10 Team Mom Tips for Senior Night

If you are the Team Mom for a high school varsity sport, quite possibly the most important event you’ll ever plan will be Senior night. As important to the parents as it is the kids, Senior night is a truly unique event that deserves thoughtful planning and your best execution yet.

Senior night is your opportunity to give parents and players a truly special time that helps everyone celebrate and gently move on. Here's my tips for you!

As a parent of a Senior athlete, you are closing a chapter in your child’s life and with it, your involvement in helping them reach their goals. And as a student athlete, your senior year can be very emotional because this is likely the last season you’ll ever play for a sport you have been dedicated to and loved for as long as you can remember.  At the same time, for some of of your teammates, it just may be their worst season ever. And this only makes these fleeting days on the field that much more bittersweet.

I can’t imagine navigating these seasons without my planner in hand.  If you are looking for the perfect printable planner that you can customize to your organized heart’s delight, be sure to check out our 2015-2016 GO MOM!® DIY Planner.

So in the midst of all that emotion, it’s go time for the Team Mom or Junior parent who has volunteered to plan Senior night.  It’s your opportunity to give those parents and players a truly special, come full circle kind of night where its all good, helping everyone celebrate and gently move on. So here are my tips to get you pointed in the right direction!

Pick a Senior night date with the coach’s blessing.

Senior night usually happens on the last home game of the season so you need to reach out to the coach well in advance to make sure that is the case. Once confirmed you can give families an early heads up so they can plan to attend in full force.

If you feel like you simply aren’t ready for the graduation process, that you honestly don’t know how you can possibly let them go; I can totally relate.

Ask about any special Senior night traditions.

Make sure you ask about anything special that the coach will expect to see happen.  Often times there are team traditions that happen each and every year so it’s important as the junior parent coordinator that you find out what these are and include them this year too.  This is your bare minimum for the basics.  Don’t be afraid to make suggestions to the coach based on experiences you may have with other sports that would work well.

Share expenses with Junior families and Booster Club.

Because this is usually hosted by junior parents, there are expenses to share and you shouldn’t hesitate to make sure everyone donates. Some years there can be a lot of kids to support but if you plan wisely, it will rarely cost you more than $20 per player.  As the parent of high school athletes, I have no trouble doing this to make sure that when it’s my child’s turn to be recognized as a senior, it will be just as special as it can be.  You can also consult your Booster Club to see if they make provision for Senior night and end of the year expenses too.

If you’ve got high school juniors or seniors, check out A Mom’s Guide to Senior Year for a road map to carry you through all these incredible milestones.

Make a program.

The key here is to get those names spelled correctly and the player’s corresponding number noted as well.  You might also include some other traditional notations such as most meaningful experience on the team. You also want to note where the athletes will be going to college regardless if they are pursing collegiate athletics.  Hearing their plans for the future is very exciting to all who attend.

Arrange for flowers for the moms.

Its so important to help the athletes also support their parents.  Having corsages for the athletes to present their moms is a very special touch for everyone involved.  You can do this in the school colors and include something that personalizes them for each mom such as the player’s picture or a brad with the player’s number.  It’s the best flower she’ll every receive! You can also give potted plants with school colors adorning the pot and a special message just for Mom.

Don’t forget to stop by our Team Mom Tips Pinterest Board for our favorite finds from around the web. SO many great ideas, so little time!

Plan to serve cupcakes.

Its not a party until somebody brings a cake or cupcakes.  Because this is the last time this will happen at school, make sure they are as full of team spirit as you can possibly include and plan ahead for these to be brought to the event.  Be sure to assign paper goods, drinks, a serving table, and anything else you might need to set a nice hostess table for this kind of treat.  Remember, you’ll be court or field side and you’ll have to bring whatever you need.

Create personalized player gift bags.

This can be hard to control the cost but its always fun.  Think candy, something in their college colors, something specific to their sport like sunscreen and a can of tennis balls, and a gift card for college shopping.  Getting them an Amazon.com card is an easy choice because it let’s the player choose exactly what he or she wants from the largest online retailer in the world! Having player gift bags is the same kind of special gesture you are making for the Moms ~ it doesn’t have to be huge but the more personalized the better.

Arrange for a volunteer photographer.

Because the parents will be involved in player introductions, they won’t be able to take pictures. If there is an underclassman parent who already takes tons of great pictures, enlist their help to do the same on this very special night, not only for the ceremony but throughout the game or match too. Then post those pictures on the team Facebook group for everyone to enjoy and download as they choose. If the team photographer happens to be you and its time for an upgrade, I’ve been thrilled with my Canon T3I but have my eye on the new T5 on Amazon. Once you fall in love with your DSLR, you’ll never look back!

Have a banner announcing the event.

Whether its a banner or sign hanging on the back stop at the ball field or styrofoam cups stuck in the fence on at the tennis courts, you want to have something that makes it clear you are celebrating the seniors.  Often these are ordered within the first few games and on display all season long so that at every home game, the senior banners are proudly displayed. If that’s not the case at your player’s high school, be sure to research the banners early enough for production and delivery so you don’t cut it too close to this very special night.

Be sure to check out this Graduation Pinterest Board for all my favorite Senior year finds.

Introduce parents and players.

Typically done during a ceremony of sorts prior to the sporting event beginning, this is a very special time to recognize the players and their parents to the entire crowd. Make sure the announcer reads the player statements from the program and that the Coach steps onto the field to say a few words as well.

