Innovative and interactive experiences, including virtual reality stations, are hot for bar and bat mitzvahs today.
Photo by Peter Oberc
If you want a bar or bat mitzvah celebration that is the talk of the town, it’s all about doing something different, so it stands out from the rest on the circuit and keeps kids engaged. We talked to two top event planners who know all there is to know about bar and bat mitzvah parties. Here’s the lowdown on the hottest trends for 2020.
Advice from the pros
Susie Mordoh of Greater Than We, a Tarrytown-based event company and Best of Westchester winner shares her insights. greaterthanwe.com.
- Whether the chosen venue is a country club or a modern industrial-looking event space, people are opting for a cool, club-type vibe with a sophisticated and more informal, loungy style. We are seeing a combination of high tops, low tables, and couches instead of the usual formal dinner table setting and LED lighting everywhere.
- Customized food stations with different types of cuisine from Asian to Greek are replacing the traditional way of plating and serving food at tables. The options are limitless and the focus is on maximum creativity and over-the-top displays. Food could come in cute containers or you could have an interactive dessert station for sweet-toothed kids.
- As well as roving boomerang booths, Instagram-worthy specialized backdrops for the photo station are in demand. This could be a Boxwood hedge backdrop with benches and seating, a giant swing to sit on, or a scene from a favorite TV series. Assigning hashtags to events so photos can be shared instantly on social media is increasingly popular.
- Balloons are making a big comeback, but they are displayed in a much more artistic way. Enormous, eye-catching sculptures are being used as stunning ceiling treatments or entrance treatments, and balloon drops at the end of the night are a rising trend.
- Entertainment is being amped up in a bid to keep kids engaged all evening and we are seeing more and more innovative and interactive experiences, including virtual reality stations, silent discos, and black lights in the party room at the end of the evening.
- After a night of dancing, younger guests will no doubt have worked up an appetite. Having some sort of exit treat after the event, whether it’s candy, a donut wall, or even hotdogs from a food truck, is a hot trend.
Melissa Rosenblum from Gourmet Advisory Services, an NYC-based event planning company that organizes more than 100 bar and bat mitzvahs every year across the tri-counties gives us the scoop. gourmetadvisory.com.
- Parents want an event to be as turnkey as possible because this means less hassle and it’s ultimately better on your budget. When it comes to picking a venue, they are choosing places that offer a one-stop-shop solution with all-inclusive packages so everything from the catering to the music is taken care of.
- People are obsessed with branding. Logos are cool, wearable, and useable, and are being accompanied by taglines or clever plays on words to make it more fun. Branding can be found on everything from the napkins to the giveaways. It’s on decals on walls, furniture, and even the dance floor too.
- Photomontages are making a comeback and the focus is on telling the story of the bar or bat student and capturing all their interests. As well as video clips to music and interviews with families and friends, a special “mazel tov” message from a favorite athlete, singer, or actor is the latest craze. We are seeing them projected onto giant LED walls that act as backdrops for dance floors.
- Dance floors have evolved so much and are becoming a central feature of the event. They are being wrapped in all sorts of colors and designs and printed with images that transform them into football fields or basketball courts. This all enhances the party atmosphere. It can be carried on around the room, onto the walls, or light-up bars for a multi-dimensional effect. Interactive LED dance floors are also huge.
- Low-tech games at the beginning of the evening are having a surge in popularity, but are becoming more group-oriented to encourage the kids to interact with each other. We’re seeing over-sized table tennis tables that take up to ten players, inflatable activities for multiple guests at a time, and six-person air hockey.