Planning a Graduation Dinner Party – Food, Budget, Guests, and More!

planning a graduation dinner party - food, budget, guests, and more!

When thinking about a graduation dinner party, be it high school or college, the first order of business is… what kind of party do you want to throw? Day or night, big or small, at home or in a special location – all of these options are lying in front of you and can make the idea of planning seem daunting.

The good news is that your budget will help answer some questions, the graduate’s tastes will answer others, and the age of the individuals attending the event often fills out the rest. All that’s left is to come up with some ideas for graduation party food that your graduate will love!

The Date and Time

For example, a high school graduation dinner party is best held during the day or early evening since some guests may not drive yet, and younger guests may have curfews. This age group tends to be “on the go” so having your event outdoors or in a space where there’s plenty of room for socialization aids the success of the party greatly.

The Budget

Contrary to what you might think, a graduation party won’t require a second mortgage to fund– especially if you plan ahead. Give yourself plenty of time to look for bargains and see if you can get a few other families to pitch in. If they have children graduation, a co-op party can be really fun and saves everyone’s bottom line from the red zone.

Graduation Party Food Planning

Socialization also gives you a hint about food: nothing complicated. Try making some flat bread roll ups with various meat and cheese combinations, have miniature hot dogs, pizza and wings, and similar items that can move with your guests. And don’t forget the munchies!

Making food yourself is one HUGE cost savings. While buying pre-prepared platters takes some pressure off you time-wise, the price tag is much higher than what it would be if you assembled what you want yourself. The additional benefit to making your own appetizers, snacks, etc. is that you can plan the selection around your graduate’s favorite flavors.

The Guest List: Get the Graduate Involved!

Don’t just assume that you know who should be invited to this event. The social demographics of a graduation dinner party can be a little tricky. So ask your graduate who they would like present (within reason – they have to give you names that fit the size of the party you’re hosting).

Rounding it Out – Music and Decorations

A CD player with good speakers and a nice variety of music will do just fine for an informal graduation dinner party. Some people like to hire a DJ to run the music, but if you’re lucky one of the graduate’s friends will enjoy this task (and know their musical tastes besides).

For decorations, put up images of the graduate at various ages (yes, you finally get to take out that embarrassing one you’ve been saving for just such an occasion). Or do a search online– there are lots of great places on the net to buy cheap graduation party decorations (balloons, gag decorations, black tableware, paper grad caps, etc.) for cheap.

planning a graduation dinner party - food, budget, guests, and more!2

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