Thursday, January 24, 2013

Inauguration Party notes.....

Four days after the Inauguration reception I worked on, am still wiped out.....Some random thoughts about helping a wonderful friend and client with a non-partisan Inauguration reception.

....and please look at the photos, even though I'm not in any of 'em!  To see some of my effort, go to:

It was a lovely party, with volunteer contributions by many! I recruited two student-photographer volunteers from a local art school to take photos, and students from Georgetown U assisted with VIP guests, and guest check-in. For affordable photographers and videographers, I highly recommend tapping into local colleges. For the photographers, I went to the school's internship program director. For the Georgetown students, I emailed the president of the student association. It helps to have a child or other family member alums.

Take a look at the flowers in the photos: Trader Joe's best. Had pre-ordered to ensure they had enough tulips. When one preorders from Trader Joe's, they can't guarantee color choices for any flowers. Color scheme was yellow and turquoise. Arranged 80 bunches of flowers in less than 2 hours! My exercise for the day! Picked up unmatched whiskey glasses at Goodwill for vases for bistro tables, with pasta canisters for vases stuffed with oranges, for buffet table. Am NOT a flower person: if I can make nice flower arrangements, anybody can.

Trader Joe's also came through very, very well with wine selection. Because I don't know a lot about wines, I usually choose by label designs and price. Fortunately, Eric, the Trader Joe's Foggy Bottom wine expert, worked with me. From the wine labels and prices (low end) I liked, he chose the best ones. A VIP-ish guest mentioned that she loved the chard! I did not tell her that it was a $3.99 bottle she was enjoying!

The 37 door prizes were all nice. Two hotels contributed weekend stays, Oprah's restaurant Art & Soul gave a great gift bag with cookbook and spices, Elizabeth's Gone Raw Restaurant contributed a $150 gift certificate, I donated two pairs of labradorite earrings that I made, and many others donated great door prizes. Wish I had won the personal training package from Fitness Together! We had give-aways like Uber gift certificates at the sign-in table.

The food was outstanding -- catered by Navajo Caterers, who came from New Mexico and Florida to prepare food, at a nearby church kitchen, for the event. Ir was very very good southwestern cuisine --lamb and beef and a lot of corn dishes, including a blue corn dessert. For this party, I rated the calorie count as 'guilt free.' Will post website later, with recipes.

The only grumpy part of the eve was the gridlocked traffic. Getting across town to Cap Hill was bumper-to-bumper, in part because the Obamas were at a party at the National Building Museum, near this Inaug party. Further, everyone was trying to get to Inaug parties at the same time. After working on site all day, I had gone home to change. Getting back to the party at 4:45 p.m., about 4 miles away, took 1 hour and 25 minutes. Was gonna go back and bicycle to get there, and only didn't, but because it was very cold.

Happy to say that it was a lovely party -- nice people, convivial, all done well, due to an amazingly wonderful collaborative spirit! Wish you were there!

Planit Meetings is happy to help our clients with all their events, in any way we can. Helping is what we do best. The next time you need party help, we're here for you too.

All the best,