Lon Horwedel / The Ann Arbor News
For graduates' families, it's party-time Throwing a graduation party for family and friends is now as much of a tradition as listening to graduation ceremony speeches. Read the story
A journalist from the Ann Arbor News Paper contacted my husband on Friday and asked if he could interview him regarding our son's graduation party. He fold David Jesse (The reporter)that his wife (Me) put the party together, he told him he could contact me with any question he had. He called me Friday while I was at my house cleaning job and interviewed me. He then asked if he could send a photographer from the Newspaper out to take pictures of the Graduation party. This is the picture and the article they wrote. It was on the front page of the newspaper today. I'll post pictures the graduation party and graduation as soon as I get new batteries for my camera.
Caps, gowns and cold cuts Parents prep for graduation parties
Monday, June 04, 2007
BY DAVID JESSE
News Staff Reporter
Every day last week, Lori Householder found herself doing some task related to her son's graduation open house.
There were pictures to be pulled out, meat trays to be filled and cookies to be baked.
But that's over now for Householder. The 400 guests have gone, and it's her turn to head out to parties.
Householder, a Milan resident, is among thousands of parents and students across the area spending the next three weeks in a blaze of party-going and party-hosting.
Throwing a graduation party for family and friends is now as much a tradition as listening to speech after speech in graduation ceremonies.
While the parties can range from the simple - some cold cuts and cake - to the elaborate - a catered affair with a band, pool rental and a bonfire - they're all about celebrating a milestone.
"It's a lot of work to get here,'' said Ted Mosley, whose son is graduating from Pioneer High School. "This is a chance to celebrate his accomplishment.''
It can also be a jumble of emotions, said Julaine Leduc, whose son, Zachary, graduates this year from Pioneer High School.
"Everyone's excited about ending high school, but sad about having to leave some of their friends. Even for parents, it can be hard to let your kids go,'' Leduc said.
"We just have to remember it's a celebration of the kids and their next steps.''
No matter how big the party is, parents are going to end up shelling out some big dollars. Prices can range from a couple of hundred dollars to several thousand, depending on how many people are invited and what gets served.
About 400 people were invited to Householder's party at Calvary Bible Church, where her family are members, to celebrate her son Aaron's graduation from Milan High School. She served cold cuts, cheeses, salads, cookies and barbecue pork sandwiches in the church's chapel, which is free for church members to use. The Householder family expected to spend around $1,000.
Judy Burt hasn't figured out how much the party she's throwing for daughter Kristin, a Pioneer graduate, will cost, but she's guessing around $500 for the outdoor, casual get-together Kristin wants.
"I don't think people talk about (price),'' Burt said. "They do what they can and enjoy in the celebration.''
Other parents use combined parties to save money and to cut down on the number of parties their friends have to go to on one day.
Huron High School graduates and stepsisters Melissa Heatlie and Christine Migda are sharing a party. The roughly $300 cost for the event is being split by the girls' three families.
Mary English's son and two of his friends are working together to hold a bigger party. They are using English's backyard for a mid-afternoon party that will stretch into the nighttime with a bonfire.
"We figured we could get more bang for our buck if we combined forces,'' English said. "Plus, the kids all have pretty much the same group of friends. Why should everyone drive all over town when they could just come to the same place and see everybody and be much more relaxed?
"And that's what (the kids) wanted.''
Going with what the graduates want is the way to go, Burt said.
"Let your child plan it and help them with it as asked.''
Planning for the big day can involve everything from the menu to when it's held.
Householder's party on Saturday was early in the season, one day before Aaron's graduation from Milan High School.
Mosley's son's party is set for this Saturday - prime party time in Ann Arbor because Community High's graduation is Tuesday, Pioneer High's is Wednesday and Huron's is Thursday.
"We're just planning to have some people just drop in and have to leave for the next one,'' Mosley said. "That's OK. Our family will be here the whole time.''
Leduc, an event planner for the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, said planning an open house is much different from planning an event for work.
"I'm not sure how many people are going to show up (at the open house),'' she said. "The kids put it out on Facebook. We could have 150, or we could have 50.''
She's trying something unique for serving whomever shows up - she's hiring a hot dog cart to come to her backyard.
She called the tent rental place in March to make sure she got one for her party. "They said they had already started to get calls back then about them,'' she said. "That's my advice for parents - book the tent early.''
David Jesse can be reached
or at 734-994-6937.