Venue Shopping

Back in the day, when I got married choosing where to have my wedding seemed like a daunting task. Where to go, what to look for, what questions to ask, will my flowers make it into the right room? All of this seemed like we were climbing a mountain and how could we ever get to the top?

Today, the task is even harder. 20 years ago everyone got married in a hotel, temple or “wedding factory” (venue that has more then 1 event going at a time). I remember when we finally picked the Crest hollow Country Club for our big day my boss looked at me and said- “I got married there. Make sure you get your flowers because mine went to a different wedding and the ones we got were awful.” Hah- 22 years ago all you had to worry about when planning a wedding were the flowers and the music- today there is so much more.

I just started in the planning process for a wedding that will take place in New York. I have not done an event in NY since my husband moved us to LA 16 years ago. So for the past 2 weeks the Internet and I have become best friends. It brings me my coffee first thing in the morning and snuggles next to me at night.

It really is truly amazing what is available to learn out in cyberspace. I was quite proud of myself at being able to link into some of the most incredible venues. While I am very familiar with the event spaces and opportunities in Los Angeles, I was unaware of how things had changed and developed in NY.

When I lived in NY, Long Island city was a place that you went to only if you had to. And I had to every day for about 2 years, as I worked for a clock importer back then. When I was going to meet with my perspective employers I was told don’t get too nervous when you walk here as most of the scary people you are going to see on the street work for us. That was then and this is now and Long Island City has become quite a little hub of old buildings that have been restored to now be rented out as event spaces.

Then there is Brooklyn. When I lived in Brooklyn it was the least cool place of all the suburbs that you could be, but that is not the case anymore. The Williamsburg area and it’s neighboring uber chic DUMBO have made the heights seem boring. In exploring I came across some of the most incredible spaces. Amazing what changes can occur in and over time. As I was born in Brooklyn, I can truly say that I am proud that it has seen a resurgence in glamour and style. It has always had the most amount of character in my book.

First, let me start by saying this is really my first time blogging and since I am new to this realm of communication I not really sure how it works. I do hope you enjoy or continue to read what I have to say and if anyone has any questions or responses please let me know.

So, after just stepping off of a plane flying round trip from Los Angeles to Virginia twice in one week I had the opportunity to experience 2 profoundly different events.

We buried my Father In Law on Monday in Virginia, 2 years after discovering he had cancer. He put up a good fight but in the end the cancer won. Unfortunately, he died exactly 1 week before his grandson was to become a Bar Mitzvah. While this may seem like a very bad and unfortunate stroke of luck for the Bar Mitzvah I have to say what a true stroke of brilliance it was for all who attended. In light of a recent passing we were all present in a way that may not have occurred had my Father In Law held on those extra few days. Everyone connected, travelled the roundtrip to Virginia twice in 1 short week as there was seriously 4 days between the closure of one life and the stepping into manhood of another. My family and I flew in from Los Angeles, my son from his studies at Syracuse University, Aunts and Uncles and cousins arrived from Boston, NY, Philadelphia and New Jersey. Did I mention that both of my kids were smack in the middle of midterms- (Nothing like adding a bit more stress into the mix).

My poor sister- in – law agonized before the funeral about whether people would show up for her son. Then she tortured herself regarding having a celebration when her father would not be there. As the voice of possibility I kept reminding her that her father would be present in everyones’ heart. Furthermore, he was present in her and her brother and his 4 grandchildren. I reminded her that he had lived a very long and fulfilled life so of course we would be able to celebrate. With that said, the Jewish faith says that you are not supposed to cancel a Simcha (Joyous occasion of celebration) that is already on the calendar when a relative dies, even a Grandfather. So in the true spirit of Judaism the celebration was going to take place. So after 3 days of funeral arrangements and shiva everyone re-boarded their planes and arrived in Virginia for the 2nd time in 1 very short and jet lagged week to celebrate this young boy.

My Father in laws untimely passing created many miracles. As an event planner I know that the key to an amazing party is to invite the people that most want to be present. I have to acknowledge that all the guests at this Bar Mitzvah were present in both body and spirit. Each one of us was happy to be there. Everyone knew that it was important to make this boy feel the love and the joy and the true reason and meaning of why we have a Bar Mitzvah.

Everyone always asks me how can I make my child’s B’nai Mitzvah better then his/her friends. My answer is that the best parties are the ones in which the community truly comes together in joy to support the young man/woman on the next phase of their journey.