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The Shining Theme Party

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Spend a winter’s night with Jack Torrance in the Overlook hotel for The Shining Theme Party.

Let’s get started.


My guests for The Shining night had never seen the movie, if you can believe it! It was fun to host this theme night and experience The Shining through the eyes of those who were watching for the first time.

The Shining
(1980) (2 hr, 24 min)
(Stream on Amazon)

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. 


Bourbon on the rocks with blood red syrup rim


  • Bourbon (Jack Daniels is used in the movie)
  • Light corn syrup
  • Red food coloring
  1. Put rocks glasses in the fridge until chilled (an hour should be sufficient)
  2. In a small bowl, combine light corn syrup and desired food coloring (red for blood)
  3. Lightly dip the rims of the chilled glasses into the colored corn syrup
  4. Turn glasses upright, allowing the syrup to run down the glasses
  5. Freeze until firm
  6. Take the glasses out of the freeze when you are ready to serve
  7. Serve with 2-3 pieces of ice and a finger of bourbon

Note: Since the glasses are short, dip very lightly, let drip a little, then put in freezer right away. They will drip much faster and further than you may realize.

Red Rum


  • Rum (I prefer Malibu)
  • Lemon-lime soda
  • Raspberry schnapps
  1. Fill a hurricane glass with ice.
  2. Pour in 2 shots rum, 4 shots lemon-lime soda, and one shot raspberry schnapps.
  3. Stir slightly and serve.

This is my own concoction. My guests found it good and sweet and red – the perfect drink to party it up at the Overlook hotel.

“I’d give my goddamn soul for just a glass of beer.” -Jack Torrance

Oddly enough, I did not see Jack drink a beer in the whole movie. However, if you want to kick it down to one or none of the liquor drinks, you can choose to serve beer at your party. Don’t you feel like Jack would prefer some sort of American beer, like a pilsner?

The Shining Drinking Game

Not going to lie, I struggled with developing this one. The Shining can be a long movie. You should definitely serve your drinks and dinner throughout so as to avoid cranky guests. So how many drinking cues should one have? Here’s a few below to follow. Or you could just drink whenever “it’s creepy” as my guests decided to do!


  • Tony talks
  • Blood flood


  • Jack is typing
  • Every time text comes on screen


  • Ghost bartender serves Jack a Jack (Daniels)
  • Movie ending

Here’s The Shining IMDb FAQs and Trivia, in case questions come up or you want to impress your guests with some interesting tidbits about the movie.


Warm your guests up with some popcorn. If you want to spice it up, consider tossing the hot popcorn with about half a teaspoon of chili powder.

Main Dish
Don’t you just feel like Jack is a steak and potatoes kind of guy? For the main dish, serve a juicy piece of steak.

Side dishes
For the sides, serve homemade mashed potatoes (to represent the copious amount of snow) and a leafy green (to represent the hedge maze).

  1. Peel potatoes
  2. Cut into 0.5 to one inch pieces
  3. Place pieces in a large pot
  4. Cover the potato pieces with just enough water to cover them
  5. Add a sprinkle of salt and a tablespoon of butter, if desired
  6. Bring the pot to a boil, until the potatoes have softened (about 15-20 minutes)
  7. Drain the potato piece in a strainer
  8. Place the pieces into a large bowl
  9. Using a hand blender, blend the potatoes just to the point where they have broken down (do not over beat)
  10. Add two tablespoons of milk to moisten
  11. Beat potatoes again slightly to incorporate milk
  12. Add garlic, butter, chives, etc. to taste, as desired

How’d you like some ice cream, Doc? -Mr. Hallorann to Danny

No Shining night would be complete without a bowl of ice cream. Serve vanilla ice cream with strawberry syrup or topping and mini Oreos in honor of Jack’s store room binge session.


Since there’s a whole old-fashioned vibe to watching The Shining, let’s have some fun with a parlour game.

Wink Murder

  • What you’ll need – a deck of cards and 4+ people
  • Pull out cards equal to the amount of people, make sure you have one ace in the bunch
  • Shuffle and deal a card to each person, being careful to not show anyone what card you have
  • If you have the ace, you’re the murderer
  • If you do not have the ace, you’re a detective
  • The murderer will try to covertly wink at the other people in the game
  • Players must not discuss amongst themselves who they think the murderer is (especially if you’re playing with 4 players)
  • If you’re winked at, you must die dramatically (pretend you’re taking an ax to the chest!)
  • If you think you know who the murderer is, announce that you have a suspect and need a person to second your suspicion
  • A person who thinks they know the murderer should second it
  • Count to three and on three the two people should point to the suspected murderer
  • If they point to the same person and that person is the murderer, good wins!
  • If they point to different people or to an innocent, the first person who winks at the other survives and the other is eliminated
  • The game continues until all the innocents have died and evil wins or the murderer is caught!

Here are a couple of sites that explain the game in more depth, if needed:


If you haven’t read the book, it’s worth a read. Doctor Sleep is the sequel to The Shining and was released in 2013. I haven’t read it, but my uncle says the book is excellent. If you’re interested in seeing the story continue, check it out.

The Shining by Stephen King

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King

For a breakdown of the differences between The Shining the book and The Shining the 1980 Stanley Kubrick film, check out Cinefix’s “The Shining – What’s the Difference?” below.

If you’re a Jack Nicholson fan like myself, check out The Witches of Eastwick, Adult’s Night In.

Also, check out The Shining Theme Party Pinterest Board!

1 thought on “The Shining Theme Party”

  1. Pingback: The Witches Of Eastwick, Adult’s Night In | Fun, Fiction, Fandom

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