How to plan and throw a Graduation Party

Graduation time is SUCH A CRAZY time of year.  And if you have other kids and commitments, it can almost send you over the edge- not that I would know that or anything.  :)

Planning a big event, such as a graduation party, can be overwhelming and stressful, but with a little bit of preparation and a whole bunch of working, you can have a fantastic Graduation Party.  Read on for my tips on Planning a Graduation Party

How to plan and throw a Graduation Party

I have a tendency to get in over my head with parties.  I have big ideas but not enough time and energy to execute on them, which leads to a lot of disappointment (anger, frustration, grumpiness) on my part.

When planning my son's high school graduation party, I wanted to be all in and ready to celebrate this important milestone, not grumpy that I didn't pull off the perfect party.  So I knew I was going to have to do something different and I did!

For the most part, everything at my son's Graduation Party went smoothly.  He was able to spend the evening with his friends and family and I was even able to enjoy it because I had done everything in my power to make it a fun evening, without going overboard!

How to Plan a Graduation Party

Book a Venue and Make Guest List

Hold your gradation party in a place big enough for everyone to be comfortable.

We held our graduation party with 2 other church families, so our church building was the perfect place to host the party.  I reserved the building a few months in advance.  As for a guest list, we weren't exactly sure how many people would be there, but we made a pretty good estimate on numbers to plan for food.

Decide on Menu

Serve something that your guests can serve themselves.

We did a nacho bar for around 150 people. Our ingredient list:

  • Tortilla Chips- 15 bags  {10 bags would have been sufficient}
  • Nacho Cheese Sauce -  2 large cans {Don't forget you need a way to heat and serve, such as a crock pot.  Ours wasn't heated properly so we didn't use a lot because cold cheese sauce = yuck!}
  • Seasoned meat - 15 lbs  {We used 5 lbs of ground beef and 10 lbs of shredded pork.  I pre-cooked the meat earlier in the week and froze it.  It was re-heated on the day of the party.}
  • Refried Beans - 10 15oz cans {5 cans would have been sufficient}
  • Spanish Rice - 1 large pan
  • Sour Cream - 5lbs {2 lbs would have been sufficient}
  • Salsa - large jug
  • Shredded Lettuce - 3 bags
  • Shredded Cheddar Cheese - 3 large bags
  • Cupcakes - 10 dozen {6 dozen would have been enough}
  • Bottled Water - 5 cases
  • Serving Dishes, napkins and utensils {We used aluminum pans to serve the food and offered paper boats, styrofoam plates, napkins in school colors and plastic utensils for our guests}

Make a BIG to do List and Plan ahead

Make a to do list by writing every single thing you will possibly need to do on it.  Prioritize by putting the most important things at the top of the list.  Then work on them one at a time.

For our party, we split up the food assignments and then I moved on to decorations.  I checked out my local stores like Target, Walmart and Hobby Lobby for party supplies.  Then since I love crafting and decorating for parties, I gathered ideas and supplies, added them to my to do list and slowly worked on everything.  By the time the party came around, I wasn't stressed because I had been doing a little bit every day.

How to plan and throw a graduation party

Keep calendar up to date

Write all important dates and times on your calendar!

There are graduation practices, meetings, and luncheons.  And of course if you have other kids they have- field days, testing, field trips, church activities- not to mention all of the family coming in to see the graduate.  Keeping track of all of that in your head will make you crazy!  If you write it on your calendar, it clears up space in your head!

Don't Stress

This one is easier said than done.  It's impossible to be everywhere and get everything done.  When things come up, and they always do, you'll have to adjust and prioritize.  I think the most important thing you can do is take good care of yourself!  During busy seasons self care is usually the first thing that goes out the window.  But we are no good to anyone else if we are depleted.  Put time for yourself (great ideas for self care here) right on your to do list so you will be sure to get that done as well!

How to plan and throw a graduation party

Graduations are such a big milestone!  With a little bit of planning and prep, you can throw a fabulous Graduation Party that your graduate will remember for the rest of their life!

See more graduation ideas

Clever ideas for a graduation display,  Quick and Easy Advice Jar for a Graduate,  How to Create the Perfect Graduation Table Centerpieces

linking up to:  Pintastic Party   Ultimate Pinterest Party