By Alexander Diedrick
Life isn’t like in the movies. For the students that are reading this article, high school graduation parties plan themselves, and they don’t end in a cheesy montage.
This means that throwing a high school graduation party requires advance planning to make sure that it doesn’t start your future off the wrong way. We’ve put together a few simple things to remember to make sure it all goes well.
Start Planning Your Party Yesterday
For most students, high school graduation takes place in June. It may seem like that’s a long ways off, but you’ve obviously never graduated high school before (because that would be strange).
Your family from all over the country could be showing up to your graduation, and it might be the last time you see many of your high school friends. You need it to go well, so you need to start planning now.
Consider Your Guest List
It’s a good idea to break your high school grad party into two parts: the family and the friends. I’m not saying you should necessarily have two parties; I’m just saying that the fun you have with your high school gang is a little bit different from the fun you have with your great-aunt.
You should definitely invite everyone to whom you informed of your graduation. You never know who is going to send you a big ol’ check in the mail for this important life step, and it’s just proper etiquette to let them know that everyone actually matters enough to be invited. I know, this might increase your costs to plan on a bunch of people, but it’s just the right thing to do. (Also, don’t forget to get those invites in the mail at least a month in advance.)
Coordinate With Your Friends/Relatives
Hopefully this isn’t a shock, but a lot of people you know in high school are graduating at the same time. This means that a lot of people are going to be having their parties at the same time, so planning yours might be a little tricky.
You aren’t going to please everyone, so coordinate with your best friends/relatives that are graduating. Not everyone is going to be able to make your party no matter how much planning you put into it, so just do the best you can.
Location, Location, Location
In your planning, location really can be a game-changer. The restaurant you book could be really full, the local park could be covered in a downpour, or the Chuck E. Cheese’s that you love could be shut down due to a cheese shortage.
In my experience, it’s always best to plan on having your party at someone’s house. It’s easier to come and go from a house than at a restaurant, and who wouldn’t agree that less formal is more fun?
If you don’t have a suitable house, though, I would still stick to the formula that less formal is better. Don’t go all out in booking some fancy dining hall or rent a yacht or buy a zeppelin. Save your money for college.
Some people will wait until your party to give you your graduation gift, so don’t forget to keep track of who gave you what. Write down the gift-givers so that you can thank them later.
Don’t wait until your graduation party to start some big drama that has been building up for the past 4 years. I think you can wait a day.
Lastly, don’t forget to have fun. It’s your graduation party, and don’t forget it.
Alexander Diedrick is a television writing and production student at Columbia College of Chicago. In addition to producing and writing for Price of Admission, a movie and television review show for college students, Alexander is a writing intern at myFootpath, LLC.