Lauren Futterman celebrated her Bat Mitzvah on April 28, 2012, at the New City Jewish Center in New City, Rockland County, New York. She had a Havdalah service followed by an evening of food and music in the ballroom of New City Jewish Center. Her party’s theme was “Lauren in the Spotlight.”
Lauren’s mom, Nicole, planned the entire celebration without the help of a party planner, so she has an endless amount of first-hand advice for other planning families.
Jeff Siegel of J. Michaels Photography was the photographer and the rest of the vendors are listed at the bottom of this spotlight.
Pictured above (L-R): Mom Nicole, Dad Jeff, Brother Matthew, Bat Mitzvah girl Lauren
Sherry Schneider of Party Perfect created Lauren’s invitations.
The invitations were hot pink and black with two sparkling chips beside her name, Lauren Leslie
A matching stamp with her full name (Lauren Leslie Futterman) was created at Zazzle.com
The room was decorated by Balloon Artistry. They were given the task of turning the temple’s ballroom into a club-like atmosphere.
As guests entered the room, they passed through an archway of white festive balloons
The archway led them into the magnificent ballroom, decorated in hot pink and black
The centerpieces were enormous clear balloons with white silver sparkle blown into the center of the balloons
This large sign was decorated with mini lights around the edges of the board which flashed all night long!
Balloon Artistry designed the place cards to match the rest of Lauren’s decor.
The place cards had flashing stars, and each of the children’s tables were decorated with flashing glasses they took home at the end of the night
Starlight Express provided the music for the evening, and Lauren’s MC for the night was Flip.
Lauren makes her big entrance
Flip the MC kept the crowd dancing all night long
The caterer, Marc Aaron Caterers, provided a delicious and beautiful cake from Strauss Bakery.
Simon Elliot Events provided the digital sign-in board. Simon created backgrounds with Lauren’s interests which included dance and her Lauren in the Spotlight theme.
Mindy at ImageMaker helped design and print the awesome t-shirt favors for the boys and girls.
A graphic of a necklace with charms was designed to hang from the neckline of the girls’ shirts. The charms were printed in purple and silver sparkle.
The charms on the necklace graphic included the letters L.L.F. for Lauren’s initials, rings with the date of her party, and “In the Spotlight” theme. Other charms included ballet shoes, hearts, peace signs, flowers, a diamond ring, and a dove.
A graphic of two dog tags was designed for the boys’ t-shirts
For entertainment, Steve Seifer of Steve Seifer Wire Sculptures, Inc. and his assistant created wire sculptures throughout the evening. The children chose their sculptures based on their interests. The kids loved the wire sculptures, and they were a unique activity that guests had not seen before.
Steve and his assistant created wire people with various themes including football, baseball, dancing, shopping, and many others
Lauren and her dad shared a special father-daughter dance to the tune of Aerosmith’s “I Don’t Wanna Close My Eyes.” Her dad chose the song because he remembers it was playing the day after Lauren was born and he was going to the hospital to see her.
Mom Nicole did not use a party planner, opting instead to find vendors on her own. She has a lot of advice for moms, whether you’re planning on your own or not:
“I would recommend to start by deciding what your budget is for your party. Then start planning about seven months prior to the event. This gives plenty of time to research and meet with vendors and plan the party leisurely. Get recommendations of vendors from friends who have had parties. The Internet can also be a great source to find fun and different ideas to entertain your guests. Most importantly, pace yourself. Don’t look at the whole picture at once. Break each part of the party planning into separate projects with deadlines. For example, the venue, the DJ, the photographer, the invitations, the decor, the party clothes, the entertainment. Once you have made your choice, move on to the next task. Keep contracts and contact information in a folder. Program the contact information into your phone so that they will be ready when you need them. This is really helpful especially if you have contracted with vendors months before your event. You might not speak to them again until a week prior to the event. You don’t want to search for phone numbers at the last minute.
Another tip I would offer is to take the invitation to a few different post offices to determine the postage. It’s so important the invitations have the correct postage. I also ordered my stamps for the RSVP and thank you cards ahead of time at the USPS.com store online. This saved the headache of having to go to the post office and buy the stamps in a large quantity. Our post offices are small and don’t stock large quantities of decorative stamps. I shopped online and the stamps were delivered to my mailbox.
Most importantly, on the day of your event just kick back and enjoy the hours of hard work. The day goes by so quickly but is so worth the many hours and months of planning.”
For her Mitzvah Project, Lauren and her friend Julia created a lemonade stand to raise money for a horseback riding program sponsored by Jawonio. The girls sold lemonade and raised close to $200 for the program. Jawonio is a nonprofit organization with headquarters in New City, Lauren’s town. The organization’s goal is to advance the independence, well-being, and equality of adults and children with disabilities or special needs.
Lauren also collected supplies for Hi-Tor Animal Care Center in Pomona, NY, which is the only animal shelter in Rockland County and is in desperate need of supplies and funding.
The following vendors helped to make Lauren’s celebration special. If you give any of them a call, please let them know you heard about their services on MitzvahMarket.com.
Venue: New City Jewish Center, Rockland County
Caterer: Marc Aaron Caterers, 845-353-5578
Music Entertainment: Starlight Express, 516-742-1100
Décor/Florist: Balloon Artistry, 845-352-2828
Favor person: The ImageMaker, 516-377-0186
Photo Booth: Action Entertainment, 800-605-4383
Wire Sculptures: Steve Seifer, Wire Sculptures, Inc., 718-846-4024
Invitation: Sherry Schneider, Party Perfect, 845-638-2602 or 845-638-2381
Cake: Strauss Bakery, 718-851-8751
Sign-In board: Simon Elliot Events, 516-586-6822
Mom Nicole’s Dress: Neiman Marcus; shawl from Jaques Ferber,
Lauren’s Dress and Shawl: David’s Bridal, 845-578-1861
Suits for family members: Men’s Warehouse, 845-624-1003
Hair: Linda Prevot, Beauty Plus Salon, 845-634-3115
Makeup: Divya Kumra, Yuva Laser and Skin Care, 845-709-6300
Photographer: Jeff Siegel, J. Michaels Photography, 516-536-3456
Videographer: Starlight Express, 516-742-1100