Gator fans flocked to Temple Sinai to cheer on Jordan, son of Alex and Mike, as he became a bar mitzvah.
Nearly 200 guests came from metro Atlanta and across the U.S. to see Jordan lead the congregation in prayer. Dad Mike said, “It was wonderful to see him lead the service. We were very proud.”
Following a Kiddush luncheon, the college football-themed evening celebration took place at Le Meridien Atlanta Perimeter. Attendees were virtually transported to “The Swamp”, University of Florida’s football stadium, with décor elements created by Let’s Celebrate and Jordan’s family. Centerpieces featured decorative holders of stadium section signs as table numbers and high-flying Gator- colored balloons (orange and blue). Lighted Gators signs flashed on the walls and a giant backlit banner of stadium images ran the width of one side of the ballroom to create a dramatic focal point and underscore the theme.
Following a grand entrance by the family, DJ Tod kept the party flowing and the energy high with music the family requested, at a volume that still allowed for conversation. Jordan and his mom Alex shared a choreographed mother-son dance set to a mash-up of songs, and games, line dances and popular tunes kept the kids on the dance floor all night.
“Jordan was smiling the whole time,” said Mike. “It was thrilling to see him have such a great time with family and friends, and really enjoy the moment!”
To carry through the Gators theme, Jordan’s invitation by EventPrints featured the official Gators colors, and guests posed at the Button-it-Up green screen with custom Gator backdrops and football props. During the party, green screen images were uploaded to a large LED screen in the ballroom so everyone could see the fun poses in real time.
Jordan gave a brief speech sharing his feeling about the big day and his gratitude for all the guests, and the family screened a montage of Jordan’s first 13 years, created by Mike. Tervis Tumblers bearing Jordan’s logo in Gator script (designed by EventPrints) made for a fitting party favor.
The food, catered by Le Meridien, included inventive choices for kids and adults, and special attention was paid to making dishes safe for allergic guests.
“Sometimes guests attend functions where they can’t eat anything if they have a severe allergy to a common ingredient,” explained Mike. “When we expressed that we needed to be careful of a tree nut allergy, Le Meridien made the whole menu tree nut-free, which was truly appreciated.”
Adults enjoyed passed nibbles including sriracha turkey meatballs, tuna tartar with avocado mousse and dined on entrees of salmon and chicken. Kids ate chicken fingers, waffle fries and pasta. For dessert, guests enjoyed a sundae bar and miniature pound cakes and cheesecakes with fresh fruit.
To keep everything running smoothly, the family used day-of planner Marci Miller. “She helped to coordinate a lot of last-minute stuff so we could just enjoy our guests,” said Mike.
Out of-town guests appreciated having the celebration at Le Meridien, where they could also stay, and enjoyed the hospitality suite throughout the weekend, which was kept stocked with snacks and drinks from Costco. For All Occasions catered a delicious brunch at the family’s home before guests headed to the airport.
How did Atlanta Party Connection help your planning process?
“Attending EXPO is invaluable! We attended three times, and found several of our vendors there,” said Mike. “The first time is overwhelming, and you’re just trying to get an idea of what vendors and are out there. We then signed up for a coaching package with Shelly, which set us on the right path.” Not wanting a full event planner, Mike worked with Shelly on creating a plan and checking off to-dos as he went.
Set a realistic budget and do lots of research, said Mike, because costs can get out of control easily. Mike says to budget for having a great entertainment, “who can make or break your party” but keep it low cost on elements like Kiddush luncheon décor. Also, a consumption bar vs. a package priced bar saved the family a lot of money.
If you don’t hire a full-time planner, get a day-of planner. “It’s worth it. If you’re running around putting out fires, you won’t have a good time. Marci was excellent and having her in charge allowed us to relax and enjoy,” Mike explained.
Get an APC Deal on many of Jordan’s Vendors:
Party Venue and Guest Hotel: Le Meridien Atlanta Perimeter
Décor: Let’s Celebrate
Photo Entertainment: Button-it-Up
Brunch Caterer: For All Occasions
Invitations and Thank You Notes: EventPrints
Event Planner: Shelly Danz with Day of Planner Marci Miller