High School Graduation Pool Party Ideas

by Hannah Wahlig

Celebrate your graduate's achievements with a well-planned pool party.

Graduating Girl image by TMLP from Fotolia.com

After 12 years of schooling, help graduates relax with a playful graduation pool party. Kick-off the start of summer and the end of their high school days through a variety of tasty foods and enjoyable activities. Whether you're hosting the party in your own backyard or at a local YMCA, a pool party is a fitting way to celebrate a high school graduation.

Invitations and Party Decorations

Themes help create a cohesive design scheme for a party; though a pool-party theme provides some guidance, consider a narrower theme like a luau or "retro" party to giev the event some additional focus. Once you choose your theme, consider invitations and decorations accordingly. For example, a luau-themed graduation party might include invitations with large hibiscus flowers printed on the front and a deck decorated with lighted palm trees. In contrast, a retro pool party might include invitations shaped like vinyl records and black-and-white-themed streamers and balloons. Tropical-themed invitations and decor are usually suitable for all graduation pool parties; decorate the pool party area with strands of miniature lights and line walk ways with tiki torches. For a last dose of school spirit, host a graduation pool party with a school-colors theme; print invitations in the school colors, ask guests to wear theme-colored bathing suits and stock the pool with toys and rafts in the school colors.

Food

Make use of the outdoor party venue by serving food from a grill. Barbecue chicken, hamburgers and hot dogs are summer party staples, while more tropical offerings like pork and pineapple skewers add a bit of variety. Another option is to set up a serve-yourself tropical buffet with colorful platters of vegetables and fruits as well as tropical main courses: glazed ham with pineapple, tropical fruit salad, and colorful fruit punch are buffet options for a graduation pool party. For a surprising twist, serve guests one final "school lunch" as the main meal. Offer fish sticks, pizza, ham-and-cheese sandwiches and milk in cartons for guests to eat off of Styrofoam trays. For dessert, consider serving ice cream cake or snow cones; if the party leads into the night, make S'mores over a camp fire.

Games and Activities

Keep guests and graduates entertained with interactive games and activities. Host a pool-dancing party by hooking up a set of outdoor speakers. All participants demonstrate their best dance moves from the pool for a panel of adult judges who award prizes like towels stitched with the graduate year to the most skilled pool dancers. Get guests moving with a cap-and-gown relay race. Divide guests into two teams and line them up at one end of the yard. At the other end, place two sets of caps and gowns. At the start, one player from each team races to the items, puts them on, and runs back before removing them and handing them off to the next player, who must continue the race. The first team to have all players put on and remove the cap and gown wins a prize like a gift card.

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About the Author

Hannah Wahlig began writing and editing professionally in 2001. Her experience includes copy for newspapers, journals and magazines, as well as book editing. She is also a certified lactation counselor. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Mount Holyoke College, and Master's degrees in education and community psychology from the University of Massachusetts.