· Make sure you and everyone attending the ceremony knows when the actual graduation ceremony will be held; make sure the cap and gown has been reserved for that day and is pressed and ready to go!
· If persons other than the immediate family are to attend the graduation, make sure you have given them directions, tickets, meeting location and parking information in advance of the date.
· Your daughter will need to know what the dress code is for the ceremony and purchase or wear appropriate attire and let her guests know as well.
· If you plan on having a celebration after the ceremony, with your guest attendees, make reservations in advance if your party is a large one (5 or more people). This will ensure seating quickly with little or no waiting.
· Graduation announcements need to be ordered, addressed and mailed out at least one week prior to the ceremony. It is customary to include their graduation photo, which should have been taken during the school year. The preparation on this can be done well in advance of school finals and should be done by the graduate (with your list!).
· Have your daughter find out what dates her friends are having their graduation party – and plan to hold hers on an open day if possible. Send out a ‘Save the Date’ as soon as you decide on the date. Weekends in May and June get filled in quickly with graduation parties and weddings and you want this party to be well attended.
· Remember, when planning a party to think of: venue, décor, parking, menu, flowers, music, attire, duration, invitations, directions, and clean up!
· Ask your daughter what she would like as gifts as many people will be asking YOU for an idea and you want her to get items she will use, need and want. Keep a list on hand for such questions. Add to the list as college prep starts to enter into the picture!
· Decide if you are having an open house or a party people are invited to during a set time. Decide if you are having the party at home, in a restaurant, picnic area, etc. Decide if you are doing the cooking, or having it catered.
· Decide on menu, décor (high school colors or the college she will be attending colors?), timing, attire for the graduation party. If you will have the party at home, many items can be done in advance. If the party is large, we suggest you have it catered so you can enjoy the party too!
· If you have the party at a restaurant, they will handle everything with regards to the menu – you may want to handle the décor. If you decide on an outdoor lake or picnic, be sure you have plenty of outdoor activities and food as well as a rain plan.
· Set ground rules for your daughter’s friends for this party. If it is for relatives and parental friends (the ones with cash), then let them know they are welcome after a certain time. The party can roll over into a teen party after the relative party is over. It is after all, her party!
· Be sure your daughter sends thank you cards to those who gave her gifts.