Bar Bat Mitzvah Party Do's and Don'ts

DO decide in advance how active a role you want to play in deciding the chronology of events at your party. If you choose to leave it entirely up to the DJ or band leader, be sure you hire someone with lots of bar bat mitzvah party planning (as opposed to only wedding) experience. If you want to design the sequence of events yourself, see our party chronology templates. They'll help you decide when to cut the challah, when to show your photo montage and when to whip out the ever-important giant inflatable dancing shoes.

DO think carefully about having a candle lighting ceremony. While it is a popular tradition, this article describes some of the hidden downsides to such ceremonies -- and suggests some great candlelighting alternatives worth considering.

DO read What's the Smartest Way to Book A Party Location?

DO decide if you'd like to include Jewish and Israeli dancing. If so, read So You Think You Can Hora to learn how to insure it's the liveliest part of your party. We've even got an instructional video so everyone can either brush up or learn anew!

DON'T design a party that contradicts or undermines the values and lessons of the B Mitzvah ceremony you've just celebrated. Read this to avoid the party-service disconnect

DON'T wait until the last minute to create a photo montage of your child. With enough time, you can make one yourself. Learn how here.

DO take advantage of party planners' and B Mitzvah families' tips and 20-20 hindsight. Disasters and bloopers and faux pax, oh my! Some will break your heart; some are good for a laugh; all are worth trying to avoid.

DON'T forget to make sure both your adult and tween demographics are accommodated during the party. We've got great tips for keeping both tweens and elders happy all day long. Click here.

DON'T ignore often-overlooked factors while making your seating chart.

DO think about how to incorporate family heirlooms into your service and celebration.

DO make your menu mitzvah-licious.

DON'T forget to place table numbers on tables that guests can see from far away and to arrange them in a logical fashion, lsuch as odd numbers on one side of the room, even on the other. After all, no one likes to feel lost and disoriented, vainly searching for a seat. If your design concept entails making each table a different aspect of your theme (such as naming each table after a different baseball team or Broadway show), be sure the signage is clear from a distance, too. We always find it helpful when the host also assigns a number to themed tables, allowing guests to quickly find their spots.

DON'T overlook renting A/C, heating or ventilation systems if you're having your celebration in a tent. Rain, heat, cold and humidity can all put a serious dent in your festivities.

DO keep abreast of the latest party trends if you want to keep au courant or simply need some fresh decorating ideas and inspiration.