As we settle into yet another month of social distancing — yes, you should
still be social distancing — finding ways to spice up your Zoom happy hour has become essential. The novelty of seeing your friends’ and family’s Brady Bunch-esque boxes has long worn off. We are deep in the throes of the virtual happy hour.
safe to go to bars and restaurants, having a happy hour over Zoom is your best bet for keeping yourself and others healthy. Social distancing, along with wearing a mask when physical distancing isn’t possible, is still one of the easiest and most effective ways to prevent the spread of coronavirus. So, unless you and a small handful of friends can meet outdoors, where you and your respective germs can easily stay at least six feet apart, sipping sangria over Zoom should still be your go-to happy hour spot.
If you’ve exhausted all your
Zoom happy hour games — even the happy hour games that aren’t drinking-centric — and the fun Zoom backgrounds just aren’t cutting it anymore, it may be high time for you to do the inevitable: throw a thematic Zoom happy hour. Listen, if Ariana Grande isn’t too good for a , neither are we. And these are desperate times, people. Here are 19 themes for your next Zoom happy hour. Midsommar-themed party 1 ‘90s Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix/Getty Images
Break out your slap bracelets, your
Tamagotchis new and old, your '90s playlists, your general childhood whimsy. There really is no wrong way to do '90s nostalgia. Unless you don't reference Spice Girls. Then you're doing your '90s nostalgia wrong. 2 ‘00s
People born in the early aughts can vote thereby officially making the early 2000s “retro.” (I know. Take a moment, fellow millennials. We are Old™.) Think
trucker hats and frosty lip gloss. Think peak Linsday Lohan. Think jeans with no back pockets for some reason. You could also expand this to a decades theme party if you don't want to retraumatize yourself with low-rise jeans. 3 TV Show Characters
Sure, you could go the typical route: have everyone pick a character from
Friends, The Office, Sex and the City, etc. But why go not obscure and hyper-specific. Maybe everyone dresses up as an audience member from Oprah. Turn your Zoom call into your own Hollywood Squares. Pretend you're all robots from Westworld just to practice your old time-y accents. 4 Tea Party
Prepare a posh happy hour party with teacups, saucers, and gossip about the Royal family. Take a note out of
Meghan Markle's book for your aesthetic. Perhaps you try out some hard tea, a thing that yes, of course, exists. Pour a beer into a teacup and call it good. 5 Beach Party
Did you buy a swimsuit you are bummed no one will get to see? Do you crave the beach aesthetic with none of the sand? Do you want to get day drunk but have it be thematic? A beach-themed happy hour is what you seek.
6 Talent Show
There are a couple of routes you can go with this one. You could have everyone prepare a one-minute talent to show off. You could have everyone pick a talent they can pull off in 15-seconds which, in some ways, is even more difficult than doing something for a full minute. Dress up like you're all parents in the audience of an elementary school variety show. Camcorders required.
7 Dinner Party
Get a little bougie and have everyone order something from the same place. Set a place for yourself at the table, something I'm guessing you haven't done in a hot minute.
8 Halloween or "What Month Even Is It?"
Throw an early Halloween party as an excuse for a costume party. Dress in all black to be "spooky" and/or to mourn your social life. Eat the candy corn you somehow still have in the back of your pantry.
9 High School Dance Emily Stein/DigitalVision/Getty Images
Sure, you could make this a prom theme, but why leave out all the other awkward and uncomfortable dances you attending during your teen years? Pretend it's winter formal and make your friends don the same butterfly-clipped hairdo they did when they were 14. Assign someone the role of DJ and have them make the playlist as you prepare terrible jokes to shout sporadically throughout the evening. Pick someone to be a parent chaperone who has to keep telling kids to stop grinding.
11 The Dankest Meme
Everyone must come in their most internet-inspired outfit. You can pick a classic
meme costume. (Yeah, sure, be nyan cat.) Pick a new favorite like the cat getting yelled at by one of the Real Housewives. Decide that this is definitely the time to debut the TikTok dance you've been practicing. 12 Disney World At Home Handout/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
While you absolutely should not be galavanting around
Disney World during its opening weeks, you can bring a little bit of the magic to your next happy hour. Sure, people can dress up as their favorite Disney princesses, Disney characters, maybe even make a DIY Dole Whip. You could also dress up as an overheated toddler, an exhausted parent, a teen who does not want to be there, a quintessential Disney Adult. 13 Office Birthday Party
Miss the awkward, obligatory celebration of an office birthday party? Well, miss it no longer. Make sure everyone has a slice of a huge sheet cake and keep asking if people remembered to sign the card.
There are a couple ways to take a color-coordinated theme. Maybe everyone has to wear all pink, background and drink included. Maybe everyone picks their own color and turn your Zoom call into a virtual Roy G. Biv.
15 Class Presentation PowerPoint parties are the pseudo-educational themed celebrations you didn't know you needed. Either have everyone prepare a slide show on any topic of their choosing: your own personal drunk history, the official ranking of every Nicki Minaj song, what qualifies as a sandwich. For an extra challenge, have people prepare presentations for someone else to present san preparation. 16 The Fun Table At A Wedding
If you've had to miss a
wedding due to coronavirus, why not throw your own virtual wedding for absolutely no one in particular. Wear that cocktail dress, prepare a tray of cocktail weenies you would've eaten alone anyway, and make people dance the Cupid Shuffle at least twice. 17 Amateur Olympics
2020 Olympics may have been postponed until next summer, but you can still bring some of the competition to your next Zoom call. Whether it's flip cup challenges or these actual Zoom Olympic games one person has created, this is a chance for you to flex your athletic prowess. 18 Night One On The Bachelor
This is merely an excuse to get sloshed in an evening gown. Bonus points if everyone introduces themselves with a corny joke and has to but into the conversation with a "can I steal you for a sec?"
19 Pajama Party
You could also go the route of the Pajama Party. Is it any different from what you've been wearing every day? Maybe not but putting the word "party" in front of it makes it feel more official.
If all else fails, say screw it, break out the champagne and party horns, and throw a NYE party. Decide the new year begins when you say it does. 2020? I don't know her.
Get Even More From Bustle — Sign Up For The Newsletter
From hair trends to relationship advice, our daily newsletter has everything you need to sound like a person who’s on TikTok, even if you aren’t.