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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I will be having a grad party for my oldest in June. I am expecting anywhere between 50-80 people I think. I haven't had to do food for this many people since 2000!

We are actually renting the Lions club for $75. It sounds ridiculous because we have 10 acres but we don't have room to park everyone! Most of our land is behind the barn. We had a big birthday party here in 2000 but we didnt have fence up and dh didnt have 3 garden plots. Those changes are taking up where we parked everyone. You can't park on the road as there is a 3 foot ditch on each side. Hence the hall rental.

I'm thinking about barbeques and hot ham in roasters with buns. I'll buy the potato salad and coleslaw either at Sams or from someone local that caters. Lets see what else do I need, chips, baked beans (Mom can do these as hers are awesome!) and fruit boats. Oh and the cake. Does that sound about right????

Any other suggestions on what is traditional?

Any good ideas on inexpensive decorations?????

I'm going to price the cake at the local bakery and Sams Club. Does a 1/2 a sheet sound big enough or do I need a full sheet?

LOL can you tell I dont know what I am doing? I'm not sure how I pulled of the party for 75 in 2000 all by myself! I wish I could remember!

I'll be really grateful for any tips or suggestions you can give me!

I'll be sending out photo invites instead of the formal grad invites btw. I figure that would cut down on how many senior pics i had to purchase because lets be honest not everyone saves them!
 

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You may want to consider renting the grill from the Lion's Club, it's big and it's already there.

Burgers, dogs, sausages, salad, veggie tray, fruit salad, chips & dips ... how about a crock of chili (to go on dogs or eat alone)?

Think about what the majority of the people are... if they are kids, simple is best... if it's grannie and every pinky pointing auntie, then some finger sandwhiches...

I know I catered my own HS graduation... we did simple bbq and because no Italian gathering is complete without something to feed an army... calzones of every kind. We made them ahead of time and wrapped them in tinfoil and reheated on the grill.

Don't forget plenty of water, soda and ice tea!
 

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Sounds like it is going to be fun! They will tell you at the bakery what size will feed how many people. Hot roast beef sandwhiches are always good, you can cook them ahead and freeze them and thaw and heat when ready for the party. Meatballs are always good too. You can serve them alone or on buns with cheese.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks LadyV! I totally forgot about veggie trays! I'll double check but I'm pretty sure they do not have a grill there. At least i haven't seen one when we did the easter hunts outside there. They do have a full kitchen though.

I forgot about drinks too! Ok so bottled water, soda etc. I'll have to start watching the sales because we never buy those items. What about punch?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Jas! I'm thinking easy is good since I work the 3 days before the party and will be doing 99% of this by myself!

I need to figure out how much food I need!
 

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Thanks LadyV! I totally forgot about veggie trays! I'll double check but I'm pretty sure they do not have a grill there. At least i haven't seen one when we did the easter hunts outside there. They do have a full kitchen though.

I forgot about drinks too! Ok so bottled water, soda etc. I'll have to start watching the sales because we never buy those items. What about punch?
There should be some sales for soda these days there always seems to be a sale on them somewhere. I don't buy much, but when I do it is most definetly on sale. Not sure if cans or 2 liters are the best best. With cans people tend to take one have a few sips and set it down and then can't remember whose is whose and just go get another one. That is a big waste for sure.

You can make some pretty tasty punches for not a lot of money. Or lemonade is good too. Iced tea always seems to go over well.
 
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I just did my son's grad party this past may. I did all the food myself, a couple of my dear sweet friends and my mom helped. We had more finger food types. Everyone we sent and invitation to got an invite there was over 100 invited. I did Chicken salad, sausage balls, cheese balls, we had fruit trays, veggie trays, nuts, Cake I did a full sheet. I did his baby picture on one half and senior pic on the other half, it cost about 40.00 to 45 dollars for the cake. I also did cupcakes with the grad hat on top. I bought the pirouette cookie from pepperidge farm and tied the ribbon on it to look like a scroll, we also had soft tort shells rolled up with filling to look like scrolls, cheese krispy bakes, chess bars, and I did punch and cokes and water, chips and dip and cheese trays. I bought a lot of things at dollar tree to use for decorations , there was a party supply outlet that I found some nice decorations at. the colors was purple white and black. I bought the table clothes at the dollar tree also. it turned out very nice. Had plenty of food left. I also had spinach dip. Good luck. TC hope it goes well for you.
 