So those are my tips for team moms and junior parents to plan a wonderful senior night for your varsity athletes this year. Tell me…

What are your best tips for a memorable Senior night?                                                                                                                                                           

If you are looking for key items for your Senior Night, Amazon is a great place to start. A few of my favorites…

If you are looking for the perfect printable planner that you can customize to your organized heart's delight, be sure to check out our 2016-2017 GO MOM!® DIY Planner.

Thanks so much for stopping by to talk sports and team mom tips! Here are a bunch more team mom tips and tricks for you.

Disclosure:  This post includes images with links to products on Amazon.com. GO MOM!® Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees.

Posted in Recent posts, Sports


  • Stumps Party April 13, 2015, 3:22 pm

    Great tips! We have a great selection of party supplies that are sure to make Senior Night memorable, including a variety of items that you can personalize with your stars name and picture! Check them out here: http://www.stumpsparty.com/event-supplies/school-spirit-items/47339

  • martha May 4, 2015, 11:29 pm

    Being the step mom of a daughter who lives with us full time let me share the perspective of how stressful it is for a child who feels conflicted about what to do for senior night. The mom is recognized who has done little or nothing to help the athlete but yet is there to receive the flowers and the honor. The child feels guilty to not ask the non custodial parent. the other bio parent is extremely uncomfortable, and the step parent who has been there through it all has to sit painfully in the stands to watch the entire awkward moment. Let’s make senior night about the athlete not the families. Recognize the kids and at the end have all the important people in their lives stand up in the bleachers. No child wants to be different and have three parents out there, especially if all the other team mates have only two parents. This happens much more than people realize, please spare the senior the agony so that it can truly be a special night for them.

    • Charlie October 18, 2016, 11:46 pm

      My son called me about Senior Night (I am the non-custodial parent). He told me that he has already told his mother’s husband that he can walk on the field with us and wanted to know if I was ‘ok’ with that.

      I told him initially that I was. I thought about it and called him back and asked him if he wanted me to not be ‘ok’ with it, then I wouldn’t be, so that way if he didn’t really want him there then I would be the bad guy. That said, I wanted him to understand that it I felt that is was HIS night, not mine, and if he wanted me to be ‘ok’ with it, I would do that as well.

      I told him that, as his father, I only had two major concerns: that he was safe and that he was happy, but that if he wasn’t safe, I didn’t care if he was happy – his safety comes before his happiness.

      Speaking as the non-custodial parent, I most definitely not ‘ok’ with it. His mother has done everything she can to alienate the children from me, denied me information with respect to the safety and welfare of my children, loaded them up with extra-curriculars to make visitation nearly impossible, even encouraging my children to consider taking his last name.

      No, I’m not ‘ok’ with it. But for my child, I will tolerate his presence.

      He isn’t bad guy, but he will never be their father.

    • Colorado mom October 21, 2016, 2:00 pm

      love how you think! Tonight is senior night at my sons football game. It has took my entire family to raise & get him where he is not just me. If he had his choice he would take his grandma, aunts, uncles on field as well but it just for parents. Wish I had read this weeks ago to suggest it

  • Divamom November 3, 2015, 5:54 am

    Thanks, Martha! I agree with you. I am currently dealing with a similar situation. I’m so in my feelings right now, and more than likely wont even go to my son’s senior night since his deadbeat dad has decided to show up. My child’s biological father has done absolutely nothing for my son in his entire 18 years of life. He doesn’t support him financially, academically, emotionally … Nothing! In fact, the only time he shows up is for the athletic awards programs and photographic moments. I guess it’s just in case my son goes pro?!? Anyhow, He now has the nerve to say he is going to catch a flight to show up for senior night. Why? Why spend $600 on a plane ticket when you claim you are too broke to even give my son a dime to help cover ACT and SAT costs, lunch, senior trip, etc? He doesn’t even help with uniforms, tuition, or even school supplies?!?! His step-dad and I do it all! Actually, I did it all by myself, happily sacrificing and working multiple jobs (with my parent’s support) for 16 of those years! I’m sorry, but I can’t stand on that field next to that deadbeat! My husband and I, and even my parents, should have the pleasure of celebrating this accomplishment with our son. We have shown ourselves to be his family, his support system. We shouldn’t have to share it with a person who only shows up for the limelight and press opportunities

    • Lynette January 14, 2016, 2:32 am

      I meant my post to be a response to you divamom.

  • Lynette January 14, 2016, 2:29 am

    Divamom, How can you say you agree with Martha and then make it all about you and your feelings? It’s about your son not you! That’s what Martha’s point was. In this day and age there are so many people in the same situation that will see & know (including myself) without any explanation or fit from you. It’s just one more selfless thing we do for our kids. Be the bigger person. Throwing a hissy fit will only portray you in a negative light and put your son in the middle. Some day you will see that all you did did not go unnoticed by your son. It took my stepdaughter 15 years to acknowledge the part that I played in her life….not only did she thank me, she even apologized!

    • Sportsmom October 17, 2016, 11:44 am

      I agree Lynette.. it’s about the kid not the deadbeat.. don’t disappoint your kid because of your bitter feelings toward his father.. years from now when your son has a child of his own and it comes time for his or her senior night maybe the only thing your son will remember about his senior night was how crappy it was because his mom wasn’t there..

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