Pick up where you left off

The Ultimate Graduation Party Checklist

10 Apr 2023

If you’re wondering what do I need for a graduation party, look no further! Your graduate worked hard for that degree. Now it’s time for you, the party planner, to do some homework of your own. Start by studying our graduation party checklist for  throwing an A+ graduation bash. As you may know, planning the perfect party isn’t easy. But don’t worry, we’re here to help. By staying organized and following the recommended schedule below, you can throw a graduation party for your guest of honor that will make them feel loved and proud of their accomplishments. 

Download the For Your Party Graduation Party Checklist

graduation party checklist

ONE MONTH before the graduation party

[  ] Pick a date that works best—it doesn't have to be the weekend of the graduation ceremony.
[  ] Finalize your guest list.
– Don't be afraid to invite friends and family who live far away. Even if they can't make it, they can still send a gift for the new grad!
– Ask the graduate for a list of school friends, teachers or professors they would like to invite.
[  ] Find a photo of the graduate for your custom party invitations. Try to get them in the mail with about three weeks to spare.
[  ] Reserve party tents, catering company, any big activity/entertainment pieces, etc.

THREE WEEKS before the graduation party

[  ] Assemble food and drinks menu/grocery list.
[  ] Let your party stand out from the rest by ordering custom cups, personalized napkins, coasters and plates.
– Not sure how many to order? See our Product Ordering Guidelines!

TWO WEEKS before the graduation party

[  ] Make music arrangements (speakers, playlist, karaoke, etc.).
[  ] Build a slideshow or frame a few of your favorite photos of the graduate.
[  ] Construct a giant card or buy a custom guest book for loved ones to sign.
[  ] Get creative with personalized gift bags and custom gift tags!
[  ] Pre-order a cake and other desserts—custom stir sticks make great cupcake toppers!

ONE WEEK before the graduation party

[  ] Prepare food that can be frozen and easily reheated.
[  ] Check the weather report and prepare a plan b if necessary.
[  ] Make a list of equipment you still need (chairs, tables, tent, etc.).
[  ] Find lawn games for entertaining (badminton set, Frisbee, cornhole, bocce ball, etc.).

ONE—TWO DAYS before the graduation party

[  ] Thoroughly clean the house and manicure the yard.
[  ] Check the weather report again and make room inside if necessary.
[  ] Get out the tables, tent and decorations.
[  ] Charge your camera and phone and make sure you have plenty of space for more photos and videos.
[  ] Notify the neighbors about the party and parking situation—or extend an invitation!
[  ] Set out several large trash bins with extra bags in the bottom.


[  ] Prepare the remaining food.
[  ] Keep cold food in the fridge until the first guests arrive.
[  ] Prepare hot food last and hold in a warm oven.
[  ] Label coolers and fill with beverages and plenty of ice.
[  ] Establish table for graduation gifts, card box and party favors.
[  ] Check bathrooms for toilet paper, towels, custom matchbooks, toothpicks, etc.
[  ] Set out food, cups, napkins, plates and utensils.
[  ] Get lawn games ready for party guests.
[  ] Tie balloons or custom ribbons to the mailbox.
[  ] Turn on the music.
[  ] Give your graduate a big hug and try not to cry.


We hope our graduation party checklist made event planning a breeze! Other occasions that are perfect for personalized party accessories? Weddings, baby showers, birthday parties and more! From wedding napkins to bachelorette party koozies, custom partyware is all the rage and will add to the memories you'll never forget!

graduation party checklist