Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Why Have A Grad Night Celebration?
    • Everyone Benefits From Grad Night!
  • Getting Started
    • The Most Important Element: The Parents
    • Grad Night Organization
    • Records
    • Sponsorship and Endorsement
    • School Support
    • Themes and Activities
    • After the Celebration
  • Insurance and Licensing
    • Grad Night Liability Insurance is a Must!
    • Grad Night Directors and Officers (D&O) Insurance
    • Vendor Liability Insurance is Mandatory!
    • Reduce Your Liability Exposure: Think Safety
    • Licenses
  • Grad Night Organization
    • Executive Committee
    • Checking Accounts and Tax Donations
    • Taxes
    • Grad Night Income Taxes
    • Applying For Status As A Nonprofit Corporation
  • Grad Night Facility
    • Alternative Facilities
  • PTA/Grad Night Committee Relationship
    • PTA Questions and Answers:
    • Summary
  • Grad Night Policies & Procedures
    • Decisions...Decisions...Decisions!
    • Summary
  • Volunteers
  • Food
  • Working With Vendors
    • Prior To The Event
    • The Big Night
    • Grad Night Is Over But The Work Isn't
  • Entertainment & Games
    • Goals & Considerations
    • Successful Grad Night Activities
    • Interactive Games
    • Contests
    • Athletic Activities
    • Beauty Related Activites
    • Special Memories Activities
    • Special Ideas For Entertainment
    • Personalized Activities
    • Home Built Games
  • Security
    • Getting Started
    • Security for the Outside Areas
    • Getting Help From Law Enforcement Officials
    • Helpful Hints
    • Training For Security Staff
    • Check-In Procedures For the Graduates
    • Check-In For the Volunteers
    • Control Center
  • Decorations
    • Getting Started
    • Site Specific Planning
    • Fire Department Guidelines For Grad Nights
  • Fundraising
    • The Budget
    • Sample Budget
    • Setting the Ticket Price
    • Fundraising
    • Fund-Raisers
    • Writing Donation Request and Thank You Letters
  • Prizes
    • Incentive Prizes, Prior to Grad Night
    • Game and Contest Prizes
    • Door Prizes and Grand Prizes
    • Random Prizes
    • Grad Night Favors
    • Obtaining Prizes
    • Establish Prize Rules
    • Thoughts and Considerations
  • Publicity
    • Suggestions For Publicity
    • Promoting Your Event Through The Media
    • Tips For Dealing With the Press
    • How To Answer A Favorite Question Repeatedly Asked By the Press:
    • Press Releases
    • Promoting to Parents
  • Entrance Tickets
    • Tickets Add Value to the Event
    • Graduate Identification Verification
    • Theme Related Ticket and Passport Ideas
  • Construction
    • Layout and Design
    • Construction Basics
    • Electrical
  • Break Down, Clean Up, and Storage
    • Considerations
  • Working With An Event Planner
  • Working With A Travel Planner


Volunteers are a very important part of the Grad Night process. It is true that a small group of volunteers can do everything that is needed to make this event happen, but having lots of volunteers makes it easier, more fun, and more successful.

See Chapter 3, 5 Recruit the Team, and click here for a Sample Parent Recruiting Letter.

Proven Ways to Recruit Volunteers

  • Notice in school newsletter.
  • Letter mailed directly to the parents of senior class members.
  • Local newspaper articles.
  • Phone calls by committee chairpersons to parents.
  • Phone calls by volunteer coordinator.
  • Sign-up tables at back-to-school nights, football games, and other school or PTA functions.
  • Personal conversations at school athletic events.
  • Letters to community service clubs and organizations.
  • Letters or phone calls to ministers and rabbis in community requesting information to be placed in their newsletter.

The volunteer chairperson needs to know the requirements of all of Grad Night committees. When someone volunteers to "help wherever needed," the coordinator needs to be able to tell him or her where they will be working.

The Golden Rule for Volunteers

"If someone volunteers, find something for them to do!!"

Nothing makes people more unhappy than to be begged to volunteer and then never hearing from anyone after they offer to help.

Remember: The more parents of senior graduates you have involved on your committees, the more graduates you will have at your celebration.

Problems Finding Volunteers?

  • Get "key" parents involved and have them get other parents involved.
  • Use existing school support groups such as the PTA and school booster groups.
  • Solicit help from community organizations such as civic groups, church groups, city council, city or county substance abuse groups (DARE, Just Say No, and MADD) Police, Sheriff, and Fire Departments, and the Chamber of Commerce.
  • Solicit help for community service clubs such as Kiwanis, Rotary, Lions, Elks, and Native Sons.
  • Solicit help from the School administration, faculty and staff.
  • Use school alumni organizations.

Consider "Grad Bucks" to Incentivize Parents

Parents earn credit for each hour volunteered, payable in Grad Bucks only their graduating Senior can spend on the night of their event. Grad Bucks can be earned by parents beginning with the first year their student enrolls in High School, so as many as four years' volunteer hours may be accrued--making for a very popular graduate during the party!