A Bar or Bat Mitzvah is such a special time for your child. They’ve worked hard practicing their Torah portion, learning various blessings, writing a D’var Torah… Then it’s time to party and celebrate your child. But how do you create a Bar or Bat Mitzvah party that reflects your child, their interests and that they feel good about?
First, ask them how involved they’d like to be in the Bar or Bat Mitzvah party planning and find out what your comfort level is with how involved they can be. Do you want them to help select some or all of the vendors? Do you want them to be involved in conversations about the budget? Or are there details that you personally don’t care about that you can hand over to them?
Planning a large party is another great learning experience for your child, if it’s something that they have an interest in. After 12ish years as their parent, you probably know your child pretty well. Make sure that the level of involvement is realistic given your child’s strengths, commitments and schedule.
Find out which the most important pieces are to them
Once you know how involved they’d like to be in the Bar or Bat Mitzvah party planning, find out which pieces are most important to them. I’ve found that there are always one or two things that the Mitzvah child feels most passionately about–the type of photo booth, the theme, the food, the type of entertainment, the favors… It’s wonderful to allow your tween to take some ownership over that piece, whether it’s helping you research options, suggesting menu ideas, deciding colors or details, or putting together a list of must play songs.
Encourage them to speak up
Let your child know that they can openly share their thoughts with you about their party, but it’s okay for them not to have an opinion on something too. However, as one mom put it, “if you don’t speak up, you lose the right to complain later.” On point advice!
Check in with them frequently
As you’ve probably seen, tween tastes and wants can change quickly. As you attend more Mitzvahs, make it a point to check in with your child afterward to see what they liked and didn’t like and if they changed their mind about something that they’d like to see at their event. There is a caveat here, make sure that you are still encouraging your tween to have elements that are unique to them. At this age, it’s easy to want to do something exactly like friend X, but your child and their friends will have a better time in the end if each party they go to has its own flavor.
Obviously, you have final say (the one who controls the finances usually does!), but the important thing is making your tween feel heard throughout the Bar or Bat Mitzvah party planning process. If the party is about your child, the party should reflect what your child wants as much as possible.
Butting heads with your tween? Sometimes a neutral third party like Pop Color Events can be a lifesaver! Contact us for more information about how we can help!