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We had a fish fry at mine. We lived on the Mississippi and Dad is friends with several commercial fisherman who he bought fish from in bulk and for a case of beer, they did the frying. ;)
 

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I just did my son's grad party this past may. I did all the food myself, a couple of my dear sweet friends and my mom helped. We had more finger food types. Everyone we sent and invitation to got an invite there was over 100 invited. I did Chicken salad, sausage balls, cheese balls, we had fruit trays, veggie trays, nuts, Cake I did a full sheet. I did his baby picture on one half and senior pic on the other half, it cost about 40.00 to 45 dollars for the cake. I also did cupcakes with the grad hat on top. I bought the pirouette cookie from pepperidge farm and tied the ribbon on it to look like a scroll, we also had soft tort shells rolled up with filling to look like scrolls, cheese krispy bakes, chess bars, and I did punch and cokes and water, chips and dip and cheese trays. I bought a lot of things at dollar tree to use for decorations , there was a party supply outlet that I found some nice decorations at. the colors was purple white and black. I bought the table clothes at the dollar tree also. it turned out very nice. Had plenty of food left. I also had spinach dip. Good luck. TC hope it goes well for you.
Everything sounds great! I bet everyone had a good time.
 

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just an fyi - any caterer or bakery, etc will tell you need WAY more than you will really go through. i always order about 1/2 - 3/4 of what they tell me....way too many catered parties w/ lots and lots of leftovers that eventually made their way to the trash.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Sophia we have the same school colors. Your party sounds great!

McD that sounds neat! Ds would kill me though as he hates fish LOL,. I'd love it!!!

I really appreciate all the ideas! Please keep them coming! I priced the photo cake at sams. $35 for a full sheet. While there I also priced a lot of other items we need right down to cutlery.

I was looking at the prices of grad napkins etc. I think I may just get purple or white and stamp them. I also had a surprise when I went to check out the photo shops photo invite templates. They now add a $25 service fee on top of all orders. That wasn't like that just a month ago when I stopped to order more of the senior portraits. There is no where else local but I'm going to check online.

I think I'll start picking up a bit of the cutlery etc every week so it isnt so much $ at once.

So who can recommend some good punch recipes?
 

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Sophia we have the same school colors. Your party sounds great!

McD that sounds neat! Ds would kill me though as he hates fish LOL,. I'd love it!!!

I really appreciate all the ideas! Please keep them coming! I priced the photo cake at sams. $35 for a full sheet. While there I also priced a lot of other items we need right down to cutlery.

I was looking at the prices of grad napkins etc. I think I may just get purple or white and stamp them. I also had a surprise when I went to check out the photo shops photo invite templates. They now add a $25 service fee on top of all orders. That wasn't like that just a month ago when I stopped to order more of the senior portraits. There is no where else local but I'm going to check online.

I think I'll start picking up a bit of the cutlery etc every week so it isnt so much $ at once.

So who can recommend some good punch recipes?
I am helping my fdil with some of the wedding projects she wants to do she told me about embossing the napkins ourselves. I didn't even know it was possible. I do crafts and never had any reason to think to jazz up napkins with stamps and embossing powder. We have done several and they look great. The stamps are cheap enough and the embossing powder is low cost too, way cheaper than getting them made.

That gives me an idea too to make some graduation napkins for my dd. We are not giving her a big party she wants something with just family, I have a stamp with a little cartoon type graduate with raised arms with the dipolma and the words "I did it!" DD wants money for her 18th birthday (in 8 days) and her graduation gift in May rather than a big party or parties. That is fine with me since I am doing a wedding shower in May also, plus other wedding things for ds's wedding in July. I will be partied out. oh yea and the rehersal dinner too. On that one I am not sure at all what is gonna happen.
 

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i'll be watching this thread closely...as I'm doing the same thing!
Same number of people.....

One thing I've decided is this...I want the food all in roasters. I don't want someone having to 'man' the grill the entire time. So far we're having..sausage with peppers and onion. Pasta Salad....cookies....a sheet cake...I've already started buying pop and water. ~(those will go in a cooler)~

I've semi-started a list for the invites also....:)
 

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Ahhh, graduation time all around. We did a small open-house at our house for the older daughter a couple years ago, now my youngest graduates in May as well. She just wants dinner with family at a buffet she likes. *shrug!* She does not like hoop-lah and gatherings. So, I'm getting off cheap compared to the older one who was my social butterfly with friends streaming through.:tay:
 

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I'm having my 3 son's graduation open house this yr and we're having meatballs and cheese plate,nuts, veggie plate, fruit salad, bread, cucumber sandwiches, sheet cake so far.
 

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there is a punch my boys love that you use white grape juice and any lemon lime soda. You can add a little food coloring to it to color it for the party colors. You can get the clear forks at dollar tree. I bought the colored forks there to match the plates and napkins.. The plates I bought were plastic so they held up better and than paper. TC
 

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Ask around and see if anyone has a large cooler to make iced tea in. Will probably save you a lot of money instead of buying cans or bottles.

Only punch I can think of is ginger ale and a tub of sherbert. But I think having soda, water, and ice tea is more than enough. One thing you can do is buy one of those big tubs of ice cream I see in stores such as vanilla. It really does go well to make a soda float.

Don't forget macaroni and cheese or baked ziti makes a good side dish and is inexpensive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Awesome! Every time I peek in here I add to my list! I really think we are going to skip the soda unless it is 2 liters. Too many people take a sip or two and that is it.
 

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I make a punch w/sherbet and it's good maybe I'll make that it's easy one!
 
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