Retirement Party Ideas for a Nurse

by Michael Monet
A good nurse comforts you in the worst of situations.

A good nurse comforts you in the worst of situations.

Thomas Northcut/Digital Vision/Getty Images

Retirement parties elicit a mix of emotions for a nurse retiree. For the past several years of her life, a nurse has given his or her time and energy to helping others through difficult moments of injury and ill health. Being free of these responsibilities will be both calming and frightening. Celebrate in a way that suits each retiree's personality. Show your honoree the appreciation she deserves for supporting doctors, patients and hospital personnel.

Themed Decor

Use theme decorations to customize the party to the nurse's profession. Have a reclining chair, stuffed animals, flowers and balloons throughout the room. When the nurse shows up to her retirement party, have her sit in a big, comfortable seat. Whatever she wants throughout the party, someone else brings to her -- much like the role she's carried out throughout her nursing career. A different guest sees to it that she gets her food, drinks and other items throughout the party, unless of course she wants to get up and wander around. Guests watch as the retiree opens her gifts up in her comfy seat. To make this theme more amusing, guests can dress in scrubs, wear thermometers around their necks or incorporate other costume items.

Team Memories

Nurses work side-by-side with a host of hospital personnel, including secretaries, doctors and physical therapists. The ability to work well in a team makes a nurse invaluable to a hospital. Working so closely with another person day in and day out is bound to create memorable moments. Collect team memories from the nurse's coworkers in the form of pictures, stories or speeches. Arrange these memories into a scrapbook, a picture slide show, or just have the nurse's team members give short speeches about their favorite experiences with him.


Nurses work long, hard hours surrounded by people, catering to the needs of their patients. Pool resources of party guests and buy the retiree a retreat or vacation to a secluded place where he can relax. Take hints by asking the retiree what his favorite vacation spots are before buying the plane ticket and hotel. If overnight vacations are too expensive, consider putting together a one-day retreat package, a map to where the retiree is going, money for gas to drive there and back, food and drinks while he's out, and a list of things to do at the destination you chose. Arrange a group trip if you think he'll want company, or arrange to have his closest friends and family join him.

Coming Opportunities

One of the scariest things about retiring is all the free time you will soon have on your hands. Nurses are used to working hard, long hours, and although a retired nurse will appreciate the break, she may have a hard time adjusting from being so busy to not busy at all. Arrange a list of local volunteer opportunities, such as working at a children's hospital or with the American Red Cross once a week for a few hours. Pay attention to the retiree's likes and interests as you arrange your list.

Photo Credits

  • Thomas Northcut/Digital Vision/Getty Images