5 Tips to Throw the Party of YOUR Dreams!

A great party is a great party, right? Well, not exactly. What may be ideal to you, may not be your best friends cup of tea, and vice versa.

Some families look for a party that is loud, high-energy and the bar mitzvah equivalent to a night at the club, whereas others prefer a Sunday afternoon affair where the music volume is optimal for a good time on the dance floor, while allowing their non-dancing guest to converse with another in their seats without yelling!

Regardless of your definition of a good time, here are 5 universal tips to help you throw the party of YOUR Dreams!

5. Take full advantage of cocktail hour

I like to tell families that I have the pleasure of working with that cocktail will be the single most important hour of their big night. Let’s be honest, it can be a LONG day for not only your family, but your guest as well. Encourage your adults to unwind and for those of them who enjoy partaking in alcoholic beverages, to take full advantage of the bar. A lose and relaxed adult crowd makes for an excellent opening dance set and that will set the tone for the remainder of your night!

Cocktail hour is equally important for your teens. As an MC, yes we will be certain they have an opportunity to play games and partake in all planned ceremonies, but more than anything else, for me, this is the time to really get to know the kids. To break the ice and partner with them. I always communicate to my team of dancers that if we can win over the kids during cocktail, the rest of the night will be a blast!

4. Keep kids speeches and presentations in their proper place

It’s true– speeches and presentations are special… to the guest of honor…and the friend who is giving it. To everyone else, they’re an opportunity to text, take selfies and lose a bit of the energy they entered the room with!

That said, do we want to ban all presentations? Absolutely not! We just want to set them in their proper place, which for the most part, is cocktail hour! Advize your MC to find out exactly how many planned presentations there are as soon as he is in the presence of your teens, and he should navigate cocktail hour accordingly. If there are a ton, he should begin them as soon as cocktail starts, that way, upon their completion, he can get right into games and dancing, which will bring the energy level of your teens back up before your adults enter the ballroom.

If YOU really want to see the presentations yourself, a good option is to either hire a videographer or ask your MC to come and get you before they begin.

3. Know your Crowd

As a Master of Ceremonies, while meeting with my families, I can’t tell you how often I hear the phrase, “We have a dancing crowd!”, when the truth is, they really don’t.

This is TOTALLY OK! Some crowds take a little longer than others to warm up. So long as we get “there”, that’s all that matters.

The important thing to keep in mind is, knowing your crowd will assist in dictating the proper flow of your night. Even though you know they’re TOTALLY AWESOME, if you believe your adults may value an opportunity to sit down and talk to one another, be certain your MC takes that into account when putting together your timeline.

Limit your opening dance set to 20-25 minutes. Have, not only a 1st, but also a seated main course. Utilize your Hora and father/daughter dance to re-engage guests who may have gotten too comfortable in their seats and finally, be mindful of when you serve dessert. If it’s too early, it will signal that the party is over.

Contrarily, if you REALLY DO have a DANCING CROWD, choose to eat from stations, tell your DJ to keep the energy in the room up all night and have your MC pack a change of shirt– he’ll need it from all that sweat he’ll lose!

2. Lead your own Party

If you ask an event planner, they’ll likely tell you your entertainment is the most important element of your party. When I sit down with families, they frequently say to me, “We’re counting on you, you’re the key to our big night!”.

As much as I appreciate the compliment, I tell them that I’m not. Myself and my team are merely a conduit–or a conductor of energy. The most important element of their party is them. The most important person at your party, is YOU!

If you choose the right one, your MC will be a great dancer and he’ll speak eloquently into a microphone. His DJ will read your crowd and play the best music for your guests, that said, if yourself and your husband are at your table talking, then a good number of your guests will be there talking with you. If our guest of honor is in the corner texting, then a majority of his or her friends will be there doing the same. On the other hand, if your family is on the dance floor, having a great time, all night long, your friends and family will follow and do the same! They can’t help it. They came to be with you.

If you choose the right one, your MC will do an amazing job at leading your crowd, but there is someone who can do an even better job than he can, and that someone is you.

1. End on a High Note

If some fun is good, more fun is even BETTER!

This may be true, however, that does not necessarily mean that you should throw a longer party just to test the theory.

Years ago, a five hour party was standard. 1 hour of cocktail, followed by 4 hours of dancing, ceremony, meal service and more dancing. The issue is, much of the ceremony has been eliminated , and the only thing to replace it is…more dancing.

Again, this sounds like a good thing, until you ask yourself the question, “When was the last time I danced for 240 straight minutes in one night?” Yep! Thats what I thought.

Unless you’re planning on having a candle lighting and lengthy montage, it’s likely in your best interest to throw a 4 hour party. If towards the end of the night, your friends and family are still having a great time. They’re full of energy, the dance floor is packed and they’re begging for the night to never end, then you just threw a great party.

However, if you decided to go until midnight, and by 11:27, everyone is either at their tables looking at their watches or attempting to sneak out the door without you noticing, then your night may have gone a little bit beyond its’ expiration date.

Of course there are exceptions to this way of thought. I’ve MC’d parties that went 5 hours plus overtime, but again, the key is knowing your crowd, and trusting that is it ALWAYS best to end on a high note.

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