Tips for a Fantastic Formal Corporate Holiday Party

ice bar for charity eventsPlanning a formal holiday party is different than coordinating the details of an office party. The atmosphere you’re trying to create is different—or should be, if you use these tips to plan your formal holiday event.

Choose the right venue.

The right venue is more than a detail. It’s a requirement that ensures the success of your formal event. The perfect event fits your theme, location requirements, sizing and space specifications, chosen atmosphere, budget, and amenity needs. Because your venue needs to check off all the boxes, determine your goal and compile a guest list before you initiate a search for the perfect venue.

Give your guests an unforgettable entrance.

Event atmosphere starts at the door; formal events are not immune from creating a vital first impression. Hire entertainers that fit with your theme to greet your guests. To choose the right entertainers that fit with your holiday event theme, contact an entertainment agent that has experience and a full line-up of holiday entertainers to choose from.

Create awe.

Bring the wonder of the holiday into your event with every detail. Incorporate high impact pieces into your décor, such as table centerpieces and ice bars, that impress your guests and leave them wanting for more.

Use dinner entertainment to create atmosphere.

Your guests need to feel the formality of the event. Use dinner entertainment, like a string quartet or dueling pianos, to reinforce event formalness and give your guests something to talk about.

Make your main stage act a showstopper.

A formal event is nothing without a main stage act that fits the name. For a formal holiday evening, a White Christmas show fits the bill and the atmosphere. For another theme, contact an entertainment agent for an entertainer that can customize their act to your specific event theme. As with any formal event, you need to use a “larger than life” event planning strategy to create an awesome atmosphere that fits the holiday mood and the event formality.

Tips for a Better (and More Fabulous) Fundraising Gala

red carpet entertainer with guests at masquerade themed charity galaThe recipe for a fabulous gala is different for every event. We’ve seen it, experienced it, and planned it. A successful gala has a unique atmosphere with its own feel. It’s up to you to create that atmosphere and push it over-the-top with these tips (and expert advice that can make it a reality).

Choose the right venue.

The right venue is an essential part of gala success. There are several factors in your decision, including location, adequate spaces, and event needs (other criteria for the right venue are listed here). Screen your venues carefully, and look for a venue that fits your practical and décor needs.

Create the ultimate entrance.

Showgirls, human statues, paparazzi. Atmosphere starts at the door—or should, if you use décor and entertainers to welcome your guests. Once you have a general idea of your gala theme, talk to a professional entertainment agent to decide how to incorporate the right entertainers into your event entrance.

Allow for plenty of time for socializing.

Networking is what your guests want at a gala. Give it to them (just like a customer, your guests are always right!). Include plenty of time in your event timeline for mingling, and entertain them while they socialize. Ask your entertainment agent for ideas that fit with your theme, such as celebrity impersonators, entertainers serving snacks, and main stage acts.

Use entertainers in creative ways.

Entertainers don’t always just need to entertain. Instead, hire entertainers that can fit the practical needs of your event as well. Use your entertainers to welcome your guests, serve food, and improve your guests’ experience.

Be inventive with your fundraising.

Fundraising doesn’t need to be a “one size fits all” part of your event. Use imaginative ways to fundraise, and be open to creative ways. Use technology or your main stage act to play a part of your fundraising efforts (like making them your emcee for a contest!). If you need ideas, don’t hesitate to ask your entertainment agent for unique ideas that fundraise and entertain.

Holiday Party Planning: 5 Common Mistakes to Avoid

company christmas party guests with santa hats by holiday treeYou may not be able to stop a snow storm or a belligerent employee at your next company holiday party, but you can set up your next holiday party for success by avoiding these party planning mistakes.

Choosing the wrong venue

You may not have a choice for your company holiday venue. If you do, careful consideration should go into choosing the right venue for your company holiday party (tips on how to choose the right event venue here). The wrong venue can feel too tight or too big, making your guests feel uncomfortable or like there is poor attendance. In addition to space considerations, selecting the wrong venue can also mean an event without atmosphere or without the necessary amenities needed to make your event a success.

Not compiling a guest list

Planning company party details without a guest list is like blindly trying to make your way through a maze. Without knowing the demographic and size of your guest list, it’s challenging to choose the right venue, select the right entertainment, and make other arrangements. Before you set any details, craft a guest list that can guide your holiday party decisions.

