kimmy surprised me with a Star Wars birthday cake. Look — it's an adorable storm trooper! Big thanks to Butter Cake Bakery for this super tasty and nerdy confection.

DRESS CODE:

Nerdy accessories, and the amazing Laura from Rebel Belle rocked her Star Trek shirt. (At least SOMEONE was repping the Trek!)
Nerdy accessories, and the amazing Laura from Rebel Belle rocked her Star Trek shirt. (At least SOMEONE was repping the Trek!)
Most of my friends aren't nerds, so I didn't make it a costume party. But if y'all have a dorkier crew than I have, make it a costume party — kigurumi suits, cosplay, shirts with pop culture references… for example:

Megan's Nerdy 30

Finally, the extra bonus that I didn't even think about happening…

GIFTS!

My buddies were so awesome, a lot of them brought me nerd-themed gifts! From John who made me this Super Mario-inspired artwork:

Megan's Nerdy 30
Click on this photo to see the bigger version. Hilarity ensues.

Megan's Nerdy 30To Laura who got me a sweet potato gun AND a potato to go with it.

And one super sweet video made by my husband in honor of my Nerdy Thirty.

If you have any more ideas on throwing a kick-ass Nerdy Thirty, leave 'em in the comments!

  1. My boyfriend and I are turning 30 this year and after seeing this article we're having a Nerdy Thirty ourselves this summer (between my half-birthday and his real one). Thanks for the idea!

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  2. I like Nerd costume parties. Like "Revenge of the Nerds" or Steve Urkel style. Otherwise it just seems like a normal party in my nerdy social circle. :\ Heh.

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  3. My friend had a nerdy thirty party in November! It was so fun. Everyone dressed like nerds from Saved By The Bell, professors or scientists. I rocked a lab coat, lab goggles and a pocket protector! We even drank cocktails out of beakers.

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  4. This is so awesome! I'm planning my 30th birthday and "nerdy thirty" is perfect!! Thanks for the super great idea!

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  5. MEGAN! You are the cutest. LOVE this party idea & totally stealing it …for when I turn 30. Again.

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    • KELLI! You may use this idea if you invite me to your next 30th! ;)

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  6. This is great! I'm not quite nerdy enough, but I'm using my 30th birthday to return to childhood. I'm having a pool party, complete with pizza and waterslides, but hopefully without any vomit (at least, not at the pool). LOVE the fact that turning 30 is a big deal for how fun it can be and not that we're "Getting OLD!"

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  7. tehehe…frak off…tehehee

    awesome party! I'm totally *stealing* this theme when my nerdy thirty day comes!

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  8. party looks super awesomely fun (was gonna write 'cool' but its not…but it is!) your dress is really cute too.

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  9. Nice job on the Hobgoblin. I haven't been able to get any of my local stores to order me anything from that brewery.

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  10. Okay, first… Did my FOUR MONTH late birthday gift actually fit the theme? (star wars lunch box with nerdy stationary?) That was a total accident. But cool. ;)

    2nd…LOVE this whole party. What a cool and fun way to celebrate! Totally didn't do up my 30th like that (with a 6day old kid all I wanted for my 30th was sleep..ha! ) but I love it! You rock.

    3rd: YOU are officially in charge of my 40th. Figure out a better theme than "Shell's lame 40th" cause that's what we've got so far. You have more than 2 weeks, more like 6. The catch is You and Mr. F. have to attend. :)

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  11. I LOVE the Mario print. Wonderful. So so great. Also the video is still one of the most special things I've ever seen.

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  12. Didn't have a Halloween party the year before, so had a Halloween Fancy dress party and everyone joined in including my parents. It was FAB!

    1 agrees

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