This post shows you the best backyard graduation party ideas.
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It's graduation party season! Every year, graduation season is my favorite time to help all of my readers throw the best graduation party that they can. In this article, we’ll focus specifically on backyard graduation party ideas.
As someone from the midwest, I understand the stress and pressure of trying to throw the best graduation party on the block. Luckily for you, my family threw a backyard graduation party, and I saved the best backyard graduation party ideas just for my readers.
This post shows you the brilliant tips and tricks for throwing an amazing outdoor graduation party. Backyard graduation parties are a great way to throw an epic celebration while staying on budget and without too much work, since it's so easy to transport decor and other stuff to and from a party that's right in your backyard!
Here are the best show stopping backyard graduation party ideas that are actually affordable.
Backyard Graduation Party Ideas
1. CHARCUTERIE BOARDS
Charcuterie boards are such a fun food idea for a graduation party, and always a crowd pleaser! You can choose between having a large outdoor setting for everyone to snack on, or go with mini individual boards instead. Either way, they will be sure to get everyone snacking.
2. CHIPS AND SALSA DISPLAY
This display is such a creative and fun way to spice up the way you serve chips and salsa! The appetizer is a true classic and affordable option to serve for a crowd. Displaying it this way allows everyone to get their chips easily and also try different salsas. Yum!
3. GIANT POOL LETTERS
These graduation floating letters are such a great way to personalize your backyard party - if you have a pool! They come in foam and you can pick the size and color that you prefer. You are going to get compliments and have lots of photos taken with this cute decor option.
4. SIMPLE POOL FLOWERS
Floating flowers are a fun way to add more graduation decor to your backyard party, and they go super well with the foam letters above! Lotus flowers are a popular design, and some style are light up so you can use them at night for ambiance too.
5. RUSTIC PHOTO BACKDROP
A rustic photo backdrop is a cute and simple way to create memories of a special day and take pics with friends and family. The setup is very easy - all you need is a stand, a sheet, and a decorative element like the banners. Tassels could be cute too!
6. DIY TIC TAC TOE
Tic tac toe is such a fun outdoor game. It’s an easy game, perfect for adults and kids alike, and you can DIY it super quickly… or buy the pieces and it’s still pretty affordable. To DIY it, use lawn paint or duct tape and frisbees or go giant with hula hoops. If you’d rather something ready made, our favorite options are below.
7. HANDY PAPER TOWELS
Paper towel is a necessity for a backyard graduation party and is pretty self explanatory!
8. MEMORY LANE
This is just the sweetest idea! The photos are a creative visual to honor the high school or college graduate and look back at their growth through the years. It’s also a pretty easy idea to DIY - you just need to size and print the photos, and tape them to some stakes.
9. WRAP AROUND TREE PICTURES
Speaking of photos, this idea for wrap around tree pictures is such an aesthetic way to display special photos and the lights add to the ambiance! I love the way the photos look when half are portrait (vertical) and the other half landscape (horizontal).
10. LADDER DRINKS
I love this idea for ladder drinks, as there are so many ways to style it. You can keep it straight drinks, or make it more of a display, adding other decor elements like flowers or framed photos. The set up works equally well with both modern and rustic graduation party decor.
11. STRING LIGHTS
Lighting is such an important decor element for setting the mood at a backyard party. You could go for something colorful, or a warm glow - strung on a tree, hanging on fences, or on a deck - no matter what, it will transform your backyard into a magical graduation celebration.
12. EASY PAPER TREE DECOR
Decorating trees is a no-brainer if you’re having an outdoor graduation party. There are so many different decor shapes and fabrics to choose from, and it’s a great way to incorporate the graduate’s school colors.
13. LAWN TWISTER
When it comes to outdoor games, a twister game board is a fun option! And super easy to DIY! The only thing you really need is yard paint.
14. CHIPS IN A BAG
If you’re looking for ideas for the food table, I love this way to serve chips in individual serving bags - it’s affordable and cute!
S’mores are the perfect backyard party dessert option, especially if you have a fire pit! If not, you can still make mini or individual s’more stations with the fixings plus cans of roasting fuel gel and roasting sticks.
16. MASON JARS AS FLOATING CANDLES
This mason jar centerpiece is an easy DIY for a graduation party. You can buy mason jars in bulk for cheap, fill them with water, and place a floating candle within. You can add ribbon, twill, or other decorative elements to them depending on your grad party theme!
17. PASTA BAR
For graduation party food ideas, pasta is so universally loved, and it’s great for a larger party when you want to have food options that are easily customizable to suit everyone’s needs. Set up a food table - and you can have different pasta sizes, perhaps something gluten free, as well as different sauces, and other toppings.
18. HANGING FLOWERS PHOTO BOOTH
I love the boho vibe of having hanging flowers as a photo booth or backdrop. There are so many different color combinations and flower styles to choose from!
19. HAND WASHING STATION
This is a simple and aesthetically pleasing way to set up a hand washing station, if you don’t have a hose or other water source nearby.
20. CLASSY SAUCES
These sauce bottles are a fun way to spice up the condiment selection, with the labels really elevating the design.
21. SUNSCREEN AND BUG SPRAY
With summer outdoor parties also comes sun and mosquitos - be prepared to keep your guests comfortable by having some sunscreen and bugspray for them to use as needed.
22. DRINK PROTECTION
Speaking of bugs, having something to protect your beverages will also help keep them away! These cupcake lines are a stylish and budget-friendly way to protect your drinks.
23. CUTLERY DISPLAY
This idea is a great alternative to having plastic disposable cutlery strewn about.
24. POPCORN IN A BAG
Love this idea so much and if chips aren’t your thing, it also works with popcorn!
25. SEPARATE RECYCLING AND TRASH
There will be a lot of trash at the end of your backyard graduation party - make sure to keep on top of it by having separate recycling and trash areas, and emptying them out as they fill up.
26. BALLOON GARLANDS
I am obsessed with balloon garlands! You can get them in so many different colors and styles, and they are so festive and also photograph well! They are a must in my opinion!
27. LAWN GAMES
Here are a few of our favorite lawn games to purchase.
28. FOOD TENTS
Food tents are a necessity for outdoor graduation parties - keep the bugs and other creepy crawlies away from the food!
29. DRINK TUBS
If you don’t want to serve your beverages in a bucket or cooler, consider a more aesthetically pleasing drink tub like this blow up buffet style one.
30. CITRONELLA CANDLES
Another must when it comes to bug repellant! Your guests will thank you.
31. LAWN DECORATIONS
I love lawn decorations, they’re a great way to celebrate your grad and also help party goers find your house - I recommend putting some in the front yard as well as the back.
32. TABLE CLOTH CLIPS
Don’t let the wind mess up your food tables or displays - invest in table cloth clips, you won’t regret it!
33. POP UP TENT CANOPY
A pop up tent canopy is an easy way to provide a respite from the sun or the rain in your backyard. They come in many different sizes to suite your needs, and it’s a great way to keep things like food or gifts protected from weather elements. It’s not a necessity, but depending on where you live, it could make your life easier. You can also hang string lights to add to the ambiance!
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