Month: January 2017

Pop Color Vendor: NJM Entertainment

Jamel Watkins, Founder of NJM Entertainment, has spent 20 years working his way to being a top MC, starting out as a dancer. Jamel not only provides great entertainment but personal attention to each and every one of his clients. His company is based out of New York, but will travel anywhere, including the DC/Baltimore-area. Here is Jamel to tell you more:

Have NJM Entertainment as MC/DJ for your Bar or Bat Mitzvah | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color to Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VA

How did you get started in your business?

A friend of mine brought me with him to a rehearsal for a company he worked for, I ended up getting a job by dancing against one of the best performers at the time.

Have NJM Entertainment as MC/DJ for your Bar or Bat Mitzvah | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color to Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VA

What’s your favorite part of what you do?

I enjoy helping the family make their vision come to life and I enjoy seeing the Guest of Honor have the time of their life and create a memory that they will never forget.

What’s your pop color–that something special that makes you, you?

What makes me unique is I am a natural performer who happens to be witty and love what he does.

Have NJM Entertainment as MC/DJ for your Bar or Bat Mitzvah | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color to Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VAWhat’s your favorite moment of a Bar or Bat Mitzvah?

The opening of the room is always my favorite. Watching the guest come in and be amazed by the sights and sounds and it just becomes infectious and it sets the tone for the entire event.

Have NJM Entertainment as MC/DJ for your Bar or Bat Mitzvah | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color to Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VA

What questions should parents ask someone in your field?

The following are questions that I would recommend all clients ask when booking an event:

  • Is a specific MC/DJ guaranteed for my event and will it list their name in the contract?
  • Will I be able to speak to my MC prior to the event?
  • What type of experience does the MC have with working with this type of event?
  • What will the attire be for the MC/DJ/dancers?
  • Will you help us to create a timeline for our event and coordinate this with the venue as well? and f) What other services can you supply for our event?

Need an experienced MC to rock your party? Contact NJM Entertainment or follow them on Facebook or Instagram to see them in action.

Lena’s Dance and Purple Bat Mitzvah at Hilton Washington DC North / Gaithersburg

I LOVED working with Lena’s family for her purple and dance inspired Bat Mitzvah at Hilton Washington DC North/Gaithersburg. The family could not have been any sweeter and Lena’s dance friends rocked it on the dance floor! Below are some shots from Anthony Marill Photography of the decor by Pattie Kim of Balloons and Decor.

Lena’s mom had been saving her dance costumes for years and finally found a good use for them… these awesome centerpieces! Each table was named after a different style of dance with one of Lena’s dance costumes proudly displayed.

Bat Mitzvah Dance Costume Centerpieces at Hilton Washington DC North/Gaithersburg | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color to Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VA

Some of the costumes were teeny tiny and from when Lena was as young as 3!

Bat Mitzvah Dance Costume Centerpieces at Hilton Washington DC North/Gaithersburg | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color to Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VA

Oversized balloons hanging from the ceiling and purple uplighting created a really dramatic look.

Bat Mitzvah Dance Costume Centerpieces at Hilton Washington DC North/Gaithersburg | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color to Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VA

It was a pleasure working with this family and it sounds like they were pretty happy also!

Brynne knew the answers to my questions before I even asked them. She had an amazing spreadsheet to keep me organized for invitations, guest lists, hotel reservations, gifts and thank you notes etc. She reviewed all of our contracts and caught details that I didn’t and helped us avoid some potential issues. On the night of my daughter’s Bat Mitzvah, I didn’t have to worry about anything and knew that Brynne and her assistant were available for any issues. For instance, my son lost a button on his jacket during pictures and we could fix it immediately. The MC at one point got a little off schedule and Brynne made sure that everything else flowed easily through the evening. No one noticed but us.
-Lena’s Mom

Thanks to the awesome vendors who helped Lena and her family have a Bat Mitzvah party to remember!

Venue: Hilton Washington DC North/Gaithersburg
Photography: Anthony Marill Photography
Decor: Pattie Kim of Balloons and Decor

Day Of Coordination? More Like Month Of Coordination

There's no such thing as a Day of Coordinator for a Bar or Bat Mitzvah party | Pop Color Events | Adding a Pop of Color Bar & Bat Mitzvahs in DC, MD & VA

Imagine stepping onto the field for a game without knowing your teammates, attending a single practice, speaking with your coaches or knowing any of the plays. Someone will hand you a piece of paper on game day that probably has most of the information that you’ll need. Think that you’d be able to do a good job? That’s exactly how I feel when potential clients tell me, “I don’t need your help for a full month. I just need you there on the day of the event.”

There is so much more that goes into coordinating your child’s Bar or Bat Mitzvah party than me just showing up on event day. I spend hours preparing to make the day of your celebration seem effortless. Since I’ve planned so many events, I know the questions to ask and the things to look for to ensure a smooth party. I had a client tell me once that “You don’t know, what you don’t know” and that is so true. If you haven’t planned a large party before (or if it’s been a very long time!), you will overlook something–hopefully not something that is too important!

Most of my work for an event happens before I ever step foot into the venue. Here are the things I do ahead of time to ensure a perfect celebration.

Meet with family and MC

The most important people of the whole day are your family and your MC. I meet with your family to get caught up on the details of your party and get to know your vision. Then a few weeks later we meet with your MC to finalize the timeline of the party. These meetings are so important because the day is about your family and what you want. I need to build a relationship with you so I can understand and communicate your vision to your vendors and execute it on the day of your celebration.

Confirming Day of Details

You have a team of awesome vendors that you’ve researched, contracted and paid; have you looked at the contracts with those vendors since that point? I confirm all of the final details, arrangements, delivery and setup times with your vendors to ensure (1) you’re getting exactly what you’ve agreed to and (2) you can fulfill your part of the agreement.

Fixing Mistakes

In doing those confirmations, there are always a handful of mistakes that need to be corrected. After all, you don’t know what you don’t know, so there were questions that you didn’t ask or things that were overlooked. I recently reviewed a contract for a Month-Of client who had signed a contract for their photo booth for Sunday instead of Saturday. There was another time when a client tried to cut costs by only renting their space for an hour of setup time when her caterer required two hours of setup time and they didn’t rent linens for the appropriate number of tables. I’ve received montages that don’t work, escort cards with missing guests or incorrect table assignments and not enough favors for the number of kids expected. If I didn’t do the work ahead of time, those are things that would have been nearly impossible to fix on the day of the event!

Creating an Event Day Production Schedule and Floor Plan

Your MC will help to craft a timeline for the dance floor, but who is keeping track of the production of the entire day? From load-in to load-out, from first course to dessert, I put together a schedule that considers all aspects of the entire day. I share that production schedule with all of your vendors and answer any questions that they have. I also put together a floor plan that works for all of your vendors needs.

Inventory and Transport Small Decor Items

About 2 days prior to your event, we’ll pick up all of the items that you have purchased for your party (favors, sign in board, decorations, escort cards, etc.). We’ll inventory them to make sure everything is accounted for and bring them to the venue on the day of your event. As a special bonus, we’ll have a quick touch base about any final thoughts you have, leaving you able to relax and enjoy a restful Shabbat and enjoy family and friends who come to celebrate with you.

In Conclusion

It takes a solid month of work to ensure that your day goes smoothly. Any planner who claims that they can come in the day of your event and coordinate isn’t going to be able to deliver the “guest at your own event” feeling.

Need Month-Of Coordination help? Pop Color Events can help!

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