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Everyone throwing a bar/bat mitzvah party has a different budget to work with. The goal is to create a wonderful celebration for family, friends and one's self. Establishing that dollar amount in advance is the biggest hurdle. Before going any farther with your planning, set a budget and spread the money out to cover all your needs. Without a realistic budget, it is easy to overspend. 


Communicate with your spouse. The attitude of many husbands is "I'm not adding an addition to my house; I'm giving a bat mitzvah!" Needless to say, while the numbers look intimidating and many people have a number in mind for the total cost, most people do not realize what the actual costs are, having never made this type of party. Think about how much each element of the party will cost and do your research together. Decide what aspects are most important to you both and allocate a little more money for them. 


Today's bar/bat mitzvahs average $35,000 to $80,000; and it is not unheard of for people to spend amounts in excess of $100,000 on a party. Location and catering is the largest budget item and is controlled by the number of guests invited. Expenses such as entertainment are fixed, regardless of the number of guests. Most people tend to go about 10 percent over their budget, so when you're figuring out your budget, leave at least 10 percent of the total budget unallocated, so you have extra cash for whatever unexpected costs pop up. 

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2015 South Florida Bar Mitzvah and Bat Mitzvah Planning Group Meet and Greet

1. Direction Cards. Make sure that your invitation includes direction cards to the temple and party.

2. RSVPs. Include a stamped response card. Make sure these are numbered. DO NOT use email RSVPs.

3. Facebook. Do not allow vendors to post your bar or bat mitzvah photos on Facebook until after the event. 

4. Parking. Make sure you have valet parking at your event.

5. Invitations. Mail invitations. Do not use Evite or other similar services.

6. Tattoos. Make sure that tattooed vendors cover their tattoos for your event.

7. Toasts. Make sure you serve champagne if you make a toast.

8. Lighting. Do not allow fluorescent lighting to be used by your venue during your event.

9. Challah. Have a large size special occasion challah to cut during the Hamotzi.

10. Food. Don’t allow your food to be so "nouveau" that you don't have any of the traditional staples that people love.

11. Security. Have security to keep the tweens and teens in the party space. Don't allow groups of kids to go to the bathroom together.

12. Kids’ Food. Have the kids‘ food be nut free due to allergies.

13. Alcohol. Serve alcohol to adults - especially on a Saturday night. If you cannot afford alcohol, at a minimum, have a cash bar so adults have a choice.


Mitzvah Tips from David Ockman



Special touches connect guests to the celebration and create a festive and memorable party. Beyond typical decor, special touches set the mood and are a way of separating your party form the rest.


For some of us, by the time we have committed to the necessities of our mitzvah celebration, we have exceeded our budget and with limited additional means to spend special touches we want them, we just do not know what touches we want and how to blend them into our party. Careful planning and budgeting helps to ensure special touches are included in your bar/bat mitzvah. 


“Enhance your mitzvah party with something as simple as sparklers and blasting rock music to introduce the bar/bat mitzvah child and family. Brand your party with custom printed M&M’s in your choice of colors. Create a theme matching specialty drink for the adults to enjoy during the cocktail hour. Add a “beach chair” lounge area for the teens to hang out in at a beach theme party.” These are just a few ideas from Chris Weinberg of South Florida based East Coast Events. “Whether by theme, color scheme or emotional connection, special touches inspire your guests to get into the spirit of the night and create lasting memories.” 

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