Prom is the most exciting event in the school calendar. With hundreds of students eagerly awaiting their end-of-year celebration, prom planning can come alongside immense responsibility and pressure. While every school aims to throw a prom, unlike no other, there are a handful of proven ways that you can guarantee success. To give you a head start, we have devised seven must-haves to plan a prom to remember!
Top Tips To Plan A Prom To Remember
From tracking down a luxurious venue to choosing catering to suit the tastebuds of even the fussiest of students, there are a plethora of tasks to tackle when taking on the all-important responsibility of prom planning. The key to success is organisation, spending time to allocate tasks and being creative; all of which must begin ahead of time to avoid any last-minute panic. To start your quest, take a browse through our seven top tips!
An Organised Planning Committee
Behind every successful event is a team of hardworking, organised and talented individuals who made the vision come to life. Planning any type of event, especially the end of year prom, takes a considerable amount of preparation months before the date of the celebration. With this in mind, your first ‘must-have’ has to be a planning committee.
The perfect planning committee generally consists of around 10 to 15 people – not too little that responsibilities become too much to handle, but not so many that tasks become confusing. Your committee needs to be filled with like-minded individuals, who share the enthusiasm and motivation to throw a prom to remember. It is always recommended to appoint a ‘head of committee’ from the beginning; this will avoid clashes between those who see themselves as a leader. Once you have decided on the perfect members to fit the role, they can then begin to delegate tasks.
Start by scheduling a brainstorming meeting, where everyone has the opportunity to input their opinion, before shortlisting your favourite ideas as a group. The brainstorming meetings give you the chance to spot the strengths of each committee members, making it easier to delegate tasks. For example, those with a creating mindset would be best suited to decorating your venue. Whereas, an academic individual with excellent numeracy skills would be ideal for budget management. This leads us to our next point; your planning committee needs to devise a budget and split the money between different expenses. Be realistic and allow a little extra cash for each fee, just to be on the safe side. Don’t forget to set aside a contingency budget, which is a percentage of your budget which will be reserved for any unexpected emergencies. You can find more helpful tips on how to get your event budget planning right on Eventbrite.
A Cool Venue
The venue that you opt for can make or break how the prom unfolds, meaning it is imperative to spend time researching various different options. Your first major decision will be whether you stick to throwing the prom on-campus or hire a nearby venue. Of course, utilising space that you already have is convenient and cost-effective, but it may not bring the ‘wow factor’ that you strive for.
If you decide to go down the route of venue hire, there are a number of different considerations that you must keep a note of. Firstly, bear in mind the estimated number of prom attendees. If the school year is somewhat large, then you need to ensure that there is plenty of room for students to dine and dance. For a smaller group, on the other hand, you want to avoid a location which will make the prom look empty – it can be tricky to find the perfect balance.
Along with capacity, it is also important to consider travel time. Particularly if you are planning a year 11 prom, students are yet to have their own driving licence, which means that parents may need to provide transport. Avoid any locations which are more than half an hour from school, any longer, and it may become difficult for students to get home at the end of the evening.
Last, but most definitely not least, is the appearance of your shortlisted venues. While the right decorations can make an immense difference, it cannot transform an old, dull building into a luxurious event venue. Pay careful attention to the exterior of the building as this is where parents and loved ones will be waiting to catch the perfect snap.
If you’re stuck for venue inspiration, we suggest heading over to liveabout.com for more than ten great ideas!
Once you have chosen your venue and booked a date, its time to create a buzz around the upcoming prom. Without effective advertisement, how will students know that your plans are beginning to unfold? You must implement a host of exciting advertising techniques, which will leave students counting down the days until prom day.
First things first, you need to send out invitations to all students. Invitations must encapsulate your theme and make a statement, giving students an insight into what they can expect on the night. Thanks to the plethora of different online invitation tools now available, creating a design couldn’t be more straightforward. Canva is a fantastic tool which allows you to make custom invitations, which can either be printed or sent out digitally through email.
