Girl power

Unique bachelorette party ideas for the unconventional bride

There’s a lot to plan for a wedding beyond the actual wedding—including the (sometimes infamous) bachelor and bachelorette parties. These gatherings originally began as a way to celebrate a bride or groom’s last days as a single person before beginning a monogamous life. Bachelorette parties are also called “hen nights” in the United Kingdom or “kitchen parties” in South Africa.

I am newly engaged, and although my fiancé and I are eloping overseas later this year, I’m not opposed to the idea of having a bachelorette party. Despite the stigma that bachelorette parties consist of phallic-related debauchery—seriously, how many penis-shaped candies have to exist in the world?—I appreciate any activity that brings women together to celebrate and have fun.

I’m not the only bride-to-be who feels this way. According to bridal publication Offbeat Bride, many betrothed women are seeking alternatives to male strippers and dick cakes. And, if that’s still your bag, that’s cool, too. But after all, bachelorette parties used to be more simple affairs, like a dinner, tea or get-together. If you’re somewhere in the middle like me—an introverted woman with a love for adventure—try thinking outside the box for your bachelorette party with these ideas.  

Learn something

If you’re using this party as a way to bond or rekindle friendships with your best gals, you may as well learn something new and have a memorable experience.

Archery is on the upswing thanks to the popularity of the sport in major movie franchises. Channel your inner Artemis at Wasting Arrows Indoor Archery, which hosts bachelorette parties. Parties can rent out the facility, or you can schedule an event at your home. Contact Wasting Arrows at

A trip to the Nevada Museum of Art or the Fleischmann Planetarium and Science Center is a fun group outing for the culturally inclined, followed by lunch or dinner at a local restaurant. Check out some international art or contemplate your place in the universe. If that’s too existentialist for you, consider another adventurous activity like horseback riding and trekking through Nevada’s rural landscapes. Small groups will enjoy Rancho Redrock Horseback Rides. Learn more by calling 969-3315.

Make something

While looking for ideas for my own potential bachelorette party, I went to the internet mecca for all things wedding-related— Pinterest not only has hundreds of bachelorette party ideas, but there’s also many posts about having an actual Pinterest party. This consists of a craft night where participants make projects they’ve found on Pinterest. For a wedding, this is a great idea—use it as a fun way to make centerpieces, guest gifts, or other wedding must-haves, and you can listen to music or drink wine as you’re crafting away with your friends and family. And, all of your wedding items will have a personal memory attached to them. You can also tie silly bridal games into the night. 

Go somewhere

A weekend girls-only retreat doesn’t have to be your traditional Vegas getaway (although that can be fun, too). A retreat to the woods or a rugged outdoor environment is perfect for those with a taste for the rustic (and, given that mason jars and barn weddings are all the rage right now, that’s becoming increasingly common). It just so happens that we live close to Lake Tahoe, where you can rent out a cabin or take a cruise around the lake in the Lake Tahoe Party Boat ( You don’t have to travel far to have a great time.