Not enough entertainment

As entertaining as networking can be, don’t rely solely on socializing for your guests’ entertainment. Instead, use your guest list to determine what the best options for entertainment are for your guests. An entertainment agent can guide your efforts and book the best entertainers that fit the bill—and leave your guests satisfied and entertained.

Lack of refreshments

Food can do a lot for an event, and that’s always the case for a company holiday party. In addition to satisfying your guests’ taste buds, the seasonal treats can enhance your holiday party atmosphere and create the complete atmosphere you’re trying so hard to achieve. To add icing on the cake, use entertainers, such as elves, to put your company holiday party over the top.

Thinking you have to do it all

There are a lot of holiday party details to juggle, as well as the budget. One of the most common holiday party planning mistakes is trying to take it all on. Don’t be afraid to contact the experts to coordinate the details and assist you making the right decisions (as well as taking some of the weight off your shoulders); it’ll make your holiday—and your holiday party—a lot more jolly.

8 Jolly Holiday Event Entertainment Ideas

office holiday party entertainersHoliday events can be whatever you want them to be, but the last thing you want them to be is “ho-hum.” Use these entertainment ideas to make sure your holiday event is remembered as more than a bad pun.

Face painters

Professional face painters are the highlight of any family event, which is why adding face painting to your entertainment line-up is sure to please everyone in your audience. With incredible talent, professional face painters come equipped with a wide variety of designs—including holiday images and colors.

Comedian

Make the holidays a jolly time with a comedian that can adapt their act to the season and your audience. A quality comedian is flexible, and can fill their act full of jollies that suit your audience.

Gifts

Gifts are always a hit with your audience. Who better to deliver those gifts than Father Christmas? Hire a professional Father Christmas to hand out your gifts and get everyone in the holiday mood.

Carolers

Establishing atmosphere is never more important that at a holiday event. Carolers can be the key to that atmosphere, filling the room full of cheer with songs specially suited to your event.

Show

Dinner and a show are always hit at a formal affair, and a spectacular musical journey through the years is sure to fit the bill. Inspired by the classic films Holiday Inn and White Christmas, this spectacular holiday concert will take you on a musical journey of memorable songs from the fabulous ‘40’s & ‘50’s. Complete with lavish costumes, original arrangements, comedy and plenty of sentiment, this show is a holiday favorite.

Cookie decorating & crafts

troop of elves and holiday entertainers for holiday partiesSatisfy two event needs with one fell swoop. Give your holiday elves another job to do (besides making toys) at your event. Holiday elves can be the perfect facilitators for cookie decorating, crafts, or passing out gifts. Your audience is going to feel like they were transported to the North Pole for the duration of your event.

Band

Give your audience a holiday concert they’ll never forget. Hire a band that fits your theme: country, jazz, pop, etc. and build your event around your entertainment. Use your venue, décor, menu, and other event details to create a complete holiday atmosphere with your chosen theme.

Mariachi band

If you want to create a more international-themed event, consider hiring an entertainer suitable for an around the world theme, a beach holiday, or an event with a theme that fits a certain country. Your entertainment agent can help you find the perfect entertainer that checks off all the boxes and leaves your guests full of holiday cheer.

Halloween Event Planning Guide

witch Halloween entertainerHalloween events are a unique combination of the perfect theme, venue, food, and entertainment—with every detail executed to excess. There is no such thing as a halfway Halloween party; that’s why you need we’ve put together this Halloween event planning guide to help plan an over-the-top Halloween event.

Select a goal and a Halloween event theme.

The first step of planning a successful event is to choose a goal, because that goal guides many of the necessary decisions made during the event planning process. Next, choose a theme, such as a Monster Mash or Haunted House, that ties all the details together and creates your desire atmosphere (family-friendly, spooky, etc.).

Know your guests.

Once you’ve set a goal and a theme, think about who your guests are and their needs. A family-friendly event is going to be completely different than an adult-only event. Consider the age demographic and location of your ideal guest and what is needed at the venue to make the Halloween event enjoyable for everyone.

Choose the right venue.

