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Theme for a Graduation Open House Luncheon

"Hitch Your Wagon to a Star" Graduation Theme


Graduation is a momentous accomplishment at any level. It signifies the completion of one stage in life and the readiness to move forward. As such, a special graduation party is in order. Celebrate your graduating star with a party theme based on the inspirational quotation from Ralph Waldo Emerson: "Hitch Your Wagon to a Star."

If you're expecting a parade of people to attend your graduation party, an open house buffet luncheon may be your best choice. Plan food that can be prepared in advance and simply refreshed on the buffet table as the applauding hoards pass through your home. Consider the age of your child's classmates and make sure some of the food will appeal to them as well as the adults. And finally, keep everything subtle enough not to draw attention away from the star of the day.

Setting the Stage

Send out your invitations on cards with a star theme or on cards cut out in the shape of stars.

Fill a variety of wagons with potted flowers as decorations around your party seating area. Child size wagons will do just fine, but so will any kind of farm cart.

Create sprays of metallic stars on long wire stems to stick into a pot in each wagon. The easiest way to create the stars would be to cut them out from sheets of aluminum foil and attach them to floral wire.

Sprinkle star confetti on all of your tables.

Purchase star design paper goods.

Hang foil-covered, star cutouts from your trees (if outside), or from your ceiling indoors.

If your child is young enough to be pleased and not embarrassed by this, create several large star cutouts and place a picture of your child in the center. Hang one on your front door, and place others at strategic locations, such as, suspended above the buffet table.


  • Announce the specific beginning and ending hours of hot food availability on your invitations, even if the open house will be all day.
  • If serving outside, set up several stations with food spread around your yard. That will keep your guests circulating and avoid a long line at a single buffet table.
  • Plan for a way to keep your cold food cold and hot food hot. You don't want your guests to leave the party with food poisoning.
  • Make sure you have purchased or made enough ice to last throughout the party.
  • If you will be hosting a high school graduation party, tell your child in advance your policy with regard to serving alcohol to his friends. Anticipate the weather and rent a tent if you expect more guests than your house can hold if it rains.

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