23 Outdoor Graduation Party Ideas For A Super Memorable Party

Want to throw a backyard graduation party this year? Here are the absolute best outdoor graduation party ideas that will make your party one to remember.

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Graduation is the PERFECT excuse to host an outdoor party. The weather is almost always nice at that time of year… plus you don’t have to clean your house first!

Whether you’re looking for the perfect decor, fun outdoor games, or good food ideas for outdoor grad parties, we have you covered!

Here are 23 backyard graduation party ideas that your guests will love.

Outdoor Graduation Party Decor

1. Hang String Lights

If you’re going to be having a backyard graduation party, you absolutely need to hang some string lights!

They add such a nice ambiance to the yard, plus they’ll help people see if your party goes into the evening.

Wrap them around a tree or hang them from your porch posts.

Recreate this outdoor graduation party idea:

Globe String Lights, 33 Feet
$16.99 ($0.51 / Foot)
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03/05/2024 09:53 pm GMT

2. Decorate a Tent

If the weather is looking iffy on the day of your grad party, you should probably look into getting a tent!

Not only will tents provide shelter in case of inclement weather, but they’re also really easy to decorate.

You can hang string lights, flowers, banners, etc. from the tent structure.

Recreate this backyard grad party idea:

3. Put Signs in The Yard

Graduation Yard Signs
$33.99
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05/14/2024 03:26 pm GMT

I absolutely love the idea of putting signs out in your front yard for an outdoor graduation party.

It’ll make it so much easier for your guests to find the right house AND it just looks really cute!

4. Graduation Party Centerpieces

How adorable is this centerpiece idea for a graduation party?

Just fill a mason jar with flowers and tie a cute grad year tag around it.

Looking for more centerpiece options? We have a full list of the best Graduation Party Centerpiece Ideas here.

Here’s what you’ll need for this DIY centerpiece idea:

Graduation Year Cutout Tags - 24Pcs
$9.99 ($0.42 / Count)


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05/14/2024 03:29 pm GMT

5. Graduation Party Photo Booth

A photo booth is a must-have for any grad party.

DIY it by setting up a backdrop (get backdrop ideas here), adding some fun props, and setting up a phone or iPad to take pictures.

6. Bug Spray and Sunscreen Station

graduation party bug spray and sunscreen station
Source: Pinterest

This is such a practical outdoor party idea!

Keep your guests comfortable by providing a bug spray and sunscreen station.

This is super easy to DIY. Just hang a bucket on a garden hook and fill it with bug spray and sunscreen.

7. Graduate Display Table

Every graduation party needs a display table filled with memorabilia from your years in school!

This is a spot to showcase sports and academic accomplishment, photos of friends and family, and other special moments in the graduate’s life.

8. School Photo Walkway

How cute is this photo walkway for an outdoor graduation party?

Display a photo from each year of the graduate’s life for guests to see as they walk up to the party.

Recreate this graduation party walkway idea:

3 Ft. Wooden Garden Stakes (25 Pack)
$33.07 ($1.32 / Count)
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03/13/2024 04:04 pm GMT

9. Giant Balloons

If you’re looking for a way to make a really big impact on a budget, add some giant balloons to your outdoor graduation party decor!

I love how chic and festive these oversized balloons look.

Just make sure you get them filled with helium or attach them to poles if you want this same look.

Recreate this outdoor graduation party decor idea:

10. “Congrads” Balloons

If you have a wall or garage facing your backyard graduation party, you can hang some cute balloons that spell out “congrads”.

Such an adorable play on words!

This would be the perfect backdrop for graduation party photos with guests!

Recreate this outdoor grad party idea:

11. Set Up A Balloon Arch

If you want to wow your guests right when they arrive, set up a balloon arch in the entryway to your backyard!

I love balloon arches for graduation parties because they’re super cheap but make a big impact. Plus, you can get them in your graduate’s school colors!

Recreate this balloon arch:

Backyard Graduation Party Games

What are some fun things to do at an outdoor graduation party? Play games of course! Here are some of the best fun outdoor games for a graduation party.

