Celebrating a graduation should be a day of happiness and wonderful memories, not only for the graduate, but also the host and hostess. A little thought and planning will ensure this. Here are a few tips to help you plan a perfect graduation party.
When planning a graduation party, you should keep the personality of your graduate in mind. If he or she is outgoing, a large, boisterous party would welcomed but if your graduate is shy or doesn’t like being the center of attention, a smaller, more intimate party would be appreciated. To be sure you host the a party the graduate will always remember and appreciate, involve him or her in your party planning.
Here are some great information that will have you giving a great graduation party in no time.
What is the budget? This is an important step. Without a budget, you will find yourself spending money that, well, let’s face it, shouldn’t be spent. Your budget will dictate what type of party to host, how many people you can invite, and what food and drinks you can supply. You might think about talking to other graduates’ families and see about having a joint party. Everyone shares in the cost and cleanup of the party. Joint parties do take some effort but sharing all the responsibilities of hosting a great party is often well worth the effort.
Who are you going to invite? Is this a huge party where almost everyone you know will attend or will it be just for classmates or maybe even just close friends and family?
Where will you be hosting the party? Will you hold it at home? If so, inside or outside? If holding it outside, make a backup plan for bad weather. Mother Nature doesn’t always give us the weather we’d like. Is your home large enough to hold the number of guests you plan on inviting? If you are planning on renting a venue, be sure to reserve the space early. With so many graduates, you may find all the nice places taken by others hosting their own graduation parties. You will also want to hire a caterer at this time.
When will you host the party? If you plan on hosting it at venue other than your home, the space availability will dictate when you can actually have the party. If you plan on hosting it at home, you need to take into consideration that other graduates will be having parties, too. You may wish to wait a few weeks and have it then. Not only will your guests be available but your graduate can attend his or her friends’ graduation parties instead of being at his or her own.
Choose your theme. Is it a standard graduation party with balloons and cake or will you be using another theme such as sports, music, or maybe even the graduate’s future career? Will it be elegant affair with a formal a sit-down dinner and guest dressed in formal attire or will it be much more casual where everyone is wearing sandals and shorts and burgers and hot dogs are served? Does the theme have a specific time for guests to arrive or is it an open-house type affair?
Invitations should be sent. Traditional, engraved invitations may be used for a more sophisticated type graduation party or you may choose to find funny invitations that set the mood for a more casual affair. Or, you may wish to make your own. Today, e-mail and telephone invitations are often the norm and most probably will be the type of invitation that younger graduates will use.
Planning your menu is next. What you choose to serve will be determined by your theme. If it is a pool graduation party, burgers, hot dogs, pizza would be welcomed. If the party is held indoors and you will be having guests come and go, a buffet would be appropriate. Food that can sit out without spoiling and food that can easily be kept hot will work best. If you do plan on cooking yourself, be sure to write a time table of when things should be purchased, frozen, thawed and prepared for serving. It is amazing how little things slip through the cracks. If you plan on hiring a caterer, meet with her early and discuss your plans. She will help you choose appropriate food for your party.
Now it is time to choose your decorations. Of course, banners, balloons and streamers are commonly used for parties. If you have chosen a specific theme, you will find all sorts of decorations on that theme at any party store. For something special, you may want to have a picture of the graduate framed with a very large mat put around it. Have guests sign their name and any notation they may want to add. Another option is to have a special “guest book” where they can write down their thoughts and comments to the graduate. These are popular way to provide a keepsake for your graduate.
When setting up the room or location, don’t forget to set aside a special table for gifts and a basket to hold all the congratulation cards. This will keep them from getting inadvertently tossed out or lost.
Do you plan on entertainment? If your party is very formal, entertainment probably isn’t necessary but if your party is more relaxed, you may find that music adds a great deal to the party. You may hire a disc jockey or have your graduate choose his or her favorite music, burn it to a few cd’s and begin playing them as soon as the party begins. Of course, if you have guests that are older than the graduate, you may want to slip in some music they like too.
Place disposable cameras around the room for people to take candid pictures. You will also want to make sure that your digital camera is handy and you have plenty of batteries on hand.
As you can see, planning a graduation party doesn’t have to be hard. You have all the tips and tricks to hosting the best party ever. Have fun and enjoy your party and your guests will too.