Other effective ways to advertise your upcoming prom include the following:
- Social Media – It is almost guaranteed that every student will have social media, so use the free resource to your advantage. Create a private Facebook page for the prom, including all information required to attend and invite students.
- Posters & Banners – As the most traditional advertising method, you cannot go wrong with placing posters and banners around the school campus. Again, these can be created online using tools such as Poster My Wall.
- Announcements – Speak to teachers to ask whether they can make prom announcements during assemblies, lessons and lectures. You may even want to consider placing invites in the main hall and gymnasium for students to pick up as they leave.
A Grand Entrance
As mentioned previously, the outside of your prom venue is the hotspot for photos. It is the prime location for loved ones to eagerly await the grand entrance of students, arriving in the outfits and transport that they have planned for months in advance. With this in mind, it is imperative to make the entrance of your venue as lavish and stylish as possible, so every student can enjoy an evening of feeling like a star!
When planning a grand entrance, a red carpet is always a must! The Events Company allow you to hire a custom-made red carpet, which can be accompanied by roped barriers and flambeaux torches for an extra touch of extravagance. If your venue is surrounded by trees or hedges, then draping delicate outdoor fairy lights over foliage would create a truly magical entrance.
When planning an event aimed at teenagers, tasty food is a must! Whether you opt for an elegant three-course meal or a relaxed buffet, it is essential to make sure that your catering fits with the dietary requirements of all students. Ensure that you have included vegetarian and vegan options, along with dishes for those with allergies and intolerances.
If your chosen venue includes catering, then it is vital to visit the location ahead of time to sample dishes. There would be nothing worse than a sudden realisation on the evening of the prom that the menu isn’t quite to scratch. It is more than likely that the venue will provide an option between a few set menus, meaning that each student’s meals must be ordered in advance. While this would work well for smaller groups, if you are planning a large-scale prom, it may become a little tedious to manage orders.
For a larger prom with more than one hundred attendees, a buffet would be the most effective catering option. In doing this, students are free to help themselves to as much or little food as they wish. You will eliminate the worry of menu planning in advance and instead, provide an array of different dishes. Recipe Tin Eats has put together a great guide to 25 super easy buffet recipe ideas for inspiration!
Every student eagerly-awaits their end-of-year prom; it is the final celebration before friendship groups part ways and begin their next chapter. Due to this, photos that can be taken home as a keepsake are so important and must be incorporated into your prom planning.
The best (and most fun) way to provide every student with a memorable photo keepsake is to hire a photobooth. Party photo booth hire comes alongside endless entertainment; students are guaranteed to be queueing up for their opportunity in front of the camera. Every component of your photo booth can be tailored to suit your prom, from the appearance of the booth to the instant printouts that students receive.
As the first company to bring the excitement of inflatable photobooths to the UK, our team specialise in party photo booth hire in Kensington and all surrounding areas. Every booth is designed with the latest, innovative technology to guarantee a truly unique experience. Not only will every group receive an instant printout, but also social media uploads accompanied by their very own hashtag.
A plethora of booth styles are available, including our brand new LED camera booth. Featuring a stylish black exterior, students enter the booth through a silver lens tunnel to reveal a luxury white interior. The booth is capable of holding up to 12 guests, making it perfect for those group prom snaps!
The Best Playlist
Once the grand entrance and meal is over and done with, its finally time to dance the night away! Make your prom just that extra special by creating a dedicated playlist that every attendee will adore. A few weeks before the date of the celebration, send an email to all students or post a note on the prom Facebook page asking for everyone to send across song requests. Once you have compiled all requests, put together a playlist of all songs, which will be used throughout the evening. This way, you can guarantee a prom that will most definitely go down a storm!
Throw The Ultimate Celebration!
Through beginning your prom preparations as early as possible, you are guaranteed a hassle-free and enjoyable planning process. Always ensure that you have a reliable, enthusiastic planning committee on board, who will help to bring your vision to life. Delegate tasks to those who are best suited to the role, so all of their efforts can be put into throwing a prom that will go down in history!