Friday, May 31, 2013

Graduation Party Ideas !

I took a little break from crocheting because my daughter graduated high school!

We put on a graduation party for her, and we all had a really fun time.  I thought I would share some of the things we did for the party, because I sure appreciated ideas that other people shared as I was trying to put the party together!

Help people find your party!

My daughter has always loved the "wiggly guy", or "sky dancer", that you sometimes see at car lot sales.  We found one at our local rental place for a very reasonable fee.  People loved it, and knew where the party was happening!  We also tied balloons outside as well.

Slide Show & Music (& popcorn too!)

We made a slide show of our daughter on the computer.  We saved it to a flash drive and played it on a loop on the TV.  You can get pretty fancy with those slide shows! 

We played music that sort of related to this time in her life, and seemed appropriate for a graduation party.  Here is the music list we put on the iPod, hooked it into our speakers, and played on a loop:
  • My Wish - Rascal Flatts
  • Unwritten - Natasha Bedingfield
  • It Won't Be Like This For Long - Darius Rucker
  • This Is Your Life - Switchfoot
  • Firework - Katy Perry
  • Don't Forget to Remember Me - Carrie Underwood
  • Breakaway - Kelly Clarkson
  • I Don't Want to Miss a Thing - Aerosmith
  • You're Gonna Miss This - Trace Adkins
  • I Gotta Feeling - The Black Eyed Peas
  • Wasted - Carrie Underwood
  • Home - Philip Phillips
  • September - Daughtry
  • All That You Are - Goo Goo Dolls
  • Life is a Highway - Rascal Flatts
  • Home - Dierks Bentley
  • Cruz - Christina Aguilera
  • Closing Time - Semisonic
  • Don't Stop Believin' - Journey
  • Who I Am - Jessica Andrews
  • 100 Years - Five for Fighting
  • The Time of My Life - David Cook
  • Party in the USA - Pitch Perfect Soundtrack
Other songs that I thought would be good, but my daughter vetoed, included:
  • Born This Way - Lady Gaga
  • Edge of Glory - Lady Gaga
  • Photograph - Nickelback
  • If Today was Your Last Day - Nickelback


My daughter did a different spin on a Memory Board than what I had seen before.  She did it collage style, by year of high school.  It was fun to look at.  Those wood bunnies (peeps) in the foreground of the picture are sitting on something that says "Hangin' with my Peeps".  Found those on for cute Easter decor, but they worked here too!

Other items in the area of her Memory Board were:
  • A basket for Cards
  • Extra Senior Pictures people could take 
  • Sign in sheets and colorful pens for people to leave messages
  • A Memory Box and index cards, with a note indicating for people to write down favorite memories with our daughter
  • Miniature Hershey's Candy Bars with Personalized Wrappers, available here:

We had put pictures together of our daughter's first day of Kindergarten, and last day of High School.  (Yes, I made her pose the same way as she did in Kindergarten!)  

We sent those pictures, as well as others, to OfficeMax online to enlarge and print out in black & white.  It was really cheap to print!  Then we backed them with colorful poster board, and put them around the party area.

We put out some memorabilia of our daughter's activities over the years.

We designed and ordered a custom step-n-repeat banner from here:  It was fun to use as a picture background.

And we took it one step further.  Yes, I'm talking about......props!

I found the props on Etsy, but you can usually find them at party stores as well.


The party was an open-house format from 1-4pm on a Sunday afternoon.  So we wanted a lot of finger type foods, but also enough to make a hearty meal for someone if they hadn't had lunch.  Here is what we had:
  • Pre-made mini sandwiches
  • Pulled Pork, Buns & BBQ Sauce
  • Sandwich Topping tray (not recommended - hardly touched)
  • Veggie Tray with dip (not recommended - hardly touched.  Maybe a veggie pizza instead?)
  • Macaroni Salad
  • Taco Dip & Tortilla Chips
  • Potato Chips
  • Fruit Tray & Dip
  • Deviled Eggs
  • Cheese Ball & Crackers
  • Smoked Weenies in BBQ sauce
  • Cheesy Potatoes

We had popcorn and candy dishes of Starburst and colorful M&M's out on the tables.

We had a dessert counter with:

  • Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • Mini Cupcakes in 7 different flavors
  • Cake
  • Brownies (from a local favorite bakery, cut in 1/4ths)
  • Scotcharoos (from a local favorite bakery, cut in 1/4ths)
  • Chocolate Covered Strawberries (huge hit!)

For drinks, we kept it fairly simple with Lemonade, Bottled Water, and all kinds of different soda in cans.

Overall, the party went very well, and we received a lot of compliments on the food, decor, slide show and photo backdrop/props.  I hope you found some of these ideas helpful!

Now - crocheting!  I am back to stocking up my Etsy store here:

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