The right venue is crucial to the success of the event (that’s why we’ve wrote whole posts about choosing the right venue). For a Halloween event venue, make sure you have the spaces needed for every part of your event (i.e. activities, haunted house, etc.), the technology and electricity needs required for your entertainment, and the square footage for your expected attendance.

Create an entertainment plan.

Start with a bare bones entertainment plan, and let your entertainment agent expand on it. An entertainment agent can recommend reliable entertainers perfect for your expected demographic, your budget, and your goal.

Make sure you have adequate staffing.

Halloween events require adequate staffing to serve food, assist and greet attendees. To create a strong atmosphere, combine those functions; hire entertainers to serve food or greet attendees.

15 Frighteningly Fun Halloween Entertainment Ideas

child with face painting of pumpkin at fall eventCostumes. Mysteries. Family fun. Haunted affairs. No two Halloween events are the same, which is why the list of possible Halloween entertainment ideas is long and varied. That’s why we’ve put together a list of Halloween entertainers sure to make any Halloween party a success (just ask us for the right entertainer or combination of entertainers for your event and budget).

  1. Costumed characters
  2. Hypnotists & Psychics
  3. Magicians
  4. Mind Readers & Fortune Tellers
  5. Face Painters
  6. Human statues (great way to establish a spooky atmosphere!)
  7. Mystery Show entertainers (keep your guests guessing whodunit!)
  8. Gangsters & Roaring 20’s entertainers (for a vintage Halloween feel)
  9. Jazz singerhuman statue entertainers
  10. Bands
  11. Mentalists
  12. Comedians
  13. halloween event entertainer with pumpkin head and orange suitCaricature artist
  14. Celebrity impersonator
  15. DJ

This list is just a starting point, of course. For more creative Halloween party entertainment ideas, contact us to take your event to the next level.

Unique Evening Wedding Reception Entertainment Ideas

LED entertainer Evening may be the traditional time for a wedding reception, but your wedding reception entertainment can be anything but traditional. If you’re looking for evening wedding reception beyond the traditional band or DJ, or for supplemental entertainers that create atmosphere, you’ll want to check out these unique evening wedding reception entertainment ideas.

LED Entertainers

Leave your wedding guests in awe with LED entertainers that can light up any wedding reception. An entertainment agent can include the LED entertainers into your evening wedding reception entertainment plan that wows and entertains.

Theme Entertainers

Make your wedding theme not seem too “themey” by turning your wedding into an experience. Use a wedding planner or entertainment agent to connect all the elements of your wedding—entertainment, décor, dishes—into a seamless atmosphere.

Dinner and a show

There’s no law against dinner entertainment at a wedding; to the contrary, an evening wedding reception with a dinner and a show can be the unique experience that sets your wedding apart. Contact an entertainment agent that can choose the entertainer that fits your taste and with your other wedding details.

Throwback Entertainers

A vintage or throwback wedding gives you the perfect opportunity to choose unique entertainment that takes your guests back to the era you feel you should have been born in (or at least love to enjoy). An entertainment agent with high-quality entertainers can connect you with the period-appropriate entertainers that take your wedding back.

Children’s Entertainment

If your wedding is an all-family affair, make your youngest guests’ (and their parents’) evening by including children’s entertainers in your evening wedding reception entertainment.  Don’t leave them out of your evening wedding reception entertainment; ask a entertainment agent about a magician, juggler, story teller, face painter, or another children’s entertainer that can make the evening memorable and unique.

Our Favorite Event Entertainment Trends

In our 20 plus years in the event planning industry, we’ve seen a lot of trends come and go. It’s part of an evolving industry, and it always makes life interesting—for us and our clients! That’s why we’ve outlined some of the latest event planning trends we’ve seen—and embraced—that make our events extraordinary.

aerialist at event hanging from ceiling

Aerialists

Aerialists are taking events to new heights as a functional part of the event. Aerialists make excellent beverage servers, unique centerpieces, and can serve as other creative parts of any event.

glow in the dark performer

Glow in the Dark Entertainers

Glow-in-the-dark is the latest trend because it makes people say “wow.” It does the same at an event, both for children and adults. Best yet, glow-in-the-dark entertainers have different ways to customize their act for maximum effect.

vintage entertainer serving food

Mixing entertainment & food

This is not a new concept, but event planning is taking this to a new level. Mixing food servers and entertainers establishes an atmosphere that draws your guests in and immerses them into an all-encompassing atmosphere.

gangster and flapper entertainers

Retro

Retro and vintage events are going nowhere; to the contrary, corporate event and wedding planners all out to create a throwback event that makes attendees feel like they are at event in that era.

