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Successful Send-Off

Get Ready for Graduation: Party Ideas, Gifts, and More

Graduating students throwing hats in the air; Get Ready for Graduation: Party Ideas, Gifts, and More

By Audrey Sellers

Cue up “Pomp and Circumstance” on the playlist: Graduation season is upon us. Whether your graduate is donning a cap and gown for high school, college, or graduate school, they deserve a celebration in honor of their achievement. What can you do to mark the momentous occasion? Read on. We’re sharing a few ideas that can help you raise a toast to your grad and show them just how proud of them you are. Let’s get the party started!

Determine your party budget.

You can host a party your grad will be proud to share on TikTok — and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. The average graduation party price tag is about $1,000 for a guest list of 60 people. You can keep things more intimate — and cost-effective — by inviting just close friends and family. Ask the grad who they’d like to invite and go from there.  

Decide on the décor.

Think about what your grad likes best and personalize the celebration to their interests. If your high school grad is going on to a university, mark the occasion with yard signs and banners in their new school colors. Are they playing sports in college? Incorporate their activity into the theme. You could also display photos of the grad through the years and use large balloons as photo props.

Get festive with food.

Whether you’re hosting a full-blown bash or a casual open house, you can celebrate your grad with some A+ snacks. If you’re serving appetizers, just replenish the food as it’s consumed, and if you’re serving a full meal, plan to serve about a pound of food per person. 

Choose a thoughtful gift.

Everyone appreciates cold, hard cash, but when it’s your loved one graduating, you might want to give something more heartfelt (and that won’t get immediately spent on gas). Consider whisking your grad away for a weekend getaway, treating them to concert tickets, or showering them with personalized gifts like engraved jewelry or a custom photo book. You could also gather some wisdom for the new grad. Ask relatives and friends to write down their best piece of advice on a slip of paper. Add all the papers to a “wisdom jar” and encourage the graduate to read when they need inspiration. 

Do something unconventional.

You don’t have to follow hard-and-fast rules when preparing for your grad’s big day. Think outside the box and do something different. Plant a tree to symbolize growth in their life. Surprise them with a video compilation of congratulatory messages from loved ones. Or, host a scavenger hunt that takes the grad to important places on their academic journey and culminates with a celebratory dinner or party. The key is to make it about the grad. Focus on their likes and dislikes and what would make them the happiest.  

Graduation is an important milestone.

You can make your grad feel extra special on their big day by incorporating personalized touches, thoughtful gifts, and creative gestures. 

Where to Host Your Grad Party

Home sweet home is the most affordable option, but just like your grad’s future, the sky’s the limit. Explore these options to host a truly unforgettable event: 

  • Community clubhouse: Rent out your community clubhouse for an indoor celebration with plenty of space for seating and entertainment.  
  • Vacation rental: Go somewhere scenic and throw a grad party in a cabin or cottage with family and close friends. You could also arrange for an onsite activity, like hiking or kayaking. 
  • Rooftop venue: Give your grad a sophisticated soiree with plenty of photo ops by hosting the party at a restaurant with city views.  
  • Lakeside bash: Head to a local lake for a casual outdoor celebration. Set up umbrellas and tents for shade, a volleyball net for games, and arrange for a bonfire at sunset. 
  • Historic venue: Book a historic mansion, museum, or cultural center for a charming and unexpected setting for the grad party. 

For more about how to celebrate your grads, visit LivingMagazine.net

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