Saturday, June 13, 2009

CHS Grad Night: Ticket to Paradise

Submitted by Linda
Last night was Tommy's graduation. The actual ceremony was nice....but the highlight of our evening was the 'gradnight' celebration which CHS is famous for.
My friend Sally from school said to me earlier this week: "I can't wait to hear you tell me about Tommy's gradnight. I know you're going to enjoy every detail so much, and you're going to wish that every high school grad could have this same experience." Well, she was right.

Here we are at "Ticket to Paradise"!
For those of you who don't know, the CHS tradition is to plan an all night grad party for the students that begins with a very nice dinner for the grads and their parents. I love this concept of including the parents, and I appreciate how this tradition cultivates the notion that a graduation is not just about the student, but about their families, and for celebrating together the student's accomplishments. In the photo below, Tommy and I are dancing the "mom/son" dance.
Another aspect of the evening which I totally appreciate is the attention to detail. A huge team of volunteers works on this event for months (and years), and every detail is neatly and elaborately planned (keeping in mind, this is a party for about 900 people!) The theme is expressed throughout the evening in the decor, music, nametags, photo-ops, etc. My role was pretty simple, but literally hundreds of people helped, and many many hours are given. There are volunteers who help every year, even though their kids are grown, because they so enjoy the "magic" of the evening.

Knowing how much I enjoy the decor details...pictured below is a close up photo of the table and the lower half of the centerpiece. Notice the shells, mesh, tealights, etc.
Now here is the rest of the centerpiece, shown in the light of day (Craig was the lucky winner who got to bring it home!). My photos of it last night (in it's native setting) didn't do it justice. The mini tiki torch has a battery operated tea light in it - clever!
After the adults left at midnight, the kids changed clothes, and were bussed to Dave and Buster's for the "all-night" portion of the party, where they played and ate all night! This morning, Tommy came in around 7 am, and went straight to bed. He hasn't gotten up yet, so I haven't had a chance to debrief with him about his night. I'm hoping it was as memorable for him as it was for Craig and I.

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