Pre-Prom Dinner Party

Have fun, create memories, and save money with a dinner party at home before the teens leave for the prom.

By FamilyTime


If your teen and his or her friends decide to throw themselves a very special, pre-prom dinner party, you are in for a great time!

As the parent, schedule a planning meeting with the teens. Decide what your role will be, if other parents will be involved, and how much the kids realistically can take on.

For fun, Dad can dress and play the part of waiter. Younger siblings can be paid or bartered with for waiting tables or cleanup. But overall, the prom-goers will do most of the work.

Your job is to organize the event and help them pull it off.

Write a master plan for when each teen will help. Chores range from pre-party cleaning, grocery shopping and food preparation to after-dinner clean-up. Have the teens make a budget for food and decorations.

Memory Makers
Center activities of this pre-prom event around creating memories.  

Create simple memory/autograph books with folded 8 ½-by-11-inch paper. Punch holes in the fold and tie the pages together with school-colored ribbons. Fill the books with autographs at the pre-prom party as well as the larger prom event.

Put a digital camera or two on the tables to record the event. You can download the photos and send them to cell phones or computers before the evening's end. Or, if you have the capability, you can print photos to place in memory books or on photo mats before the prom.

Record dinner and pre-prom party activities with a video camera and, if budget allows, plan to give a copy to each celebrant.

The kids can set up a playlist for an iPod to play during the event, or play a CD that one of the kids has burned with special tunes. Make copies of the burned CD to give as party favors.

Party Decorations
School colors rule! Bargain-basement white sheets are good tablecloths and great backgrounds for school pom-poms and colored curly ribbons. Use school yearbooks, trophies, and special event photos grouped in the center of the tables as centerpieces.

Roll napkins around silverware and tie the bundles with ribbons in school colors. Light the dining area with twinkle lights and candles.

Create a special area in the house or backyard for taking couple and group posed photos. One of the teens can have the job of creating an entire photo album later.

Make our Chocolate Truffles Topiary for a centerpiece. This doubles as a sweet ending to the meal. Use school colors for the ribbons and fill the base with school-colored candies for a colorful alternative to the fresh fruit.

Put a tuxedo bib at each place setting. Make them out of lobster bibs or inexpensive cloth and decorate each one with markers or stickers. The idea is that everyone gets a goofy bib to ensure the prom clothes are spotless when the teens leave for the bigger event.

Time- Savers for Teen Hosts
Short on time? Consider these purchase-power options. Even when you buy prepared foods, the meal will be less expensive than dining out.

Serve deli veggies and purchased dip. Pick up bread from a bakery, bread store, or supermarket. Buy a dessert from a bakery, deli, or supermarket.

Your teens will look back on their self-hosted dinner party with as much fondness as the prom itself.