Graduation is right around the corner, which means it’s time to reflect on years of hard work and accomplishments. More importantly, it’s time to start celebrating the beginning of an exciting new chapter. We put together eight of the best backyard graduation party ideas for a party that your guests will never forget.
Find the perfect details, games, and delicious recipes to help decorate your backyard, entertain your guests, and give your graduate the party they deserve.
1. Photo Collage
A photo collage is one of the easiest yet most meaningful backyard graduation party ideas you can have. Find photos of your child from each year leading up to this moment and use clothespins and twine to string them together. Hang them from trees, fences or tents for your guests to casually take a look at as they walk around.
Plan on having your party go well into the evening? Grab a package of string lights and weave these into the twine, too.
2. Diploma-Inspired Treats
When you’re planning your dessert table, think of ways to incorporate graduation-themed goodies, like diploma cake pops.
Cake pops are fun, personalized favors for your guests that are also super easy to make. Simply dip the cake pop in the colored chocolate of your choice, let dry and place a diploma or tassel on the very top.
3. Sunscreen and Bug Spray Basket
Since your party will be outdoors, guests will need protection from the sun’s rays and those pesky bugs and mosquitos. Display a hanging bucket of sunscreen and bug spray so your guests can easily help themselves.
Personalize a basket (with a sign, paint or ribbon), place the sunscreen and bug spray inside and hang it from an outdoor plant hanger or deck. Make sure you place this in a high traffic area so your guests can easily see it.
4. Personalized Graduation Gear
Balloons and decorations are great for any party, but for your backyard graduation party, make sure everything is personalized for your special grad.
Graduation balloons: Step up your decor game and look for balloon letters to make personalized messages, such as “shoot for the stars” or “congratulations Amy!” You can also write on your balloons with white and gold metallic markers, which can be found on Amazon for a great price.
Giant graduation cap: Make your own giant graduation cap from black posterboard and place your balloons inside. At some point during the party, gather your guests and lift the cap and release all of the balloons. Check out the full how-to from Little Miss Party Planner.
Beverage caps and tassels: To add some flare to your bar and beverage pitchers, add graduation caps and tassels on the top to keep a consistent theme.
5. Homemade School Pennants
Show off your graduate’s school spirit with easy, homemade pennants made with scrapbooking paper. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Scrapbook paper or cardstock
- String or hemp jute
- Paper glue or glue stick
- Hole punch
Simply cut the paper into triangles, punch holes in the top two corners of each triangle and string them together onto ribbon to make a banner. Print out the school’s block letter or logo and attach to every few triangles.
Hang the banner on the porch, garage, trees or where your guests will be hanging out for the day.
6. Outdoor Games
Graduation may not be all fun and games, but your backyard graduation party can be.
Add some outdoor lawn games for your guests to participate in throughout the day. You can even personalize games with logos and school colors to add to the graduation theme. Here are a few ideas:
Twister: Instead of using the actual game materials, spray paint your own dots in the grass to make a bigger board and allow more guests to participate.
Cornhole: Cornhole is a lawn game staple and is a great way to involve several guests. Personalize your cornhole board with the colors, logos or mascots from your graduate’s school.
Giant Jenga: Take a traditional favorite to the next level with outdoor Jenga. Use 2×4 pieces to make an oversized version of the famous stacking game.
7. Outdoor Beverage Bar
If your party is going to be outside all day, don’t make your guests come inside to grab a cold beverage. Create an interactive beverage bar where guests can personalize their own drinks. Place champagne, juice, and berries on a cart so guests can make their own yummy cocktails. Place popsicles in a nearby cooler so guests have a fun and tasty way of keeping their beverages cold.
To add some flare to your bar, customize it with photos, chalkboard signs, and glitzy graduation decorations.
8. Create Your Own Photo Booth
So you might not have the budget to hire a professional photographer, but you will definitely have the time and budget for a fun, crafty DIY photo booth.
Create a unique backdrop at your backyard graduation party so your guests can take their own photos to upload, share and remember.
Here are some graduation party photo booth ideas:
- Fill a bucket with fun props like wigs, glasses, scarves and mustaches for your guests to mix and match as they take photos.
- Make your own “InstaGrad” sign (mimicking the Instagram logo) as a backdrop.
- Create your own hashtag for your graduation party and be sure that everyone uses it so that all photos are housed in one place and easily accessible.
With the right backyard graduation party ideas, you’ll be able to shower your graduate with the food, decorations, gifts and memories to last a lifetime.