If you're over the age of 12, you know that the traditional bachelor party involves strippers, booze, and then more strippers. [Yawn.] That's all fine. And we would never discourage lapdances and liquor.
But you can do better. You can get more creative. In addition to the ho-hum routine of pole-dancing and beer, consider mixing it up with the following:
1. Hunt. Especially for guys who don't usually go hunting—it's a wacky adventure. 10 guys. 10 guns. 10 cases of beer. What could go wrong?
2. Play poker. Perfect for a lean budget. Grill steaks, get beer from a cheap grocery store, and play Texas Hold 'Em with a $20 buy-in.
3. Camp. Swigging beers around the campfire—stars in the sky, clear air, no Blackberries—is just the right contrast to the madness of wedding planning.
SEE ALSO: Bachelor Party Ethics: How Far is Too Far?
4. Golf. But only if the groom actually—you know—likes to golf. Otherwise it feels forced, rote, and awkward. If someone influential eagerly suggests, "Hey guys—let's do golf!" others might feel obligated just out of peer pressure. Feel out the groom's honest interest-level.
5. Taste whiskey. This ain't cheap. But arranging your own private "tasting" at a posh whiskey bar—like any of these in New York—lets you class-up an ordinary bar experience.
6. Take a road trip. Ideally, to someplace fun and quirky, like Graceland, Atlantic City, or the Baseball Hall of Fame.
7. Herd cattle. Think: City Slickers. Yep, you can actually book this kind of "working vacation" where you live like cowboys.
8. Kill each other. Virtually. If your group is into video games, a weekend of Halo, Grand Theft Auto, or Madden could be the perfect (if nerdy) way to relieve stress. If you do this, just lie to other friends and tell them you hit a strip-club.
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9. Ski. The Plunge's favorite bachelor parties are the ones that incorporate both rugged outdoors and drunken revelry. Skiing fits the bill: a few runs on the slopes, a few bourbons in the lodge. Bonus? Ski bunnies.
10. Rent a beach house. When enough guys chip in, renting a house is cheaper than hotels, gives you an Old School-type vibe, and increases the odds that the groom, at some point, will vomit. Which is the goal of every good bachelor party. (Unless, of course, the bachelor party is the night before the wedding. Which you would never schedule, right?
11. Play paintball. Only two rules: 1) You have to let the groom's team win. 2) You can't let the groom know that you're letting him win.
12. Go white water rafting. Plenty of organizations now offer multi-day, pre-planned, guided rafting trips that require no knowledge, experience, or sobriety.
13. Fish. Maybe. Obviously, this depends on the personality of the groom. Some guys will find it boring—profoundly so—to stare, for hours and hours, at a tranquil sea of water. He'll get enough of this tedium in marriage.
14. Taste cigars. Splurge on a swanky cigar lounge and smoke cigars that you would never, ever ordinarily justify buying. If not now, when?
15. Skydive. Most guys want to go skydiving...but never do because of the eye-popping cost. (Hundreds of dollars for only a few minutes fun—it's a worse $/minute ratio than Eliot Spitzer's hooker.) Like cigar tasting, you might as well live it up now.
16. Take in a game. If you can swing it, get box seats. If you can't, just get really, really drunk. Either way, pony up the cash to get seats you would never usually afford.
17. Rent dirt bikes. Or dune buggies, ATVs, or anything else that provides at least a 13% chance of death.
18. Flee to Mexico. Not the obvious party-cities like Cancun or Cozumel, but the actual real Mexico-the real culture, cities, and grit. Less comfortable but more rewarding. Um.....yeeeeaaaah. Before you grab your ticket to Mexico, you might want to sure the jaws of hell haven't opened.
SEE ALSO: 20 (Stripper-Free) Bachelor Party Ideas: Locations and Lodging
19. Feast on steak. Maybe your group has tons of dough but can't find a weekend to all get away. No problem: rent a limo and go for a steak dinner. Especially if this is not the kind of lifestyle your groom is used to, this will make him feel like royalty.
20. Anything but this. Learn from this real-life example. In your attempts to get more creative, don't let the pendulum swing too far. Unless the groom is a recovering alcoholic or doesn't drink for religious/personal reasons, you still want to incorporate booze and debauchery. Don't turn into this exchange:
Question: Do you have ideas for a Clean, Christian Bachelor Party?
My husband is the best man and is clueless to what to do for his best friend. Needs to be clean (no strippers, no drinking)!
Best Answer -
Have an advice and blessing party. The friends get together at someones house and help him fill a book of marriage and child rearing advice - personal and scriptural advice. Things that could be covered are:
To encourage them to pray together daily and share scripture.
That he should respect and treasure her as his wife and hold her above all other women.
Never stop dating - no matter what always make time for each other.
Have all the men at the party write these down a a page from a 3x5 scrapbook and then when they have all contributed and placed the book together they all raise up a prayer of blessing for his future that he be a good,faithful and generous husband and a father his children can be proud of.
Hope this helps!
...and that was voted as the "Best" answer.
For North America's 10 best bachelor party destinations, click here.