Graduations are exciting times of remembrance, celebration and looking to the future. Whether you are celebrating by inviting loved ones to a party, the ceremony itself or both, deciding on the wording for your invitations is an important part of the celebration planning. Invitations need to communicate clearly the type of celebration that is planned for the graduate so guests can plan accordingly.
Graduation Ceremony Invitations
Sometimes graduates would like to invite guests to attend the actual ceremony but will not be having a party to celebrate the graduation. Graduation invitations in this situation should be clearly worded so that guests understand they are being asked to attend just a ceremony. Make it obvious that there will not be a party and give a reason if possible. Most people like to give gifts to the graduate, and they will need to know there will not be a party so gifts can be given at the ceremony.
Some possibilities include: "You are cordially invited to join in the celebration of our son, James Archer, at his graduation ceremony on June 12 at 3:00pm. We are proud to announce that our son has joined the Marines and will leave for boot camp on June 15." Or "You are invited to attend the graduation ceremony of our daughter, Addison Paige, at South High School on May 28. Addy will be leaving immediately for a summer internship at her college, and we will not have time for a graduation party."
Graduation Party Invitations
Another situation that often arises is that graduates are only allowed to invite a small number of guests to graduation---sometimes as few as two people. In these cases, it is important to make sure the invitations state that there will be a party for everyone to attend, but there are not enough seats for everyone to attend the ceremony.
Some ways to do this are: "Our daughter finished high school! Come celebrate with us on June 3 at our house at noon. We will have photos from her ceremony on display at the party. Looking forward to seeing you there!" and "We are proud to announce that Gavin Lucas graduated from high school on June 19. Come celebrate his occasion and help us give him a huge send-off to college with a celebration on August 10."
Graduation Ceremony and Party Combined Invitation
Another option is sending one invitation for both the ceremony and the party. The party might be the same day as the graduation or it may be a different day entirely. If guests need to RSVP for one or both events, make that obvious in the invitation wording.
Some ideas include: "Kaley Mae is graduating! Join us for her ceremony at Emmanuel Lutheran High on May 15 at 4:00pm. Graduation party to follow at our house at 7:00pm or whenever the ceremony concludes. Tickets are needed for the graduation ceremony so please let us know if you will be attending by May 1." Or "Cooper Ryan is celebrating the end of high school with a graduation ceremony on June 1. Please join us for the ceremony at noon with a celebration party to follow immediately on the school grounds."
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