Making Memories

So you want to have a party? Whether you are planning a party for 20 or 200, you want it to be perfect – Great food, upbeat music, a fun vibe and beautiful setting! Staying organized and knowing where to turn for help are the two easiest ways of pulling off a memorable event.

Listing your main goals for the party will help prioritize your details, knowing what you want to accomplish with your party will help you know where to start.

A small tip in your beginning your planning process – keep your budget handy!

1. Choose a date – If you have a particular date in mind start with booking your venue because many venues book up more than a year in advance. If you are set on a particular venue you may have to adjust the date, another reason to book early on in your planning.

Stylish placecards can even be themed

2. Create a guest list – you will probably adjust this a few times, so abstain from telling people about the party, you don’t want to feel obligated to extend an invite or offend anyone if an invite is not received.

3. Order invitations – do you need response cards? Most invitations take a few weeks for to arrive – plus you’ll need time to review the proofs and make any necessary edits. Most people send out invitations 6-8 weeks in advance. For a large party, such as a wedding, consider a save the date invitation up to a year in advance.

Photo by: RedBox Pictures

4. Food and Drink – Casual or Elegant – sit down is more formal, buffets are great and people tend to move around more. Will there be catered hor d’orves Meet with your top 3 catering companies, who will consider your budget and come up with a plan to meet your needs and desires. (and the taste testing is always a bonus!) Standout and serve a signature drink for adult guests and virgin version for kids.

And don’t forget dessert. Today we are able to easily find decadent, extravagant cakes and cupcakes (think Cake Boss). Many local bakeries are happy to offer tastings and show you their portfolios of designs. A memorable cake can be the talk of the party.

5. Entertainment – Band, DJ or both? The music can make the party, so make sure you have appropriate music for the style of your event, but also something that expresses your individual style. Ask friends for recommendations, lend an ear at local live music happenings, or look for mp3 samples of local bands online.

Flowers work for every occassion

6. Decorations – A themed party can be made extra fun and memorable with the right décor. For example, if the theme is football, the centerpieces can be jerseys and the table cards can be shaped as footballs, with buffet tables lined with faux-grass to reflect the field. Get creative and paint lines and personalized end-zones as well. No theme – that’s OK – just pick your favorite colors and coordinate the décor using flowers, balloons, colored tablecloths and other stylish finds.

7. Making Memories – Your pictures and videos are the one tangible outcome of your day, these are important for you! Make sure to visit a reputable photographer and review their work. Choose from a variety of printed photos, such as an album, or purchase digital files to share and preserve your photos forever.

8. Feel pressed for time? Consider a party planner or event manager, they can organize all the details, come up with fun ideas AND give you piece of mind-a big time advantage when you’re in a time crunch. Also, utilize the technology at your fingertips-the Internet. There are so many wonderful and helpful sites out there, such as Bucks and Main Line Bar Mitzvahs.


Planning an extravagant event, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, or other milestone in life? Turn to and for all your planning needs. These easy to navigate websites list all the area’s greatest venues, photographers, entertainment companies, and much more!

Photo Credit: Pictures by Todd


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