Combining digital and the live experience

Smart phones and tablets are invading our everyday lives, so why shouldn’t they play a part in our events? Event planners are going to great lengths to combine digital and live entertainment into a cohesive and seamless experience.

If you want to incorporate any of these event entertainment trends into your event, contact us for entertainers that work for your target audience and take your modern event to the next level.

Make Your Event Fun for the WHOLE Family

When your event is an all family affair, it presents a whole new challenge to your event planning. How can you satisfy parents, kids, and every adult that attends? Whether it’s a grand opening, company picnic, festival, or another family event, we’ve put together some general event planning tips that are sure to please your youngest and “most experienced” event attendees.

Hire entertainers fun for the whole family.

One of the key things your event goers are going to remember is whether they enjoyed—or didn’t enjoy—the event. You don’t want to hear “I’m bored” from anyone. To avoid the boredom, contact a pro that can point you to entertainers that aren’t necessarily targeted at one age group over the other or can provide a group of entertainers for every audience in attendance.

If you’re hosting a country-fair themed event, set up stations that are suited for everyone, such as a dunk tank, face painters (that can do kid and adult designs), jugglers, and other acts perfect for your event. For a country luau, contact an entertainment agent who coordinate dancers that the adults approve of but can customize their act so the kids can join them on stage.

Include dishes in the menu that a picky kid would enjoy.

You don’t want the parents in attendance to have to be fishing in their bags continually for fruit snacks. Instead, plan a menu fitting for everyone in attendance. Talk to your caterer about adding kid-friendly dishes to the menu, such as PBJ’s, chicken tenders, cheese quesadillas, corn dogs. In addition, be open to dietary restrictions for buffet or sit down menus that can accommodate any dietary restrictions or allergies (i.e. peanut-free dishes, gluten free, vegan, etc.)

Avoid anything even remotely risqué.

Including anything risqué can back fire, so go to great lengths to plan an event that can offend attendees or leave the parents in an awkward situation around their kids. Make sure that every part of the event is kid-friendly without boring the adults so you don’t have an egg on your face when the event is over.

Choose a family-friendly venue.

It’s your job to think like a parent—even beyond their wildest expectations—and plan for any situation. One of the biggest ways you can do that is by choosing a family-friendly venue (another factor to add to this list when choosing a venue). Locate your entertainers in kid-friendly areas that are safe. Your youngest attendees are going to appreciate your efforts—and so aretheir parents.

Company Picnic Entertainment Ideas for Adults

dance group at adult-only company picnicNot every company picnic is a family affair; when your company picnic is more of a adults-only event, it takes a strategic approach to choose entertainers for your “more experienced” guests. Here are a few ideas that can kickstart your company planning—and put your event on the successful list.

Celebrity impersonators

Nothing impresses your guests more than a celebrity impersonator they can identify (unlike the younger crowd). Contact an entertainment agent that can connect you with an impersonator appropriate for your picnic theme and guest demographic. Nothing completes your anniversary celebration or your retro company picnic than Frank Sinatra (or another appropriate celebrity!).

Band

Give your guests dinner and a concert. Choose the appropriate kind of band that your guests want to see and fits with your theme. A country band is the perfect fit for a country hoe down with barbecue dishes. A jazz band can give your audience the perfect entertainment for your jazz lounge theme. Beach bands work perfect for a lakefront souire, or an orchestra for a more elegant night on the town. Choose an entertainment agent with a full line-up of entertainers so you can get the right band for your company picnic theme.

Themed entertainers

If networking is a goal, contact your entertainment agent for themed entertainers that contribute to the atmosphere but allow your guests to circulate and mingle throughout the event. Themed entertainers and a strategic seating and eating arrangement can combine together to meet your goal and create an enjoyable atmosphere.

Mentalists/Hypnotists/Psychics

If you’re looking for unique entertainment geared more toward adult guests, mentalists, hypnotists, or psychics are the way to go. Use these tips to choose the right venue to set the atmosphere for your guests—then let the décor and their mind do the best.