Graduation parties can be tricky to arrange, since Memorial Day and Mother’s Day usually fall around the same time as high school and college graduation ceremonies. Nonetheless, graduation parties honor an important milestone in every student’s life. They provide a platform to celebrate and encourage graduates in their future academic or work prospects, with the added bonus of getting family and friends together in one place.
Even though it’s a busy time of year for most people, it’s definitely worth putting in the effort to plan a graduation party. Wrangle the aunts and uncles, send out invitations to the distant cousins, and fire up a group chat for all your closest friends. After all, you only graduate a few times in your life at most. If you or someone you know is about to don the cap and gown, here are some tips for throwing a graduation party to remember.
Set up a guest book
Everyone loves to feel appreciated. By giving your guests the opportunity to sign their name and pass along words of wisdom to the graduate, they feel included and the grad has a special book to look back on in years to come if they feel nostalgic. In today’s highly competitive post-grad workforce, the insights of older people who’ve struggled and come out on top can be very helpful for the nervous graduate who isn’t sure how to navigate this brave new world outside of the classroom.
Guest books are a lot of fun for high school graduation parties in particular, since they give classmates and friends a chance to let loose and scrawl some memorable inside jokes within the pages of a book that will be treasured for years to come. A uniquely decorated guest book is a fantastic gift for the graduate in question.
Set a relaxed tone
Since graduation ceremonies themselves tend to be formal affairs, full of old traditions and fancy graduation dresses, graduation parties should be the exact opposite. Let guests arrive in their favorite casual spring and summer attire, and explain that the party is meant to be a low-key, stress-free occasion.
Consider the demographic you’re inviting, and arrange an ambience for the party based on the age of the guests. College seniors might prefer to sip cocktails by the lake, sharing laughs and reminiscing about the time they fell asleep in an early-morning lecture during freshman year. Generally, adult grad parties are a bit more relaxed. Set some mood lighting with LED icicle lights strung up along the patio and serve some light, colorful cocktails. For a high school graduation party you should set up balloon decorations, serve soda and snacks, open the pool, and set off some fireworks once the sun goes down. There’s no better way to kickstart the summer.
Make a killer throwback playlist
What party is complete without a great playlist? If you’re unsure what music to include (after all, everyone has different tastes), choose only songs that came out during the four years that your guests were in school. That way, you can guarantee they’ll recognize most of the tracks, and the playlist will have a relevant theme.
Use Spotify or Apple Music to set up a playlist a few days beforehand, and turn it up once all the guests have finished mingling and are starting to settle in for the evening. If you aren’t sure where to start, try researching some of the best songs for grad parties. There are lots of tips for baffled parents trying to ensure they make cool selections.
Follow these tips and you can guarantee that this graduation party will be one that your guests will never forget!
Image Credits: Fu Zhichao