There are many milestones in everyone’s lives. For some it may be a graduation, retirement, birthday, learning to drive, or any other number of achievements. One of the largest milestones in a Jewish person’s life is their bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah. When this is the celebration it is important to plan the menu, activities, and to record and keep the memories of this day.

Serving Food When planning a bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah for your son or daughter, there are a lot of things that have to be organized. Many things such as the menu involve the smallest of details. Planning for the type of food, amount of food, and where it will come from is a large task to be conquered. If your wish is to serve all authentic celebration food it is necessary to consider the amount of preparations that can be done in advance to lighten the load on the celebration day.

Traditional Meals For the Jewish family who wishes to keep their celebration as traditional as possible, the menu of the party needs to contain a few of the historic dishes that are served at a bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah. One of the most recognized of all Jewish foods for this type of ceremony is borscht, hummus, bagel and lox, whitefish, Rugelach with different fillings, potato knishes, chopped liver, pastrami on rye, falafels, Challah bread, bubble tea, Matzo ball soup, black and white cookies, medium-rare roast beef, and of course braised brisket. Many of these components can be prepared in advance or can be brought in by specialized caterers.

Modern Additions to Meals In recent years, the restraints of the bar and bat mitzvah ceremonies have been loosened. Celebrators of this occasion are no longer serving only traditional foods. Some of the new menu items include such things as cupcake towers, ice cream stations, popcorn machines, chocolate fountains, mini-hot dogs, mini-grilled cheese sandwiches, mini-sushi, mini-pies, candy buffets, and mocktails. The addition of these non-traditional foods lends a more friendly and fun feeling to the celebration. Incorporating some or all of these elements into the planning for a party will allow you to entertain a large number of people without having to do many small and elaborate preparations.

It may be necessary to hire a professional catering company to handle the food. Another alternative is to enlist in friends and family to help with the menu. A day of cooking in the kitchen with friends and family for the party will turn into a great day to enjoy each other’s company and strengthen relationships. Attaining the use of such things as buffet style food presentations and fountains will lighten the load of the food preparation.

Entertainment In the area of entertaining your guests the music and activities have to be able to entertain and involve the guests into the activities. Some of the activities that should be considered are:

Hire a graffiti artist to create party favors such as t-shirts, balls, bags, and glassware. Hire a magician or illusionist to entertain and amaze your party guests. Hire a company to create glitter tattoos for the guests. Invest in a spa day for the individual and a group of their friends before the party. Hire a magician comedian if your party guests are entertained by humor. Have a clay sculptor come and do a live creation of a memorable keepsake while the party guests watch. Not only will they be entertained, but you will have a keepsake from the day with the signatures of the party attendants on a plate or clay scroll. Recording the Memories Many bar and bat mitzvah parties are recorded by a paid photographer or videographer. Although this is a great way to preserve the memories of the day, the guests are not actively involved in the process. One way to not only record memories but add entertainment to the celebration is to have a photo booth to preserve these passing precious moments. Photo booths that are used for these types of gatherings allows people to create their own twist on the pictures being taken and who they are taking them with. Guests will be able to customize the background, captions, and many other aspects of the photo using the modern photo booths that are available today. In this age of endless selfies, what teenager doesn’t like to jump in front of a camera with a silly face?

When it comes to the planning and execution of a bar mitzvah or a bat mitzvah celebration, there are many factors to consider. Planning the food, music, entertainment, and activities takes a lot of preparation and execution. Adding such things as traditional foods, live entertainment, and a photo booth will surely make your child’s bar or bat mitzvah a memorable and enjoyable experience.