5 Creative Graduation Ceremony Ideas

2020 outdoor graduation ceremony

After a year of closures, masks, and stay-at-home orders. Schools, Colleges and Universities are looking for creative outdoor graduation ceremony ideas to honor their students and families.

Even though traditional Graduation Ceremony Programs may have to be changed, we have seen some amazing pivots from educational institutions with wonderful unique graduation celebration ideas.  Listed are some things to do for a graduation ceremony.

1. Livestream/Live Feed to an Outdoor Inflatable or LED Screen Rental

Limits to indoor venue capacity can leave many family members at home.
By using an Outdoor screen showing the live feed, you can fill your parking lot or field with additional guests.

If your Graduation Ceremony Program runs during daylight hours, use an ultra-bright LED trailer or an LED wall. At night, go bigger with massive inflatable popup movie screens and HD projection.

You can choose either a drive-in style or socially distanced seating for your guests depending on the latest recommendation from your school, district or county.

What’s the different between a Live feed and a LiveStream for your Graduation Ceremony Program?

Live Streaming allows guests to attend online, in other words its a virtual graduation ceremony!

Live feed directly connects to an indoor ceremony and does not necessarily rely on an internet connection.

2. Outdoor Graduation Ceremony “Drive-in”

A highly popular and creative graduation ceremony idea has been the “drive-in” style outdoor graduation ceremony, a.k.a. the Ceremony Cinema. Guests relax and stay safely in their cars while watching the ceremony, and some entertainment before & after.

A stage is setup outside in a parking lot or field and the graduation ceremony proceeds as usual.

Audio can be heard over guest car speakers using their radio utilizing an FM transmitter.
A major advantage of a drive-in graduation ceremony is that guests can stay “safely” in their bubble (in their car).

With using a screen, you can also add multimedia aspects & entertainment to your graduation ceremony, which may include:

  • Prerecorded messages
  • Sports highlights
  • Musical performances

At most large graduations, the graduates can look like a small spec in a sea of people. Using large screens and a videography team you get to see the graduate as they process across the stage and receive their diplomas. These screens are 40 feet wide or larger.

For a spectacular graduation with views from all angles, we recommend placing a screen on either side of the stage.

If during the day, LED screens would need to be used, these could be panels or the easy to setup LED trailer that can be driven into place.
Daytime Outside Graduation

Some schools are looking at seated Graduation Ceremony outdoors. These allow a safer setup than a traditional indoor event. With possible additional spacing restrictions, you may wish to show the ceremony on more than one screen. To allow this further spacing, multiple screens can be linked to show the ceremony.

For daytime events LED is the only option.

3. Unique Graduation Ceremony Idea: Celebration Events

Another unique graduation ceremony idea for all to enjoy is a multimedia show on the big screen!

This Graduation Ceremony Idea can Include:

  • Band Music
  • Sports Highlights
  • Photo montage
  • Messages from family
  • Local sponsors that can make funding the event possible.

This could be a drive-in movie or a traditional outdoor screening event, both are great Graduation Ceremony Ideas.

4. Diploma Drive-thru for a Graduation Day Ceremony

Another fun thing to do for a graduation day ceremony is to highlight each student in a fun way as they “drive thru”.
Each student’s family drives up to receive their diploma.

Once they have the diploma, they drive past the DJ who gives them a big shout out as they pass. On the screen images of the student or school logos are displayed and staff cheer them on. This is a wonderful option for a high school graduation ceremony.  If you are wondering about places to have a graduation ceremony – use your high school parking lot!

As students stay in their car for the complete ceremony, all social distancing guidelines can be adhered to.
Be sure to decorate the car!

Visit Paul the Outdoor Movie Guy on YouTube.

5. Case Studies using Large screens for Outdoor Graduation Programs

Turlock Christian School

At Turlock Christian school, we set up a huge 40×22 viewable screen to watch an outdoor graduation.

The HUGE AIRSCREEN was setup next to the stage. Chairs for the graduates were spaced 12 feet apart. This was a full graduation ceremony with speeches. 2 cameras and multiple multimedia presentations from a laptop were displayed on the screen. Guests at the drive-in graduation could see everything as the graduation unfolded.

Messages to students, musical performances and music made this an event they will never forget.
As each student crossed the stage, horns honked, lights flashed, and families cheered.

Leadership San Leandro Small Car Graduation

Using one of our smaller screen’s leadership San Leandro was able to hold a small drive-in graduation. Families and loved ones sat in their cars with their graduates and enjoyed the evening. Class speakers took to the stage. This group of future community leaders finished the night with a video made by the class about racial equality in a wonderful multimedia presentation.

Due to the limited group size allowed, the graduation was live streamed to Facebook for family members that could not make it in person.

A High School Graduation Ceremony in Tracy, CA

Cars processed past a live DJ that highlighted each student, cars then made their way into the parking lot for a multimedia presentation on a massive screen.

A combination of music, video and messages from teachers made for an amazing grad night for the seniors.

How to Run a Graduation Ceremony – connect with FunFlicks®

Wondering how to run a graduation ceremony?  For standard events, we provide client with the ability to connect via HDMI to our system. In our more advanced packages, our video switch allows multiple video sources to connect and seamlessly switch, integrating live video and prerecorded content. Depending on event needs we can help you create custom packages for your school.

All of this is played into cars using radios and an FM transmitter or to a crowd using speakers. Some events are moving to a hybrid with a mixture of FM and speakers.

A Graduation Day Ceremony, if in the daytime, needs an LED screen

Is your graduation day ceremony during the light of day? LED is the way to go. These bright screens are viewable in daylight hours. Most convenient for most events are LED trailers. These can be driven into place and powered up in a matter of minutes, helping you to keep to your schedule.

Whether you are livestreaming or providing a live feed to these bright LED screens or our huge inflatable screens, using these cool technologies you can make your Graduation Ceremony Program amazing.

They will talk about this experience for years to come!

Event Rentals for Your Graduation Ceremony

FunFlicks® Inflatable Movie Screen Rentals

Inflatable movie screen rental drive-in

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FunFlicks® LED Screen Rentals

LED screen rental event among palm trees

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