Archive for the 'Trivia And A Tip' Category

If Who’s On First And What’s On Second, The Short Stop Is…?

Monday, March 9th, 2009

Answer: I Don’t Care (sometimes rendered as I Don’t Give A Damn.)

When you are planning an event honoring a special person or couple (ie. retirement dinner, birthday, or anniversary), the last thing you want to hear from your guests is I Don’t Care. But, all too often, the persons who should be the focus of the evening are lost (or at least blurred) due to too many preliminaries.

Case In Point 1: At a 50th wedding anniversary recently, one of the couple’s children turned the spotlight on herself for a long and self-serving retrospective “tribute” to her parents’ marriage. Some of the elderly guests (friends of the honorees) actually left before the bride and groom ever got to rise and say a word.

Case In Point 2: Due to extended thank-yous from winners in lower categories (whose “2 minute” speeches average closer to 20), Mary Kay’s annual awards dinners in my town routinely run hours over schedule. As a result, the Top Salesperson Of The Year receives her prize before an exhausted – and half empty – room. This is grossly unfair (but totally understandable.)

What’s the solution? As the batting coach says to Who (or What): “Keep your eye on the ball!” Just as the bride is the center of the wedding universe, the honoree (or – in the case of multiple winners, the TOP honoree) is always the central figure of an awards gala. Every element of the evening leads to their special moment – including whatever it takes to get to that moment before anyone says, “I don’t give a …!”

Ann-Margaret Starred In Which Re-Make Of A John Wayne Classic?

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

Answer: The 1960′s version of “Stagecoach,” the story of a very eventful ride on the Lordsburg Stage. Instead of the Duke, A-M appeared with the immortal (?) Alex Cord.

If you are planning a special event, a stage may be in your future, as well. The additional height of a stage makes it easier for audience members to see a featured speaker. Band or deejay wires, speakers, and lights are also less likely to be tripped over by your guests when they are off the dance floor and on an elevated surface.

So a stage is a good thing – usually. Two common exceptions to this rule are (1) when your venue has a low ceiling that makes those onstage likely to bump their heads on light fixtures (or on the ceiling itself), and (2) when the stage is not configured properly for your music provider. For instance, a stage that is 8′ deep and 20′ feet wide has the same number of square feet as one that is 20′ deep and 8′ wide. But one may work perfectly for your band, while the other is useless.

So listen up, Pilgrim, and listen tight: a stage is only good when it’s right for the room and right for your band, deejay, or featured speaker. If it’s not, the only stage they’ll be gettin’ on is the next one out of town!

Who Sang “The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia”?

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

Answer: It was Vickie Lawrence, Carol Burnett Show alum, game show hostess, and star of “Mama’s Family.”

If you don’t want the lights to go out at your next event, you need to be in possession of 2 critically important facts: (1) how much electricity your party will require, and (2) what power is available at your venue.

Today’s PA and lighting needs for bands or deejays are enough to blow the breakers at many older venues (or places – like a train station, gymnasium, or art museum – that were never designed as party palaces.) Margarita machines, spotlights on every centerpiece, coffee pots, and heat lamps on the buffet table also drain precious power your party may need. Ask all of your vendors what their total electrical needs will be. If they’ll have to economize, it’s better that they – and you – know it, up front.

(You really don’t want your guests walking out the door humming, “That’s the night that lights went out…”)