[RELATED: 15 Perfect Outdoor Graduation Party Games]

12. Bag Toss

giant jenga yard game
Source: Pinterest

One of the best outdoor party games is bag toss (or corn hole).

Everyone knows how to play it and it’s super easy to set up.

I absolutely love this colorful bag toss game from Pinterest.

You could easily DIY it with a plain bag toss set and some paint!

DIY this cute backyard grad party game:

Solid Wood Premium Cornhole Set
$127.99


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05/14/2024 04:00 pm GMT

13. Ladder Toss

One of my all-time favorite outdoor graduation party games is ladder toss.

It’s portable, super easy to set up, and fun for all ages.

Just make sure you stake the ladders into the ground or put sand bags over them! They’re super easy to tip over if you don’t.

14. Giant Jenga

Giant Jenga is another classic yard game that people love to play at graduation parties.

Be aware that the pieces are really heavy. So make sure that you don’t have small children running around while you’re playing.

15. Giant Backyard Pong

BucketBall Starter Pack
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03/13/2024 07:41 pm GMT

You’ve probably heard of beer pong, but have you heard of yard pong?

This giant version of the famous party game will be super fun for everyone at the party.

16. Giant Connect Four

I absolutely loved Connect 4 as a kid, and this giant version is perfect for backyard parties!

Plus I love how chic the black and white pieces look.

17. Croquet

If you’re going for vintage vibes at your grad party, make sure you set out a game of croquet!

It’s actually super fun, and up to 8 people can play at once.

Here’s a good croquet set for parties:

Croquet Party Set for 8 Players
$65.99
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05/14/2024 04:05 pm GMT

Outdoor Grad Party Food Ideas

People come to a graduation party expecting to be fed! Here are some of my favorite food and drink ideas for an outdoor graduation party.

[RELATED: 19 Graduation Party Dessert Ideas To Impress Your Guests]

18. Inflatable Serving Bar

outdoor graduation party inflatable food serving station
Source: Pinterest

This inflatable serving bar is a genius idea for your outdoor graduation party.

Fill it up with a variety of drinks or bowls of food and you’re good to go.

Just make sure you fill it with lots of ice if it’s going to be a hot day!

Here’s what you’ll need:

19. Outdoor Grad Party S’mores Station

If you’re planning on having a bonfire, s’mores are an obvious must-have.

But did you know that you can make s’mores even without a fire?

There are a ton of s’mores making kits on Amazon that even come with s’mores sticks.

Make your own grad party s’mores station:

20. Have a Mimosa Bar

If you’re having a daytime party, a mimosa bar would be so fun for your adult guests.

Set out champagne, different fruit juices, and some bowls of berries so people can customize their mimosas.

And make sure you have some cute disposable champagne flutes to serve them in!

Recreate this outdoor mimosa bar:

Clear Plastic Champagne Glasses, 16 Pack
$21.99 ($1.37 / Count)
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05/14/2024 04:13 pm GMT

21. Fruit And Veggie Platters

Most outdoor graduation parties happen in the summer months.

Keep your guests cool by serving chilled snacks like fresh fruit and veggies.

Tiered serving trays can help you save some space on your food table when serving items like these.

22. Elegant Drink Station

outdoor graduation party drink station
Source: Pinterest

How cute is this outdoor drink station for a grad party?

Not only does it look cute, but it’s also super functional without taking up much space.

Just bring a bar cart outside and stock it with whatever drinks you’re going to serve.

Here’s what you’ll need to recreate this look:

23. Set Out A Taco Bar

The easiest way to feed a crowd is to do a self-serve taco bar. It’s cheap, easy to prepare, and a total crowd pleaser.

Make sure to have a ton of different filling options, including something for the vegetarians!

Also, how cute is it that they served chips out of a sombrero brim? Love that idea.

Hopefully this post gave you some inspiration for how to throw the best backyard graduation party.

Looking for more grad party inspo?

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